Find out how this miraculous little cannabinoid may be able to help you snooze at night…
Did you know that in the United States alone, over 70 million people experience difficulties sleeping or have been diagnosed with insomnia or some other sleeping disorder?
CBD, known scientifically as cannabidiol, is one of over a hundred cannabinoids found in the marijuana plant, as well as the cannabis hemp plant (in smaller amounts). Used historically as not only a sleep aid but also as a medicine to relieve pain, nausea, and many other ailments, CBD is considered a real miracle element – and science has been explaining why.
One aspect in which cannabidiol truly seems to shine is when it comes to sleep management. For this reason, it is being utilized globally as a natural, non-psychoactive, and (mostly) side-effect free method of managing anxiety-induced insomnia, stress, and nighttime restlessness.
Keep reading to discover how (and why) more and more people are starting to use CBD for insomnia and other sleeping disorders…
What Exactly Is CBD?
As mentioned above, CBD (cannabidiol) is one of around 100 cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant, and not only the marijuana variety, but also hemp as well.
Other than the fact that it is medically useful, a unique aspect of CBD is that (unlike its relative THC) the compound is completely non-psychoactive, making it a suitable option for a wide range of individuals across all ages.
Moreover, CBD within certain dosage limitations is legal in all 50 U.S. states, which means that many vendors are able to ship their cannabidiol products straight to your doorstep.
Products with higher doses are only legal in some states where cannabis laws are more relaxed, but nevertheless, CBD is extensively used by all types of individuals with a variety of medical conditions and ailments.
“CBD is a completely non-psychoactive compound, making it a suitable option for a wide range of individuals …”
Some pharmaceutical drugs available in the medical world are actually derived from CBD, such as the Epidiolex label (designed to treat patients with intractable forms of epilepsy) which was just recently approved by the FDA as the first-ever prescription cannabinoid compound.
Still, some people relate cannabidiol solely to the “illegal” marijuana plant, making it difficult to see past its abundantly therapeutic origins and health-promoting potential.
How Does CBD Work in the Body?
The body actually has its own cannabinoids present which are known as endocannabinoids. These are produced by what’s known as the body’s endocannabinoid system, or ECS. This system helps to regulate and monitor numerous body and mind functions, and essentially assists in maintaining all aspects of homeostasis, which is the body’s internal equilibrium system.
For example, if the body needs assistance in the form of an immune response to attack against a virus or bacteria, it produces a greater quantity of endocannabinoids. If there is an excess concentration, it decreases the active amount.
For this reason, a balance is kept that is imperative for things like sleep management, appetite management, immune system function, hormone production, mood, pain management, and so much more.
Cannabidiol is known as a phytocannabinoid because it is derived from an outside source, and is not naturally produced inside of the body (unlike the “endo”-cannabinoids). CBD comes into play when it interacts with the ECS and its receptors (CB-1 and CB-2 are the most prevalent), helping to fill in the gaps when the body is not producing enough endocannabinoids.
IS CBD Good for Insomnia?
Insomnia is a complicated condition wherein an individual has difficulties either falling asleep or staying asleep through the night. It produces many negative effects the next day, as the individual goes on to experiences drowsiness, fatigue, lack of focus, mood changes, and other physiological conditions due to lack of rest.
Sleeping one or two nights poorly is of course problematic in its own right, but those with serious insomnia will consistently having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep night after night.
This exhaustion can quickly add up, and may lead to many serious health issues and chronic medical ailments. For instance, all of the following conditions have been attributed (at least in part) to the occurrence of insomnia:
- Asthma/trouble breathing
- Chronic pain
- Sinus allergies
- Parkinson’s disease
Some research has also shown that certain neurotransmitters in the brain are able to “encourage” insomnia, which is why some might deal with sleeplessness for years on end with seemingly no other present medical conditions.
“Chronic insomnia can lead to fatigue, lack of focus, mood changes, and other serious physiological conditions if not dealt with properly.”
