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CBD For Sleep: All You Need to Know

The lack of sufficient sleep amongst adults has become endemic. Although sleep is imperative to optimal health, more than a third of Americans do not get enough sleep on a regular basis.

Lack of sleep can be caused by a variety of different factors, including stress, poor time management, unhealthy habits, and sleep disorders.

Despite any of these reasons, the inability to sleep, afflicting a substantial percentage of the population, has led to an increase in markets for various sleep aids and remedies.

One such remedy, which has been increasing in popularity over the last couple of years, is CBD. Studies have shown it can help relieve symptoms of stress and anxiety, as well as help aid restful, deep sleep. 

What is CBD?

CBD is short for cannabidiol. It is one of the active ingredients in cannabis, otherwise known as marijuana. It is derived from the hemp plant, which is closely related to the marijuana plant. Unlike THC, the other active ingredient in marijuna, CBD does not produce an inebriating effect, which adds to its appeal.

Although its exact effects on the brain are unknown, studies have shown that it helps increase levels of chemicals associated with pain and stress management in the body.

There is evidence that it can be used to alleviate symptoms of several neurological disorders such as epilepsy, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and multiple sclerosis, as well as insomnia, although studies differ on how much it can actually help.

How is CBD Used?

CBD can be consumed in various different ways, some of which are more popular than others. This makes CBD use more convenient and attractive to potential users. Consumers can choose the way they most prefer to ingest the product. Here are just a few different methods:

  • Smoking - Strains of marijuana and hemp that are high in CBD can be smoked “traditionally” to deliver the compound.
  • Vaporizing - One of the most popular methods, this involves the use of CBD oil cartridges in an electronic device. It is more convenient than smoking, and often thought to be safer.
  • Oil and Tinctures - Oil and CBD infused liquid are packaged in drop bottles and consumed by dropping under the tongue.
  • Edibles - CBD is infused in candy or gummies which are eaten to release the compound. This is another very popular and convenient way to use CBD.
  • Pills - Like a vitamin, CBD also comes in tablets. However, in a pill form, it may take longer to produce effects in the body.
  • Isolate - Usually in powder form, isolate is derived directly from the hemp plant and is considered the most concentrated form of CBD. It is very versatile and can be added to food, drinks, and tinctures. It can be used to make CBD tea as well.

CBD is also used as an additive to many different products such as topical creams. It can be used during the day time for anxiety, and before bedtime to promote rest.

Because of its association with mairjunana, many people can be skeptical about using CBD. However, because it comes in many different forms and methods of delivery, stigma surrounding its use has been more relieved. This opened up the market to all different kinds of users.

Benefits of CBD Use for Sleep

Endocannabinoids are molecules produced in the human body that help regulate appetite, sleep and circadian rhythms. They bind to receptors located in the central and peripheral nervous systems in order to directly send signals to the brain.

CBD in the body binds to these molecules and receptors, and therefore may also help regulate sleep. Here’s how:

  • It can help relieve pain and muscle soreness for more comfortable sleep.

Although studies done on CBD for sleep differ in opinion, CBD is generally considered to safe. Before using CBD products or any sleep supplement, it is important to first consult with a doctor.

The benefits and effects of CBD may differ from individual to individual, and many users may not see effects right away. There is scientific evidence to support that CBD can be beneficial for both sleep and overall health, however, it is best to combine use with a healthy lifestyle.

Potential Risks of CBD Use

Like any supplement, there are risks that can come with CBD use. While the substance is generally considered to be safe, it may have adverse effects or not be suitable for people with underlying health problems.

  • It may cause drowsiness that can temporarily impact coordination and cognitive function.
  • It can cause nausea and gastrointestinal discomfort.
  • It can interact with medication and other treatments.
  • It can cause liver problems and injury.
  • It can increase sedation if used with drugs or alcohol.
  • It can have effects on fertility, especially male fertility.

Another risk of using CBD products is that the industry is largely unregulated. Although CBD can seemingly be bought anywhere, products on shelves are not approved for medicinal use by the FDA.

Where Can You Get CBD?

CBD is federally legal in all 50 states. The FDA has only approved one drug made with CBD for the treatment of epilepsy. While CBD can be legally sold, it cannot be advertised for medicinal use per FDA rules. This makes it more difficult for buyers, however, as they have to figure out for themselves whether the product they are purchasing is safe or not.

CBD is sold almost everywhere; you can get it online, at pharmacies, and at drug stores. While purchasing, it is important to be aware of the following:

  • The company’s reputation - Are they well known for good, safe, effective products? Have they received any FDA warnings?
  • Cannabinoid content - How much CBD is in the product? Is there any THC? What is the dosage like?
  • Filler ingredients - Is the product safe for use? Does it contain any chemicals or harmful additives?

Research should be done before buying any CBD product, and in all cases, it is best to consult a doctor before taking any CBD product.

Key Takeaways

  • CBD is derived from hemp and marijuana plants, but does not have any psychoactive effects on users.
  • It can help alleviate the symptoms of a myriad of neurological disorders, but is predominantly used for stress, anxiety, and sleep.
  • It can be consumed in many different ways, the most popular through vapor and gummy edibles.
  • It can be used during the day and before bedtime to help regulate circadian rhythms and combat symptoms of stress and anxiety.
  • Although there is much evidence for its effectiveness in helping combat symptoms of stress and anxiety, studies differ on how effective it can be for sleep.
  • It is generally safe, but can cause side effects and interact with medication, so use with the guidance of a doctor.
  • Because it is unregulated, it is important for users to do thorough research before buying any CBD products without the guidance of a doctor or professional.