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Nowadays, CBD is over the news. It is claimed by many to be a cure for many illnesses, including chronic pain and cancer. How about sleep conditions that are causing so much trouble to many people?
One of the health benefits that people claim about CBD compound is its effectiveness in promoting better sleep. Moreover, it is believed to help sleep problems, like insomnia. Is there any truth behind this claim?
What to Know About CBD
CBD means Cannabidiol, and it is a non-psychoactive substance that is found in cannabis plants, including marijuana and hemp. However, the popular CBD oil, CBD gummies which is used in different products now, is usually derived from the hemp plant.
Cannabis plants have accumulated a not-so-good reputation due to the abusive usage of marijuana. This is one reason why many are hesitant to use CBD. However, what many do not know is that cannabis plants have many compounds, known as cannabinoids. These have medical effects and can be therapeutic.
Among these cannabinoids, CBD is one of the most popular and is now used to cure different conditions. A lot of drugs, nutritional products, and supplements are promoting the health benefits that this compound brings.
Is CBD Good for Sleep?
One of the claims is that CBD can help improve sleep in people suffering from sleep apnoea, fibromyalgia, and other sleep conditions. What is the truth about this?
A lot of people with sleep disorders are seeking for a natural sleep remedy. For this reason, many of them turn to CBD oil. Primarily, this extract can help manage anxiety, which is one of the basic ways it promotes sleep.
According to Dr. Aimée Gould Shunney of Santa Cruz Integrative Medicine, CBD balances the endocannabinoid system. As a result, the human body is kept in homeostasis. In addition, it keeps the endocannabinoids in the circulation, which is necessary for the body to cope well with stress and recover immediately.
Specific Sleep Conditions CBD May Treat
If you are wondering what are the specific sleep conditions that CBD may help to cure, here are some of them:
Fibromyalgia is a condition that is characterised by sleep problems, extensive pain, stiffness in joints and muscles, and daytime fatigue. People with fibromyalgia have to suffer from the cycle of sleep problem and pain, which contribute to each other. The lack of sleep worsens the pain, while the pain makes it harder to attain sleep.
Currently, there are no FDA approved medications for fibromyalgia. The available drugs are only known to treat this illness’ symptoms, such as sleep disturbance and pain. Aside from drugs, there are also health supplements that target to minimise the discomfort caused by fibromyalgia.
There are a handful of studies supporting CBD effectiveness in treating fibromyalgia. Although most of the theories still need more research and testing, the existing results can give us a glimpse of why this cannabinoid is a potential cure. Most of the studies focused on how this substance may reduce pain symptoms. (1)
One of the reasons why CBD could be helpful to fibromyalgia patients is its pain-relieving effects. This compound may be able to affect the nerve pathways, which transmit pain signals between the body and brain. Moreover, CBD is known to be anti-inflammatory, so it may help to alleviate the pain symptoms too. (1, 2)
Another 2017 study stated that CBD may stabilise the hypersensitivity of the nerves’ surrounding cells in patients with fibromyalgia or other chronic pain. This needs more research though. (1)
A study done in 2016 suggested that fibromyalgia and other chronic pain syndromes are the results of the lack of endocannabinoids (neurotransmitters). Since CBD is known to interact with these neurotransmitters, taking this substance may correct the problem. (1)
Obstructive sleep apnoea, a kind of sleep apnoea, is a condition characterised by shallow or even stopped breathing during sleep. While the patient is asleep, something blocks the upper airway, which prevents air from entering into the lungs. Usually, the breathing comes back with a body jerk, loud gasp, or snort.
Aside from troubled sleep, this illness may also cause irregular heart rhythms, which is the result of decreased oxygen flow into the important organs.
The available sleep apnoea treatments are only meant to deal with contributing factors. They include weight loss, avoiding alcohol, and sleeping on the side. Nasal sprays are recommended to those who have nasal congestion or sinus problems, while a CPAP machine may be necessary if your condition has worsened.
CBD oil is also said to help people with sleep apnoea. How does it help?
According to research, cannabinoids can affect the peripheral and central nervous systems, which may resolve this condition. Scientists believe that CBD can improve the muscle tone of the upper airway. It makes the glottal region firmer, which may lessen the attacks and effects of sleep apnoea. (1)
More research is needed to prove that CBD can treat sleep apnoea. So far, existing studies focused on the effect of CBD, together with THC, on providing relief for this condition. The Sativex, a drug combining CBD and THC, is said to help sleep apnoea patients. (1, 2)
Consult Your Doctor First
Generally, CBD oil is considered safe and low-risk by health authorities. Most of the users of this supplement do not experience side effects. However, this is not a guarantee that everyone can safely use it.
Like other supplements and drugs, CBD intake may have some side effects too. Some of the reported effects are diarrhoea, tiredness, weight gain or loss, and change in appetite.
Moreover, before you take CBD oil, make sure to consult your doctor first. Taking this substance may interact with your medications, which could be harmful to your body. This is also not for you if you are pregnant or a lactating mother.
In addition, always remember that any supplement, like CBD oil, must never be used to replace conventional medications in treating any disease.
For more information, keep reading our blogs about CBD and find out about its other health benefits.