CBD and Sleep
Although sleep is essential to our health, its biological purpose is not yet fully understood. Strangely, the seemingly inactive state of sleep is actually a dynamic and critical process that helps us maintain memory, build immunity, restore tissue, regulate metabolism and blood pressure, control appetite and blood sugar, and strengthen the learning process along with countless other physiological processes. And these processes are all regulated by the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institute of Health (NIH), the new findings suggest that “sleep plays a household role in removing toxins that are formed in the brain when awake.”
Briefly about sleep cycles.
Night sleep consists of 3 – 5 cycles, each of which begins with slow sleep and ends with fast sleep, if a cycle is disrupted, the next night the corresponding cycle is extended, some sleepless nights are compensated by the prolongation of sleep cycles in the following nights.
During the sleep phase, the rhythms of the electrical activity of the cerebral cortex characteristic of waking end, and human contact with the environment is lost.
The deep stage of sleep is dominated by the slow 6 – rhythms of electrical activity in the cortex, so this stage is often called slow sleep.
In the less deep sleep stage, slow rhythms are replaced by a variety of faster rhythms, so it is called fast sleep, intense rearrangement of tissue metabolism, organ activity, as well as cerebral nerve activity, preparation for the next waking period, dreams often caused by irritation and effects. with intensification of internal organs and relaxation of skeletal muscle, tendon and joint ligaments.
Poor sleep is the first recorded medical complaint not only in the United States, but a serious public health problem worldwide. An adult needs an average of seven to eight hours of sleep a day. However, many people do not sleep regularly.
The survey found that more than 60% of American adults report that they have trouble sleeping even several nights a week. More than 40 million Americans suffer from more than 70 different sleep disorders.
The most common sleep-related problems are:
⦁ Insomnia – when you cannot fall asleep or sleep.
⦁ Sleep apnea – which includes difficulty breathing during sleep.
⦁ Restless Legs Syndrome – This is characterized by tingling, discomfort and even pain in the legs that increases at night and is relieved by movement.
⦁ Diurnal arrhythmias – when the internal clock is turned off and sleep patterns are disturbed.
⦁ Parasomnias – associated with abnormal movements and activities during sleep, including sleepwalking and nightmares.
⦁ Excessive daytime sleepiness – when an individual experiences persistent daytime sleepiness from narcolepsy (sleep attacks, when you suddenly fall asleep but wakes up after a few minutes as if from normal sleep), or another medical condition.
Living with a sleepless night can be a depressing experience. From influencing energy levels and mood the next day to not being able to reach your full potential, sleepless night – even if it only happens for one night – can have a real impact on your health and well-being.
Poor sleep can become a risk factor for serious illness. Compared to people who get enough sleep, adults who have had little sleep (less than 7 hours in a 24-hour period) are more likely to experience one or more of the 10 chronic health conditions, including obesity, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, stroke, and more.
Lack of sleep due to insomnia is associated with an increased risk of depression, anxiety and forgetfulness. Inability to get enough sleep can even increase the risk of neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia.
Why do we suffer from insomnia?
Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders. According to data released by The Guardian in 2018, around 16% of all adults in the UK sleep less than six hours a night.
Another 19% sleep only six to seven hours – less than the seven to nine hours recommended by the National Sleep Foundation each night.
Although most people associate the term “insomnia” with an entire night spent awake trying to fall asleep, the reality is that insomnia can range from mild to severe. Signs of insomnia could include:
⦁ Trying to fall asleep for several hours after lying in bed.
⦁ Wake up in the middle of the night, then it is difficult to fall asleep again.
⦁ Often wakes up at night for a short period of time.
⦁ Relying on supplements or medications to fall asleep.
⦁ Wake up early (for example, before sunrise) and try to sleep again.
⦁ Difficulty concentrating and working productively due to poor quality sleep.
Fortunately, there are several options available to prevent insomnia and improve sleep quality. And we will look at them in this post.
Over the last few years, Cannabis and CBD oil have become an increasingly popular natural insomnia suppressant. Although research is still at an early stage, there are promising signs that CBD is an effective treatment to promote and improve sleep.
Below we have looked at the potential benefits of CBD as a sleep remedy and natural insomnia-reducing therapy. We have also explained how you can use CBD to improve sleep if you currently have difficulty falling asleep, sleeping, or sleeping deep enough to ensure optimal health.
A little look back at history.
