In the 21st century and the age of information, people are discovering the miraculous potential of various herbs and plants which were previously either outlawed or frowned upon. Cannabis is one such plant that has now become the center of attention for the health and wellness industry worldwide.
As people grow more and more aware of the vast potential that each cannabinoid in the cannabis plant holds, the taboo surrounding the use of cannabis-related products is breaking. CBD or cannabidiol is one such cannabinoid that stands at the forefront of this change. While various researches are being conducted regarding several potential benefits that CBD might have, the use of CBD for sleep is a hot topic in the CBD community.
The age that we currently live in is extremely fast-paced. From managing work to upholding your personal and social responsibilities, the pressure surrounding people today is immense. This is why sleep deprivation and insomnia are growing problems. According to the American Sleep Association, whether it be due to stress or other mental health illnesses, 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder, with short-term and long-lasting insomnia being the most common ones, affecting 30% of adults and 10% of the people, respectively. We are here to analyze the potential of CBD to deal with this problem and tell you everything you need to know about CBD for sleep.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, better known as CBD, is one of over 100 cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant and non-psychoactive. It is one of the most abundant cannabinoids in the plant, second only to delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, which is the cannabinoid that causes the ‘high,’ it has also become the most popular cannabis-related product. There are three types of CBD products currently on the market, and they are as follows;
- Full Spectrum CBD; This type of CBD contains all the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids present in the cannabis plant, including THC, which it contains 0.3% of as per the legal regulations.
- Broad Spectrum CBD; Standing on the middle of the road, broad-spectrum CBD contains all the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids present in the cannabis plant except THC.
- CBD Isolate; On the other end of the spectrum is CBD Isolate, which only contains CBD and nothing else.
There is no need to be alarmed at the mention of THC as the legal regulations of the U.S have maintained the maximum amount of THC in any CBD product at 0.3%, which is not enough to produce any psychoactive effects.
How does CBD relate to sleep?
CBD works by influencing the endocannabinoid system in your body and interacting with the CB1 and CB2 receptors of your body as well as the endocannabinoids. Since the ECS controls bodily functions such as appetite, sleep, mood, and focus, etc. CBD has the potential to influence each of these factors. This means that if CBD interacts with specific receptors, it can influence the sleep/wake cycle of an individual.
What does the research say about CBD for sleep?
While research regarding the potential of cannabidiol as a sleep aid has not reached a conclusive end, the current research is heavily in favor of CBD for sleep. According to a study published in the journal, Medicines, the results of treating 409 patients with insomnia with CBD yielded positive results. In this study which carried on from June 2016 to May 2018, participants were given cannabis with different combustion methods, including vaping, joints, and pipes. The average THC potency was limited at 30%, while it stood at 20%. With a CBD potency of 5.7% after using the cannabis, participants rated their symptoms to drop from a 6.6 average to a 2.2, which was a decrease of 4.4.
Another research compared a CBD dosage of 160 milligrams with a placebo and found that the participants’ sleep duration increased. Furthermore, the research also found that 5mg of a drug used to treat insomnia, nitrazepam, can induce sleep if combined with 40, 80, or 160mg of CBD.
One of the major causes of insomnia is fluctuation in a person’s cortisol (stress hormone) levels. While cortisol levels peak in the morning for healthy people, they are high at night for insomniacs. Even if it doesn’t cause insomnia, higher cortisol levels at night will result in more awakenings at night. A study found which was researching the effects of CBD for sleep found that cortisol levels were decreasing more significantly when participants took 300-600mg of CBD oil.
If you look at more recent investigations and research, a study that recruited 103 participants diagnosed with anxiety and poor sleep would be convincing. This study aimed at researching the effects of cannabidiol in relation to other prescribed medications. In this research, the CBD dosages were ranged from 25-175mg, and the research found that while 25mg is enough to combat anxiety, countering troubled sleep required comparatively higher doses. During this 3-month study, the researchers were following patients up every month and found that 66.7% of the participants reported improved sleep at first follow up while 56.1% reported the same in the second.
