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Medical Marijuana Strains for Insomnia

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Introduction
Medical marijuana has been proven to aid insomnia and here at Sensible Seeds we have undertaken extensive research into the cannabis strains and treatments that will most benefit insomnia sufferers. Sensible Seeds is dedicated to bringing beneficial cannabis strains and related medical marijuana information to you, and we are committed to updating our information as new discoveries come to light. We have sourced information from a variety of well-established medical marijuana websites and a summary of this information is laid out for you below.

What is insomnia?

A majority of people will suffer from insomnia at some stage in their lives. Current research suggests that a third of adults in the UK will suffer sleeping problems. Insomnia tends to affect women more than men, and the older you get the more chance you have of suffering sleeping problems, but it can affect anyone at any time. Age, lifestyle, diet, environment, and the amount you exercise will all have an impact on how well you sleep.

Insomnia is a common sleep disorder. It is what you are experiencing when you have difficulty drifting off to sleep or remaining asleep for long enough to feel reinvigorated the following day. You may have given yourself the opportunity to sleep, but if you can’t, that is insomnia.

Symptoms of Insomnia

Insomnia can be a symptom of a wide variety of other disorders and quite often is not something that you experience by itself. Approximately 40% of adults with insomnia will also be suffering from a mental disorder – most commonly depression, but also anxiety, stress, asthma and other physical or mental conditions.

You are probably suffering from insomnia if any of the following apply to you

·         You can’t get to sleep

·         You can’t stay asleep

·         You wake often

·         You wake up too early

·         You feel tired and irritable

·         You are finding it difficult to function during the day

Insomnia can be serious and dangerous. If you are not getting enough sleep then you will feel tired the next day and this will have an adverse effect on your work, your driving, your relationships and what you do in terms of diet and exercise. Lack of sleep depresses the immune system leading to poor health and many minor ailments. Your decreased energy at work can mean poor productivity and time taken off.  In fact, a lack of sleep can be deadly; poor concentration when driving or operating machinery can lead to tragic mistakes and even death.

Insomnia is highly prevalent among the overall population and is estimated to affect between 10-30% of adults – many of whom turn to sleeping pills for relief. In fact, research shows that over 95% of diagnosed cases of insomnia are treated with sleep medications. While certain sleep medications may be effective in managing insomnia, they also subject users to a wide range of side-effects, including the risk of death.

Prescription medication

A number of prescription medications to help you sleep are available from your GP. Prescribed drugs used to promote sleep include: Rozerem, Sonata, Martazapine, Temazepam, Zolpidem tartrate (Ambien) and Eszopiclone (Lunesta).

Over the counter (OTC) medications tend to have been formulated for other conditions and symptoms. You can find antihistamines for treating allergies which can help you sleep.  However, it is never a great idea to take a treatment for a condition you do not have.

You can take sleeping pills from your GP but remember they do have side effects. For example, Ambien (zolpiderm tartrate) can lead to some or all of the following

·         low mood, depression, suicidal thoughts, anxiety and aggression

·         decreased inhibition (no fear of danger)

·         hallucinations, confusion, vivid dreams

·         daytime sleepiness or general feeling of ‘being out of it’, amnesia or forgetfulness

·         lack of coordination, dizziness, blurred vision

·         nausea, constipation

·         stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, aches and pains

 

How Can Marijuana Help?

The earliest recorded use of marijuana as a sleep aid comes from ancient Indian medicine where it was widely used. Medical marijuana found its way into Western medicine during the nineteenth century, when Dr. William B. O’Shaugnessy returned from India with cannabis. He encouraged physicians to prescribe and henceforth medical marijuana patients suffering a number of different illnesses, including sleep, used it.

Research on medical marijuana for insomnia came to an abrupt halt at the end of the 1980s because of lack of support and funding. However, recent studies show that the use of medical marijuana can improve the sleep quality of patients with sleep-related problems. Health experts cannot voice their support for medical marijuana for insomnia but history does confirm that medical marijuana can help with sleep.

A study published in 2010 found that synthetic tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was more effective than amitriptyline which is an antidepressant that is commonly used to treat insomnia. A 1973 study on THC found it was more effective in helping medical marijuana patients fall asleep once they got into bed, as opposed to getting them into bed sooner. A dose that was too high outweighed the desire for sleep, so a lower dose was recommended. THC decreased the number of sleep interruptions that insomniacs experienced during the early part of the night and increased the amount of time that patients spent sleeping. A high does lead to ‘hangover’ type side effects the next day although 20 mg was fine. Alternatively, cannabidiol (CBD) can benefit patients with insomnia, without the psychoactive effects that THC is known for. A 1981 study with 15 insomnia patients demonstrated that 160mg doses of CBD led to an increase in the amount of time spent sleeping compared to a placebo.

THC has been found to improve sleep quality in MMJ patients with fibromyalgia. Studies by Russo et al., 2005 and Bribois et al., 2011 found an improvement in sleep quality from the use of cannabinoids in MMJ patients with MS and cancer. Research has also suggested that medical marijuana is an effective treatment for sleep apnoea.

Medical marijuana for insomnia reduces the time it takes to fall asleep and also impacts on the sleep cycle. It increases stage 3 sleep and reduces REM stage sleep. Stage 3 sleep – also known as slow-wave sleep – is the most important stage of sleep. Without good stage 3 sleep, insomnia sufferers may have high blood pressure. A lack of REM sleep has been found to improve memory and symptoms of depression but researchers are unclear about whether REM is a good thing or a bad thing.

Medical Marijuana for Insomnia

Medical marijuana patients often find that a fabulous benefit of cannabis use is that it improves sleep. Many patients with chronic pain find immediate relief with cannabis.  It is a natural alternative to drugs, with few side effects. It can be taken via a vaporizer, in a tincture or as an edible up to 2 hours before bedtime. Medical marijuana is a viable alternative to drugs.

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Sensible Seeds source all their medical marijuana information from related MMJ sites on the web. This information comes from reliable sources though we cannot be 100% certain of its accuracy. Medical Marijuana strains listed for helping certain medical conditions are again sourced from other medical marijuana web sites and are not officially approved by any government organisation. Recommended strains usually come from individuals that discovered that a particular strain helped them for a particular condition though this may vary from person to person. Our Medical information serves only as a guideline and customers are advised to make their own independent research. Sensible Seeds are not qualified medical practitioners and source any medical info from information already present on the internet. We cannot accept any liability for any issue arising for information provided on our website.

The Service provides general information about medical conditions and treatments and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

You must not rely on the information provided by this Service as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information provided by this Service.

Reliance on any information provided by Sensible Seeds employees, other parties privy to the Service, or other users of the Service is solely at your own risk.

 

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