Cannabinoids have been used for centuries to promote drowsiness and help people fall asleep. Cannabis was included in the list of ‘narcotica’ and ‘anodyna’ (painkillers) in a positive medical reference published in the 18th century in Materia Medica. It was reintroduced in Western medicine by Sir William B. O’Shaughnessy in 1843, leading to studies highlighting the remedial properties of ‘Indian hemp’ in sleep disorders.
“Of all the anesthetic drugs ever offered, Indian hemp produced the greatest effect, similar to natural sleep, without causing extreme anxiety or loss of bodily functions without fear of a dangerous reaction and sequential paralysis,” observed German researcher Bernard Fronmueller in 1860.
Nine years later, Fronmueller reported that in 1,000 patients with sleep disorders, 53 percent of them were cured with Indian hemp 21.5 percent was partially cured, and 25.5 percent had little or no effect.
Sleep problems still encourage a large proportion of people to seek help with Cannabis. Because, as we mentioned at the beginning of the article, poor sleep and lack of sleep cause physiological changes in the body after one night, leading to slower response times, cognitive activity, less energy, increased pain and inflammation, and in many cases overeating or cravings for high fat and high-carbohydrate “comfort” dishes.
A 2014 study by Babson et al notes found that around 50% of long-term Cannabis users (over 10 years) report using Cannabis as a sleep aid. Among medical Cannabis patients, 48% report using it to treat insomnia.
Another study found that 40% of those who suffer from insomnia also suffer from anxiety and depression or other mental disorders. (Roth, 2007) Would you be surprised to learn that people with mood disorders who use Cannabis have the highest sleep improvement – 93%?(Babson & Bonn-Miller, 2014).
What, then, are the reasons why good sleep is disrupted and how Cannabis and CBD therapy can improve it:
Stress and mental health disorders. Insomnia can occur for a variety of reasons. The most common is stress. If you feel excessively stressed about your work, personal life, or anything else that is currently affecting you, there is a real risk that it could affect your chances of getting quality sleep.
Other possible causes of insomnia are anxiety and depression. Often, insomnia that results from these conditions can exacerbate their effects, creating a cycle in which the symptoms of depression or anxiety become more severe, which further affects the quality of your sleep.
Physical health conditions as pain. Some aspects of your physical health can also affect your ability to fall asleep. If you have a medical condition such as chronic pain, difficulty breathing, indigestion, or anything that affects your comfort level in bed, it may also affect your ability to sleep.
In addition to the desire for good sleep, pain treatment is another common reason for using Cannabis. Chronic pain is a major public health problem, many of whom also suffer from sleep disorders. Sometimes it is difficult to understand whether pain causes insomnia or whether insomnia causes pain.
Patients who want both pain relief and better sleep can achieve positive results with Cannabis and CBD. (A 2014 article by Babson & Bonn-Miller indicated that over 83 percent of surveyed patients taking cannabis for pain said they experienced improved sleep.)
Different cannabinoid ratios helped in different ways: “Compared to placebo, CBD had a significant effect on pain, THC had a significant effect on pain, muscle spasms, spasticity and appetite, and combined THC: CBD dose significantly reduced muscle spasm and improved sleep.”
The authors concluded that the combination of CBD and THC (15 mg of them) “improved sleep synergistically.” Of the thirteen studies analyzed in this article, seven showed an improvement in sleep. Six of the seven were performed with Sativex®, a sublingual spray of 1: 1 CBD: THC, indicating that a balanced cannabinoid profile facilitates sleep improvement in patients with chronic pain. (Nicholson et al had similar results in a double-blind placebo-controlled with a 4-way crossover design study evaluating the effect of cannabis extracts on nocturnal sleep, early-morning performance, memory, and sleepiness in eight subjects ages 21-34 years old. A cross-over design is one where each group of participants take two or more interventions; in this case four different preparations were tested, including THC (15 mg) alone; THC and CBD together (5 mg each and 15 mg each); and a placebo. They scientists found that “although impaired memory was observed the next day when 15 mg THC was given alone overnight, there were no effects on memory when 15 mg THC was ingested with 15 mg CBD.” They also found that the effects of THC and CBD appeared to be dose dependent as evidenced by the fact that 7.5 mg of THC did not impair memory, but 15 mg did.)
PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Cannabis use is also common among those with PTSD. A small open-label study in Israel showed that 5 mg of inhaled THC twice daily in patients with PTSD improved sleep and reduced the incidence of nightmares. This correlates directly with similar test results associated with Nabilone, a synthetic THC-like agent.
Memory processing occurs when we are asleep, so there is reason to believe that someone suffering from PTSD, especially those experiencing nightmares, would benefit from better sleep using Cannabis or cannabinoids.
