Delta-8 THC has taken the industry by storm thanks to its impressive number of potential therapeutic applications, including pain relief, stress management, and appetite stimulation. But the benefits don’t stop there. Many people have successfully used Delta-8 to help them sleep, providing a natural solution for better rest while avoiding the many risks associated with sleeping pills and prescription medications.
But does Delta-8 help you sleep, and if so, why? In this article, we’ll discuss the science behind Delta-8 and its potential benefits for sleep. We’ll also look at how to use Delta-8 for sleep safely and effectively so that you can get the best results possible.
Ready to get better sleep? Let’s dive in!
Delta-8: The Basics
Before we delve into the science behind Delta-8 and sleep, let’s cover some basics. Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol, or Delta-8 for short, is a cannabinoid present in small amounts in both hemp and cannabis. Cannabinoids are the chemical compounds responsible for most of the desirable effects, both recreational and therapeutic, offered by the cannabis plant. Because it’s only found in small amounts in these plants, it’s considered a “minor” cannabinoid.
Delta-8 is structurally very similar to its more famous cousin Delta-9 THC, which is often simply referred to as “THC.” Delta-9 is what most people think of when they think of cannabis, as it’s the most prominent psychoactive cannabinoid and primarily responsible for the stereotypical “high” feeling.
Even though Delta-8 is also psychoactive and offers a similar high, it’s a much milder and more euphoric experience. Many people report that this cannabinoid doesn’t make them feel the anxiety and paranoia sometimes experienced with Delta-9 THC.
Will Delta-8 Help Me Sleep?
Now that you know the basics, let’s get to the fundamental question: is Delta-8 good for sleep? Since it offers the same potential therapeutic effects that Delta-9 can, and because many people use cannabis as a sleep aid, it’s reasonable to assume that you can also use Delta-8 THC for sleep. But let’s look at the evidence. There are many studies that confirm the efficacy of cannabinoids for sleep concerns.
A recent study into cannabis oil’s efficacy as a treatment for insomnia found that 96% of patients considered the treatment acceptable, with 79% requesting a cannabis oil prescription afterward.
A review of several studies into cannabinoids as sleep aids published in 2017 also found that cannabis can help treat insomnia, help people get to sleep faster, serve as a short-term treatment for sleep apnea, and potentially even help treat REM sleep behavior disorder.
However, it’s important to note that this same review found that consuming too much cannabis may actually impair sleep. Much like with everything else in life, the use of cannabinoids requires moderation.
Exploring the Potential Sleep-Enhancing Properties of Delta-8
What exactly is it about Delta-8 and other cannabinoids that might make it a good sleep aid? Let’s look at the sleep-enhancing properties of this popular cannabinoid.
Getting to Sleep Quicker
For some people, the problem isn’t that they can’t get to sleep at all or have trouble staying asleep — the issue is that it takes a lot of tossing and turning to finally get there. Delta-8 interacts with the endocannabinoid receptors in your brain that play a significant role in getting your brain ready for sleep and balancing your sleep cycle. That means the cannabinoid can help you fall asleep faster and more easily.
Helping You Relax Before Bed
Sometimes, the culprit of poor sleep is your circadian rhythm, but often it’s the result of something much deeper. For example, you might be struggling with anxiety and stress, which can significantly impact your sleep quality. A Delta-8 sleep aid can help ease anxiety, reduce stress, and induce a state of calm before bed.
Delta-8 is famous for its ability to provide muscle relaxation and pain relief. If you suffer from chronic discomfort, there’s a strong chance that it makes it far more difficult to get to sleep at night. Using Delta-8 for sleep can help reduce physical pain and discomfort, helping fall — and stay — asleep.
Delta-8 vs. Delta-9: Which Is Better for Sleep?
Both Delta-8 and Delta-9 have sleep-enhancing properties, so which should you choose? When deciding between Delta-8 or Delta-9 for sleep, it’s important to understand that individual experiences may vary. Both cannabinoids have the potential to impact sleep, but they do so in slightly different ways.
We recommend experimenting with both Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC to find out which one works best for you. But if you’re looking for a quick opinion, we’re more likely to recommend using Delta-8 for sleep. Here’s why:
Delta-8 Is Milder
Many people find the psychoactive high from Delta-9 to be a little too intense, making it difficult to fall asleep. Additionally, many people experience high anxiety and paranoia with Delta-9. On the other hand, users have reported feeling less anxious and more mentally at ease after consuming Delta-8-THC. This could be beneficial for those struggling with sleep issues related to anxiety or stress.
Delta-8 Is More Widely Available
Because Delta-8 is considered federally legal and is currently more widely legal on the state level, it makes for a more accessible sleep aid. By opting for Delta-8 as a sleep aid, you can rest assured knowing that it’s easily accessible — without the risk of legal complications. You don’t need a medical card to access Delta-8 products and most can be delivered straight to your door.
