Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid present in the cannabis species of plants. Due to its potential health benefits, it is becoming a common ingredient in a variety of products. When using CBD, people may experience some side effects, which can include oral dryness.
CBD is one of the many substances found in the cannabis plant. Unlike delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is another well-known cannabinoid, CBD lacks the euphoric effects that people may associate with cannabis.
These substances can have a variety of effects on the human body due to how they interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), or the complex biological system that helps regulate and balance key bodily functions.
Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, typically refers to when a person experiences dryness of the mouth due to changes in the composition of saliva, or a reduction in salivary flow. While it can occur for no obvious reason, it often occurs as a side effect of medications, including CBD.
In this article, we will discuss why CBD and other cannabinoids may cause a person to experience dry mouth.
Is CBD legal?The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the legal definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. This made some hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3% THC federally legal. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3% THC still fall under the legal definition of marijuana, making them federally illegal but legal under some state laws. Be sure to check state laws, especially when traveling. Also, keep in mind that the FDA has not approved nonprescription CBD products, and some products may be inaccurately labeled.
Saliva serves many important functions within the body, such as helping prepare food for swallowing and digestion, defending against pathogens, protecting teeth, and keeping the mouth moist. Experiencing oral dryness can be uncomfortable and may be a potential side effect of CBD and other cannabinoids.
The endocannabinoid system
CBD and other cannabinoids may influence oral dryness and saliva production due to how they interact with the ECS. This term refers to a complex biological system in the body that helps maintain homeostasis, or the ideal internal environment for the body to function correctly.
The body produces endocannabinoids to interact with this system. These molecules have a similar structure to cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant, meaning they can also influence this system.
Dry mouth typically occurs when the salivary glands in the mouth are unable to produce sufficient saliva to keep the mouth moist. The
However, anandamide is a naturally occurring endocannabinboid that has a similar structure to THC. A
The type of CBD product
The type of CBD product a person uses can also affect mouth dryness. For example, xerostomia also often occurs with THC and full-spectrum CBD products can contain up to 0.3% THC. As such, using full-spectrum CBD products could increase the risk of dry mouth. Additionally, while more research is necessary, different delivery methods of CBD, such as smoking, may also increase the chance of experiencing oral dryness.
Furthermore, in some cases it may not necessarily be CBD that is causing dry mouth, but an underlying condition. For example, a person may take CBD to help ease pain and discomfort from arthritis, but rheumatoid arthritis can
Nevertheless, research notes that more research is still necessary to better understand the relationship between cannabinoids and dry mouth.
According to the
- regularly sipping water, or other sugar-free fluids
- avoiding beverages that contain caffeine, such as tea, coffee, or soda
- chewing sugar-free gum or sucking on sugarless hard candies
- sour sweets or fruits may also help
- avoiding spicy or salty foods
- avoiding tobacco or alcohol
- using a humidifier at night
Additionally, people can also use
Evidence from the
- changes in mood, such as irritability or agitation
- changes in alertness, such as drowsiness and sleepiness
- gastrointestinal problems and changes in appetite
- liver injury
- interfering with other drugs, which could lead to injury or serious side effects
- damage to male fertility
Furthermore, many CBD products do not undergo regulation by the FDA. This means that some CBD products could contain other ingredients, such as THC, pesticides, heavy metals, bacteria, or fungi.
CBD products are available in a variety of different forms, which
As such, the way a person uses each product can vary. When trying a CBD product, it is advisable to follow guidelines and instructions on the packaging, particularly as the concentration of CBD can vary between different types of product. A person may wish to start with a weaker strength to ensure they do not exceed the suggested dosage.
If a person is considering CBD products, health experts advise that individuals purchase them from a reputable source. Additionally, a person should consult their healthcare provider before using CBD. This is to ensure that CBD will not negatively interact with any current medications.
Dry mouth is a potential and common side effect of using CBD products. It typically occurs due to CBD interacting with the endocannabinoid system, which can alter the flow, consistency, and composition of saliva. To help relieve dry mouth people can try drinking water or chewing sugar-free gum. Additionally, it may be advisable to avoid activities that can further dry the mouth, such as eating spicy or salty foods, drinking alcohol, or smoking.