At first glance, it may seem that Cannabis is only a suitable treatment for PTSD patients; in the medical literature, this is sometimes the case – negatively described and, so far, most studies of cannabinoids and PTSD have been conducted from an addiction perspective – will Cannabis harm PTSD patients and turn them into addicts?
Increasingly, researchers are recognizing the crucial role of the endocannabinoid system in helping us forget painful memories, a normal process that is somehow unregulated when PTSD occurs.
In some cases, THC and other herbal cannabinoids may provide sufficient relief for PTSD patients to begin to understand traumatic memories and begin the healing process. None of this can happen without quality sleep.
“If you can’t sleep, your world is really going to hell very quickly,” said Al Byrne, a U.S. Navy veteran and medical Cannabis advocate.
Many military veterans and victims of sexual violence use Cannabis to treat PTSD-related symptoms. The 2016 case study provided clinical data that confirmed the use of CBD oil as a safe and effective treatment to reduce anxiety and improve sleep in a young girl with PTSD.
The pharmaceuticals provided minimal relief to a 10-year-old girl who had suffered sexual abuse as a young child. Her medications caused major negative side effects, while the CBD oil regimen caused “a permanent reduction in anxiety and a steady improvement in the quality and quantity of the patient’s sleep.”
This is not an isolated example. CBD oil, which is an increasingly popular treatment for anxiety and sleep problems, has emerged in recent years as a viable alternative to Big Pharma.
Habits, diet and lifestyle factors. Usually, your habits affect your ability to fall asleep. For example, if you drink a lot of caffeinated drinks in the afternoon and evening, such as coffee or energy drinks, they may prevent you from falling asleep later in the night.
Other habits that can affect the quality of your sleep include excessive alcohol consumption, long sunbathing, taking large amounts of food shortly before bedtime, neglected exercise, and exposure to bright light sources in the evening/night.
Medicines. If you are currently taking prescription medications, there is a risk that they may adversely affect your sleep quality. For example, many commonly prescribed thyroid medications, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) medications, thyroid medications, and painkillers can affect your body’s natural sleep cycle.
Some supplements, such as herbal weight loss capsules and pre-workout stimulants, can also affect your sleep cycle and make it harder to fall asleep than before.
According to an industry study, people spend a total of several billion dollars a year on sedatives and sleeping pills, over-the-counter sleeping pills and herbal sleeping pills. From 2021 onwards, the market growth rate for such products is projected to be around 4.5 percent.
The search for a good night’s sleep can sometimes be dangerous to human health. In his article, Daniel F. Kripke, a medical expert, sleep expert, and co-founder of the Scripps Clinic Vitebri Family Sleep Center, discusses the dangers of sleep aids in his paper “Hypnotic drug risks of mortality, infection, depression, and cancer: but lack of benefit.”
Dr. Kripke reviewed 40 studies of prescription sleeping pills that include hypnotics (sleeping pills) such as zolpidem, temazepam, eszopiclone, zaleplon, triazolam, flurazepam, quazepam, and other sleeping barbiturates. Of these 40 studies, thirty-nine found that hypnotic use was ‘associated with excessive mortality’, which means that the risk of death for hypnotic users is 4.6 times higher.
Gloomy statistics: 10,000 deaths a year are directly caused and attributed to hypnotic drugs, based on data verified by doctors. However, studies show that the death toll can actually be as close as 300,000 to 500,000 a year. The difference may be because the use of hypnotics at the time of death has been little reported, and the fact that prescription sleeping pills are rarely listed as a cause of death.
Dr. Kripke concludes that even limited use of sleeping pills causes “next-day dysfunction,” increases the risk of road accidents, increases the number of falls and accidental injuries, especially among seniors, many new cases of depression compared to randomized placebo, and increases suicide. risk. Also, the use of opioids, in combination with hypnotics, two known dose-dependent respiratory depressants, can be hazardous, especially when mixed with alcohol and other drugs. (In 2014, there were 47,055 accidental opiate overdose deaths. Dr. Daniel Kripke estimates one third of them also involved various hypnotics as a cause of death. It should be noted that cannabis has been shown to improve safety and effectiveness of opiates making it possible for the patient to take a lower dose, thereby reducing the risk of side-effects including death. In some cases, cannabis can replace both the opiate as an effective painkiller and the hypnotic.)
How can CBD help improve sleep?
For the treatment of insomnia, doctors usually prescribe medicines such as benzodiazepines and benzodiazepine-like medicines. You may have heard of these drugs as diazepam, zolpidem and zopiclone.
