Struggling with insomnia is no fun at all, but it’s surprisingly common. In fact, around 50 to 70 million people deal with insomnia and fatigue on a regular basis. Not only that, but we all experience minor bouts of insomnia from time to time. It could be due to stress from work, consuming too much caffeine, or another cause. Whatever the reason is that you can’t sleep, there’s strong evidence to support that CBD can help you. Let’s take a look into the benefits of using CBD as a sleep aid!
What is CBD?
According to Merriam Webster, CBD is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid found in marijuana. It differs from THC, which is the intoxicating cannabinoid that provides the user with a ‘high.’ Due to the growing list of health benefits from marijuana, CBD is an alternative to cannabis. That way, users can enjoy the health benefits without the intoxication from the THC.
In recent years, CBD products have flooded the market. There are also lots of medical studies underway examining the effectiveness of CBD. For a complete list of CBD’s health benefits, check out our existing blog post found here.
Benefits include relief from anxiety, pain, and better sleep. Many patients claim that taking CBD is effective in treating their insomnia. First, let’s take a look at insomnia and its possible causes.
What Causes Sleeplessness and Insomnia?
Insomnia is very tricky because there are so many factors that can cause it. Also, short bouts of sleeplessness here and there can pop up for some surprising reasons. It’s essential to grasp the root cause of your sleeplessness to find an effective treatment. Some common causes of insomnia include:
- Problems or changes in your mental health. For many, this is the leading cause of sleeplessness. Changes in your hormones and neurotransmitters can interrupt your sleeping patterns. If you’re under a lot of stress from work or have PTSD, you may experience insomnia. Depression and anxiety are also causes of restlessness.
- Medications. Certain types of medication can interfere with sleep. For example, did you know that many headache medications contain caffeine? It’s effective for treating your headache but can also keep you up at night. Also, sleeping pills can cause insomnia if you’re trying to get off them. If you’ve been taking sleeping pills for years and stop cold turkey, sleeping sober will be hard.
- Coffee, tea, and soda. Caffeinated beverages can interfere with your natural sleep cycles. That is especially true if you’re a fan of drinking these beverages in the evening. Try to limit caffeinated drinks to the morning, so they have lots of time to wear off!
- Your environment. Do you work overnight? If so, then you have to sleep during the day, which can be difficult. That’s because our bodies require darkness to produce melatonin, which makes us sleepy. Try to sleep in a completely dark and quiet area to get the best rest.
Okay, so now that you know about the causes of insomnia, here’s the good news. Several vital studies, such as this one, have found that CBD can help you overcome all of these factors. In the study listed above, sleep scores improved in 66% of the participants that took regular CBD. It can also help you relieve the anxiety associated with sleeplessness. Now let’s take a look at the mechanisms within CBD that can help you sleep!
How Does CBD Help With Sleep?
CBD has been on the rise for several years now. Tons of patients are claiming that it helps with a myriad of different conditions. One that keeps popping up over and over again is its effectiveness as a sleep aid. A big reason for this is CBD’s ability to ease anxiety in the patients that take it. It’s speculated that this is a big reason why CBD is effective at getting patients to sleep.
If you experience regular insomnia, there’s a great deal of anxiety that goes along with it. You may start to worry the second you lay your head down on the pillow. CBD will help you relax and put sleeping off your mind. That way, you can focus on something else, unwind, and drift off to sleep.
CBD also interacts with your endocannabinoid system. This system helps your body maintain a sense of balance and stability. This balance includes maintaining regular sleep cycles.
The same study listed above took about a month for the patients to start to see results. That suggests that it can take some time to start working with some patients. If you’re taking regular CBD for insomnia, allow several weeks to see results. However, some patients have claimed to feel instant results, so it seems to vary.
There will continue to be studies conducted on CBD and insomnia in the years to come. For now, the evidence suggests that CBD can ease anxiety and help patients get some sleep. It’s an all-natural supplement that’s harmless to the body. That means there won’t be any adverse side effects from trying it!
Is CBD the Right Choice For You?
Okay, so now you know about CBD and how it works. The big question remains, is taking regular CBD a viable option for you? Well, let’s break down a few things to find out!
Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial to maintaining one’s health. Without the proper amount of sleep, you’ll start to notice a lot of adverse side effects. Sleeplessness can cause:
- Poor work performance
- Depression, anxiety, and frustration
- High blood pressure
- Slowed reaction times
- Increased risk of heart disease
As you can see, not getting sleep is no fun at all. It increases your risk for long-term diseases and can make you plain grumpy! We’ve all felt the effects of getting little to no sleep at some point in our lives. For those struggling with chronic insomnia, that miserable feeling is a daily occurrence.
