Ask The Genius: How Does CBD Help With Sleep?

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Hey Genius, I’m not getting enough sleep.
 

You better fix that. Sleep is very important. 

I know, hence me coming to you for answers. 

Ah yes, that makes sense on the account that I am, in fact, the Genius. Anyway, this may come as no surprise but I’m going to recommend cannabis. Specifically CBD. 

I’m into it. It’s so hard to shut my mind off when I lay my head down and I’m only sleeping a few hours a night.

Totally understandable. And you’re not alone — the CDC says that 1 in 3 adults aren’t getting enough sleep (at least seven hours per day). You may be able to slide by the next day with that morning coffee, but be mindful of the long run. Insomnia can lead to chronic conditions including mental distress, obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. 

I don’t want those. 

Right. It’d be weird if you did. Nobody’s sitting around being like “Some heart disease would really spice up my life right now.” 

How does CBD affect sleep?

Unlike an over the counter sleep aid, which may technically increase the time spent sleeping while ignoring the quality of the sleep, CBD treats the problems that negatively impact sleep. It gets ahead of it. Let’s take anxiety as an example. Do you suffer from anxiety?

All the time. And it knows exactly when to mess with my head. Usually I’m fine during the day, but the moment I turn off the light to go to bed, my brain’s like “hey cool day we had, by the way, here are all your biggest fears.” 

Totally. Again you’re not alone. Anxiety keeps many people awake at night, which makes them more anxious knowing that they’re losing sleep-hours. Although the effects of CBD in the treatment of anxiety are not fully understood, it is thought that CBD helps by altering serotonin signals, and also by relieving physiological symptoms of stress such as increased heart rate and digestive discomfort, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

On top of that,  in the journal JCI Insight, a 2017 study showed that a single dose of CBD reduces blood pressure, even in relatively healthy individuals.

So if the CBD is decreasing my stress, the less likely I am to be kept awake by the anxious thoughts running through my head

Bingo. 

I’ve heard of people using CBD as a recharge during the day. If I take it at night, wouldn’t it theoretically keep me up?

Fair point. When used during the day to energize the body, CBD reduces the possibility of daytime sleepiness. By reinforcing the sleep/wake cycle, CBD helps facilitate longer and more consistent sleep times in steady users, according to Dr. Michael J. Breus, The Sleep Doctor.

What’s the best way to consume CBD for sleep?

Vaping methods have the fastest working time; however, sprays, tinctures, and concentrates are just as effective. They simply enter into the body by different means and therefore have varying impact times. Ingesting through food is always an option as well, but the effects may take longer to feel. 

According to the researchers at the CBD Alliance, becoming a CBD user is also about having patience, and paying close attention to the nuanced effects you experience in the first period of use.

This reinforces the notion that one should test their reaction to CBD–and its various consumption methods–to discover what works best for the individual. 

Should I talk to my doctor about the best way to consume? Or how CBD will affect me?

You should! I’ll always recommend discussing with your doctor. 

Thank you again for your guidance. You are a wise being, one who is likely physically attractive and never smells unpleasant

Thank you for finally acknowledging that.