Can You Use Cannabis to Restore Your Natural Sleep Cycle?
Insomnia isn’t that uncommon
Sleep is essential for maintaining our mental and physical health, yet it eludes many adults.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, 50 to 70 million U.S. adults experience symptoms of a sleep disorder. About 30 to 40 percent of the population will experience insomnia at some point in their lives, and about 10 to 15 percent of adults will deal with chronic insomnia.
So if getting shut-eye is becoming harder and harder, you’re not alone.
With so many people experiencing sleeping disorders, there’s been a rise of interest in one controversial cure: cannabis. Many in the medical marijuana community refer to cannabis as an effective treatment, with little to no side effects, for a range of sleeping disorders.
“Marijuana is an effective sleep aid because it restores a person’s natural sleep cycle, which so often falls out of sync with our schedules in today’s modern lifestyle,” says Dr. Matt Roman, a medical marijuana physician.
Whether you have a sleep disorder or you’re having difficulty sleeping after a stressful day, cannabis might be a choice for you. Marijuana’s analgesic properties might provide some relief for those with chronic pain, while the anti-anxiety properties can soothe a stressed out mind and body.
There are different strains of marijuana. Some are more energizing, and some are calming and sedating depending on the balance of the different cannabinoids.
First, here’s a quick primer on the science behind marijuana. This herb works because it contains different cannabinoids, two of which you’ll see most often:
- Cannabidiol (CBD). CBD has a number of health benefits, and is nonpsychoactive, meaning it doesn’t cause you to feel “high.”
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC, a psychoactive cannabinoid, is primarily responsible for that “high” feeling.
Something else THC is responsible for? Inducing sleep . So you’ll want a strain that contains more THC than CBD.
According to a 2008 study , ingesting marijuana strains with higher levels of THC typically reduces the amount of REM sleep you get. Reducing REM sleep means reducing dreams — and for those who experience PTSD, it could mean reducing nightmares.
So the theory is that if you spend less time dreaming, you’ll spend more time in a “deep sleep” state. The deep sleep state is thought to be the most restorative, restful part of the sleep cycle.
Still, REM is important for healthy cognitive and immune functioning, and marijuana with higher THC levels could impair your sleep quality if taken long term.
But this isn’t true across the board. Some studies have found that sleep can actually be impaired by regular use of marijuana. It’s clear that marijuana changes sleep cycles.
Smoking of any kind is a known health risk and should be approached with caution. Also, medicinal use of marijuana is still illegal in many areas.
Talk to your doctor about your sleep cycles. There may be long-term health consequences with interrupted REM, because much of the immune function repair takes place in deep sleep.
Please use marijuana responsibly. As with all forms of smoking, your risk of COPD can increase. Smoking marijuana is hazardous to the lungs, especially for those with asthma or other respiratory conditions. The use of marijuana while pregnant or breastfeeding isn’t recommended.
Long-term marijuana use has been shown to have changes on the amount of gray matter in the brain. For teenagers, marijuana seems to have even more profound long-term and lasting effects on the brain and isn’t recommended.
Marijuana use isn’t recommended for anyone under 25 years of age because of the long-term effects on learning and recall.
More research on marijuana for medicinal purposes as well as the risk of COPD is still needed.Is cannabis an answer to entering the land of sleep? From strains to timing, here’s what you need to know about cannabis as a nightcap.
Best Indica Strains For Sleep – Top 10 Indica Weed Strains for Sleep
As a cannabis aficionado, you must be familiar with the two categories of cannabis – Indica and Sativa. Sleep is thought to be the most common weed symptom, but that’s not an entirely correct assumption, depending on the weed category or strain, some weed can make you sleepy while others can have a quite opposite impact. The Indica category is known to induce sleep, whereas, the Sativa strains of cannabis have an uplifting effect that’s suitable for activities.
With the growing cases of sleep disorders, medical professionals and researchers are suggesting Indica strain for sleep with no side effects.
What is Indica?
Indica is a weed category known for its physically sedating, heavy, and sleep-inducing effects. Cannabis of Indica strain is also popular for its pain relief effects due to the body buzz it induces, relaxing every muscle in the body. It provides the perfect tranquilizing effects that deliver the users in a slumber that can last hours on end.
How Indica Helps with Insomnia and Sleep Apnea?
Insomnia is a sleep disorder that’s becoming more widespread these days with 30-40% of people contracting this disorder at some point in their lives, according to the National Sleep Foundation. 10-15% of people suffer from chronic insomnia. A patient suffering from the ailment has trouble falling asleep or maintaining sleep.
Patients with sleep apnea do not have trouble falling asleep, but the breathing stops and starts repeatedly during sleep, which can cause a lack of sleep in the patient.
Due to the lack of sleep, patients suffering from both the ailments contract other disorders that are a result of lack of sleep. Indica weed does not just help the user fall asleep faster, but it also helps patients with sleep apnea breathe normally. With sleep apnea, research is still in the early phases, but the signs so far look promising.
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Top 10 Indica for Inducing Sleep
Indica strain of cannabis is a great sleep-aid. The THC and CBD in cannabis provide the adequate physical relaxation and relieve the stress and anxiety of the user. With all these properties, the user experiences the quality of sleep like never before. So, what are the best strain for sleep?
- Big Bud
As suggested by its name, the big bud has a ridiculously large bud with an incredible amount of THC. This is the best Indica strain for sleep. A hybrid, the Big Bud is 85% Indica with 20% THC. This strain is the cross between Northern Lights, Afghani landrace, and Haze. Winner of the High Times Cannabis Cup, the aroma of the Big Bud is primarily dank and earthy with an undertone of fruitiness. The flavor is grape with a lingering sweet taste.
