Insomnia affects more than 40 million Americans every year. This sleep disorder manifests in many symptoms like difficulty falling asleep and constant wakefulness, but its causes are even more diverse.
Because of these factors, many treatments have emerged over the decades that promise to address this issue.
One of the most recent ones recognized by the healthcare industry is medical marijuana (MMJ). People can now get a medical marijuana card for sleep problems, allowing them to easily access this treatment to address their sleeping troubles.
So, how does it help restore the natural sleep cycle? Read on and see how MMJ for insomnia works.
What is Insomnia?
Insomnia is more than just difficulty sleeping. It’s a disorder that causes problems like short sleeping hours, grogginess and irritability.
When left untreated, insomnia can cause long-term issues like depression, hypertension and other problems.
Its Effects on the Natural Sleep Cycle
A person’s natural sleep cycle is composed of four stages. Each cycle begins and ends within 90 minutes. These are:
- NREM Stage 1
- NREM Stage 2
- NREM Stage 3
- REM Sleep
Typically, the body needs four to six cycles every night to feel refreshed the morning after. However, those with insomnia typically get a much lower number.
Insomnia happens when the sleep cycle and our circadian rhythm aren’t synchronized. When this happens, the body fails to produce melatonin, the sleep hormone. This results in the common symptoms associated with the disorder.
What causes the body to no longer produce melatonin? Stress, disease and genetics are just some of the factors that have been linked to the disorder. But, the biggest culprit is our modern lifestyle.
The brain uses the environment to tell if it’s time to sleep. When the sun is gone and everything is dark, the organ starts releasing hormones that make us feel sleepy.
The busy modern lives of humans dampen this natural bodily function with our constant exposure to light sources. From bright cities to our electronic devices, this constant influx of bright light disrupts our circadian rhythm, eventually causing chronic insomnia.
Treating Insomnia Symptoms with Medical Cannabis
Can you use medical cannabis to restore your natural sleep cycle? Research has shown that some compounds in MMJ do help alleviate the symptoms of insomnia and synchronize our sleeping patterns.
There’s also evidence of improved mood patterns, behavior and social functioning when MMJ is taken to aid in sleeping.
So, how does MMJ work for sleep?
The Science of Sleep via Medical Cannabis
There are several active compounds in MMJ that bind to cannabinoid receptors. When this happens, the receptors send messages that increase adenosine levels in the brain, resulting in sedation or sleepiness.
Aside from inducing drowsiness, some strains of medical cannabis have been shown to reduce instances of nightmares, especially for those who have PTSD.
It can also help manage symptoms of anxiety. Both this and PTSD are frequent causes of insomnia, so treating them translates into better sleep for the patient.
What About Sleep Quality?
It’s one thing being able to fall asleep, but getting a consistent snooze is another thing altogether. Wakefulness and short sleeping time are two other hallmarks of insomnia, which a person won’t have much control over since these are involuntary actions.
Fortunately, MMJ has been seen to alter your sleeping cycles positively.
Some strains of medical marijuana make your deep sleep and REM cycles last for a longer time. The prolonged periods help patients wake up feeling refreshed and energized the next day.
Ingesting Medical Marijuana for a Good Night’s Rest
The two main ways to ingest medical marijuana are inhalation via smoking or ingestion by edibles. Smoking is the quickest way to start feeling the effects, as the compounds are readily absorbed into the blood via the lungs. Eating takes a longer time as MMJ has to pass through the digestive system.
Because of many variables, the time that MMJ starts to take effect is different from person to person. You can experiment with the dosage and time of intake to find the best routine before sleeping.
Apply at TeleLeaf for a Medical Marijuana Card
Having trouble sleeping? You can try medical marijuana for sleep and see if it’s the best option for you.
To get a medical marijuana card for sleep problems, contact TeleLeaf today.