Can CBD cause headaches?

Can CBD cause headaches?

CBD has skyrocketed to fame over the past few years. Oils, capsules, tinctures, edibles, topicals and vapes are some of the most common forms of CBD consumption. Whether physically or mentally, it has a wide array of health benefits and is increasingly being used to treat all types of ailments.

Even though the parent plant cannabis has been used for its medicinal properties since ancient times, the benefits of CBD were little known to humankind until recently. If you are planning on taking CBD, there might be a lot of doubts surrounding the topic as there are many misconceptions about CBD and hemp.

If you crossed that stage, have consumed it and sensed a headache, it can be a valid cause of concern. Since a handful of people complained of the same after consuming CBD, we decided to look into it and wanted to share with you what we found. Worry not, since the effects of CBD are mild and will not affect you majorly.

Just like every other drug, CBD has both positive and negative side effects. Let us look into what CBD does to the body and if it results in headaches. We have also given a detailed explanation of other explanations for regular headaches. If you are a beginner, you are at the right place to get all the information regarding CBD, its side effects, then read on to know the answer to can CBD cause headaches?

Can CBD cause headaches?

The benefits of CBD were not known for a long time. Once it was out in the open and people started to talk about it, many companies raced to produce and promote the wonder drug that many individuals benefitted from. Unsurprisingly, this also led to a lot of low-quality brands posing as authentic and ultimately prompted the possibility of side effects that some people started to face. 

Headaches are associated with CBD since it provides a feeling of light-headedness. While headaches are not a frequently mentioned side effect, nor that any research has found one, CBD may cause headaches to specific individuals due to various underlying reasons.

These cases are not because of the consumption of CBD in general, as they are perfectly safe to consume for anyone. In fact, it has been shown that CBD can even help with migraines. Any side effects that people face are minuscule and are not a cause of worry. Nevertheless, we will look into why this happens and how to prevent it from happening in the future.

CBD and its uses

Cannabidiol, more commonly known as CBD, is one of the active ingredients of hemp, a variety of the cannabis sativa plant. Discovered in 1940, the usage of CBD became common only recently when the United States government passed the Hemp Farming Act of 2018. 

CBD is used for various purposes. It is especially beneficial in treating inflammation and pain, and other associated benefits are that it relieves stress, anxiety, and other cognitive ailments. When you consume CBD, a feeling of calmness sweeps over you and gives you peace of mind. 

Many confuse hemp with marijuana. Marijuana contains THC, a psychoactive component that causes the feeling of highness. It affects your system and alters your thought processes. It’s important to note that CBD does not contain THC and will not affect you in any way. Even if it does contain THC, it will be in negligible amounts and not present any trouble. 

It’s also important to say that CBD is legal (with varying restrictions) worldwide and can be consumed without apprehension. 

Types and Forms of CBD 

There are many methods of CBD extraction, and each technique affects the end result of these products. CBDs are classified into types based on the varying concentration levels of THC. 

Full-spectrum: This form contains CBD, cannabinoids and small traces of THC in it. Nonetheless, it is safe to use as THC is present below the permissible limit of 0.3%. 

Broad-spectrum: It contains CBD, cannabinoids, and a tiny hint of THC. It is similar to the above except for a much more reduced amount of THC. 

Isolates: It possesses only CBD without cannabinoids or THC. This property makes it ideal and requires only a small amount to display its ability.

The forms of CBD that you can utilize are oils, tinctures, capsules, topicals and edibles in the form of gummies and gelatins. Many also choose to incorporate CBD along with their daily food intake, making it easier for them to consume it naturally. 

Can CBD cause headaches? 

While there is no proof that the consumption of CBD in any form can cause a headache, it is possible that it can trigger one. Nevertheless, even if the intake of CBD starts a headache, it will at most be mild. 

A report published in 2017 on the effects and safe consumption of CBD states various changes that the supplement can bring about in a person. The most prominent ones mentioned were weight gain, appetite changes, drowsiness, hypertension, dry mouth and light-headedness, among a few others. However, headache as a sign was never mentioned in this report, and it is likely that light-headedness could well be a symptom leading to a headache. 

One interesting reason that was found to increase the side effect of this supplement was if other reactions influenced it. If you are on other medications like blood thinners, it could trigger unwanted side effects. Nevertheless, headaches are an infrequent occurrence among users and are not a cause of worry. The following section will help you narrow down the likely reason for this occurrence. 

What could have caused headaches? 

It is important to remember that CBD alone might not be the sole reason for the cause of your headache. We have mentioned some reasons that could have acted as a catalyst. 

Incorrect dosage

Just like any other supplement, taking the recommended quantity is necessary to extract all the benefits of CBD. Consuming less or more than the correct dose has the potential to start a reaction due to CBD’s high sensitivity. As the studies that were conducted used CBD at the proper dosage, it is possible that they would not have observed headaches. 

Poor quality 

With the growing unregulated CBD market, it has become easier for companies to profit through the supplement’s popularity. This has led to the rise of low-quality products that employ artificial or chemical means. Any high-quality and tested product must show a Certificate of Analysis on its label, confirming that it has been lab-tested and authorized for use. The use of organic ingredients with absence of pesticides and low-grade solvents are a sign of a superior product.

Other reactions 

It is possible that the cannabinoids present in the supplement could have resulted in an allergic reaction of some kind. If taken at the recommended dosage, there is little to no possibility as far as official reports are concerned. It is advisable that you consult with your doctor before incorporating CBD into your diet. 

Other potential side effects 

CBD comes in different forms, and each one of them have different absorptivity in our body. The effects of CBD are quite mild and will not affect the majority of users. Some common side effects reported are tiredness, diarrhea, sleepiness, dry mouth and reduced appetite. Some people have also experienced other developments after the supplement interacted with their medications. 

On a general note, CBD should be avoided by pregnant women, individuals with liver issues and people taking high/low blood pressure medicines unless you have spoken with your doctor firstly about it.


So can CBD cause headaches? It is possible that CBD might cause headaches for people taking other medications or due to some allergic reactions. Overdose of CBD is also a principal reason for feeling different effects than the ones they are known for. 

Other reasons not pertaining to you might be the quality of the product. Remember to check for a Certificate of Analysis to ensure that it has been lab-tested. Buying CBD in an authentic store without ordering them online is advisable. With the instances of it being reported very rare, it’s fair to say that in general, CBD does not cause headaches.


1. Can CBD cause rebound headaches?

Research has found that people who use CBD products to treat headaches, like migraines, are more susceptible to rebound headaches. It is primarily due to improper dosing of the supplement in order to get instant relief. Start with smaller doses and increase it according to what works for you. 

2. How does CBD make your head feel?

CBD makes you feel light-headed and comfortable. What you feel is dependent on what form of CBD you take and what your body needs. However, you will never get high as any superior product will not contain THC, the psychoactive component that gives you a high. Even if it does contain THC, it will be below the prescribed 0.3% and you will not feel anything. 

3. Does CBD slow down your brain?

No, CBD will not alter or slow your functioning. It is known to reset the activities in your brain by activating the endocannabinoid system through a channel of receptors. In fact, it protects the brain cells and helps in anti-inflammatory responses of the immune system. 


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