How to buy the best CBD oil in Australia - A 10-Step Guide:

How to buy the best CBD oil in Australia - A 10-Step Guide:

At Chronic Therapy, we like to keep our patients up-to-date with the latest developments regarding the regulation of CBD Products in Australia! There can be a lot of overwhelming information, so we have made it easy for you. Keep reading for our simple 10-step guide on all you need to know regarding CBD medications or contact us for a chat (via the chat box on the bottom right-hand side of this page).

  1. What is CBD?
  2. History of CBD
  3. What effects does CBD have on the body?
  4. Is CBD Legal in Australia?
  5. Different Types of CBD Medications
  6. How is CBD absorbed?
  7. Differences between CBD Oils available in Australia
    1. The different types of CBD Oil
    2. Which CBD carrier Oil is best
    3. The concentration of CBD within the medication
    4. The price of CBD oil
    5. Medical Grade vs Green/Black Market CBD Oil
  8. Can you drive while taking CBD?
  9. Barriers to accessing CBD oil in Australia
  10. Chronic Therapy Treatment Process

1. What is CBD?

While over 120 different cannabinoids are found in cannabis, the two primary cannabinoids used therapeutically are Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). According to the World Health Organization, “CBD is the second most abundant cannabinoid; it is non-psychoactive, non-addictive and is characterized by very low levels of toxicity” (1).

CBD is most commonly used for treating chronic pain and a variety of other conditions. However, one can receive numerous potential benefits from using CBD oil, which will be discussed in more detail below.

CBD can be isolated from the Cannabis plant using a number of methods, CO2 extraction being the most common. The active compound is then diluted into a carrier oil to make the final product. This carrier oil makes dosing the medication much easier and helps preserve the compound. This allows CBD’s health impacts to span the whole endocannabinoid system.

2. History of CBD

The oldest written records regarding CBD usage date back almost 5,000 years to China and Ancient Greece. The Ancient Greeks applied it to human nose bleeds as well as wounds on horses. CBD was also medicinally popular amongst Vikings and medieval Germans for relieving pain during childbirth and toothaches.

CBD was first isolated by Roger Adams and his colleagues in the 1960s but has only recently been accepted in the medical community for its therapeutic benefits. In recent decades we have started to understand how and why cannabis affects humans.

In 1992, an Israeli chemist named Raphael McCollum was able to obtain cannabis for research purposes. He elucidated the structure of THC and CBD, which he used to discover the human endocannabinoid system. While researching the plant, McCollum discovered naturally occurring neurotransmitters called endocannabinoids which are structurally nearly identical to the phytocannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.

3. What effects does CBD have on the body?

Unlike THC, CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, meaning it does not cause someone to feel ‘intoxicated’. This is a common misconception associated with cannabinoid-based treatments. People assume that they will get ‘high’ from the medicine, however, this is incorrect as most prescribed CBD oils in Australia contain only trace amounts of THC.

The effects of CBD are generally considered to be much milder. Patients often say it has very little to do with the feeling of consuming actual Cannabis. Keep in mind that this is based on the patient’s personal and subjective experiences. People may react differently to these medications and should always consult a medical professional when taking cannabinoid medications in Australia.

To understand the effects that CBD has on the body, one must first understand the endocannabinoid system. Professor Di Marzo explained the role of the endocannabinoid system to “control the basic physiological functions such as eating, sleeping, relaxation, forgetting and protection.“

  • Pain
  • Stress
  • Inflammation
  • Metabolism
  • Regulating Emotions
  • Memory
  • Cognition
  • Appetite Regulation
  • Neuroprotection
  • Movement
  • Cardiovascular/Immune function.

Yes. In 2016 CBD became a legally prescribable medication. In 2019 CBD became accessible to patients with a prescription for CBD oil in Australia. Most prescribed CBD oils are Schedule 4 prescription medications. For CBD oil products to be classified as Schedule 4 prescribable medication, the CBD oil product must meet the following criteria:

In 2021, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) down-scheduled certain CBD products to become Schedule 3 over-the-counter CBD medications, theoretically making them more accessible to the public. Please click the link above if you would like to find out more about the various schedules of CBD and other cannabinoid medications.

Unfortunately, at this stage, due to the TGA’s strict compounding requirements, as well as the rigorous clinical trials that must be completed by manufacturers to achieve this schedule, no such products are seen on the shelves today.

The only way to access medical cannabis products in Australia is by obtaining a prescription from a doctor. This can most easily be done by taking one of our Free Online Pre-Screening Tests and speaking with one of our qualified medical practitioners.

Over-the-counter CBD products are expected to be available to Australians in Pharmacies as early as 2023. This news will be a relief to many Australians who are suffering from chronic pain conditions and looking to access CBD oil or medical cannabis products in Australia.