CBD has been known to help relieve dozens of medical conditions, some of which are actually connected to insomnia. For example, since the ECS is responsible for mood regulation, a lack of endocannabinoids can be supplemented with the cannabinoid CBD, which helps to take away anxiety and depression – two of the most common underlying causes of insomnia.
Additionally, cannabidiol has been known to act as a brilliant pain manager with a unique ability to fight off symptoms of arthritis, chronic pain, back pain, and other insomnia-promoting disorders.
What seems to be most intriguing, however, is the fact that CBD in lower doses can act as a stimulant, activating the same adenosine receptors that caffeine does. Yet somehow, when consumed in the evenings a couple of hours before bed time, cannabidiol seems to have more of a calming and relaxing effect which in turn aids with sleeplessness, insomnia, and other sleep disorders.
This may appear contradictory, but it is likely a result of the endocannabinoid system’s role in maintaining total body health, as opposed to just a single aspect of it.
In fact, part of the reason why this system is so incredible is because it produces balance no matter which direction the body is leaning in — whether it be a surplus in some chemical pathway or a lack thereof, the ECS works to re-establish homeostasis and revert the body back to a state of natural health.
That is why the same phytocannabinoid can help bring energy to an individual when they need it, yet calm them down and help them drift off into a deep sleep when they require that instead. Many conventional medications simply treat only one end of the health spectrum, typically either lowering or increasing whatever aspect is out of balance.
Ultimately, this is what makes CBD so unique as a medication; it does not act as a traditional single-purpose therapy, but instead is effective even if the two medical challenges being treated are a juxtaposition of one another (for example having fatigue and insomnia).
CBD for Help Sleeping: Options for Administration
Cannabidiol seems to be most effective towards insomnia and sleep disorders when consumed a few hours before your desired bedtime. This gives the body enough time to process the component, yet still not long enough for the CBD to leave your system.
“Several studies have shown CBD to help relieve dozens of medical conditions, most of which are directly connected to the appearance of insomnia.”
There are many ways to consume cannabidiol, and most individuals opt for oral ingestion which is done by administering CBD oil drops under the tongue. These oils can be purchased in a multitude of dosages, as well as from a wide array of reputable vendors.
If you’re the type of person that likes some good old fashioned bud, on the other hand, (but does not want to get high), then there are actually quite a few strains on the market that provide a high CBD/low THC ratio. These low THC/high CBD marijuana strains have been all the rage lately, and breeders seem to be placing extra emphasis on producing seeds and clones that cater to this audience.
If you’re interested in high CBD, low THC marijuana strains, here are some that you might want to ask for at your local dispensary:
- ACDC (hybrid)
- Ringo’s Gift (hybrid)
- Cannatonic (hybrid)
- Canna-Tsu (hybrid)
- Harlequin (sativa)
- Charlotte’s Web (sativa)
What Are Some Other Sleep-Improving Uses for CBD?
The applicable uses for CBD can sometimes seem endless, as it is certainly one of the most multi-functioning components in nature – not to mention one of the most valuable parts of the cannabis plant.
In addition to helping regulate sleep patterns and melt away insomnia, however (which is one of its most common uses), some of the other medical conditions that cannabidiol has been shown to treat include:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder
- Addiction and drug/alcohol/tobacco dependency
- Heart disease
- Chronic pain
Final Thoughts on CBD Oil for Insomnia
If you have been experiencing restlessness in the evenings or even full-blown insomnia, and do not want to turn towards addictive pharmaceuticals which typically arrive with a slew of negative side effects, then perhaps CBD (cannabidiol) may be exactly what you need to fall asleep easy at night, so you can feel fresh and rejuvenated the next day.
We hope you found this article to be not only entertaining, but also educational and informative. It is important to remember that the consumption of cannabis is the sole responsibility of the user, and discretion should always be taken.
Relate article: 5 Best CBD Oils for Sleep and Insomnia (2019 Review)
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