Here’s a question to ask yourself, what are you currently doing to treat your restlessness? Here are some standard options and their potential downsides:
- Sleeping pills. You may find relief from sleeping pills, but they’re highly addictive. They also don’t provide a restful night’s sleep but a forced one. You’ll also have a lot of trouble trying to stop these medications.
- Alcohol. Sadly, some people that have insomnia turn to alcohol for relief. However, this is dangerous and not recommended. Sure, you may pass out for a few hours, but you’ll wake up in a hot sweat with a possible hangover. Not only that, but the sleep you get is not restful and replenishing.
- Lavender Oil. 80mg of lavender oil a day can help some patients find relief from insomnia. It’s said to be most effective when ingested orally, so lavender tea is quite popular. There are also lavender oil capsules available as well. The potential downside of using lavender oil is that some people can have some adverse side effects to it. These include headache, constipation, and nausea.
Then there’s CBD. For many, CBD has become their sleep savior! It’s all-natural so that you won’t deal with withdrawals or heavy intoxication. It will also relieve anxiety and depression instead of worsening their effects.
CBD is a fantastic option to try out to improve your insomnia. Remember to give it at least a month and to consult with your doctor before determining a dosage.
Finding the Right Dosage For You
Speaking of dosages, many patients find that higher doses work for them. Having said that, it’s essential to start off light. Ideally, it would be best if you started with a dose of around 5 to 10mg. If you don’t feel or see any results, it’s time to increase your dosage slowly. Higher dosages are in the 20mg to 25mg range.
Try to avoid taking doses in excess of 160mg or higher. CBD doesn’t have a lethal dose, but higher amounts can be dangerous. That’s why it’s imperative to consult with your doctor before starting CBD supplements.
The Many Forms of CBD
CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant. It comes in a wide variety of forms for consumption. There are:
- Edible forms
- Liquid tinctures
If you’re taking CBD to help you sleep, vaporizing it is an efficient option. That’s because you’ll start feeling the effects instantly or within a few minutes. To vaporize CBD, you’ll need a vape pen or a vaporizer. You can find these at many different stores, and they’re very affordable. Vaping CBD does involve inhaling hot steam. If that’s not your thing, you can choose another method of consumption.
If you choose to take a pill, oil, or liquid tincture, take them an hour before bed. That’ll give the CBD plenty of time to absorb into your system. Try reading a book or laying down in the darkness to induce drowsiness to make it work faster!
Selecting the Right CBD Products
Okay, so now that you have your preferred method, you need to choose a brand. There are literally thousands of CBD companies out there. That’s because the CBD market has exploded in the last few years. CBD companies produce all sorts of oils, creams, pills, and even pet supplements. You read that right; you can even use CBD on your pets!
It’s imperative that you find a trusted source that has many positive reviews. You see, there are many companies out there that claim to sell CBD but don’t. What they claim is CBD is actually dangerous chemicals and pesticides. Try to find a supplier with a flawless reputation. You can also look to see if the FDA or USDA approves their product. As long as you’re a careful shopper that reads reviews, you’ll find quality CBD in no time. Refer to this guide if you have any questions or concerns!
Are There Side Effects With CBD?
Of course, side effects are a widespread concern with CBD, as with any substance. The short answer is yes, there are side effects, but they’re very mild. In fact, the side effects pale in comparison to those of other sleep remedies. For example, you won’t have to deal with crushing withdrawal like you will with sleeping pills.
Here is a list of the side effects reported by CBD users. They are rare and very minor, and they include:
- Loss of appetite
- Slight changes in weight
More recent studies have claimed that CBD is very safe and has little to no side effects. Yet, if you’re taking CBD and experience drastic effects, consult with your doctor ASAP. It would be best if you also discontinued the CBD immediately. However, no cases such as these have been reported so far.
Is CBD a Legal Substance?
Yes, CBD is totally legal as it does not contain any THC. Yet, it would help if you were cautious when purchasing a new CBD product. Do adequate research so that you know if there’s any THC in the product. Some CBD products may contain trace amounts or even small doses of THC. That would make them illegal in many states, so be very cautious. As long as your product contains 0% THC, then your CBD is legal, and you can use it anywhere with no repercussions.
Is Using CBD For Sleep Really Worth It?
Okay, so let’s break everything down. CBD is a non-addictive, non-toxic substance that can treat anxiety and insomnia. There are little to no side effects, and studies back up its effectiveness. CBD products are generally inexpensive, and you can find them anywhere.
Living without sleep is a horrible thing for anyone to go through. Treating your insomnia is essential for your health, well-being, and longevity. If you’re struggling with sleeplessness, CBD can be a very effective treatment for you. Please consult with your doctor on which dosage you should start with, and try it out! There are little to no downsides to doing so. Do some research, pick the right product, and start getting better sleep!