Can I use CBD as a sleep aid? A guide on how to sleep better, naturally

Can I use CBD as a sleep aid? A guide on how to sleep better, naturally

High quality sleep is critical for you to function normally, both physically and mentally. In fact, did you know that sleeping improves your memory and brain function? However, spending most of our days with our eyes glued to screens means our sleep cycles are suffering. If you’re tired of getting restless and inadequate nights, overthinking, turning and tossing in bed, we feel your pain. Good news though, we may have a solution: we recommend turning toward CBD sleep aid. That's right, you can ditch the sleeping pills and opt for a more natural option—we particularly love CBD softgels with melatonin for sleep.

Can CBD help you sleep?

Yes, in more ways than one! Research and anecdotal evidence suggest that it can act as a sleep aid. By promoting relaxation and reducing pain, it can help you fall asleep more quickly—but more on that later. Reducing the time you spend tossing and turning is not all it does, CBD is also shown to help you stay asleep for longer thanks to CBD. In fact, a 2012 study showed that "duration of sleep significantly increased" among people who took oral CBD. (I'm sure you understand why we recommend CBD softgels for sleep now!)

Lastly, CBD may aid in improving the quality of your sleep, so you get a more restful night. Studies have shown time and time again that by affecting the sleep cycle—REM sleep in particular—CBD can help reduce sleep disturbances and nightmares. Falling asleep more quickly, staying asleep for longer and waking up more rested sound like 3 excellent reasons to give CBD for sleep a try.

CBD as a sleep aid: how does it work?

To be honest, we don't know exactly, but we are finally starting to better understand how CBD can affect our sleep. First, we need to look at the root causes of insomnia. A number of things can be responsible for a poor night's sleep, including:

  • mental health issues—anxiety being the most common
  • physical discomfort (e.g. chronic pain, restless leg syndrome)
  • excessive or late consumption of caffeine
  • medication
  • environmental factors (think loud noises from your neighbor, or an uncomfortable bed)
how to use CBD for sleep

Although CBD won't magically improve the quality of your mattress, it can help alleviate the most common causes of sleeplessness: anxiety and pain. We've already discussed how CBD can help with anxiety and pain on the blog, but in short, CBD is a cannabinoid similar in structure to the endocannabinoids found in our body. These endocannabinoids form part of the endocannabinoid system (ECS for short), which influences mood, pain signaling, and sleep cycles, among others. By affecting the ECS receptors, CBD can ease anxiety and relieve pain, and therefore remove the most common barriers to a restful night.

Research also suggests that taking oral CBD can help decrease cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone, and having high levels of cortisol during the night is associated with nighttime awakenings. By decreasing these levels, CBD may promote better sleep.

Will CBD make you drowsy or groggy?

This is a question we hear all the time from our community and something we discuss together often. Now that we've explored how CBD can help you sleep, it's clear that unlike traditional sleeping pills, it does not work by promoting drowsiness or making you sleepy. That means there is not "sleeping pill hangover" to dread the next day. In fact, it might be quite the opposite! By promoting better quality sleep, it can help you wake up more rested and alert with the same amount of sleep time—not to mention in a better mood!

Additionally, studies suggest that CBD shows potential to treat excessive daytime sleepiness and could promote wakefulness. It also seems to induce an increase in dopamine release, with dopamine being one the neurotransmitters involved in—you guessed it—wakefulness.

How to take CBD for sleep

There is more than one form of CBD you can take as a sleep aid. CBD hemp oils, softgels, gummies, and more are widely available. If you opt for a sublingual tincture, we recommend taking it about half an hour before bed. You'd rather go for CBD softgels or other oral forms? Good choice, that's actually what we recommend (see below what we have to say about CBD softgels with melatonin for sleep)! Take them a few hours before bedtime for best results. Dosage differs from person to person, so it’s best to start low (30-40 mg per day) and gradually increase it till you start seeing the positive effects of CBD for sleep.

What is most important is to be consistent with your CBD journey. We recommend you make CBD a part of your night-time routine. For example, you can place the tincture next to your toothbrush so that when you’re done for the day, you can just take a few drops and experience restful sleep. Another thing to keep in mind is that many people don't notice an immediate difference. Be patient and give it about a month before deciding whether it helps you.

CBD softgels with melatonin for sleep

Numerous studies focus on how oral CBD can help promote better sleep. If that's your main concern, we really recommend opting for softgels. In fact, that is the reason why we offer The ritual softgels with added melatonin.

CBD oil for sleep

Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced by the pineal gland in your brain. Its main role is to manage your body's circadian rhythm, that is to say to regulate your sleep-wake cycle. It's often called "the sleep hormone" and as such is very commonly used as a natural sleep aid. In fact, it can help you fall asleep faster and improve the quality of your sleep. Just like CBD, it does not work by knocking you out, but instead tells your body when it’s time to prepare for sleep. It's not entirely clear how exactly it does so, but we know that for instance it helps regulate your body's temperature and reduce nerve activity.

Melatonin levels normally rise when it's dark outside. Conversely, light reduces melatonin production, signalling to your body that it's time to wake up. However, even if it's pitch-black outside, your body might be confused because you've been staring at screens all day, which may cause low melatonin levels. Stress, smoking, or aging can also impact melatonin production, hence the potential need for melatonin supplements.

Our CBD softgels with melatonin therefore provide the best of both worlds for extra restful sleep. They combine melatonin to help regulate your body's internal clock and get it to prepare for sleep, as well as CBD to aid you in feeling more comfortable and relaxed, so you can drift off to sleep faster and stay asleep for longer. One softgel is all it takes for you to enjoy restful nights and happier, more productive days.

The best way to get the most out of your CBD softgels with melatonin for sleep—aside from being consistent—is to pair them with healthy habits. Give this routine a try and see how big a difference a good night's sleep can make!

TL;DR: Yes, CBD can be a great sleep aid! By easing your mind's worries and alleviating pain, it can help you drift off to sleep easier, and may also promote longer, more restful sleep. Unlike traditional sleeping pills, it won't cause any drowsiness the next day. We recommend taking a CBD softgel with melatonin a couple hours before bed to help your body prepare for sleep and get an extra restful night!

Yesterday offers a full-line of hemp derived CBD oil, containing broad-spectrum hemp extract and zero THC. Check out our full selection of oils and softgels to help bring calm to your daily life. To learn more about the CBD basics, we recommend reading more from our CBD 101 articles, available here.