All-in-all, cannabidiol doesn’t only tackle the issue of insomnia and other sleep problems directly but also has the potential to help with it indirectly. People who are experiencing troubled sleep are often disturbed by things such as stress, anxiety, or other factors. Since CBD for anxiety and stress has shown promising effects, it indirectly helps with the sleep troubles of individuals.
How have customer experiences with CBD for sleep been like?
Apart from research, one of the most effective ways of judging a product’s quality is trying it yourself. This is why the value of customer reviews in the cannabis industry is huge. According to customer reviews, no matter the brand of the CBD product they have tried, the claimed efficacy of CBD for sleep is not hogwash. Reviews on WebMD have resulted in a 4.2-star overall rating for CBD as a health and wellness product, with several reviews depicting its efficacy as a sleep aid. Other reviews have also mentioned the other ways CBD has helped them as an analgesic or a pain reliever and more.
Are any CBD or cannabis products for sleep FDA approved?
While most cannabidiol or even cannabis products are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration as the FDA is still skeptical since it considers the current research on CBD to be insufficient, some pharmaceutical drugs which make use of the properties of CBD are. However, none of these drugs are sleep-inducing drugs. They are as following;
- Epidiolex; This is an oral CBD solution for sleep containing a purified cannabis-derived substance that is approved by the FDA for seizure treatment in rare cases of epilepsy.
- Cesamet; Contains nabilone which is a synthetic compound with a chemical structure similar to THC. This drug is also approved to be used against vomiting and nausea.
- Marinol and Syndros; These drugs contain dronabinol, which is a synthesized form of THC and is available in capsule forms and oral solutions. It is approved for use as a treatment for nausea, vomiting during chemotherapy, and other symptoms such as weight loss during HIV.
Even if the FDA doesn’t approve the vast majority of cannabidiol products, the host of positive reviews for CBD and the lab tests reputable brands of CBD carry out are enough to build your trust in CBD.
How to dose CBD for sleep?
There are multiple ways in which you can consume CBD for sleep. From oral consumption to vaping, each form of consumption will have its own efficacy. While vaping might offer more bioavailability which refers to how quickly the CBD is absorbed in your bloodstream, it may result in respiratory problems.
When it comes to health and wellness products such as CBD, pharmaceutical, or herbal, there is no set dosage of CBD for sleep that is bound to resonate with you. The ideal dosage varies from person to person and is dependent on several factors. It depends on your body weight, body chemistry, the severity of the condition you are trying to treat, and your natural tolerance to CBD as well. At the same time, most clinical trials of CBD for sleep involved giving participants CBD ranging from 25mg to 100mg per day.
A general rule of thumb that you should follow when trying any product is to start small and work your way up to a bigger dosage. If you start small, even if there is no effect, there will be no unpleasantness either. On the other hand, if you start with a stronger dosage and it results in an experience that is unpleasant, you might not want to try CBD again.
This rule of thumb applies to CBD for sleep specifically as well as most research conducted on CBD for sleep and CBD for anxiety as researchsuggests that many patients don’t notice an immediate difference when consuming CBD. A 2019 study even suggested that it took about a month for certain users to notice a difference.
Always Consult a Physician
This is something you should always keep in mind no matter the reason you want CBD for. If it is a health condition, you are trying to get help for, consult your physician and make sure that CBD sits well with you and is a safe way to go about treating yourself.
Where should I get CBD from?
Finding the ideal brand for your CBD needs can be a very daunting task at first. You need to check for their lab tests, the quality of their products, the variety of their products, and even customer reviews. One brand that checks all the boxes that make up a choice for a CBD enthusiast is MedaLeaf. With a wide variety of products, reasonable prices, and a team dedicated to satisfying our customers, MedaLeaf has covered all its bases. The products are all tested by third-party labs, and as per various customer experiences, the products are also effective.
While the FDA won’t back this statement, CBD has shown great potential as a sleep aid not only in studies but also after normal consumption. If you are sick of the pharmaceutical drugs riddled with various side effects, giving CBD, a try would be like finding the holy grail for you. Not only will it help you as a sleep aid, but its off-shoot effects will also help with any other conditions that you might have. To buy some of the best CBD for sleep, visit MedaLeaf, an up-and-comer in the cannabis industry and perhaps the most dedicated brand out there.