In the modern world where everything is moving at an unprecedented speed, increasingly more people are grappling with sleep disorders. In the U.S, one in four adults suffer an acute episode of insomnia each year. While over-the-counter pills have been the mainstay of treatment, people are seeking natural remedies that come with fewer side effects.
Many people acknowledge the stimulating effects of cannabis that are usually as a result of the psychoactive cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). However, many are not aware of the sleep inducing properties of this plant. This article explains how a non-psychoactive ingredient in the cannabis plant called cannabidiol (CBD) can be used to promote restful sleep.
How Does CBD Affect Sleep?
Lack of sleep weakens the immune system, increases inflammation, and elevates the risk for various health conditions such as hypertension, obesity, diabetes, depression and heart attack. CBD has been proven to greatly improve sleep disorders.
CBD has a marked effect on the ECS in the promotion of rest and sleep. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a multifaceted cell-signaling system composed of endocannabinoids, enzymes, and receptors. Endocannabinoids are molecules made by your body that are similar to cannabinoids such as CBD, which keep bodily functions running smoothly. The two main endocannabinoids produced by the body are anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol.Amide Hydrolase is an enzyme that breaks down anandamide. Low levels of anandamide are associated with stress and lack of sleep. While THC binds to CB1 and CB2 receptors to induce a high, CBD does not. CBD inhibits Amide Hydrolase, which increases the levels of endocannabinoids in your body and allows your body to get relaxed, allowing for decreased anxiety and better sleep. In addition, CBD, especially full spectrum CBD contains even more cannabinoids which might further enhance the CBD for sleep benefits.
The range of CBD products are vast and varied, and differ in content and potency. For some CBD oil drops will do the trick and for others CBD edibles or CBD bath bombs for relaxation can work better. Perhaps the best way to determine what CBD product will help you with sleep is to try a wide array and find what works best for you.
Does CBD actually help with sleep?
The simple answer is yes. As we have seen, CBD can help the body relax and go to sleep better and faster.
CBD and Insomnia
Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years with some cultures describing it as a “powerful sedative”. Recent research has shown CBD to improve sleep within 1 month when administered in doses of between 25 and 175mg a day.
As discussed earlier in this article, CBD has an effect On the ECS, encouraging the longevity of the endocannabinoid that promotes relaxation. CBD may also have an effect on cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone that ordinarily peaks in the morning. People suffering from insomnia experience high cortisol levels throughout the night leading to sleep deprivation.
A study carried out in 2019 investigated the benefits of CBD for sleep. The researchers found significantly lower cortisol levels in subjects taking between 300-600mg of CBD oil. The findings are suggestive of a sedative effect which affects the release of cortisol.
In a clinical trial to measure the effect of CBD on insomniacs, doses ranging from 40-160mg of CBD were administered along with a placebo and 5 mg nitrazepam. The subjects receiving the higher doses of CBD reported better sleep, and all the subjects on CBD better quality sleep with less dream recall.
Research has shown that CBD can help the body relax and go to sleep better and faster with significantly less dream recall. For this and this reason it is definitely an option worth exploring.
CBD is often used to manage anxiety, and to offer relief for patients besieged by insomnia as studies suggest it helps them both fall asleep and stay asleep. CBD is very promising as an option to manage insomnia, anxiety, and chronic pain.
Does THC Induce Sleep?
After consuming moderate doses of THC some consumers end up feeling sleepy. This happens because THC acts centrally to induce drowsiness and sedation. However, higher doses of this psychoactive cannabinoid will trigger euphoria and other unpleasant side effects. This may not work well for consumers wishing to fall asleep while avoiding the typical “marijuana high.” CBD on the other hand does not cause these side effects, which makes it more appealing as a sleep aid.
Does Cannabinol (CBN) Induce Sleep
CBN is one of the numerous phytocannabinoids that are found in cannabis. In some quarters CBN is referred to as the “sleeper phytocannabinoid.” This is due to the sleep inducing properties of CBN.
Early this year, Dr. Kaufmann led a research that was investigating the sleep promoting properties of CBN. The study which was titled “Use of a water-soluble form of cannabinol for the treatment of sleeplessness,” was published in the International Journal of Complementary Alternative Medicine. From this research it was clear that CBN has the potential to address a myriad of sleep disorders.
What other things can help you sleep better
In addition to taking CBD, there are several behavioral strategies that can help promote better sleep. These are:
- Taking time to wind down before retiring to bed without bright screens. A brightness filter should be used if you really have to look at a screen.
- Managing anxiety and stress through outlets such as journaling or seeking the professional help of a therapist in more serious cases.
- Setting a regular sleep/wake cycle and training your body to follow it in the absence of a routine.
There are many products that contain the required CBD to help you get to sleep faster, and stay asleep for longer while experiencing better quality of sleep. Do not hesitate to make an order today and start experiencing the sleep enhancing and relaxing qualities of CBD!