Using Delta-8 as a Sleep Aid: What You Need to Know
Clearly, Delta-8 and sleep make a great pair, and you may be curious about giving it a try yourself. But before you do, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Finding the Right Delta-8 Product for Sleep
There are several different ways to consume Delta-8, and not all of them will be the right option for you. It’s important to make sure the product you choose fits seamlessly into your nightly routine and makes it easy to measure the appropriate dosage.
Popping a gummy before bedtime can be a fast, easy, and tasty way to use Delta-8 for sleep. However, it’s important to note that Delta-8 gummies take a bit longer to kick in than flower or a vape would — and gummies last longer, too. You’ll likely want to experiment with gummies at a low dosage before making these your go-to for sleep.
Delta-8 Tinctures and Softgels
When using Delta-8 for sleep, chances are you want to just cut right to the chase so you can get some well-deserved rest. Thanks to Delta-8 tinctures, that’s a lot easier to do. Just place a drop or two beneath your tongue, or mix it into some tea with honey before bed.
For a similar kind of convenience, Delta-8 softgels are a great option for those who don’t like the taste of tinctures. Just pop one a bit before bedtime and you’ll be asleep in no time!
Delta-8 Flower and Vapes
Some people prefer the old-school way and choose to consume their Delta-8 in flower form. However, smoking Delta-8 flower makes it more difficult to accurately measure dosage, so this is not recommended for beginners.
If you don’t want to smoke flower but can’t shake the routine of a night-time toke, you might find that Delta-8 vapes are a better choice for you. But while vapes are more discreet and convenient than smoking flower, they have the same problem — it’s difficult to measure exact dosage.
For experienced smokers who know their tolerance levels, flower and vaping can be an enjoyable way to consume Delta-8 with fast results. But if you’re new to the game, tinctures and gummies may be your best bet for accurate dosing.
Optimal Dosage of Delta-8 for Sleep
Getting the dosage right is an essential part of using Delta-8 for sleep. Too little won’t produce the desired effects, while too much can make it difficult to fall asleep. To strike the perfect balance, you need to find the perfect dosage. But everyone is different, which means the “perfect dosage” will vary from person to person. So if you’re new to Delta-8, how do you know how much to take?
You’ll need to do some trial and error to determine the answer to that question, as Delta-8 will affect everyone differently. However, your best bet is to start with a low dose (approximately 10 to 15 milligrams) — especially if this is your first attempt at using Delta-8 for sleep.
Measuring dosage is much harder with vapes and flower because your measurement is an estimate at best. That’s why it’s a good idea to go with tinctures, softgels, or even edibles when starting out, as they will give you accurate measurements.
Choosing the Right Strain
Perhaps you’ve tried Delta-8 for sleep and it didn’t work, so you’re thinking: “Wait, Delta-8 keeps me awake. How can it possibly be used as a sleep aid?” This is a fair question, and there’s a simple answer: you probably chose the wrong strain.
When it comes to Delta-8, insomnia and other sleep conditions should always be managed with indica-heavy strains. Indica is known to relax both the body and mind, the perfect combination for better sleep. On the other hand, sativa strains stimulate the mind and provide a burst of energy to the user. If you’re trying to use a sativa for sleep, it will likely have the opposite effect.
Keep in mind that hybrid strains offer a mix of both sativa and indica effects, so choosing one is a bit of a gamble if your goal is to get a good night’s rest.
When to Take Delta-8 for Sleep
Timing your Delta-8 nighttime routine is crucial to maximizing its sleep aid properties. You don’t want to take your Delta-8 too early, but you also shouldn’t wait too long. However, when you should take Delta-8 will depend on how you’re consuming it.
When smoking or vaping, the Delta-8 will kick in within 10-20 minutes, so you can vape or smoke just before your nightly routine and be ready for a better night’s sleep fairly quickly.
When eating edibles, softgels, or using a tincture, you need to give yourself a larger window than with flower or vapes. Processing Delta-8 through your digestive system takes approximately 30 minutes to an hour, so be sure to plan accordingly.
How Long Does Delta-8 Last?
This is an important question, as you don’t want to wake up with a Delta-8 buzz still going — especially if you have an early morning or lots of important things to do. With flower or vapes, you can expect the height of the effects to have peaked within two to three hours and all of the effects to have dissipated within four to six hours.
Edibles are a different story, however, as processing them through the digestive system takes longer, making the effects last longer as well. Edible products can last 8-10 hours, so unless you’re planning a sleep marathon, don’t take them right before bed.
It’s also important to note that the amount you take plays an important role in how long these effects might last. Keeping your dose low will reduce the length of time that it takes for the cannabinoid to leave your system.
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