CBD dominant strains of flower (marijuana) are classified as Schedule 8 medications (controlled substances). They are available only to patients that meet specific criteria and have tried CBD oil before.

5. Different types of CBD medications

Before we look more closely into CBD oil, it is necessary to understand that CBD does not have to be smoked. In fact, there are a variety of ways in which CBD can be administered to the patient. A few examples of this are as follows:

  • Oil
  • Capsule/Pill/Wafer
  • Ointments such as topical creams
  • Flower - Australian patients now have access to CBD dominant strains of marijuana.

This article will primarily focus on CBD oil as it is currently the most common CBD medication in Australia. Please continue reading to learn about the differences in absorption and how quickly various types of medication provide a therapeutic effect.

6. How is CBD absorbed?

CBD absorption dramatically varies, depending on which CBD medication is taken. The administration method plays a big role in determining the medication's bioavailability (how much is absorbed), as well as the time needed to feel the effect of the medicine.

When taking CBD medication, there are four main methods of ingestion:

  • Sublingually - The oil is absorbed through membranes under the tongue. For this method, doctors recommend that the medication is held under the tongue for 30-seconds before swallowing.
  • Oral Ingestion - Via the digestive system. This is a slower method of absorption. The extended release provides patients with a milder, longer-lasting effect as the medication is slowly absorbed through the digestive system.
  • Inhalation - This is by far the fastest method of absorbing CBD as it bypasses the digestive system altogether. This can be done through a vaporizer.
  • Topical creams - These can quickly reduce local inflammation but have poorer absorption levels.

7. Differences between CBD oils available in Australia

Not all CBD oil is the same. It is important to understand the five main factors that differentiate the various CBD oils available in Australia. These are:

  • a) The different types of CBD Oil (Isolate, Broad Spectrum, Full Spectrum CBD)
  • b) Which CBD carrier Oil is best
  • c) The concentration of CBD within the medication
  • d) The price of CBD oil
  • e) Medical Grade vs Green/Black Market CBD Oil
  • a) The different types of CBD Oil:

CBD Isolate – Often called “Pure CBD” as it does not contain any other cannabinoids, terpenes or healthy fatty acids found within the plant.

Broad Spectrum CBD Oil – Includes all of the plant's cannabinoids and other chemical compounds, excluding THC.

Full Spectrum CBD oil – Commonly referred to as “whole-plant CBD oil”. Full spectrum CBD oil includes all of the plant's cannabinoids (including THC) and other chemical compounds. Patients often experience increased benefits from these medications. This is known as the entourage effect, which refers to the combination of multiple cannabinoids creating a better therapeutic effect when compared to a pure isolate.

    • b)Which CBD Carrier Oil is Best?

All CBD oils use a carrier oil. This refers to the oil that the CBD is mixed with. Carrier oils play an essential role in the bioavailability of the medication (how effectively the body absorbs the medication), as well as the taste of the medication.

Common carrier oils used in CBD oil in Australia include:

Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT) Oil
( )
High Solvency (can have a high concentration of CBD),
( )
Absorbs quickly,
( )
( )
Many black-market suppliers sell Hemp Seed oil as CBD Oil.
Hemp Seed Oil
( )
Has Antioxidants, Fiber & Omega-3,
( )
More expensive than MCT oil,
( )
Lower solvency than MCT oil,
( )
Many black-market suppliers sell Hemp Seed oil as CBD Oil.
Avocado Oil
( )
Absorbs relatively quickly (both orally and topically),
( )
Most expensive carrier oil,
( )
Much thicker than other oils,
( )
High allergy risk (comparatively).
Olive Oil
( )
Rich in antioxidants,
( )
Lower solvency than MCT oil,
( )
Dissolves slower than MCT oil,
( )
Many dislike the taste.
    • c) Concentration of CBD within the CBD Oil

It is important to understand that all CBD oils vary in concentration. Different CBD oils have varying concentrations of CBD per ml of liquid. The concentrations vary drastically between different oils and normally range between 10-100mg/ml.

    • d) Price of CBD oil in Australia

It is important to understand that all CBD oils vary in concentration. Different CBD oils have varying concentrations of CBD per ml of liquid. The concentrations vary drastically between different oils and normally range between 10-100mg/ml.

  • (Price of the Medication) ÷ (Total milligrams of active compound)

In Australia, CBD ranges between 5c to 25c per milligram. For that reason, it is crucial to understand the various concentrations of the medication, as medicines with lower concentrations of CBD are significantly cheaper to buy, but tend to be worse value for money.

    • e) Medical CBD vs Imported Black Market CBD in Australia

In the past, people have often resorted to buying their CBD oil from the green/black market. Historically there have been two main factors driving people towards Green Market CBD:

  1. Few doctors were willing to prescribe cannabis medications.
  2. The price of the black-market CBD medications used to be significantly cheaper.

