The time CBD takes to have an effect depends on the same factors that influence how long it stays in your system.

How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System?

How long CBD stays in your body can depend on multiple factors, including the dosage and form of CBD you use. Your body and metabolism can also play a role.

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CBD can stay in a person’s system from hours to about a month. This depends on how much a person takes and how they take it.

The half-life of CBD in the body can range from about 1 hour to up to 5 days . Half-life is how long the body takes to eliminate one-half of a substance. Typically, the body will eliminate a drug within four to five half-lives .

CBD sprays and drops have a half-life of 1.4 to 10.9 hours. Chronic oral consumption of CBD products can increase its half-life to 2 to 5 days, while CBD typically has a half-life of 31 hours if a person smokes it.

This means that CBD sprays can stay in the body for 10 hours to about 2 days, chronic oral consumption can mean CBD stays in the system for 10 to 25 days, and CBD can stay in the system for about a week after smoking.

There are a few variables to consider when thinking about how long CBD stays in your system.

How much you use

As with most other substances, the higher the dose you take, the longer CBD will stay in your system.

How often you use it

The frequency of your usage also determines how long CBD stays in your body. CBD builds up in your body over time if used regularly. This is why you should use it for at least a week to see if it works for you.

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If you use it only occasionally, it’ll clear from your system faster.

Your body

Everyone’s body is different. That’s why CBD and other substances affect people differently.

Your body mass index, water content, and metabolism are only some of the things that can influence how long CBD stays in your system.

Food

What you eat, how much you eat, and when you eat matter. After eating, it takes longer for CBD to reach peak concentration in the blood, and when it does, it’s typically higher than in those who take it on an empty stomach. The body also eliminates CBD slower when fed rather than during fasting states. Fasting is when a person does not eat for a certain period.

Method of use

There are a few ways to take CBD. The method you use affects the onset and duration of effects and how long it stays in your body.

Different forms of CBD include:

  • oils and tinctures
  • pills and capsules
  • edibles
  • vaping
  • creams and lotions

When you vape CBD (which you should avoid for now), it enters your lungs and takes effect quickly, and also leaves the body quickly. Oils and tinctures placed under your tongue are absorbed into the bloodstream faster and linger longer.

Your digestive system metabolizes edible forms of CBD, which can take a while. Creams and lotions are also slow to get into and out of the body.

The time CBD takes to have an effect depends on the same factors that influence how long it stays in your system.

The form used, dosage, and your body composition all play a role and make it hard to predict how quickly CBD will kick in or how it will affect you.

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Generally, you can begin to feel the effects of CBD within 15 minutes of vaping or using it sublingually. Edibles and topical products can take as long as an hour or two to kick in.

Again, it all depends on your body, how much you take, and how you take it. But generally, the effects of CBD can last from 2 to 6 hours.

CBD typically won’t show up on a drug test, but if your CBD product contains THC, it will. THC is cannabis’s main active ingredient. It’s the one responsible for the “high” effect.

Many CBD products contain trace amounts of THC. Depending on the composition and quality of a product, you could have a positive drug test result.

If you’re concerned about THC levels, consider the type of CBD products you choose. Here’s a quick breakdown:

  • Full-spectrum CBD.Full-spectrum CBD extracts contain all of the naturally occurring compounds from the plant they’re from, including THC.
  • Broad-spectrum CBD. This is similar to full-spectrum CBD, but it goes through a process to eliminate THC.
  • CBD isolate. This option contains only CBD.

If going with a full-spectrum CBD, look for hemp-derived CBD instead of one that’s marijuana-derived. Hemp-derived CBD is legally required to contain less than 0.3 percent THC.

People should not use CBD when breastfeeding or chestfeeding. If you plan on nursing in the future, avoid using CBD for at least 1 week beforehand.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) strongly advises against it because of the lack of comprehensive research on the effects of CBD on chestfed babies. So far, some CBD can transfer to babies through breast milk.

CBD products can also contain THC and other substances that pose risks to a breastfed baby. Research is ongoing, but until experts know more, it’s best to avoid using CBD while pregnant or breastfeeding.

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It’s hard to say exactly how long CBD stays in your system because there are so many factors involved. Plus, different bodies can have very different responses to CBD.

Is CBD legal? The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the legal definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. This made some hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3% THC legal at the federal level. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3% THC still fall under the legal definition of marijuana, making them illegal at the federal level. Some states have legalized CBD, so be sure to check state laws, especially when traveling. Also, keep in mind that the FDA has not approved nonprescription CBD products, and some products may be inaccurately labeled.

Last medically reviewed on June 20, 2022

How we reviewed this article:

Healthline has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

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