CBD and Cannabis: Can Cannabinoids Cure Insomnia?
Trouble sleeping? You’re not alone Nearly 50% of adults in the United States deal with insomnia on a regular basis. And make no mistake, even occasional insomnia could be secretly doing more damage than leaving you tired or distracted.
Did you know that your cells actually regenerate and repair while you sleep? Yes.
And getting more sleep can create a massive transformation in your life. It is often the secret weapon to creating more energy and better health.
Sleep affects growth and stress hormones, your immune system, appetite, breathing, blood pressure and cardiovascular health.
Research shows that the benefits are endless: healthy weight, lowered risk for serious health problems like diabetes and heart disease, reduced stress and improved mood.
Sleep is also VITAL to a large number of brain functions, including how nerve cells communicate and the process of processing (and removing) toxins in your brain that build up while during waking hours!
The choices are vast when it comes to the medical options related to insomnia. Many professionals treat insomnia with prescription medications, such as antidepressants, benzodiazepine and antipsychotics. The problem with that approach is daytime sedation, what we call a hangover effect.
Curing insomnia with medications can create a whole host of other problems consistent with dysfunction during the waking hours as well as a very impressively long list of side effects.
In some studies many medications have been shown to increase the risk of falls in the elderly and also increase the risk of motor vehicle accidents in people who take it chronically.
Sadly, many other solutions are not without risk. Many sufferers self-medicate using over-the-counter therapies, such as Melatonin, Valerian and Skullcap, which have some benefits, but most patients find them to be not as effective as the prescription therapies.
And some OTC remedies commonly used can be even riskier. Benadryl and Zyrtec have been shown to increase the risk of dementia due to an their cumulative effect on the body’s production of Acetylcholine.
So what is left? How can we battle a sleeping disorder without dealing with the short-term and long-term side effects of prescription and nonprescription drugs?
CBD or Medical Cannabis might be the answer!
It appears that for those struggling with sleep, medical marijuana is a medicine that they reach for with good results.
With the exception of those who suffer from psychosis, medical marijuana (and probably even CBD) have been shown in a multitude of studies to aid in the treatment of insomnia without the harsh side effects that prescription and non prescription drugs induce.
Why? This is true due to CB1 receptors being distributed widely throughout the brain, but being absent in the cardio and respiratory centers found in the brain stem, there are a wide range of potential therapeutic effects with little evidence for cardiac or pulmonary consequences.
But which product is the best?
It appears that a cannabinoid product with higher levels of Indica seem to be better tolerated, but in a study that provided a questionnaire to 95 California dispensary patients, patients that were taking the product for insomnia and nightmares, were mostly choosing high CBD Sativa strains, so take this opportunity to test out various combinations to find the appropriate balance of Indica and Sativa for your biological needs.
Sleep is often a self-directed journey, be educated! But also speak to your doctor or dispensary consultant to make sure you’re taking the best steps and getting enough support along the way.
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Dr. Mary Clifton
Dr. Mary Clifton is an Internal Medicine doctor in New York City, with 20 years of experience in both the hospital and private practice and is also a licensed by the New York State Department of Health to provide medical marijuana and is a recognized expert in CBD, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana.
She is a published researcher, national speaker on women’s health and osteoporosis, and author of four books, and two new soon-to-be-released books on CBD and Cannabis – what you need to know, how to use them and a COOKBOOK to support ease of use.