If you’re in a state where weed is legal, you might be safer smoking (or vaping) it, by going to a licensed dispensary for a high CBD-strain or vape that’s subject to the same regulations that cannabis is. In states like California and Oregon, where cannabis is regulated by state agencies, products with THC are subject to testing for contaminants such as pesticides, heavy metals, solvents, and mold-related toxins. Again, hemp-derived CBD products are currently subject to … nothing.
As of Oct. 10, more than 1,200 cases of a mysterious vaping-related illness, and 26 related deaths had been reported to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which is advising consumers to “consider refraining” from vaping altogether. Of the 771 patients the CDC previously reported data on, the majority reported vaping THC and/or nicotine. Only about 17% reported having vaped a CBD product, but there is still good reason for CBD enthusiasts to take note—and even to be especially cautious.
A brief legal primer
Some of those companies are those that come from the cannabis industry, and therefore have years of experience with extraction and testing.
Kathryn Melamed, a pulmonologist at University of California, Los Angeles, Medical Center who has seen patients affected by vaping, agrees that smoking oils can be dangerous, and notes that the vaping-related illness bears some resemblance to lipoid pneumonia—a direct reaction to lipids or oils in the lungs.
“It’s the wild, wild west,” says Aaron Riley, the CEO of the Los Angeles-based cannabis testing lab CannaSafe, of the CBD landscape. Riley says that many of the CBD products CannaSafe tests would fail if they were subject to the same exacting standards as products containing THC—but they’re not. “You don’t have to get licensed. You don’t have to do any type of testing at all.”
These are the most common devices used to vape CBD vape juice. Some are easier to use than others, but you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to vape CBD e-juice, it’s simple. If you feel intimidated at first, just start with the easiest option and work your way up. Disposables, cartridges and pods are the simplest option if you’re new to vaping. Refillable vape pens are slightly more advanced, but more cost effective in the long run.
CBD is a household term now. Most are familiar with tinctures and the popular choice of edibles like CBD gummies. If you’re new to vaping CBD, it can seem intimidating and overwhelming at first. You should understand that when people say “vaping CBD oil” they are referring to CBD vape juice or CBD vape carts, which are designed for inhalation.
Determine your CBD dosage
CBD oil cartridges are slim cylindrical vape tanks that come pre-filled with CBD vape juice or CBD distillate. CBD oil cartridges require a vape pen or a 510 thread battery compatible with standard 510 cartridges. They typically hold around 0.5 mL to 1 mL of CBD vape juice, and are the second easiest way to vape CBD, next to disposables.
Pod vapes that are refillable are suitable for use with CBD. They must be able to handle thicker viscosity e-liquids because most CBD vape juice contains 70% VG or more. Some of them may look like the JUUL, but they also come in a variety of forms and sizes.
See our guide on how to get the right dosage for vaping CBD, based on your personal needs. It is highly recommended that you start with the lowest possible dose and gradually increase in 5 mg intervals as needed.
Generally speaking, vaping is an unsafe practice regardless of what substances are in the vape pen. And, CBD oil is no exception. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recently linked vaping products to an outbreak of nearly 3,000 lung illnesses that were so serious that even young people were being admitted to the hospital. Meanwhile, nearly 70 people have died from what is now being called EVALI (e-cigarette and vaping associated lung injury). And, the CDC believes thousands more may have admitted to the hospital with lung issues related to vaping.
Sean is a fact checker and researcher with experience in sociology and field research.
What Is CBD Oil?
And despite the fact that the 2018 Farm Bill removed CBD from the definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act, it is still subject to the same laws and regulations as other substances monitored by the FDA. Unfortunately, though, there is very little regulatory oversight of CBD oil in general—even though vaping is one of the most popular ways of using the oil. In fact, the FDA has not yet determined how to regulate CBD vaping products just yet.
If you are considering vaping CBD oil as a way to address a medical concern, talk to your doctor first. The risks associated with vaping and CBD oil are significant and may not provide the benefits you want.
Although the CDC has traced many of the EVALI hospitalizations back to vitamin E acetate, a substance used to dilute oils used in vaping, the risks of vaping CBD oil are not without risk, especially if the vape pens are obtained from illicit dealers, online sources, or friends. At least 26 of the EVALI cases were hospitalized after vaping CBD oil.