Many people are asking how to safely switch from prescription meds to CBD. The thing to keep in mind is that this switch can take some time and that’s okay, it’s all part of the process.
When formulating a CBD regimen for a specific disease or illness, it’s important to understand that CBD should be used regularly for maximum relief. Think about CBD like a daily vitamin or supplement, the goal is to establish a baseline concentration in your system.
Begin Taking Full Spectrum CBD Oil Daily
Full Spectrum CBD oil refers to a CBD oil that includes all of the therapeutic compounds in the hemp plant, like terpenes and other cannabinoids—not just the CBD. These full spectrum extracts are significantly more effective than consuming isolated cannabinoids like CBD alone—this synergy is known as the ‘entourage effect’.
The first step is to start by orally ingesting full spectrum CBD oil daily. Regardless of your ailment, a systemic approach is always necessary. Begin with 15mg per day of CBD.
Begin by taking your full spectrum CBD oil two hours prior to any other medications, this will allow your body to begin processing the CBD oil before being influenced by your current medication. It will also provide your body relief prior to reducing your current pharmaceutical dosage.
Of all the CBD products available, nothing is more effective for overall health than regular oral consumption of a full spectrum CBD oil—it most closely mimics your current medication. Remember, CBD influences the endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for maintaining homeostasis within your body.
Supplement With Other CBD Products
Many conditions benefit from a multi-pronged approach where you treat a problem with a mix of products. You could combat Rheumatoid Arthritis, for instance, with a full spectrum CBD oil tincture to reduce systemic inflammation and powerful CBD topical salve to treat the local joints. The other benefit to this complimentary product approach is that some products provide instant relief for a short amount of time, while others have a longer onset time, but provide relief for the entire day.
The benefits of full spectrum CBD oil are that it provides long lasting, full body relief—the downside is its slow onset time, which can take up to 90 minutes. Having said that, you can apply topical salves when you need relief to a specific, localized area.
Make Positive Life Changes
As you incorporate CBD into your daily routine, you should supplement with other positive lifestyle choices. Most people underestimate the impact of their daily routine when making the switch from pharmaceuticals to CBD.
Obviously your options here will be somewhat dictated by your current condition, but positive lifestyle changes include:
- Eating an organic, plant-based diet
- Regular exercise or yoga
- Attending physical or psychological therapy
- Getting 8 hours of sleep
- Drinking lots of purified water
- Cultivating a positive mindset
Even small changes to your daily routine will have a huge impact on your ability to effectively manage withdrawal symptoms from reducing your pharmaceutical intake.
Taper Off Your Prescription
Never stop taking your medication cold turkey!
Anyone regularly consuming pharmaceutical medications will need to taper off of them in accordance with their doctor’s recommendations, which will vary based on the medication. That’s because abruptly quitting your medication can often trigger serious problems—like physical and psychological withdrawal, or even worsen the symptoms the medication was meant to treat.
Start by building a minimum baseline of 15mg CBD in your system over 5-7 days with the goal of starting to taper down your pharmaceutical intake after one week.
When your CBD oil arrives, start with a 15mg dose. If there are no effects within the first 60-90 minutes, consume another 15mg CBD, and continue this process until symptoms subside.
Once relief is achieved, determine for yourself how much total CBD you took and how long it lasts. This will become your regular dose—simply repeat as relief is required.
Keep ingesting more CBD until you find relief. Remember, you must continue to increase the dosage of CBD until you notice some improvements or relief before you start the actual tapering process. Continue taking your regularly prescribed dosage of pharmaceuticals over this period.
Medication Reduction: Ask your doctor for an initial dosage reduction recommendation—this will vary from medication to medication.
Let’s say your doctor suggests you reduce your regularly prescribed dosage by 10%, continue taking this amount of medication until you feel you have stabilized at the new dose level.
The key here is that you feel stable with the combination of a reduced pharmaceutical dosage and your current CBD intake before you continue tapering. This can be after one week or four weeks, but it could take even longer.
As you make reductions in your medication dosage, you may find that you need to increase your daily CBD intake to offset the reduction in pharmaceuticals—this is normal. In fact, increasing your daily CBD intake is recommended to anyone suffering from the withdrawal symptoms associated with decreasing their medication.
Continue Tapering: Repeat this process until you have fully weaned off of your pharmaceutical medication. There is no rush; going slowly decreases your likelihood of experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
According to A Clinicians Guide To CBD, “There is a general lack of data on the types of drug-drug interactions that may occur between CBD and other pharmaceutical drugs in terms of published evidence of clinically significant interactions at the doses being used by consumers via over-the-counter CBD products.
Generally, at doses of CBD below 50mg or even 100mg a day, the chance of a clinically significant drug/herb interaction is probably quite low.
However, if the patient is taking certain medications such as antiepileptics, immunosuppressive agents post-transplant or cancer immunotherapy drugs or anticoagulantins, it is best practice to be especially careful and to ensure that specialists involved in a patient’s care and prescribing are made aware of any CBD use.”