Is there a connection between sleep and cannabis? Let’s decode it!
Sleep occupies about one-third of a human’s life. It is a relevant state where one’s consciousness to the environment and its stimuli is reduced. It plays a significant role to survive in the physical world, even though the exact function of it is not known. For this reason, persistent sleep deficiency is dangerous and could lead to a severe physical impairment followed by mental loss and ultimately, death. There are four stages of the sleep-wake cycle.
These stages are usually repeated multiple times during the night. Step 1 is considered to be the lightest and shortest phase of sleep lasting only 5% of the totality of the cycle. Stage 2 is the shifting of the gear to a deep sleep with your heart rate and body temperature dropping and completes roughly 50% of your sleep.
Progressing to stage 3 means you are in your deepest stage of sleep. It implies that waking up from this stage will have you tired and mentally weakened for an hour utmost. Moreover, your tissue repair, growth, and strengthening of the immune system occur in phase 3.
The fourth and last stage is what we call the Rapid Eye Movement or REM sleep, also known as the dream sleep. An average person spends up to two hours every night dreaming, and the rapid movement of your eyes occurs when you imagine (Stone, 2020).
According to the National Sleep Foundation, 50 to 10 million adults in the U.S suffer from symptoms of a sleep disorder. And approximately 30 to 40 percent of the population go through the experience of having insomnia at some point with about 10 to 15 percent of adults dealing with chronic insomnia. With the number of people being subject to sleep disorders in the populace, there has been an increase of attention in one controversial cure: cannabis.
Cannabis and Sleep
Dr Tishler observed that several studies have shreds of evidence on how cannabis can decrease or suppress REM sleep. The two active components of cannabis being THC and CBD have differing effects on sleep. THC is responsible for suppressing REM sleep, although findings are not consistent. According to Kebra Smith-Bolden, a registered nurse and CEO of CannaHealth, THC consumption shortens REM sleep, exterminating other people’s ability to dream due to the reduced time in this particular phase. A study by Ceri Bradshaw in 2019 discovered that cannabis users show significantly less REM sleep than non-users and strangely, cannabis users can recall dreams as often as non-cannabis users do.
A 2008 study by Thomas Schierenbeck on the effects of illegal recreational drugs upon sleep, noted that lesser REM sleep reduces dreams, and for those who are suffering from PTSD, this also means more minor nightmares. Hypothetically, spending less time dreaming means you have more time in a “deep sleep” state which is the most restorative, and peaceful part of the sleep cycle. Nevertheless, REM is vital for healthy cognitive and immune function. Using marijuana with high THC levels could damage your sleep quality if consumed in the long term.
There is a dramatic increase in the need of CBD as a sleeping aid. A 2017 review of cannabis, cannabinoids and sleep, although not well comprehended, hints that dosage seems to affect the duration of dreaming phase. The report also contains proofs of the different effects of dosages. Such that, on the day it was taken, high dosages of CBD increases the start of REM sleep, while mid-range dose decreases the beginning of REM sleep.
CBD consumers also narrated the significant impact of cannabinoid on their dreams to the point of experiencing more vivid and lucid dreaming for some, as well as the more positive and enhanced recollection of their dreams.
Edibles are ideal for sleep because the “high” it provides entirely affects the body, which will sit well during the night. It takes about two hours to kick in, that means, you should keep in mind the amount you consume before going to sleep. If you are only starting with edibles, starting with no more than 5mg of THC will be best for you.
The following products are the best edibles that could help you in your sleep (Janikian, 2019);
• Insomnia by Sensi Chew. These are 100g chocolate caramels filled organic cannabis with 4g of melatonin per serving. The main cannabinoid is THC with CBD, CBC, CBN, CBG, and terpenes on the side. Taking half a dose or less 30 minutes before going to bed with a guarantee you an instant slumber.
• Relaxing Elixir by Herba Buena Lullaby. This product will help you relax your mind and body. It is made organic and grown under the sun cannabis from Mendocino County, California.
• Sleep Tablets by Stratos THC. This product contains cannabis capsules that will help you sleep. It has 10mg of THC per pill with only pure CO2 cannabis oil from indica strains.
• Indica Cinnamon Gummies by Incredibles. This product is not only spicy with cinnamon flavour and contains soothing indica TCH, but also leaves your body and mind relaxed.
• Oil Drops by Fab CBD. If you add a few drops to your snack, tea, or straight to your tongue, this drops with no THC content will help you fall asleep.
• Beautiful Dream Blend by Kin Slips. This is a fast-acting relief—with only 10 to 15 minutes to affect your body—that instantly melts in your tongue. It is also formulated with compounds that are usually found in indica strains, that is, cannabinoids and terpenes.
• CBD Rich Tinctures by Treatwell Tinctures. It is one of the best edibles for sleep that comes with three CBD: THC ratios and is made with the whole plant extracts from organic Humboldt County flower that is grown naturally outdoors.
• Lavender Chamomile Cannabis Tea by Hippie Brew. It is infused by cannabis and lavender for a sedating effect to help you fall asleep.
• Blueberry Acai Calming Gummies by Altus. These gummies are made with indica strain with a 1:1 THC: CBD ratio. Altus gummies are thought to be one of the tastiest and best edibles for sleep because they are made out of natural fruit puree with a hint of passionflower and chamomile.
• MedOil CBD Sleeping Pills by MedTerra. It is made out of 25mg of CBD as well as 10mg of melatonin. MedOil CBD sleeping pills contain no THC which makes it available to ship in all 50 states.
The occasional effectiveness of cannabis to sleep does not prove its consistency; it may be practical to a certain number of people but could be harmful to others. Although the shreds of evidence it offered honestly had a positive impact on matters concerning sleep and the conditions related to it, consulting a doctor must also be considered before consuming marijuana most especially when you are a beginner.
Ferguson, S. (2019). Can You Use Cannabis to Restore Your Natural Sleep Cycle?
Retrieved June 15, 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/medical-marijuana/cannabis-for-sleeping#precautions
Janikian, M. (2019). 10 Best Edibles for Sleep: How to Treat Insomnia with Cannabis.
Retrieved June 15, 2020, from https://herb.co/learn/best-edibles-for-sleep/
Mandal, A. (2020). What is Sleep? Retrieved June 15, 2020, from https://www.news
Stone, E. (2020). Does Cannabis Affect Your Dreams? Retrieved June 15, 2020, from
Ryan, K. (2019). 10 Edibles to Help You Stay Asleep. Retrieved June 15, 2020, from
3 thoughts on “Cannabis and Sleep: Does Cannabis Affect Dreams?”
Very helpful and informative. Thank you. I have a tumor in my leg and I was supposed to have surgery to remove the tumor on March.24th, 2020 but after months of tests, MRIs, X-rays, and visits with the doctor, the surgery was cancelled on 5 days before, on March.19th, due to the Covid-19 outbreak. The pain meds that my doctor prescribed rarely help and I often can’t fall asleep. I decided, even though I quit smoking week over 3 years ago now, to try some edibles, and this blog gives me hope that not only will I be able to get a good nights sleep but that the edibles I purchased will help with my pain.
Some strains give me the best sleep of my life!
Makes sense, sometimes when I smoke a lot then stop for a couple days I’ll have crazy dreams. Some strains change my sleep more than others.
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