Can Someone Have an Allergic Reaction to CBD?

CBD is used for a variety of health reasons. Both physical and mental benefits have been reported for those suffering from anxiety, arthritis, and many other ailments. Although it is frequently used for the treatment of pain, allergic reactions are possible when using the cannabis plant itself.

What Is an Allergic Reaction?

Allergic reactions can range from mild to severe, depending on the culprit and the individual. For instance, many people experience an allergic reaction to pollen in the springtime. This can cause the sinuses and eyes to become red and irritated. While this can be frustrating, it is not life-threatening. Individuals with certain types of food allergies like peanuts or fish can become extremely sick and may require hospitalization. Both types of allergic reactions occur when the immune system overreacts to a harmless substance called an allergen.

CBD allergies are not commonly found in those who use the substance. However, they do exist. Common allergic reaction symptoms from using CBD include a dry cough and runny nose.

What Are the Different Reactions between Marijuana and CBD?

CBD and marijuana both come from the cannabis plant, but can cause very different results. Marijuana is frequently more potent than CBD and can create a more intense experience for those who inhale it. Because marijuana can induce paranoia and anxiety in those who inhale, physical symptoms can feel intensified. While these symptoms may not actually be an allergic reaction, they can feel like it.

The mental and physical reaction to using CBD is often milder. Because CBD is the preferred choice for individuals who experience anxiety or panic, the calming experience is less likely to lead to intense feelings. In addition to the relaxing psychological response, CBD is frequently used to heal physical ailments like inflammation. This can be especially helpful for weakened immune systems.

What Is a CBD Allergic Reaction?

While there are studies that show CBD has antihistamine properties, this does not mean allergic reactions can not occur. Body chemistry is different for everyone, and what may be tolerable to some is not tolerated well by others. This is dependent on a number of factors.

The exact cause of allergies is unknown, but scientists suggest that both genetics and the environment play a crucial role. Allergies tend to run in families. Many people can inherit allergies from their parents and never even experience any symptoms. If the immune system perceives harmless allergens as dangerous, skin, sinuses, and airways can become inflamed; but not everyone experiences these same symptoms to the same degree.

CBD allergic reactions can include coughing, sneezing, and dry mouth. Very rare side effects include nausea and fatigue. While allergic reactions can occur, it is more likely to find CBD helpful for alleviating allergic reactions than causing them. When applied topically, CBD has been used to help with inflammation, rashes, and bug bite irritation.

Since some individuals are allergic to plants, it is common sense to assume that CBD can produce allergic reactions. For most people who experience common allergies from plants, the symptoms are mild and disappear quickly without any prescription treatment needed.

How to Tell If You Have a CBD Allergic Reaction

Preventing a CBD reaction is difficult unless a family member (usually a parent) has an allergy. Most people find out they have an allergy after they experience an allergic reaction for the first time. An allergic reaction to CBD usually happens approximately one hour after it is used.

If you experience a runny nose, sore throat, red or irritated eyes, and/or dry skin, you may have an allergic reaction. Although these symptoms may be uncomfortable, they can be treated relatively easily with over the counter medication or by simply waiting it out.

Experiencing other allergic reactions may be an indicator that you could be at risk for other allergies. If you suspect you may be allergic to CBD, buying CBD products that have minimal additional ingredients is recommended. Allergic reactions may be caused by CBD or by chemicals that are used in conjunction with it. By purchasing the purest form of CBD, you can eliminate any other possible allergy culprits.

Full Spectrum CBD Oil vs. CBD Isolate

Two specific CBD extracts include full-spectrum and CBD isolate. Full-spectrum CBD oil contains up to .3% THC. THC can technically cause allergic reactions. For those who do experience CBD allergies, they have usually used a full spectrum. Those who have experienced an allergic reaction from marijuana may have an allergic reaction from using the full-spectrum CBD oil simply because it also contains THC. While this is a possible outcome, since the THC levels are so minuscule, the probability of an allergic reaction is still quite low.

CBD isolate has a very low risk of triggering an allergic reaction. Non-psychoactive components will rarely pose any danger. Carrier oils such as coconut oil or hemp seed oil can be removed so that specific allergic reactions from coconut or hemp seed will not be triggered. While allergies could happen, it is unlikely to occur.

CBD Oil vs. Pain Medication

Using CBD is an incredibly safe option for pain relief. Many patients who experience physical pain regularly prefer to use CBD rather than potentially addictive pain medication. The side effects of taking CBD are few, if any.

Allergic reactions can occur with almost any substance. If you are using CBD as a replacement pain medicine, it’s always important to consult with a doctor before using it for medical purposes. While opioid pain medications can provide quick pain relief, they are known for their uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms and addictive properties. CBD does not cause withdrawal or physical dependence.


Allergic reactions associated with CBD are incredibly rare. Although symptoms such as cough, runny nose, and sore throat can occur, they are frequently mild and can be treated with over-the-counter medicine. CBD is known for its anti-inflammatory properties that can help treat irritation and swelling. It is more likely to alleviate these symptoms than cause them.

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