This medicine is extremely widely used in the UK. According to a 2012 article by The Guardian, in 2011, more than 15 million prescription sleeping pills were prescribed. The author noted that sleeping pills are, to some extent, Britain’s “hidden addiction”.
Not only can many widely used sleeping pills be addictive – but they can also be severely harmful. Medicines, for example, are associated with side effects such as addiction, and people who use them often try to have dangerous withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop.
They are also relatively poor in treating insomnia, often helping people fall asleep, but preventing them from experiencing REM sleep, which is important for optimal recovery and cognitive function.
Therefore, more and more people with sleep disorders are turning to natural insomnia treatments and one of them is CBD.
How do CBD and cannabinoids work?
Not everyone fully understands how cannabinoids (including CBD) work. What we know from research is that CBD and cannabinoids interact with proteins and cells in the brain.
Like many other potential benefits of CBD, research into the effects of CBD on sleep conditions, such as insomnia, is still at an early stage. However, existing data suggest that CBD could be an extremely useful, safe treatment to prevent insomnia and improve sleep quality.
Endocannabinoid system and sleep.
Given the problems of common soporific (those that cause sleep or drowsiness), medical scientists have explored other ways to improve sleep by targeting the endocannabinoid system (ECS). ECS as the primary homeostatic regulator of human physiology plays a key role in the sleep-wake cycle and other circadian processes.
How we fall asleep, sleep, wake up, and stay awake is part of an internal biological process regulated by our circadian rhythms and our endocannabinoid system. The circadian rhythms regulate a variety of activities in the body, including hormone production, heart rate, metabolism, and when you go to bed and wake up.
It is as if we have an internal biochemical timer or clock that tracks our need for sleep, drives the body to sleep, and then affects sleep intensity. This biological mechanism is affected by external forces such as travel, medication, food, drink, the environment, stress and more.
The key question is: does the endocannabinoid system regulate our circadian rhythm experience or vice versa?
Evidence of a strong relationship between the two is observed in fluctuations in the sleep and wake cycle of anandamide and 2-AG (Cannabis-like molecules), along with metabolic enzymes that produce and degrade these endogenous cannabinoid compounds.
Anandamide is present at higher levels in the brain at night and works with the endogenous neurotransmitters oleamide and adenosine to create sleep. Conversely, 2-AG during the day is higher, suggesting that it is involved in wakefulness.
The problem of researching and treating sleep disorders is complicated by the fact that sleep disorders are symptomatic of many chronic diseases. In many cases, chronic sleep results in poor sleep, and chronic diseases are always associated with imbalance or dysregulation of the endocannabinoid system. Although we still have a lot to learn about the relationship between ECS and circadian rhythms, it is clear that adequate sleep quality is an essential component of restoring and maintaining human health.
What about specific plant cannabinoids to improve sleep quality: CBD, THC, CBN?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is slightly stimulated in moderate doses, while its psychoactive counterpart delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) tends to be sedative. However, science is a bit paradoxical.
Studies suggest that CBD and THC have different effects on sleep, both of which may be stimulants or sedatives, depending on the dose.
Interestingly, CBD can help people fall asleep as well as stay awake. An insomnia study showed that 160 mg CBD reduced night-time sleep breaks and increased total sleep time, suggesting that a higher dose of CBD therapy may improve sleep quality and duration.
In addition, cannabinol (CBN), most commonly associated with the older Cannabis plant, is said to potentiate the sedative properties of THC when the two cannabinoids are used together, although the term may be more in modern folklore than scientific facts.
How to use Cannabis and CBD?
Cannabis therapy is a personalized medicine – and it certainly refers to the use of the substance and its ingredients in the treatment of sleep disorders. The effectiveness of Cannabis and how to sleep is very different, depending on how each user uses it, the ratio of cannabinoids and the profile, time and dose of the aromatic terpene, all of which play a role and affect different outcomes.
Success may depend on how well a person responds to Cannabis. Like all medicines, Cannabis can be used for some sleep. Short-term use of Cannabis may reduce the onset of sleep latency (how long it takes to fall asleep). But over time, this improvement may weaken. Tolerance develops with chronic consumption, which can impair the quality of sleep in the long run.
CBD is available in a variety of ways, making it easy to use at bedtime to help you fall asleep. However, there are a few things to know if you want to use CBD for better sleep but have never used it before.
First, not everyone has the same tolerance for CBD. This means that a light dose of CBD for one person could be a significant dose for another person. When you are just starting to take CBD, you will get the best results by choosing a relatively light dose.
