By Spike Bowan | June 10, 2018
With CBD oils and products becoming more popular and relevant, there have been more cases of people showing adverse symptoms to CBD. Some of these symptoms are considered side effects or sensitivity to CBD, while other symptoms are allergic reactions to CBD.
An allergic reaction can occur from any product the body sees as an allergen. The most common allergies occur from foods, medications, insect stings, pollen, and pet dander. Since CBD is derived from the cannabis plant called hemp, CBD contains properties like pollen and histamine that can cause allergic reactions. Although allergies to CBD are rare, it is possible for people to be allergic to CBD. CBD has also been known to help with allergies due to the antihistamine and anti-allergenic properties.
An allergic reaction to CBD oil can range from an itchy nose to breathing problems. It is important to stop using CBD at the first sign of any negative side effects from CBD. To understand the difference between being allergic to CBD or exhibiting side effects from CBD, it is important to understand the different symptoms of both.
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, someone with allergies to CBD can exhibit symptoms after inhaling, touching, smoking, or consuming any products containing CBD. An allergic reaction happens when the body’s immune system overreacts to a substance that the body sees as a threat. To protect the body, the immune system will produce antibodies called Immunoglobulin E, which cause the symptoms of an allergic reaction. These reactions vary depending on the person’s immune system and the number of Immunoglobulin E their body releases. An allergic reaction does not always occur on the first exposure to the allergen and allergies can change over time.
Since CBD is extracted from hemp plants, most allergic reactions to CBD are similar to seasonal allergies or allergies to pollen and fungi. These symptoms should go away if you stop using CBD.
Congestion and dry cough
Runny nose and sneezing
Eye irritation and redness
Inflammation and redness
Although rare, anaphylactic shock is a life-threatening allergic reaction that can be caused by an allergic reaction to CBD oil. When someone is experiencing anaphylactic shock, their body is flooded with chemicals that cause their airways to narrow and restrict breathing.
Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, or wheezing
Dizziness or fainting
Loss of consciousness
Allergies to CBD can be diagnosed by a doctor through two methods: a skin prick test and blood tests. A skin prick test is simple and the results are quick, but it is not as accurate as a blood test.
A skin prick test is when a diluted allergen, such as CBD, is applied to the skin with a needle. After 15 minutes, if the location where the allergen was applied appears to be inflamed, red, or itchy, the person may be allergic to CBD.
With a blood test, a sample of blood is drawn to see if there are any present antibodies to CBD. If there are more antibodies than expected, the person is most likely allergic to CBD.
If you are exhibiting any of these side effects or allergic reactions, please stop using CBD and seek medical attention if the symptoms worsen. For those that are worried they might be allergic to CBD, allergy tests are an option for you. Understanding the differences between side effects and allergy symptoms may help you decide if CBD is right for you.
The content on this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. While research has shown that CBD has the potential to help provide beneficial outcomes for several complaints, it is advisable to seek the advice of a physician or other qualified healthcare provider when you have questions regarding any medical condition and when starting, augmenting or discontinuing any existing health routine.