Fighting Insomnia with CBD
Struggling to get to sleep at night? You’re not alone. A whole third of UK adults are tossing and turning right alongside you. Once you’ve tried all the lavender pillows and chamomile teas and, hell, even over-the-counter sleeping pills in the book, you’re probably at your wit’s end, right? But we’re firm believers that there’s a solution to every problem, and sleep – whether you’re struggling to drift off every now and then or battling hard-core, zombifying insomnia – is no different.
We’ve documented our love for CBD and its myriad uses pretty extensively here at OHNE, but did you know CBD could even be your coveted key to the gates of dreamland?
The lovely people at Sleep Help, an organisation dedicated to exploring and educating people all about that ever-elusive concept of the perfect night’s sleep. CBD could be the key. Consider how CBD can alleviate your insomnia so you can get the rest you need and wake up feeling more refreshed each day.
How CBD Can Help Your Insomnia
What’s keeping you up at night? If you’ve ever felt like a zombie after a rough night (or several), you’ll know sleepless nights can take the life out of you. It happens. But, if you’re getting a little help from CBD, you could sleep better and come back to the land of the living.
We know what you’re thinking: CBD is going to get me high and I’ll stay up all night… It won’t, and you won’t. The fact is, CBD can be effective for helping you sleep better at night, so you can feel better each morning. No funny business.
When you can’t sleep, nothing works right. You’re tired, have little energy and probably even less patience. You can barely form a thought, much less deal with the demands of the day. Skipping sleep just doesn’t work. Unfortunately, so many people do skip it, and it’s a real problem. In fact, as many as two-thirds of UK adults report suffering from disrupted sleep and women are more likely than men to say they don’t get the right amount of sleep. Generally, adults should sleep seven to nine hours each night.
Insomnia is commonly caused by stress, anxiety, depression, or unusual working hours. But other factors, like an uncomfortable bed, noisy room, or even temperature can play a part. You could also be sabotaging sleep with recreational drugs, alcohol, caffeine, or nicotine.
How do I know if I have insomnia?
You might have insomnia if you find it hard to sleep, wake up in the night, lie awake at night, or wake up way too early and can’t get back to sleep. It’s possible to experience insomnia even if you think you’ve got a healthy sleeping routine or can’t identify external stressors or other situational factors than may be causing it. Even if you’re sleeping for many hours after finally falling asleep, the hours awake tossing and turning prior to dropping off will likely be taking a mental and physical toll on you. You might still feel tired after you wake up, and feel irritable or have a hard time concentrating. Untreated, insomnia can last for months or years, or can sporadically crop up during times of stress or change.
Insomnia might make you feel like you’re hitting a brick wall each day, and it can put you at risk for some serious medical conditions. If you’re regularly not sleeping enough, you’re at a higher risk of conditions including obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. And your mental health can suffer, too.
In short: Sleeping is cool, insomnia is not.
CBD Can Help Insomnia
Sometimes, insomnia is a behaviour issue. If you’re staying out late, using your phone all night, and giving yourself five hours to make the best of it, you’re just not going to get the sleep you need. And you’re going to feel awful. But other times, there’s not a lot you can control about what’s keeping you up at night.
If you’re suffering from anxiety, depression, chronic pain, or just plain can’t sleep, CBD might be able to help you.
Again, CBD isn’t going to get you high and conk you out at night. In fact, you might not really feel different taking CBD at all, just…better. CBD has a subtle effect, and its primary goal isn’t to drastically change your body, just help it function properly. CBD binds with your endocannabinoid system, which balances your mood, emotions, pain, digestive system, and yes, even sleep. Think of it as a lubricant for balancing your body and improving pain, emotions, and how well you sleep at night.
CBD is especially helpful for sleep if pain or anxiety are keeping you up at night. It’s a great tool for pain relief, so if you’re suffering from chronic pain and it’s keeping you from falling asleep every single night, a little CBD could do the trick and have you sleeping better and feeling right. The same is true if you’re lying awake with anxious thoughts. CBD can help regulate your mood and emotional response to those obsessive, intrusive thoughts that keep us up at night.
Using CBD For Insomnia
So how can you actually use CBD to get a better night’s sleep?
- Look for an oil with a good quality profile. This means looking for CBD made with full-spectrum extract rather than CBD isolates and doing your research about the kind of dosage you’re after as the different products available vary greatly. Don’t believe everything you read on the internet. CBD oils aren’t all the same, and some are much better than others. The popularity of CBD, and relatively lax regulations surrounding it, means that it’s easy to end up with low quality CBD oil made from cheap CBD isolates. Make sure you know what you want from your CBD before you start to shop for it and it’ll be far easier to identify the products that are right for you and your needs. Read online reviews, and make sure the producers have third party testing that verifies the concentration and purity of CBD. OHNE’s pro-period CBD oil, Anti-Teardrops, is a great choice for a low-dosage CBD oil, and if you’re looking for something with a higher concentrate, we’ve compiled a list of Sleep Help’s faves here.
- Think about how you want to use CBD. There are a handful of different ways to take CBD and your choice can depend on how fast you need relief or just how you feel like taking it. If you want to vape, know that it will offer faster relief but may not last as long. Or if you prefer edibles, taking a gummy could be helpful and long lasting, but might take a while to kick in. This matters if you need to fall asleep fast, or if you need to stay asleep longer.
- Don’t just rely on CBD. It’s not a magic wand. If your sleep habits aren’t great, CBD won’t conk you out like a sleeping pill. You’re going to have to do some work, too. If you’re not giving yourself time in your schedule to sleep, or if you’re bingeing on screen time and caffeine late at night, sleep just isn’t going to happen, even with the help of CBD. Make CBD a supportive tool for sleep, but make sure you’re practising healthy sleep habits, too.
- If in doubt, always ask your doctor. You can let them know you’re interested in using CBD and ask if they have any concerns or issues you should be aware of – this is especially important if you are pregnant or are being treated for other health issues. Though rare, CBD can have side effects, especially if you’re taking other medications, so it’s important to be upfront with your medical professionals.
Ready to sleep better at night? CBD could be the key. Consider how CBD can alleviate your insomnia so you can get the rest you need and wake up feeling more refreshed each day.
This article was written by Amy Highland of Sleep Help. Sleep Help a sleep education organisation dedicated to researching and sharing resources on how to maintain a healthy, sustainable sleep routine, whether you’re a veteran insomniac, a new parent, or just want to catch a few more Z’s.
Amy Highland is a sleep expert at SleepHelp.org. She loves taking naps during thunderstorms and cuddling up with a blanket, book, and cats.
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