Both CBD and CBN have both become very important medical treatment options that can have a major positive impact on pain management. But with CBD vs CBN, which option is the most effective? Which one can provide the type of results most pain sufferers are looking for? As we explore the pros and cons of each, we’ll delve a little deeper in regard to which treatment option can have the biggest impact on your health and how both CBD and CBN are commonly used.

CBD vs CBN: Because CBD is a well-studied chemical, more is known about its effects and benefits, unlike CBN. CBD also does not cause any sedating effects which CBN can, in large amounts. There simply isn’t enough known about CBN and its true potential. Which is why CBD is the clear winner here. CBD can be used to treat:

  • Seizures
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Inflammation
  • Pain
  • Arthritis
  • Nerve pain
  • Symptoms associated with autism
  • And more.

While for most users, CBN is primarily used to treat insomnia.

Now that you know that CBD is often the chemical of choice, one that’s well-studied and a powerful all-natural chemical that’s versatile and able to treat a wide range of conditions, let’s find out what makes CBD and CBN so different.

What is CBN?

CBD stands for cannabidiol, while CBN stands for cannabinol. Both CBN and CBD are cannabinoids. To date, scientists have isolated a total of one hundred and thirteen different types of cannabinoids, including:

  • CBE
  • CBL
  • THCV
  • CBG
  • CBC
  • THCA
  • CBT

THC is by far the most widely known cannabinoid, due to its powerful psychoactive effects. But CBN and CBD are different than THC for several reasons.

How These Chemicals Work

When you vape, eat, dab, or smoke a cannabis product, you introduce cannabinoids such as CBN and CBD into your bloodstream. As the blood circulates, the cannabinoids move through your body to your brain.

Once the cannabinoids have reached your brain, they activate special neurons that produce a wide range of effects throughout the body and the brain.

As an example, when you’re stressed or have anxiety, CBD will send a signal to your brain to release anti-anxiety hormones.

How CBN and CBD are Produced in the Cannabis Plant

How CBN and CBD are Produced in the Cannabis Plant

It starts with the biosynthesis in the cannabis plant producing cannabigerolic acid, or CBGA for short. This acid is combined with other chemicals to form CBCA, CBDA, and THC-A. These are essentially the acid forms of CBC, CBD, and THC.

All of these changes occur in the growing, live cannabis plant. The plant eventually needs to be harvested. After which you can consume the plant but you won’t feel any of the effects that the marijuana plant is known for. This is because the acid cannabinoids must first be broken down in order to be used in the traditional sense. Decarboxylation is how they’re broken down. There are a couple of ways this can happen: place the cannabis in the oven to bake or set it on fire. But lighting it on fire will only be a good option if you plan on smoking it. If you have other plans for your weed, such as shatter or distillate, then you will first need to bake it.

During the decarboxylate process, the heat breaks down the bonds that keep the acid molecules together. Once the acid is burned away, you’re then left with CBC, CBD, and other cannabinoids.

But CBN is a little different. There are only a couple of proven ways that CBN can be produced: aging or decarboxylation.

Some of the THC breaks down further during the decarboxylation process in order to produce CBN. This is a relatively fast process.

The aging process will require more time. Once the raw cannabis is harvested, the acids will break down naturally. Considering it’s such a lengthy process, most growers prefer the decarboxylation method.

Those who prefer the aging method will have to wait for a period of several weeks before the final product is ready. During that time, the THC-A will break down into CBN-A which will become CBN eventually. Keep in mind that this process only works for CBN and will not work for CBD.

Can CBN and CBD Get You High?

Let’s start with CBD.

CBD cannot get you high and actually works against the effects of THC when they’re taken together to prevent the user from becoming too high. If you use top of the line products such as Diamond CBD Full Spectrum MCT Hemp Oil, then rest assured, you will not experience any type of high.

Now, CBN is mildly psychoactive. In the past, the mildness led most users to consider it as non-psychotropic, however, recent studies have proven that CBN can be used as a sedative with excellent effects.

Basically, CBN produces the backend of a typical high, and all without any of the unwanted effects that you’ll experience from THC.

CBN and CBD Benefits

Both cannabinoids offer similar beneficial effects. While it’s true that CBD tends to offer more benefits, scientists are still learning about the true potential of CBN, so I expect its list of benefits to continue to expand in the near future.

Both cannabinoids can be used to treat:

  • Insomnia
  • Pain
  • Inflammation
  • Seizures
  • CBD is commonly used to treat:
  • Osteoporosis
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • OCD
  • PTSD
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Side Effects

Both cannabinoids have very few side effects linked to use. Even top brands of CBD oil can cause dry mouth, however, if you’re using it to treat a serious condition, this mild side effect is a fair tradeoff for the type of results it offers. Another known side effect linked to CBD use is the fact that it can interfere with the liver’s ability to process certain types of medications.

CBN also does not cause any serious side effects. Although, it does work as a sedative, as I mentioned earlier. However, in many cases, people suffering from insomnia or other sleep-related issues will specifically take CBN in order to enjoy a better night’s rest.

