THC for sleep is a safe alternative to habit-forming pharmaceuticals. Cannabis has the added benefit of mood enhancement and it kills pain.
If you are finding it harder and harder to get quality shut-eye, you are not alone. It is estimated that 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from some form of insomnia. The recommended amount of sleep for adults is 8 hours a day, but many fall short of this guideline for various reasons. The worst of it is the insomnia that keeps you awake all hours of the night. THC for sleep? It’s something that is helping many troubled sleepers the world over.
More and more adults find themselves seeking solutions to their sleep problems. Some of these include sleeping pills, alcohol, meditation, white noise, and cannabis. Cannabis is an ancient sleep solution that is experiencing a resurgence in popularity.
The Trouble with Sleeping Pills
Sleeping pills are over-used and abused by many sleep derived adults in search of a solution for their sleep problems. As much as these pharmaceuticals offer sleep in the short term, they are never a long term solution. There are dangers associated with sleeping pills, including risk of withdrawal symptoms, headaches, seizures, anxiety and depression. Some sleeping pills are also known to cause parasomnia, a sleep disorder in which the affected person may do bizarre things and not be aware of their actions the next day. Worse still, most sleeping pills are addictive in the long run while also becoming less effective in delivering sleep, leaving you groggy and slow the next day.
These are the most common sleep aids and their side effects:
This common allergy medication is also used as a sleep aid by many adults in the US. Though it is effective for a short while, in the long run it may cause complications, such as dizziness, reduced coordination, and constipation. Benadryl is in class of drugs known as ‘anti-cholinergic.’ A recent Harvard study found that these are associated with cognitive decline and may even cause dementia in long term use.
Lunesta was initially administered at an adult therapeutic dose of 3mg, but the FDA halved this dose recommendation after realizing that it was associated with severe psychomotor and memory impairment for up to 11 hours after ingestion. This can result in impaired driving and lack of coordination the morning after.
This sleeping pill is associated with easy bleeding, arrhythmias and decreased sodium levels.
Valium doubles as an anxiety rescue pill and has been associated with paranoia and suicidal thoughts if taken for a long time.
This list is not summative of the side effects associated with sleeping pills; different patients experience different adverse effects. The adverse effects and reduced effectiveness over time have strongly contributed to the re-emergence of THC for sleep wellness.
THC for Sleep is a Better Option
A study conducted in 2008, found that THC for sleep alters the length of time in REM sleep (the phase of active dreaming). THC diminishes both the duration and intensity of this phase. Some people who suffer from insomnia are not able to sleep though REM as they are roused to full alertness. Others who suffer from PTSD are afraid of falling asleep because REM will lead them down the rabbit hole to new horrors.
Because cannabis can alter REM, it serves as a suitable remedy for this form of sleep disorder, allowing the patients to sleep soundly through the night. The deep sleep phase is associated with more rest and increased energy levels the next day.
THC for sleep has additional benefits:
- Stress reduction which allows you to fall asleep more easily
- Pain control which allows you to sleep in case you were being kept awake due to pain.
- It promotes muscle relaxation which will ensure better quality sleep
- It is a mood enhancer allowing you to fall asleep more easily
- Cannabis has also been shown to avert sleep apnea. In this condition, the patient has several obstructions in breathing and hence they have to wake up to breathe. One study showed that THC can restore respiratory stability by modulating serotonin activity thereby averting sleep apnea.
- It has also been shown that aged cannabis has higher efficacy in promoting sleep. When THC breaks down over time, it converts into Cannabinol (CBN) which is more sedating.
In the long run, THC for sleep is safer than sleeping pills as it has fewer associated adverse effects. Studies have revealed that addiction to cannabis is also very rare, one can get used to the feeling of euphoria, which is different from being addicted. Sleeping pills on the other hand are highly addictive and it is easy to build dependence on them.
It is highly recommended that you address the underlying problems that is causing you to experience insomnia in the first place. Cannabis is a good sleep aid, but it will not substitute for the hard work of dealing with the things that are keeping you up at night.