CBD For Sleep: A Beginner’s Guide
Cannabidiol, or CBD, which is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid derived from the cannabis plant, has continually been on the rise in popularity, quickly becoming one of the most favored supplements to take for sleep disorders.
With the current statistics revealing that up to 70 million people struggle with sleep deprivation, it is easy to see why people are seeking out sleep aids that, not only successfully eliminates this particular health struggle, but that’s also natural – much safer than pharmaceutical drugs which are known for their many negative side effects and health hazards.
Below, this article dives into the claims that Cannabis-derived CBD is indeed the answer for many insomniacs. Are these claims true? And if so, what are the best products on the market to buy? Read on for a more information.
Does CBD Help You Sleep Better?
The studies on CBD for sleep have been questionable, partly because many studies performed in the medical field are generally done in a biased way with conflicts of interest at play, and partly, because the studies that have been done have been done mostly on rats and not humans. Therefore, one has to wonder? Unless you’ve actually tried it for yourself, does CBD really help a person to sleep better?
To find out, let’s consider the research that has been conducted:
Research on CBD for sleep
Cannabis is classed by the government as a schedule 1 drug. Therefore, it cannot be tested on humans. However, there is one human study, albeit it was conducted on only one person:
In this 2016 study done by the University of Colorado School of Medicine, a teenage girl who struggled with PTSD, and thus insomnia was given CBD in the form of a low milligram spray. The results found that she was indeed sleeping better.
Other tests on rats have been conducted below with promising results:
A 2013 study done by the Department of Neuroscience and Behavior of the Ribeirão Preto Medical School at the University of São Paulo studied 4 groups of rats, 3 of them given CBD in differing milligram dosages and the fourth group was given a placebo. This was their conclusion:
“The systemic acute administration of CBD appears to increase total sleep time, in addition to increasing sleep latency in the light period of the day of administration.”
In this 2003 study done by the Department of Neuroscience at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, scientists found that CBD does seem to regulate sleep patterns for optimal deep sleep in rats. This is their conclusion:
“We found that CBD modulates waking via activation of neurons in the hypothalamus and DRD. Both regions are apparently involved in the generation of alertness. Also, CBD increases DA levels as measured by microdialysis and HPLC procedures. Since CBD induces alertness, it might be of therapeutic value in sleep disorders such as excessive somnolence.”
The last study that will be mentioned is more ambiguous in proving the effectiveness of CBD on sleep due to the fact that this study did not use CBD alone but added THC properties, which is another chemical in the cannabis plant that induces the famous marijuana high. When adding the THC and CBD together, it is much harder to get an authentic CBD response from the body.
This 2004 UK study done by the Centre for Human Sciences concluded this:
“Fifteen milligrams THC would appear to be sedative, while 15 mg CBD appears to have to alert properties as it increased awake activity during sleep and counteracted the residual sedative activity of 15 mg THC.”
The results from these studies show promise that the CBD in marijuana does indeed work for sleep disorders. However, more studies are needed oh humans rather than on rats to determine if these claims truly have any concrete credence.
The Benefits of Taking CBD for Sleep
There are many benefits to taking CBD. Not only does it help you to get a better night’s rest, but the effects of CBD benefit other aspects of your health, giving you a better quality of life. This is because of the cannabinoids in CBD that work in congruency with the body’s endocannabinoid system. This system has cannabinoid receptors that help regulate physiological processes such as pain perception, neurological function, appetite, and mood. The following list of benefits is a good indicator of just how great CBD can be for the body:
- Bi-polar disorder
- Chronic pain and other chronic inflammatory conditions
- Addiction (substance abuse)
- Cancer-related symptoms such as appetite loss, nausea, pain, and hindrance of tumors
- Neurogenesis (growth of new brain cells)
- General neuroprotection (which hinders cognitive decline)
Although this is a great list of benefits, there are still more discoverings being made on the wonders of medicinal CBD cannabidiol use.
Additionally, it is well to note that anxiety can directly cause insomnia. This is because anxiety produces a fight-or-flight response in the body, which then causes adrenaline surges, thus hindering sleep and keeping the body alert for the signs of the danger it thinks it’s in. Therefore, by eliminating anxiety with the consistent use of CBD, you also help to eliminate insomnia.
CBD for Sleep Dosage
It is recommended that a person start off slow when first beginning CBD for a sleep disorder. The recommended dosages are based on the research that has been done surrounding sleep issues. Keep in mind that CBD is derived from cannabis. Therefore, if you don’t desire that high that regular cannabis causes, you want to make sure you get CBD products that do not contain THC.
Start with a 10-milligram dosage and then slowly up your milligram dosage until you start to experience consistent relief. It is not recommended to go over 600 milligrams daily unless you first consult your doctor. This dose range also helps anxiety, depression, other stress-related conditions, and additional conditions mentioned briefly above in the benefits section.
