Is Cannabis a Good Sleep Aid?

Have you ever considered cannabis as a good sleep aid? Most everyone these days has probably smoked marijuana at some time in their lives, but there are probably very few who have used to battle insomnia. But there seems to be some credibility to that very thing.

Variations of Cannabis Related Sleep Aids

This is demonstrated by all the different variations of cannabis-based medicines that are now on the market to help improve sleep. Products such as Dronabinol, Nabilone, and Marinol are a few examples. Also, it is one big reason why lots of cannabis users are constantly seeking medical marijuana cards.

There are several sleep psychologists out there who feel that whether or not cannabis is a successful sleep aid depend entirely on the individual. It is very effective with some, but not so much for others. This begs the question, why is it that cannabis is effective as a sleep aid for one person but not another?

Although there are certainly lots of lingering questions out there remaining to be answered, current research has discovered that these sleep effects from cannabis depends on several factors. Some of those include the individual differences that we mentioned, but it also depends on frequency of use as well as cannabis concentrations.

Cannabis and Sleep

We all know that access to cannabis is rising every day. Currently there are 28 states and the District of Columbia who have legalized cannabis for medicinal use.

Research conducted on how cannabis affects sleep within humans is largely comprised of some very inconsistent studies that were conducted during the 1970s. Scientists who want to learn the way that cannabis affects a sleeping brain are now studying volunteers in sleep laboratories and are measuring the stages of sleep and also sleep continuity. Some of these studies have revealed an improved ability to fall asleep and to stay that way throughout the night. There were even a few subjects that experienced the slow wave sleep, which is the very deepest of sleep stages.

But whenever the nightly use of cannabis stops, the quality of sleep quickly worsens over the withdrawal period.

During the last decade, research is focusing more on cannabis for medical purposes. Individuals who suffer from insomnia usually use medical cannabis at a very high rate. As much as 65 percent of previous cannabis users have name poor sleep as their main reason for relapsing. Using cannabis for sleep is very common for those suffering from PTSD and chronic pain.

These studies indicate that research suggests that the sleep improvements could wane over time for chronic users.

Does Frequency Matter that Much?

Researchers were especially interested in the way that sleep quality would differ among daily cannabis users, users who used cannabis least one time every month, and those who never smoked.

A total of 98 healthy young male volunteers were chosen to answer comprehensive surveys, maintain a daily sleep diary, and to wear accelerometers for seven days. The accelerometers serve to measure activity levels over multiple days. And of course during the study, they were asked to use cannabis in their normal manner as they would routinely.

The data indicates that frequency of use was a very important factor as it pertains to sleep. Thirty-nine percent of these daily users reported significant levels of insomnia. Meanwhile, just 10 percent of the occasional users had any complaints about insomnia. And there were no differences at all in the sleep complaints from the nonusers.