July 21, 2021 7 min read

Brain fog shows up for many different reasons—poor diet, lack of sleep, or anxiety are common culprits. For others, a chronic condition like ADHD may be the cause. Luckily, people have found that using CBD for focus can keep the fog at bay, usually with fewer drawbacks than other common remedies.

Thanks to a slew of positive anecdotal reports from people using CBD to enhance focus, researchers have taken interest in CBD's potential for managing various neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions.

The jury is still out on how well CBD performs (though many people experience great results without CBD Multivitamin Gummy), but the general consensus is that it has far fewer side effects than prescription stimulants. It's likely even a suitable alternative to the multiple cups of coffee you may drink to start your day.

But why make the swap? And how do you use CBD for focus in your daily routine?

Here’s what you should know:

Table of Contents
Trouble Focusing and Common Causes
CBD for Focus Research
Is Using CBD for Focus Safe?
Can Children Use CBD for Focus?
How to Use CBD for Focus
Resources

Key Takeaways

  • Poor focus can disrupt daily life, and many people turn to prescription or household stimulants, which may have drawbacks or cause addiction.
  • Researchers have found evidence regarding the use of CBD for focus, and some studies even suggest that CBD may be useful for managing conditions like ADHD.
  • CBD’s side effect and safety profile is often preferable over other focus-enhancing options, leading many people to make the switch to a daily CBD dose.
  • Always talk to your doctor before incorporating CBD for focus, especially if you already take prescription medications.

Trouble Focusing and Common Treatments

Concentration issues affect many aspects of everyday life, and almost everyone finds that they are affected by mental fatigue from time to time, even if they don’t seem to have any underlying issues. Others may have an official diagnosis, like ADHD, or one of many chronic conditions that cause brain fog, like hypothyroidism or multiple sclerosis.

A woman sitting at her computer trying to focus with great difficulty.

Unfortunately, there aren’t very many solutions available for everyday brain fog, and many people turn to caffeine to help them focus. In some cases, a doctor may prescribe medications like Adderall to enhance focus. Both the caffeine and prescription solutions are generally similar—they’re both stimulants that come with various adverse effects.

According to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation, stimulants can potentially cause over-stimulation resulting in anxiety, panic, seizures, headaches, stomach cramps, aggression, or paranoia. This can even be true for your seemingly harmless cup of coffee each morning.

What’s worse is that stimulants are known to be habit-forming, meaning that your body may become reliant on this artificial form of stimulation. Some experts theorize that using stimulants can actually cause your brain fog to worsen over time, especially if you discontinue use.

With that in mind, using CBD for focus already comes with serious advantages—CBD isn’t habit-forming. Some theories suggest that CBD may actually cause reverse tolerance, meaning your need for CBD may decrease over time.

Of course, it only matters if CBD actually helps to improve focus. For that, we’ll turn to the science:

CBD for Focus Research

Research surrounding CBD is still in its infancy, but the soundest evidence to date surrounds the use of CBD for epilepsy. It may sound unrelated, but much of the research has helped uncover the ways that CBD affects the brain and neurological functions, like acting as a neuroprotectant to help ward off some neurodegenerative diseases.

Most of this research highlights some indirect ways that CBD may help improve concentration or memory, but other research takes a more direct approach to explain the benefits of CBD for focus.

A photo of a hemp flower with a diagram of CBD's molecular formula.

The general consensus, however, relies on understanding how CBD works inside the brain via the Endocannabinoid System.

Research shows that the Endocannabinoid System, a major system of endocannabinoids and receptor sites, plays a role in many regulatory brain functions involving mood, memory and learning processes, and more. The Endocannabinoid System may also impact anxiety and sleep, two factors that may inhibit concentration.

Here’s what we currently know about CBD for focus:

CBD is Wake-Promoting

Research has found that CBD has wake-promoting properties that may activate certain portions of the brain involved with hormone production and homeostasis, like the hypothalamus.

This research was mostly focused on the use of CBD to fight daytime sleepiness and may suggest that CBD can help promote alertness when first waking up or if you’re hit by afternoon fatigue.

CBD May Have ADHD Treatment Potential

A 2012 study looked at CBD’s potential for managing certain symptoms related to attention-deficit disorders in mice. The study reports that mice with “reduced social investigative behavior, hyperactivity, as well as reduced attention span," experience a decrease in symptoms after CBD treatment.

Another 2017 study involving 30 patients with ADHD surveyed the impact of CBD on various symptoms and IQ performance on standardized tests. Although the study found significant improvement in cognitive functions and other ADHD symptoms, as well as some improvement in hyperactivity and impulsivity, the authors found the study to be mostly inconclusive.

A Dopamine Boost May Improve Focus

Conditions like ADHD have frequently been linked to lower dopamine levels. CBD, however, is thought to increase dopamine production. Dopamine has many functions, but it’s thought to help enhance focus and cognitive flexibility, which may help explain why many people experience enhanced focus when using CBD.

CBD May Help With Underlying Issues that Disrupt Focus

Often, the cause behind brain fog is unclear, but sometimes it may be related to one or more underlying issues. For instance, brain fog, depression, and poor sleep have all been linked to trouble focusing. Research suggests that CBD may help regulate some of these imbalances, which may subsequently improve concentration, too.

There has been a fair amount of research surrounding the use of CBD for managing anxiety, and a 2015 review suggested that CBD holds potential as a treatment for many common anxiety disorders.

Various reports have also concluded that CBD may help regulate sleep cycles. In addition to the wake-promoting effects mentioned above (which may help regulate the “waking” portion of the circadian rhythm), a 2019 study found that CBD improved sleep quality in patients.