Medical Cannabis for users often perform better at lower doses, especially if they treat pain, spasticity, or post-traumatic stress disorder in addition to sleep disorders. Based on the available literature, it appears that a 1: 1 CBD: THC formulation is likely to provide restorative sleep. Patients who have not yet used Cannabis may experience improvement with 2.5 mg THC and 2.5 mg CBD alone. A slightly higher dose of 5 to 15 mg of THC and CBD may be appropriate for experienced Cannabis users.
The combination of odipheric terpenes, present in the relevant Cannabis strain or product may also have a significant effect on sleep. Some terpenes have a calming or stimulating effect, thus affecting the sleep-wake cycle. Terpenes can be independently therapeutic. As important modulators of cannabinoids, terpenes significantly contribute to how a particular strain or variety of Cannabis makes you feel.
Those trying to solve pain and sleep problems should consider Cannabis products, which include beta-caryophyllene, as this terpene is also a powerful anti-inflammatory and analgesic.
Use of CBD oil for sleep disorders.
CBD oil does not cause any significant side effects and is not addictive, as is the case with medications. CBD oil has few or no negative side effects, and the World Health Organization has stated, “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.”
So if you have tried sleeping pills and are not happy with the results or side effects, or want to try a more natural sleep aid, CBD oil may be your expected supplement. As with any treatment, consult your doctor before adding CBD oil to your sleep regimen, as CBD may interact with certain prescription medications.
By putting in the time and effort to get a good night’s sleep, you guarantee that your brain and body will function as productively and healthily as possible.
CBD comes in many forms. CBD could be isolate, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum. Here we have looked at the main differences between these forms of CBD.
When you are ready to start using CBD oil to improve your sleep, you will need to decide what form to choose. There are a variety of options, including vape, drops, tinctures, capsules, depending on where you live and what is available in your market.
Other ways to improve sleep.
Here are some simple lifestyle-changing and holistic lifestyle options that can improve the quality of your sleep.
⦁ Create a sleep-promoting environment. Quality sleep is based on a comfortable bed in a relaxing environment. Reduce distracting lighting and maintain a suitable temperature for sleeping, reduce noise. Consider using ‘white noise’ to suppress unwanted sounds. Salt lamps can help purify the air by reducing the amount of positive ions (and provide enough light to get into the bathroom without interfering with sleep).
⦁ Perform a sleep routine. It is optimal to sleep and wake up at the same time seven days a week. Some people also benefit from a soothing bedtime routine that allows the mind to understand that it is time to fall asleep. This can include a small warm cup of milk or green tea 45 minutes to an hour before bed, or some simple yoga stretching to relax, or an Epsom salt bath.
⦁ Avoid excessive stimulation. It is best if there is no TV in the bedroom and do not watch it before going to bed. Avoid reading or using your phone, laptop, or tablet in bed.
⦁ Exercise every day. Whether you prefer running, weightlifting, gardening, or walking, do some exercise every day. But avoid exercising for two hours before bedtime.
⦁ Avoid stimulators after 13:00. Caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, certain herbal supplements, and medications can cause “hyper” and excessive stimulation, which can impair the brain’s ability to go to sleep.
⦁ Aromatherapy. Many of the sedative essential oil components found in Cannabis are also found in other herbs and can be purchased at natural products stores. Aromatherapy can be relaxing and very helpful in inducing sleep. For example, lavender essential oil can help manage certain sleep disorders.
⦁ Use herbal medicines to improve sleep. It is best to work with someone who is familiar with herbs and supplements, rather than buying any sleep treatment that is advertised online. Herbs that promote sleep-promoting properties include valerian, kava, German chamomile, Roman chamomile, passionflower, California poppy, hops, linden, and more.
⦁ Food supplements. Talk to your doctor about products made from kava, soothing minerals and the right dose of magnesium overnight.
⦁ Other therapies. In addition to Cannabis, safe holistic healing alternatives include cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia and bright light therapy for circadian arrhythmias.
The information on the internet about CBD products and their use will be ambiguous, so we always recommend reading safe and reliable sources. We also use websites related to the Cannabis industry, research and education to prepare information.
The content of this site is for informational purposes only. We are not medical experts and this should not be interpreted as medical advice. Be sure to consult your doctor before undergoing CBD or other treatment.
The chemistry of every human body and brain is unique, so the use of CBD to improve mental as well as physical health does not guarantee results. However, many GWEEPRODUCTS CBD oil users have included it into their daily routine as one of the therapies for improving mental, physical health and quality of life.
References: sleepassociation.org; projectcbd.com; pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov; ninds.nih.gov; cdc.gov; theguardian.com; link.springer.com; marketsandmarkets.com; cannigma.com