The Effects of Cannabis on Sleep

As the use of marijuana becomes more and more popular throughout the world, so spreads the word on the infinite list of benefits that the consumption of this plant can provide. 

Cannabis use from a medical point of view is often associated with its anti-inflammatory properties, as well as its pain-relieving effects or its capacity to reduce anxiety and stress levels. 

However, one highly popular use that is made of marijuana is to treat those who are struggling with poor sleeping schedules or insomnia. Whether diagnosed by a doctor or not, many people all around the world recognize that they encounter issues falling asleep at night.

In fact, according to a study led by the American Sleep Association, in the U.S. approximately 70 millions of people encounter some sort of sleeping disorder, among which insomnia is the most common. Furthermore, 30% of the adult population is undergoing short-term insomnia, while 10% struggles with it throughout their entire lives. At the same time, 40% have reported events such as accidentally falling asleep over the course of a day. And, while the suggested amount of sleeping hours daily is a minimum of 7 hours to be considered a healthy sleeping schedule, around 35% of the population can not manage to reach these numbers. 

Now, several aspects affect such lack of sleep in people’s lives, for instance, high levels of anxiety or stress, which tend to be the major cause of sleeping disorders. And, as mentioned above, one of cannabis’ biggest strengths resides in its capacity to reduce these two. 

The key to understanding marijuana’s effect on sleep resides in its two most important and renowned components, THC and CBD. The first one, THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the component in the cannabis family known for causing the effects often associated with a high, has proved in diverse scientific studies and research that it can indeed bind with the body in an efficient way to lead the user into a deep sleep. And although most of the credits are attributed to THC, its brother CBD, or cannabidiol, is no stranger to aiding sleep either. In fact, CBD, which on the contrary causes zero high effects, is well known for producing what many like to refer to as a body high. This doesn’t mean the body gets clumsy or anything in that direction but rather that it provokes a deep state of relaxation, which also aids in the regulation of a poor sleeping schedule. 

Now, you may find it interesting as well to note that the consistent consumption of marijuana was revealed to suppress the REM phase of sleep. As you might have already heard, this is the phase, usually, where humans experience the most dreams in the course of a night. In fact, as it was found in several studies, once a cannabis user ceases to consume the plant, dreaming doubled and the content of these dreams seems to be, well, particularly stranger than the usual strangeness of dreams. Now, this isn’t’ entirely bad news, while some of us may indeed appreciate some good night dreaming stories, the fact is that this can aid all of those struggling with different types of trauma that gets triggered through sleep. PTSD patients are a good example of this, but it’s not only them, cannabis can aid patients with poor sleeping schedules due to other sorts of disorders, such as depression, or eating disorders. 

For people who’d rather stick to a strictly medical use of marijuana, a great alternative to smoking the plant is consuming oil derived from the plant instead. Making such oil is extremely easy, most users make it themselves at home by growing feminized seeds and producing their own cannabis-infused oil at home. So, if you were looking for ways of improving your sleeping schedule, dodge over the counter or prescription meds and give marijuana a try instead. 


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