Among the many uses that researchers are finding for CBD oil, sleep may be the most interesting. The ability to use CBD oil for sleep could provide relief for one of the biggest health problems in the U.S today.
Sleep disorders are alarmingly common, with an estimated 50 to 70 million adults affected, just in the United States. If you find yourself tossing and turning in the middle of the night wishing you could get relief we understand your struggle.
We also know what it’s like to not want to turn to things like sleeping pills that can be unhealthy and habit forming.
What if CBD Oil could help you wake in the morning feeling rested without any grogginess? Is this too good to be true?
Using CBD Oil To Help You Sleep
Surprisingly, CBD is actually a mildly altering substance that activates some of the same receptors as caffeine. So, how could it possibly help with sleep?
It starts with CBD’s effect on your brain. CBD is shown to affect many different receptors found in your brain and throughout the body. For our talk today, the fact that CBD directly activates the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor is interesting.
The serotonin receptor in question has been shown to have soothing effects on anxiety, addiction, appetite, sleep, pain, and even stomach issues.
With anxiety being one of the main causes of insomnia, the fact that CBD could help sooth anxious feelings could very easily lead to an easier time falling asleep at night.
Also, serotonin has been scientifically proven to be a precursor to melatonin production.
Melatonin is one of the most important naturally occurring chemicals in our body helpful in ensuring deep, restful sleep. Chronically low levels of serotonin are likely to fail to signal melatonin production.
Lastly, high levels of serotonin have been known to combat both depression and anxiety, both of which are linked with insomnia.
All of this points to the fact that, while CBD doesn’t directly help with sleep, the positive effect it has on the 5-HT1A receptors and serotonin levels definitely will.
Pain, or discomfort, can also be a common roadblock on the way to sleep. CBD helps the body’s endocannabinoid system with chronic and arthritis related pain, inflammation and muscle soreness related.
Lastly, and probably the one that needs the most research to be truly proven, is CBD Oils effects on improving REM sleep behavior.
Both PTSD and Parkinson’s sufferers are known to have REM sleep abnormalities that could possibly be improved with CBD use.
Research into CBD and Sleep
As with many uses for CBD, the research proving its effectiveness is fairly lacking. The studies that have been done show promise, but simply not enough evidence exists that is backed by clinical trails.
That being said, we did dive deep into the research that has been published, and this is what we found.
The first study set up patients with various doses of CBD vs a control group given a placebo. Patients receiving doses of 160mg showed increased sleep duration. The also found that groups given 40, 80 and 160mg of CBD fell asleep faster.
Those who suffer from insomnia often have elevated levels of cortisol, even at night (this can be related with low levels of serotonin, as mentioned earlier).
In a study on CBD and cortisol participants took either 300 or 600mg of CBD. The study found levels of cortisol significantly decreased in the patients taking these large doses.
Finally, a study done in 2019 on 103 patients who suffered either from anxiety or reported low sleep quality. The 103 participants were tracked for 3 months and data was recorded.
In this study patients were given between 25 and 175mg of CBD. During the first check in 67% reported improved sleep, at the 2nd, the number had fallen to about 56%.
The conclusion drawn from this study was that CBD will help many with sleep in the short term, long-term effectiveness may be in question.
How Much CBD Should I Use?
The amount of CBD that is right for you will differ for everyone. The effective dose depends on things like sex, weight, metabolism and even genetics. You can read our full guide to dosing to see how these factors come into play!
In the studies, participants were often given large amounts of CBD (from 40-600mg). We take CBD a few times a week before bed to help us sleep, and we usually take between 10-20mg.
We recommend starting with a small dose. It is always better to see how your body handles it and slowly work up to a dose that gives you the results you want!
The Best CBD Oil for Sleep
If you haven’t already, you should jump over to our best CBD brands page for more information about CBD projects! Specifically for sleep though, we have two products that stay by our bedside.
The first is Charlotte’s Web Hemp Extract. We keep the 17mg bottle handy as we’ve found this is the one that works best for us. They also have a 5mg and a 60m of CBD bottle as well if you need a different strength product.
Charlotte’s Web has a huge lineup of products and flavor, and has long been one of the established leaders in the industry.
The other product we normally turn to when using CBD oil for sleep is the Joy Organics 15mg tincture. The flavors Joy offers are a little different and are a nice switch from the Charlotte’s Web offering.
We did a full review of Joy Organics recently and were extremely impressed with their product offering. Since then we’ve added both the oil and the CBD salve
to fight muscle soreness into our daily routine to fight muscle soreness!
Final Thoughts on CBD for Sleep
With so many uses for CBD, the research is lagging behind what we anecdotally know about CBD. Cannabis has been used as a sleep aid for decades, and it appears that CBD has many of the same benefits, without the drawbacks of THC.
As more research comes in we’ll be updating this article, so feel free to check back often!