People with sleep issues are turning more and more to cannabis as a natural sleep aid as its legality becomes more commonplace throughout the United States. CBD and THC are the most commonly used cannabinoids in medicinal marijuana that are supposed to help with sleep. CBD oils, in particular, are seeing a huge rise in popularity.
Sleeping well allows you to function better in all aspects of your life. But which cannabinoid works better when it comes to helping you sleep?
What is CBD?
CBD is a cannabinoid that is extracted from cannabis. It works with the body to create non-psychotropic effects to replenish your body’s naturally occurring endocannabinoids and it also helps to regulate homeostasis.
CBD reduces anxiety and convulsions, and also works as a mild sedative, without producing any of the psychoactive effects that weed is known for. Despite its sedative effects, it is also noted to have a mild effect which can make you wakeful, according to some studies. CBD is one of the most common cannabinoids extracted from Cannabis Sativa.
What is THC?
It is a psychoactive compound that can result in hallucinations, anxiety and heart palpitations. This is what produces the high that you get from marijuana.
At low doses, it has been found to calm anxiety, but the higher the dose gets, the more anxious it will make you. THC can also make you feel more wakeful, which can create issues for some people if taken right before bed. Some strains of marijuana plants are significantly higher in THC than others, so if this is what you’re looking for, talk to a local bud tender or an online resource to make sure you’re getting what you want.
How do they help you sleep?
CBD is a mild sedative that helps to calm anxiety and convulsions, and also helps to relieve pain. These are a few of the many reasons people have trouble sleeping, so CBD is the most helpful on its own.
When you combine CBD and THC, you get an interesting effect. The THC creates a high and possibly some psychotic effects and the CBD counteracts them by helping to calm you. However, THC may be too active for some people to use as a sleep aid on its own.
Which will help you sleep better?
A combination of THC and CBD, like the Sativex used in this study work best for most sleep patients with chronic pain and anxiety issues. The combination works together to relieve pain, allowing you to sleep better, and improve your mood once you wake up.
If you were going to go with just one, you should use CBD oil only. However, you should use it a few hours before you go to bed. That way, when it induces wakefulness, you can either make use of that extra energy or wait for it to wear off. If you do choose to use CBD or THC, avoid smoking marijuana during the day, because that will negate the effect that you experience when you want to go to bed.
Finding your personal balance to get a good night’s sleep can be a bit of a process, but it will be worth it, in the long run, to have better sleep on a regular basis.
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About the Author
Mary Lee is a researcher for the sleep science hub Tuck.com. She specializes in sleep’s role in mental and physical health and wellness. Mary lives in Olympia, Washington and shares her full-sized bed with a very noisy cat.