What is CBD oil, and how does it work to improve sleep?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of many compounds found in the cannabis plant. However, unlike THC, another well-known compound in cannabis, CBD is not psychoactive, so it won't get you high. CBD oil is a product made from CBD extracted from the cannabis plant and mixed with a carrier oil, such as coconut or olive oil.
CBD oil has gained popularity for its potential health benefits, including reducing anxiety and improving sleep. But how exactly does it work to improve sleep?
CBD oil interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our bodies, which plays a crucial role in regulating sleep, among other functions. The ECS is made up of receptors and chemicals called endocannabinoids, which help maintain balance, or homeostasis, in the body.
One major component of the ECS is the CB1 receptor, which is mainly found in the brain and nervous system. Studies have found that CBD interacts with these receptors and increases levels of the neurotransmitter GABA, which has a calming effect on the brain and can help with sleep.
CBD oil may also help regulate the body's circadian rhythm, which is our internal clock that regulates sleep-wake cycles. In a study on rats, CBD was found to increase wakefulness during the day, but also increase total sleep time at night, suggesting that it helps regulate the circadian rhythm.
Another potential benefit of CBD oil for sleep is its ability to reduce pain and inflammation. Chronic pain can make it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep, and CBD's anti-inflammatory properties may help reduce pain and promote relaxation.
While more research is needed to fully understand the effects of CBD oil on sleep, early studies and anecdotal evidence suggest that it may be an effective and natural way to improve sleep quality and duration.
Research-backed benefits of using CBD oil for insomnia and sleep disorders
As mentioned earlier, CBD oil has been found to have positive effects on sleep and insomnia. Here are a few research-backed benefits of using CBD oil for insomnia and sleep disorders.
Reduce Anxiety and Improve Sleep Quality
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology found that CBD oil can reduce anxiety in individuals with insomnia. Anxiety is a major cause of many sleep disorders, and reducing anxiety can lead to improved sleep quality. The study also found that participants experienced a significant increase in sleep duration and a decrease in the number of times they woke up during the night.
Decrease REM Sleep Disorder Symptoms
REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD) is a parasomnia that causes individuals to act out their dreams during REM sleep. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Neurology found that CBD oil can decrease symptoms of RBD and improve sleep quality in individuals with Parkinson’s disease.
Reduce Daytime Sleepiness
A study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology found that CBD oil can reduce daytime sleepiness in individuals with sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a condition that causes individuals to stop breathing for short periods of time during sleep, resulting in daytime sleepiness.
Improve Insomnia Symptoms in PTSD Patients
A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that CBD oil can improve insomnia symptoms in individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a mental health condition that can result from experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. Insomnia is a common symptom of PTSD, and improving insomnia symptoms can lead to improved overall mental health.
Research suggests that CBD oil can have positive effects on sleep and insomnia. However, more research is needed to fully understand the effectiveness and safety of CBD oil for sleep disorders.
Tips for incorporating CBD oil into your sleep routine: Dosage, delivery methods, and potential side effects
When it comes to incorporating CBD oil into your sleep routine, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure you're using it effectively and safely. Here are some tips:
One of the most important things to consider when using CBD oil is the dosage. While there is no universal dosage that will work for everyone, start with a low dose and gradually increase until you find the amount that works for you. It's important to note that CBD oil can interact with some medications, so talk to your doctor before starting to use it.
There are several ways to consume CBD oil, including ingestion, sublingual, vaping, and topical application. The delivery method you choose can impact how quickly you feel the effects and how long they last. Ingestion and sublingual methods can take up to an hour to feel the effects and can last up to eight hours. Vaping can provide almost immediate effects, but they only last around two hours. If you're looking for long-lasting effects, topical application may be the best choice, as it can provide relief for up to five hours.
Potential side effects
CBD oil is generally considered safe, but there are some potential side effects to keep in mind. These can include dry mouth, low blood pressure, drowsiness, and changes in appetite or mood. If you experience any adverse effects, stop using CBD oil and talk to your doctor.
Incorporating CBD oil into your sleep routine can be effective for helping you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer, but it's important to take the right dosage and choose the right delivery method to ensure you're getting the full benefits.