CBD can interact with other prescriptions a person takes. In particular, CBD can slow the liver’s ability to break down certain medications. Additionally, using CBD as well as herbs or supplements can make the patient too sleepy.
So far, CBD’s effectiveness in the treatment of epilepsy is well-supported by research. Other early research suggests that CBD may also help treat schizophrenia and substance use disorders.
In a limited study of four patients with Parkinson’s disease, CBD helped manage the REM sleep behavior disorder symptoms. Before taking CBD, the patients experienced disorder symptoms 2–7 times per week. After taking CBD, the symptoms occurred 0–1 times in a week. Further studies are necessary, but these initial results suggest CBD as a possible treatment for REM sleep behavior disorder.
Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Disorder and CBD
Research on the effects CBD has on sleep disorders is still preliminary. Some people who use CBD for chronic pain report sleeping better. Currently, it is unclear whether these patients sleep better because of the pain relief or because CBD directly affects their sleep.
Currently, there is insufficient research to determine the effectiveness of CBD in treating other health conditions. However, preliminary research suggests CBD can help with a number of sleep disorders, including insomnia REM sleep behavior disorder, and excessive daytime sleepiness disorder. Additional preliminary research suggests CBD can also help patients improve sleep and reduce anxiety.
Unlike THC, CBD does not induce a feeling of being “high.” Even large doses of CBD do not produce THC-like effects. Additionally, a few studies have demonstrated that CBD reduces the psychoactive effects of THC.
The FDA has not approved any other CBD drug products. The agency has not determined the safety and effectiveness of cannabis or CBD in the treatment of any particular conditions or disease.
While more research is needed to back the current published findings, several hopeful studies have begun to emerge that show CBD as an aid for insomnia and sleep.
While any CBD tincture or capsule from a trusted brand can work for sleep, here are five different brands we have found to be effective.
Your endocannabinoid system is naturally occurring, all cannabinoids including THC, CBD and CBN are simply plugging in to those receptors. When looking at how CBD and CBN may interact with one another, the short answer is, they don’t. “They won’t really interact with each other, nor will they compete for receptor binding sites. In fact, they actually have quite different pharmacologies… different effects on the body have completely different biochemical mechanisms.”
One 2018 study performed on 409 adults over the course of two years looked at insomnia and each individual’s level of symptom relief. It concluded the cannabinoids CBD and THC both showed a “statistically and clinically significant improvement” for insomnia. This improvement on sleep and reduction of negative symptoms was stronger for Indica than Sativa strains.
(Photo courtesy of Mary’s Brands)
The CBD dosages ranged from 25–175 mg. The researchers found that 25 mg was the most effective dosage for anxiety and that addressing troubled sleep required higher dosages.
Levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, typically peak in the morning, but people with insomnia may have high cortisol levels at night. Independent of insomnia, having high cortisol levels at night is associated with an increased number of nighttime awakenings.
So far, no reports of lethal CBD overdoses exist. Some researchers may be concerned about CBD abuse, but information on significant complications is limited.
Taking 10–400 mg of CBD per day for a long period and by different routes did not have a toxic effect on participants in a large retrospective study. Even dosages of up to 1,500 mg per day were well-tolerated, other researchers report.
If these effects on drug metabolism and transportation are confirmed, it would indicate that CBD interferes with other medications. Overall, more research is necessary.
Overall, the available evidence suggests that CBD is well-tolerated.
One investigation found that, compared with a placebo, a CBD dosage of 160 milligrams (mg) increased sleep duration. The researchers also concluded that the placebo, 5 mg of the insomnia drug nitrazepam, and 40, 80, and 160 mg of CBD helped the participants fall asleep.