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Cannabis and Sleep: How to Use Cannabis for a Better Night's Rest

Updated: May 29, 2023

Many cannabis users claim that the plant helps relieve symptoms of insomnia. In this post, we will explore the reasons why cannabis can help you sleep, the caveats associated with cannabis as a sleep aid, and the best ways to use pot marijuana to help get a good night's sleep.

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Does cannabis really help people sleep?

Cannabis has often been reported to help users sleep - in fact, around 70% of young adults that use cannabis report that one of the main reasons they consume is to aid with sleep.

While research is still developing on this topic, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that cannabis can improve sleep quality in the short term, particularly for patients who suffer with chronic conditions like pain, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and multiple sclerosis. Additionally, many cannabis users who experience anxiety report that cannabis can help ease their symptoms and help them sleep.

That being said, there is also evidence that links daily use of cannabis to lower quality of sleep, so it is important to take this risk into account.

Why does cannabis help users sleep?

Cannabis has been shown to help sleep through several mechanisms. Firstly the high amount of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD), alongside other cannabinoids, has been shown to help users fall asleep faster. In a study, among people who regularly struggled to fall asleep, patients experienced an average of a 30-minute reduction in the time it took to fall asleep.

Additionally, cannabis has been shown to ease symptoms of a number of physiological and psychological disorders. By easing the symptoms that patients experience, weed actually helps them sleep better as well.

It has also been shown that cannabis changes the way that you sleep, decreasing REM sleep and increasing deep sleep. Because of this, many users of cannabis report dreaming less. The total effect on quality of sleep is still up in the air.

Additionally, research is showing up around a promising cannabinoid that has recently become popular in legal markets, Cannabinol (CBN). This cannabinoid actually represents a broken-down THC molecule, generally one that has been exposed to air and light for an extended period of time. While this cannabinoid is significantly less psychoactive than THC (meaning it gets you less high), it has been shown to be the most sedative cannabinoid.

How should I use cannabis for sleep?

There are many different ways to consume cannabis, and deciding which one is the best can be tough, especially for new consumers.

Smoking Flower

While traditional smoking is widely popular, and often reported to produce strong highs, it is not always a favorite method for sleep. It can have negative health effects over time, and is harsh and difficult for some users to handle, particularly before bed. While it is a good option for people who enjoy it, it is certainly not for everyone.

Vaping Flower

Utilizing a flower vaporizer is a relatively new, but very popular consumption method. Similar to smoking, it involves heating cannabis and inhaling the fumes, but it involves much lower temperatures that avoid burning the flower, but instead vaporize the cannabinoids. It is much less harsh than smoking, and can be a great option for sleep

Cannabis Concentrates (Dabs)

Cannabis concentrates are another popular smoking method, with users either utilizing a vape pen, or a dab rig (see our post, what is a dab for more info). This can be a great option for those who do not want to combust flower, because like vaping, it uses a much lower temperature than you would see with a lighter. These are generally highly potent concentrates, and should be handled with care for newcomers.


Edibles are becoming increasingly popular for sleep because they allow users to benefit from cannabis, without having to inhale anything. Some new edibles even come with mixes of cannabinoids including CBN and THC, and users report that these can be highly effective sleep aids. CBN on its own is also legal through the 2018 Farm Bill and can be purchased online or at local retailers.


Finally, tinctures are a popular sleep aid. They are highly concentrated cannabis oils that are consumed by placing them under the users tongue. They are potent and generally more cost effective than alternatives and come in different cannabinoid mixtures like the edibles mentioned above.


All in all, the jury is still out on whether cannabis can be an effective, long-term sleep aid. However, there is a significant and growing body of evidence to show that cannabis can be a powerful sleep aid, especially when used correctly.

While you should always consult a doctor for medical advice, cannabis may be worth trying for many people who suffer from insomnia and want to avoid taking harder prescription drugs.

Please feel free to comment below with your experiences!

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