The Major Differences Between these Two Powerful Cannabinoids

The Major Differences Between these Two Powerful Cannabinoids

Both of these cannabinoids share a number of similarities including:

  • They both interact with the receptors in the brain
  • Both are cannabinoids
  • They offer many of the same benefits
  • They will not get you high
  • Both have no major side effects linked to use

So, how are they different exactly?

  • Each type of cannabinoid is produced within the cannabis plant in a different way
  • CBD offers more benefits
  • CBD can be used to treat a wider range of conditions

CBD Takes the Lead

If you’re looking for a natural solution to pain management, anxiety, stress, depression, inflammation, I recommend trying CBD oil first. More is known about this powerful cannabinoid, and as it stands, it offers a wider range of benefits when compared to CBN. If you don’t experience the type of results you’re after with CBD oil use, you can always switch to CBN. For more information on leading CBD products and how CBD oil works, click here to read by CBD oil buyer’s guide.

CBN: More Research is Needed

Years ago, we didn’t know much about CBD or its potential to treat pain, anxiety, symptoms associated with autism, inflammation, and epilepsy. As we learned more, CBD quickly became one of the go-to all-natural treatments for these conditions and more. CBN is not as widely known as CBD. More studies are needed in order to understand CBN’s full potential. While its name may be similar to CBD, it features a unique profile of benefits and effects that have researchers scrambling to investigate. These benefits include:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Pain relief
  • Antibacterial
  • Promotes bone cell growth
  • Promotes sleep
  • Anti-convulsive
  • Appetite stimulant

By far, CBN’s sedative effect is its most pronounced attribute. Studies have shown that a low dose of CBN is as effective as a prescription sleep aid, or prescription sedatives that are used to treat seizures, and symptoms associated with anxiety. Unlike THC, CBN does not cause any intoxicating effects.

Related Questions

Can CBN Get You High?

No. CBN is not a psychoactive cannabinoid like THC is, so you will not feel any of the same effects when taking CBN. However, CBN is commonly used as a sedative. Because of this, I don’t recommend driving or operating heavy machinery when taking CBN, at least initially, until you have learned how your mind and body respond to it. It’s important to experiment with the CBN dosage, beginning with a lower dose and gradually increasing it based on the type of effects you’re after. Make no mistake, when used as a sedative, CBN is very powerful. If you’re new to CBN use and you’re unsure what dosage to use for sleep, speak with your doctor before use. I also recommend consulting your physician about CBN use if you’re currently taking other types of medications, in order to ensure that the CBN will not negatively impact the effects of your current medication regimen.

What are the Benefits of CBN?

There are several cannabinoids found in cannabis, with CBD and THC being the most well-known. However, CBN is another cannabinoid that’s currently gained some notoriety, offering a variety of properties that are well worth understanding. CBN has the potential to treat a variety of health problems from healing bone cells to relieving stress and promoting sleep. But because the presence of CBN often indicates that less THC is present, since CBN fights against the effects of THC, many people consider CBN to be a bad cannabinoid. While it’s true that CBN doesn’t bind well to cannabinoid receptors, CBN is still able to produce powerful sedative effects, especially when it’s mixed with THC. But it’s not psychoactive, even though it contains the properties of a sedative. Because of this, it can be useful for people who do not want to experience any type of psychoactive effects. Aside from its powerful effects when used as a sedative, some studies have also shown that CBN use can potentially stimulate bone tissue growth. It has also been shown to ease the overgrowth of cells which can be important for people who suffer from certain skin conditions such as psoriasis. Just like CBD, CBN is also a powerful anti-inflammatory.

Are Terpenes Safe?

Yes. There are no known side-effects associated with terpene use. Terpenes will work to make your high last longer, increase the strength of your cannabis, and can provide additional benefits such as improved mood, or a boost in energy. The type of effects you can expect from terpenes use will be based on the type of terpenes you use and how much you use. In terms of safety, since terpenes are all-natural and are non-psychoactive, you cannot overdose on terpenes. However, adding too much terpenes to your cannabis can negatively impact the flavor and aroma. Terpenes are very pungent and potent. Because of this, you will only need to use a drop or two of this powerful oil. To learn more about terpene use, click here to read my terpenes buyer’s guide.

Can You Mix CBD with Terpenes?

Yes, you can. The kind of terpenes you add to your CBD oil will be based on the type of effects you’re after, whether you need help falling asleep at night, you’re in need of pain relief, or you suffer from joint pain and are using CBD and terpenes to reduce inflammation. To learn more about adding terpenes to CBD oil, THC, and more, click here to read my article Working With Terpenes: How to Mix and Add to Buds, Distillate and Shatter, which discusses how to properly add and mix terpenes.

Final Thoughts

CBD vs CBN: CBN and CBD are both cannabinoids, but CBN is not as widely used as CBD. Over the years, many studies have been conducted to learn more about CBD, how it works and what type of benefits it has to offer, but not much is known about the true potential of CBN use. Currently, CBN is primarily used by people suffering from insomnia or those who have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. In comparison, CBD is by far the most versatile cannabinoid.