A woman portioning out a dose of CBD for focus and concentration support during the day.

Is Using CBD for Focus Safe?

CBD’s safety profile is still being developed, but the majority of studies describe the cannabinoid as “well-tolerated,” even at high doses. Very few side effects have been linked to CBD, but the most common are tiredness, diarrhea, and weight changes.

Others are concerned about CBD’s connection to cannabis, as some high-THC products can actually make concentration issues worse. Thankfully, CBD is non-psychotropic, so it won’t get you high like THC.

As opposed to common medications or stimulants used to enhance focus, CBD has a sound safety profile. In other words, CBD may help to improve focus without causing the jittery, anxious feelings associated with many stimulants. Plus, CBD is not habit-forming, and leading organizations have characterized it as having no public safety risks.

Note that while CBD is generally described as safe, it may react with some medications and shouldn’t be added to your prescription routine without a doctor’s guidance.

Can Children Use CBD for Focus?

Since conditions like ADHD are often diagnosed in childhood, many people have found interest in using CBD for kids. Many of the studies surrounding CBD involve pediatric doses, and ongoing studies are aimed at evaluating the benefits of CBD for childhood ADHD.

Plus, the most common (and only FDA-approved) use of CBD is for managing childhood epilepsy, so there is definitely potential for CBD as a pediatric supplement.

Like all supplements and medications, you should always discuss these changes with your child’s doctor. We do not recommend giving CBD to children without a doctor’s guidance. In general, children react differently to medications and supplements than adults, so it’s not always safe to assume that CBD is right for your child.

How to Use CBD for Focus

Many people have found that using CBD for focus is the key to less brain fog and boosted productivity, but remember that everyone will experience CBD differently. The way that CBD works depends on your unique endocannabinoid balance, which is why everyone requires different dosages, dosing routines, and CBD formulas.

Because of CBD’s sound safety profile and lack of psychotropic effects, many people can use CBD without any drawbacks. For most people, a low-and-slow approach is the best way to figure out their CBD dosing routine. This means starting with a small daily dose and increasing your dose slowly until your focus noticeably improves.

In order to create a CBD routine to enhance focus, consider the following tips:

  • For the greatest efficacy, CBD should be taken daily. You may want to wait a week or more before deciding to increase your dose.
  • Full Spectrum CBD is thought to offer boosted benefits thanks to a synergistic effect between cannabinoids and terpenes. Many people prefer Full Spectrum CBD over CBD Isolate.
  • When taking CBD for focus, you may benefit most from a morning dose. Others find that they need two doses to help keep brain fog at bay all day. Depending on the type of CBD you choose, CBD’s effects could last anywhere from 2-8 hours.
  • If you think that other underlying ailments may be the cause of your concentration issues, you may need to adjust your CBD dose accordingly. For instance, some people find that taking CBD at night helps them sleep better and wake up feeling more refreshed the next day.
  • Record your dosing routine when you’re getting started. Write down how much you took and how you felt afterward so that you’ll have a reference to go by as you adjust your routine.

Vida Optima Vitality CBD Multivitamin Gummies

Looking for a simple and effective CBD product to get you started? Our Vitality CBD Collection is optimized for daily use and includes a dose of energy-stabilizing vitamins that support general wellness, too. Our CBD Multivitamin Gummies may be just what you need to clear daily brain fog and start feeling your best.

Resources

  1. “Review of the neurological benefits of phytocannabinoids” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5938896/
  2. “Cannabidiol for neurodegenerative disorders: important new clinical applications for this phytocannabinoid?” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3579248/#:~:text=At%20concentrations%20between%201%20and%2010%20%C2%B5m%2C%20CBD%20has,expression%20of%20several%20phosphatases%20in
  3. “Chapter 5 - The Endocannabinoid System and Human Brain Functions: Insight From Memory, Motor, and Mood Pathologies” https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780128096666000058
  4. “Endocannabinoid System: the Direct and Indirect Involvement in the Memory and Learning Processes—a Short Review” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5684264/
  5. “The endocannabinoid system in anxiety, fear memory and habituation” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3267552/
  6. “Cannabidiol and clozapine reverse MK-801-induced deficits in social interaction and hyperactivity in Sprague-Dawley rats” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22495620/
  7. “Cannabinoids in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: A randomised-controlled trial” https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0924977X17302377?via%3Dihub
  8. “Cannabidiol is a partial agonist at dopamine D2High receptors, predicting its antipsychotic clinical dose” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5315552/
  9. “The Neurochemistry of Focus” https://poweronpoweroff.com/blogs/longform/the-neurochemistry-of-focus#:~:text=Although%20the%20actions%20of%20dopamine,information%20you%20have%20learned%20previously.
  10. “Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604171/
  11. “Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6326553/

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Cannabis Encyclopedia

Delta-8 vs Delta-10: Is There Really a Difference? | Vida Optima
Delta-8 vs Delta-10: Is There Really a Difference?

September 17, 2021 6 min read

Delta-8 and Delta-10 have a lot in common with a few key differences.
Read More
Should Delta-8 Taste Like Chemicals? | Vida Optima
Should Delta-8 Taste Like Chemicals?

September 16, 2021 4 min read

If you grabbed a Delta-8 product that has a strange taste, here's what to know:
Read More
Can You Mix Delta 8 and CBD? | Vida Optima
Can You Mix Delta 8 and CBD?

September 14, 2021 6 min read

Is Delta-8 and CBD the magic combination? Here's what we know:
Read More

Subscribe