Big Bud provides a strong body high that takes several minutes to take hold. Once the high is at its peak, the user becomes completely relaxed wanting to sink into the couch. The high makes the user lethargic with the desire to do nothing other than relax. As the effects of the Big Bud starts to dissipate, it delivers the user in an unswayable sleep that lasts for hours.
- Granddaddy Purple
A relatively new strain, the Granddaddy Purple is the offspring of the aforementioned Big Bud and Purple Urkle. The strain takes its appearance from its parent Big Bud with large and compact buds. The complexity of its aroma with grape and berry adds to the alluring appearance of the strain. With a THC content of 17.5%, the effects of the strain are detectable on the mind and the body. At the peak of the high, the mind floats in a dreamy buzz while the body remains completely relaxed. Like most Indica dominant strains, the Granddaddy Purple is a couch-lock and night-time strain. The sleep-inducing effects of the stain make it great for insomnia.
- Northern Lights
A pure Indica, the Northern Lights is a favorite for insomnia and other sleep disorders. Descendent of the Afghani and Thai landrace, the buds have a sweet and spicy aroma. Mildly potent with the THC of 16.5%, the effects of the strain are predominantly a body buzz that pacifies the mind and relaxes the body. The comfortable laziness induced by the strain provides pain relief and sleepiness, while a good remedy to relieve depression symptoms and stress. The Northern Lights is a popular strain in the US and Canada for its sleep-inducing effects.
- Afghan Kush
The Afghan Kush is one of the all-time-favorite strains for insomnia. With a THC of over 20%, the strain provides a sedating effect that starts from the spine and spreads throughout the body. The smell of the Afghan Kush is a pungent earthy with slight hash. The user primarily feels euphoric and sleepy after administering the strain which makes the Afghan Kush an ideal strain for insomnia and inducing sleep.
A hybrid with a ratio of 50% Indica and 50% Sativa, the Skywalker has a THC of 15%. A lovely fruity aroma with the flavor that reflects a classic Indica, the Skywalker quickly delivers the users into a euphoria. Unlike the other strains, this cannabis does not lead to couch-lock; however, it does make the user feeling lazy and ensuing sleep. A great strain known for its relaxing effects that can immediately lighten the mood of the user making them happy and euphoric.
- Grape Ape
A predominant Indica with the cross of Afghani, Mendocino Purps, and Skunk, the Grape Ape has a ridiculously high amount of THC averaging at 25%. With a fruity flavor and a potent body high, the Grape Ape is a great choice for users looking for the best strain for sleep. The effects of cannabis take over slowly eventually making the user’s head and body heavy and lethargic. This weed completely relaxes the user without the desire to do anything. This makes the Grape Ape a nighttime strain with effective sleep-inducing effects.
- Blackberry Kush
A strong Indica with the reputation of causing couch-lock, the Blackberry Kush has a THC averaging 20%. This is a beautiful strain with buds covered in trichomes and tiny red hairs. You also notice a variety of other colors including yellow, purple, and black. Despite the lethargic effects of cannabis, the user also feels euphoric and happy after administering the strain. Blackberry Kush relaxes the muscles and removes anxiety and stress allowing the user to rest and sleep. Some of the feelings experienced by users after administering the strain include euphoria, sedated, sleepy, creative, and dizziness. This is another favorite for patients suffering from Insomnia. If you want an Indica strain for sleep, the Blackberry Kush should be on your list.
- 9pound Hammer
A perennial favorite of connoisseurs for its sleep-inducing effects, the 9pound Hammer is an Indica with the cross of Jack the Ripper, Gooberry, and Hells OG. With enticing flavors such as the lime and grape, the strain has a THC averaging 23%. An incredibly potent strain, the effects of 9pound Hammer is sedating, relaxed, creative, and sleepy. The strain hits you soon after consuming with a strong head high and sedation. As the effects progress, all pain and muscle tension disappears. In low dosage, the strain will not have much of a sleep-inducing effect, but in high dosage, the strain quickly puts you to sleep. For sleep, this strain is recommended only for users with a high tolerance level.
- God’s Gift
A California’s favorite strain, God’s Gift has some popular parents who are known for their sleep-inducing effects like the Granddaddy Purple and OG Kush. With an average THC of 25%, God’s Gift is a potent strain that delivers a strong high. This is a fast-acting strain that makes the user relaxed and dreamy. It delivers a happy and peaceful effect that clears the mind and allows the user to rid anxiety and stress. A strain that would make you want to lay on the couch for hours, this strain would eventually make you sleep.
- Blueberry Kush
As with most Indica-dominant strains, the Blueberry Kush also brings a heavy body-sensation that relieves stress and anxiety completely relaxing the user. The strain has an aroma of fresh berries with a hint of earthy making the Blueberry a delicious strain, but instead of being a mouthwatering delight for the taste buds, it makes you peaceful and serene. Apart from being useful in insomnia, it relieves a variety of medical properties such as dizziness, headaches, and paranoia. This is the last strain in our list but the Blueberry Kush is certainly not the last when considering the best strain for sleep.
Cannabis is a great alternative for patients struggling with sleep disorders. It has no side effects and provides a wide range of other health benefits. As more studies are conducted on cannabis, the results have been surprisingly positive. Indica is best known for its heavy and sedative effect, but sometimes that’s what needed.What indica strains are best for helping you fall asleep? Our team did some research and came up with the top 10 indica strains that can help you and your sleep! ]]>