August 20, 2022 5 min read
Quality and sufficient sleep are undeniably important for optimum performance in life.Sadly, most people struggle to fall asleep and stay asleep, which has led to many other challenges, such as health deterioration. However, some evidence suggests that CBD may help with sleep problems.
Recently, the use of marijuana and CBD to treat various ailments has risen significantly. People have also long used the cannabis plant for recreational purposes. Compounds called cannabinoids in the cannabis plant are responsible for the effects on the brain. The two most prevalent cannabinoids are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). No one would want to ignore that a good night's sleep is important to the overall health and well-being of a human body. According to experts, adults should have 7-9 hours of sleep each night. Proper sleep is undeniably important even for productivity the next day. However, it's unfortunate that falling asleep or staying asleep might be difficult for some people. Some studies suggest that CBD may be a sleep aid. This article discusses whether or not this is true and the associated risks.
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the many chemical compounds naturally occurring in the cannabis plant. Most people often confuse CBD with its counterpart, THC, better known as the substance that causes a ‘high’ feeling. CBD doesn't have psychoactive properties but has been embraced due to its therapeutic benefits. THC, also known as delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, is mostly used for recreational purposes to intoxicate the user. While CBD products may contain trace levels of THC, it’s never enough to get the user high.
Additionally, CBD products are legal under federal law in the United States, provided they contain less than 0.3% THC. Under federal law, this amount isn't enough to intoxicate anyone. Rather, you're left with the benefits of CBD and many minor cannabinoids, as seen in formulas containing full-spectrum CBD or broad-spectrum CBD. However, some CBD consumers prefer a free THC-free product, and for such, a CBD isolate product is preferable.
You may encounter some CBD products that contain delta-9 THC. Consequently, such CBD products may not be available in your state. Always double-check the state laws you live in and those you may be traveling to stay out of any legal trouble. If you are in a state where THC is banned, you can still reap the benefits of full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or CBD isolate to aid you in getting a better night's sleep.
Although research on the effects of CBD on sleep disorders is still young, some users report that using CBD for chronic pain has helped them to sleep better. Currently, it’s clear whether these patients sleep better because of the pain relief or because CBD directly affects their sleep.CBD works in conjunction with a network of receptors in the body called the endocannabinoid system (ECS) to regulate important body functions such as energy, sleep, and mood.
Kwan Cheung & Peiris (2019) found that CBD, naturally found in the hemp plant, interacts with ECS receptors throughout the body, much like molecules produced naturally by the body.Further, experts state that the best CBD products for sleep should help you wind down by addressing some of the root causes of restlessness and stress.
Most people rarely notice that quality sleep is closely related to stress and maintaining a strong immune system. Shannon & Lewis (2019)also found that it can keep you awake if your cortisol levels increase. Moreover, CBD is thought to decrease this, thus keeping your body homeostasis. Studies also state that finding CBD products that contain other ingredients that work together may help the user feel more relaxed and restful. Relaxing herbs like lemon balm, chamomile, and passionflower have been shown to help with providing a full restful night.
The rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep is a common disorder in older patients with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. In REM sleep behavior disorder, patients verbalize and make aggressive movements. Chagas & Eckeli (2014)examined patients with Parkinson's disease and noted that CBD helped manage the REM sleep behavior disorder symptoms. Before consuming CBD, the patients experienced frequent disorder symptoms. After taking CBD, the symptoms occurred fewer times. Although more studies are required to validate these claims, these initial results suggest that CBD is a possible treatment for REM sleep behavior disorder.
Some people also experience excessive daytime sleepiness disorder and thus struggle to stay awake during the day. One solution for waking up on time and staying awake may be CBD.Sadaka & Ozuna (2021) showed that CBD functions as a wake-inducing drug. Consequently, other studies suggest that CBD also functions as a sedating drug. As a result, more studies are needed to determine what doses and methods of CBD use affect wakefulness and sleepiness.
Moreover, while anxiety isn't a sleep disorder, it can contribute to poor quality sleep, inadequate sleep, and sleep disorders. Since CBD calms the nervous system, initial studies state that CBD can be used to treat anxiety-related disorders. Moltke & Hindocha (2021) also showed that almost 80% of patients who used CBD to treat their anxiety reported lower anxiety levels within a month. Subsequently, sleep improved in more than 65% of the participants, followed by fluctuating results.
Sleep disorder, commonly known as insomnia, is a common condition, especially in this century where most people are so anxious and always on the move in pursuit of a better life, as they say. Doctors usually recommend behavioral changes such as cognitive restructuring and relaxation techniques combined with prescription drugs. However, some people try to self-medicate sleeping problems with CBD. While CBD seems generally safe, research into its effects, especially long-term effects, is limited.Medics are unsure whether CBD helps patients sleep, but some evidence suggests that it may enhance sleep duration. Therefore determining the most effective way to take CBD and the right amount to support sleep requires more research. It's therefore important to talk to your doctor before taking supplements or medication, including CBD. A physician is best equipped to advise you on using CBD to improve your sleep, depending on your specific circumstances.
Chagas, M. H., Eckeli, A. L., Zuardi, A. W., Pena‐Pereira, M. A., Sobreira‐Neto, M. A., Sobreira, E. T., ... &Crippa, J. A. S. (2014). Cannabidiol Can Improve Complex Sleep‐Related Behaviors Associated With Rapid Eye Movement Sleep Behavior Disorder In Parkinson's Patients: A Case Series. Journal Of Clinical Pharmacy And Therapeutics, 39(5), 564-566.
Kwan Cheung, K. A., Peiris, H., Wallace, G., Holland, O. J., &Mitchell, M. D. (2019). The Interplay Between The Endocannabinoid System, Epilepsy, And Cannabinoids. International Journal Of Molecular Sciences, 20(23), 6079.
Moltke, J., &Hindocha, C. (2021). Reasons For Cannabidiol Use: A Cross-Sectional Study Of CBD Users, Focusing On Self-Perceived Stress, Anxiety, And Sleep Problems. Journal Of Cannabis Research, 3(1), 1-12.
Sadaka, A. H., Ozuna, A. G., Ortiz, R. J., Kulkarni, P., Johnson, C. T., Bradshaw, H. B., ... &Ferris, C. F. (2021). Cannabidiol Has A Unique Effect On Global Brain Activity: A Pharmacological, Functional MRI Study In Awake Mice. Journal Of Translational Medicine, 19(1), 1-16.
Shannon, S., Lewis, N., Lee, H., &Hughes, S. (2019). Cannabidiol In Anxiety And Sleep: A Large Case Series. The Permanente Journal, 23.
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