Cannabinol – CBN for short – is one of over a hundred compounds, called cannabinoids, found in the cannabis plant. Perhaps (like many) you’ve always thought cannabis contains only THC and CBD? Not at all. 

While tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) are predominant in the ancient herb, there are over a hundred more cannabinoids – including Cannabinol. Aside from being found exclusively in cannabis, these compounds claim several desirable effects and health gains. 

That said, if you never heard about Cannabinol, don’t feel bad – billions out there are in the same boat! Thankfully, this article seeks to give a comprehensive but brief look at CBN – benefits, effects, and safety.

Where do we find Cannabinol?

Cannabinol is formed when tetrahydrocannabinol breaks down. It also forms when the THC is exposed to light and air over time. When THC-rich cannabis buds age, the THC in the plant degrades into CBN, naturally and gradually.  It is also possible to extract CBN from previously extracted THC.

Benefits of CBN

As a relatively new discovery, research on the compound has only begun. The lack of research makes it difficult to make substantive statements concerning the compound’s therapeutic benefits. 

That said, old discoveries seem promising.  With the rising global interest in the cannabis plant, who knows, perhaps CBN will be the next big discovery in the medical world. 

Here’s a quick look at some acclaimed CBN benefits: 

Anti-inflammation and Pain Relief

A study conducted in 2010 suggests CBD’s potency in suppressing inflammatory responses and, in turn, alleviate disease symptoms. One case study shows that THC and Cannabinol both can trigger the release of vasorelaxation and neuropeptides, making it effective in relieving pain.


CBN is widely considered to have a sedative property that alleviates anxiety disorders and insomnia – among other conditions.

Is CBN Safe?

Although widely safe and highly tolerable, as with all the cannabinoids, large doses may leave some undesirable effects.

  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness 

Inexperienced users may begin with low doses and increase – matching volume consumed with resultant effect. 

CBN and CBD share common side effects. While offering more of a sedative effect, CBN has been shown to give mild psychoactive effects as compared to CBD which offers none.