In recent years there has been a shift. Some medications are now significantly cheaper than black-market CBD oils in Australia. Thousands of Australian Doctors are now prescribing cannabinoid medications to suitable patients. CBD oil has become easier to obtain via a GP (in person) or via an online consultation. Click here to book an online appointment with a Chronic Therapy Doctor.

Benefits of getting a CBD Prescription:

  1. You can legally possess and travel with the medication.
  2. Strict quality controls, ensuring the medicine is up to GMP standards.

There are stringent Great Manufacturing Standards (GMP) protocols that must be followed when producing any cannabinoid medication for Australians. These protocols ensure that all medical cannabis products in Australia are of the highest quality. This is obviously not guaranteed unless the product is purchased with a prescription.

While most black-market medications claim that they are compounded in a reputable pharmacy overseas, a study conducted in the United States, which tested various CBD products available without a prescription concluded that nearly 70% of these medications had less than the advertised amount of CBD. Many were Hemp Seed oil that only contained trace levels of CBD, not enough to offer any therapeutic benefit.

This study is relevant to Australians, as most of these medications have traditionally been imported without a prescription. claiming to be compounded in an American pharmacy. It’s essential to dose the medication accurately and effectively when taking CBD oil in Australia to treat the symptoms of a chronic condition. This can drastically affect the benefits one could potentially receive from this medication.

8. Can you drive while taking CBD?

While motor side drug tests are not designed to detect CBD, it is illegal to drive with any detectable THC in your mouth or system. Most CBD oils available in Australia are full-spectrum and contain trace quantities of THC. While the quantity of THC taken with this medication is not enough to intoxicate you, it is important to know that driving with any detectable level of THC in your system is a crime.

The required time between the administration of your medication and when you are allowed to drive is impacted by a variety of factors including what medication you have taken, and the dose of the medication.

Your Chronic Therapy doctor will let you know how long you specifically will need to wait before driving or operating heavy machinery during your consultation.

9. Barriers to accessing CBD oil in Australia

Until Schedule 3 over-the-counter CBD medications become available in Australian pharmacies for purchase, all patients need a prescription to access any CBD based medications

There are currently three barriers to accessing CBD oil in Australia:

  1. Finding a doctor that is open to prescribing cannabinoid medications.
  2. Find a dispensing pharmacynearby that can fulfil your prescription for CBD oil.
  3. Expensive medications- Many competitors write prescriptions for brands of cannabinoid medications that have greater markups (in price).

The doctors at chronic therapy write generic, electronic prescriptions for various types of cannabinoid medications. We believe that it is unethical to force patients to purchase a single brand of medication. While we help patients purchase the cheapest medications from the comfort of their own homes, all patients can choose to take their e-script to another dispensing pharmacy and purchase an alternative brand of medication.

Chronic therapy offers an end-to-end solution by linking suitable patients with doctors that are not opposed to cannabinoid treatments. Patients with prescriptions can order medicine from the comfort of their homes and will have the medication delivered to them directly. We have made affordable CBD medications available to all Australians (with a prescription).

The culture is rapidly shifting and the stigma surrounding CBD oil is changing. Cannabis products in Australia are becoming more widely accepted as solutions for the management of chronic pain, amongst other conditions. Having said this, many doctors are still not comfortable prescribing such treatments as they are relatively new and considered controversial to some. Click here to speak with a doctor to see if CBD oil is right for you.

Many doctors lack the necessary training or know-how to appropriately prescribe these medications. This leads to a lot of doctors avoiding cannabinoid medications, and referring patients to more well-established forms of pain management such as highly addictive opioid-based medicines.

10. Chronic Therapy Treatment Process

Chronic Therapy has streamlined the process of getting cannabis-based medications in Australia, such as CBD oil.

  1. Free Online Pre-Screening Survey – this prescreening questionnaire has been designed by our team of doctors to determine if patients are suitable for medical cannabis in Australia.
  2. Book a consultation with a Chronic Therapy Doctor. You will be sent a text and email to join your consultation 20-min before it starts. Simply click the link to join the Teleconsultation. Click here to make a booking.
  3. Speak with a Chronic Therapy Doctor - Our doctors will assess you to determine the suitability of cannabinoid medications. If you are a suitable patient you will be sent an Electronic Prescription as well as a link to purchase your medications from our partnered pharmacy.
  4. Have your Medicine Delivered to Your DoorYour medication will be delivered straight to your doorstep.

We know that living with a chronic condition is difficult, this is why we have made receiving treatment simple. We connect patients to a dispensing pharmacy that offers the highest quality medications at the lowest prices! These medications are made available to you to buy once you have obtained a prescription.

We value your privacy. All medication is sent with discreet, plain packaging. If this treatment seems suitable and you are happy with your first month’s results, you can book a follow-up consultation with your doctor (all via video chat) from our website.