CBD and Sleep Disorders
Sleep disorders, like sleep apnea and insomnia, are caused either from a physical cause, like chronic pain or from mental stress such as anxiety. This then causes irregular neurological responses in the brain that disrupt the natural sleep-wake cycle and prevent a person from being able to fall asleep and have a great sleep quality.
What CBD does is regulate the synaptic interactions, which then encourages deeper sleep during NREM cycles and discourages people from waking up during the lighter REM cycles. CBD further aids Non-REM sleep if a person takes it during the day.
This is because CBD actually increases alertness during the day, giving a person both physical and mental energy. This, in turn, encourages a better night’s rest. When taken at night, CBD decreases the chance that a person will wake up during the lighter REM cycle.
Additionally, because CBD also seems to help with inflammation, which is what causes pain in the body, and also helps in reducing anxiety, it makes sense that these science claims have some credence when it comes to the connection between improved sleep and the use of CBD products.
5 CBD Products That Will Help You Sleep
There are many great ways to take CBD coming in different forms: CBD oils, CBD vape liquid, edibles, capsules, and other convenient forms. Some of the most popular hemp-based and non-hemp-based CBD products are listed below:
Green Roads CBD Oil
CBD oil for sleep is one of the best products on the market. With a 99 percent pure CBD concentration and also having a superior extraction process with super high production standards, this CBD oil is not cheap but promises great results. The standard dosage is a 350 milligram, 15 ml bottle which costs 65 dollars. However, they have CBD oil strengths ranging from 100 – 1500 milligrams.
Pros of Green Roads CBD oil:
- Pure grade hemp CBD oil
- Calming without the sedative effects of THC
- Good shipping prices because the bottle being light and small
- A more pricey CBD hemp oil
YiLo Jamyn Gummies
These gummies taste just like the real thing: tasty and fun, and yet they give you that relaxed calm that people seek with marijuana. YiLo gummies last 3-6 hours, no matter the milligram dosage you try. Milligram dosages come in 100 or 400-milligram dosages and each bag contain 10 gummies for both strengths.
The 100-milligram package is 14 dollars and the 400-milligram package is 56 dollars.
Transporting costs depend on if you use regular flat rate shipping or priority mail. Rates have gone in 2018 so make sure to check out these current rates. The good thing is, the lighter the package, the cheaper the transport cost will be.
Pros of purchasing this form of CBD:
- Easy to carry with you
- Tastes great
- Lasts longer than smoking marijuana (3-6 hours)
- If you’re looking for a sedative effect alongside the CBD benefits, this is a good one
- Does contain THC
- Some people do not like gummies
- Might be too strong
Purely Medicinal Cannatonic Capsules
This cannabis product is strong but also a bit pricey. The THC content ranges from 50 to 90 milligrams per capsule and also contains CBD. Also, it seems after viewing many sites that carry these, it is hard to find them in stock.
Prices: 20 capsules at 50 milligrams costs around 50 dollars. 20 capsules at 90 milligrams cost around 64 dollars. You can purchase them in higher quantities. A 200 capsule bottle containing 90 milligrams per capsule costs around 598 dollars.
Pros of consuming PM cannatonic capsules:
- Easy to take (no bad tastes or smell)
- Easy to transport
- Produces the longer sedative effect
- Transporting costs aren’t as expensive because they are light
- Vegan capsules
- Contains THC
Life Bloom Organics CBD Sleep Oral Spray
This CBD hemp product is great if you want a mix of natural sleep aids all rolled up into one. Made with valerian, L-Theanine, MCT oil, and of course CBD, this product is a potent formula for a great night’s sleep.
It is also all organic, non-GMO, and made from 99 percent pure grade hemp. The standard price for this spray is 39.95 for a 120 milligram for an eight ml bottle.
Pros of Life Bloom Organics CBD spray:
- Decently priced
- Has other ingredients that help with sleep
- Is pure grade hemp with all organic ingredients
- No THC (no sedative effect)
- Having other sleep-inducing ingredients might not be what you want if you just want CBD
Liberty Cannabis Serenity Tincture
If you prefer alcohol tinctures, this might be something to look into. This Liberty tincture is a medical marijuana tincture so it does contain THC with a 12.67 THC content. It comes in lavender, vanilla, and in the unflavored form. The size of each bottle is 30 ml’s and the price is $60 per bottle.
Pros of Liberty Cannabis Serenity Tincture:
- Only offered through your nearest dispensary and is not available online
- Does have the THC sedative effect
- Small quantity for a large price
- Only offered through a Liberty dispensary
Is CBD Right For You?
With the evidence presented, it seems that CBD products can help a person in many great ways, especially if they are struggling with insomnia. Since it is a relatively safe product, it makes sense that one might desire to try it in order to determine if it will bring them relief from their sleep disorders.
If you do struggle with getting enough shut-eye, then this very well might be the answer you have been looking for. But remember, always be careful with any product, even natural ones. Start off with a low milligram dosage and work your way up. If you do this, you ensure that you do not experience any adverse effects while at the same time, ensuring that you get the therapeutic effects you desire.