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Finding a good night’s sleep is something we all seek to accomplish. Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders in the world, and it impacts certain age groups different. One of the most highly impacted: senior citizens. In fact, up to 48% of older adults suffer from symptoms of insomnia according to the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Insomnia and restlessness can come in a variety of forms, from not being able to fall asleep, waking constantly or being unable to fall back asleep. So, is there something seniors can do to help aid in a good night’s sleep? Say hello to CBD.
What is Cannabidiol?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, a chemical compound found in cannabis and hemp plants. It is a naturally occurring compound that can be used in products like oils and tinctures, edibles and gummies, capsules, lotions and salves. Unlike its possibly better known cousin THC, the major active ingredient in marijuana, CBD is not psychoactive. While CBD is an essential component in medical marijuana which can similarly aid in sleep, it is derived from a hemp plant. This means CBD is a component of marijuana, but it alone does not get you high.
The cannabis plant is made up of the two major players, THC and CBD, with the latter being the non-psychoactive portion of the plant. Cannabidiol can be isolated from the cannabis plant and the THC compound. CBD does not have a “euphoria effect” but it is believed to have wide ranging health benefits. For this reason, CBD has become more attractive to some people as a treatment for sleep as well as other conditions without any of the psychoactive effects of its counterpart THC.
CBD as a Sleep Aid
When it comes to the list of benefits CBD can bring, it is long and growing. CBD is thought to have positive impacts on anxiety, pain management, sleep cycles and more. This is due to CBD’s direct interaction with the human body’s endocannabinoid system. This bodily system is responsible for a number of physiological and cognitive processes like mood, appetite, pain, stress regulation, etc., and CBD has the ability to impact receptors within the ECS (endocannabinoid system). The ECS contains naturally occurring phytocannabinoids already, needed to maintain homeostasis or balance within the body.
The two most widely known receptors to interact directly with CBD in the ECS are the CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are found most abundantly in the central nervous system and the brain, while CB2 receptors are found in the peripheral nervous system, digestive system and immune system. When CBD is consumed and enters the ECS, its interaction with the receptors can lead to increased or decreased breakdown of particular enzymes and molecules that influence our mood, pain reception, stress levels and more.
The direct interaction between cannabidiol and the endocannabinoid system could potentially deliver a therapeutic effect, promoting feelings of relaxation and calm. Though research is still limited, it is this interaction that leads us to believe CBD could be useful as a sleep aid, including for those suffering from insomnia.
Best CBD Products for Sleep
When it comes to finding a good CBD product to help promote a restful sleep, turning to a higher-dosage and high-quality product may be your best choice. Not all CBD products are created equal, so fact checking label claims for accuracy and lab-test results for quality is key.
A CBD oil is an ideal choice for a CBD product to act quickly and potentially aid in sleep. CBD oils enter the bloodstream through sublingual consumption and can be taken before bedtime. Another choice is a CBD edible, which can also be taken easily before bedtime. There are even companies like Blue Ribbon Hemp, who have crafted CBD products with senior care in mind and have a CBD Oral Strip in mint flavor that pairs perfectly with bedtime. These breath-saving strips are completely THC-free and deliver a perfectly dosed 15mg of CBD. If you are looking for a higher dose of cannabidiol, they also have a Max-Strength CBD Oil Tincture, crafted in part by Dr. Igor Bussel to deliver a high-quality broad-spectrum CBD in a 166mg per serving dose.