CBD for Sleep: Benefits, Risks, How to Use Cannabidiol for Sleep

Written by Review Weed Cannabis & Health Enthusiast
Updated: 2023-05-18
A person sleeping after using CBD tinctures on the bedstand.

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Getting a restful night of sleep is crucial for overall health and well-being, yet many people struggle with sleep problems. While there are numerous remedies out there – from over-the-counter medications to prescription drugs – many are turning to CBD as a better natural remedy.

CBD, short for cannabidiol, is a naturally occurring chemical found in the cannabis plant that is gaining popularity for its potential health benefits, including improving sleep.

In this article, we will dive into the use of CBD for sleep, including its effectiveness, safety, and practical tips for adding it to your sleep routine.

Why take CBD?

Unlike THC, the psychoactive chemical found in marijuana, CBD is non-intoxicating and non-addictive. Taking CBD will not get you high.

It is a safe option for those who want to avoid the side effects of traditional sleep aids or THC while experiencing the goodness of marijuana.

CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating sleep, among other functions. It has many health benefits, ranging from pain relief to easing stress, seizures, anxiety levels, and inflammation.

Scientific research: CBD and sleep

Most studies on cannabinoids and sleep have looked at the combination of THC and CBD rather than just CBD alone.

Unfortunately, this makes it difficult to determine CBD’s specific effects on sleep quality. That said, below is a summary of what we know about how CBD helps poor sleep.

  • Scientific research has shown that CBD can improve sleep by reducing insomnia symptoms, increasing total sleep time, and improving sleep quality. This is backed by proof from animal studies and clinical trials.
  • Studies on the effects of CBD on sleep have shown promising results. One study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology found that CBD improved sleep in 66.7% of participants within the first month of treatment. The study also found that CBD decreased anxiety in 79.2% of participants.
  • Another understanding is cannabidiol works as a sleep aid by managing the symptoms that interfere with sleep – like chronic pain, stress, and anxiety. Cannabidiol has a calming effect on the body, reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation, which can help people fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
  • Studies have suggested that CBD may help reduce symptoms of PTSD, including nightmares and sleep disturbances.
  • In addition, two case reports have documented the successful use of CBD oil to reduce marijuana addiction and improve insomnia and anxiety symptoms. One report describes a 27-year-old male with a history of daily marijuana use, while the other documents the improvement in sleep quality and anxiety in a young girl with PTSD after using CBD oil for six months.
  • The effects of CBD on sleep may be dose-dependent, with low doses potentially having alerting effects – especially when taken with THC. Medium to high doses have more soothing and relaxing effects.

While some evidence supports the use of only CBD for treating insomnia and other sleep issues, more studies are needed. In addition, questions about dosage, safety, and long-term use must be answered with further research.

Choosing the right CBD product

You will find a wide range of CBD products, including oils, capsules, gummies, flowers, and topicals. When choosing a CBD product for sleep, keep the following in mind for a good experience.


CBD products come in varying strengths (expressed in milligrams), and selecting a dosage appropriate for your needs is vital.

If you are new to cannabis, start with a lower dose, see how you are doing, and gradually increase as needed.

The amount of cannabidiol you need to take for sleep depends on:

  • Metabolism
  • Weight
  • Age
  • Cannabis tolerance/sensitivity
  • Product

Serious cases of sleep disorders will likely require a lot more cannabidiol.

If you are wondering how much CBD to take for sleep, there is no fixed or universal recommended dosage.

It is well-tolerated in varying amounts. A review published in 2017 highlighted that humans could tolerate up to 1,500 mg of cannabidiol per day without any adverse effects. Most people take between 100 mg to 200 mg per day – but this may not be the case for you.

Speak to your doctor to find the suitable CBD dosage for sleep – especially if you have any medical conditions.

Type of CBD

CBD products (usually oils) come in three varieties: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate.

Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all cannabinoids and terpenes in the cannabis plant, including trace amounts of THC. Broad-spectrum CBD is similar to full-spectrum CBD but has been processed to remove THC. Finally, isolate CBD is the purest form of CBD, with all other compounds removed.

Third-party testing

Look for products that have been tested for purity and potency in third-party labs. These lab test results will be published on the site or on the product label in the form of a QR code. This ensures that the product contains the amount of CBD advertised on the label and is free from contaminants like pesticides, additives, and heavy metals.

Brand reputation

When selecting a CBD product, choose a reputable brand with high-quality organic ingredients and a proven track record of producing effective products. Look for positive reviews, transparency, and quality.

CBD products for sleep


CBD capsules are an easy way to take CBD. They come in pre-measured doses, making dosing effortless. Capsules are also easy to swallow, making them a good option for those who may not like the taste of CBD oil.

Locally-made CBD capsules are rare in Thailand at present, but the situation could change in the future as the industry expands.


CBD flowers are the raw, dried buds of the hemp plant. They can be smoked or vaporised, which can be a quick and effective way to experience the effects of CBD. Some people find this method to help them to relax and fall asleep faster. Popular CBD strains are ACDC, Charlotte’s Angel, Harlequin, and Cannatonic.


CBD oils are widely available in Thailand and come in a range of strengths and flavours. Some formulations are also approved by the Thai Government Pharmaceutical Organisation and can be prescribed by medical marijuana doctors.

They can be taken sublingually (under the tongue for 30-90 seconds) or added to food and drinks. Cannabidiol oil tinctures can take effect quickly and may be a good option for those who need fast-acting relief.


CBD topicals such as creams, balms, and lotions can be applied directly to the skin to ease muscle tension, soreness, and chronic pain. They are often used for a relaxing massage that can help improve sleep. If you’re experiencing pain or discomfort that’s preventing you from getting a good night’s rest, CBD topicals can help.


CBD gummies are an enjoyable and easy way to consume CBD, with various flavours and strengths available. They can be a good option for people who want to add CBD to their nighttime routine in a fun and discreet manner. Some gummies for sleep may also include a blend of melatonin and CBD, which can enhance their sleep-promoting effects.

Taking CBD for sleep: Practical steps

  • Start with a low dose and gradually increase until you find the right amount.
  • Take CBD at least 30 minutes before bed to allow it to take effect. The time it takes for CBD to start working can vary depending on your product.
  • CBD oil is often absorbed more quickly through the mucous membrane under the tongue, leading to effects in 15-20 minutes. If you’re taking gummies or capsules, take them an hour or two earlier to allow enough time for your system to metabolise them.
  • Consider using sleep apps to track your sleep patterns and see if CBD is making a difference.
  • Establish a consistent sleep routine and create a relaxing environment in your bedroom.

Remember, CBD is not a magical cure for sleep problems and may not work for everyone. Approach it with realistic expectations while also focussing on your sleep hygiene routine for the best results.

If CBD does not help you sleep better, seek other natural alternatives and remedies like lavender oil, valerian root, and chamomile flower.

Side effects of using cannabidiol as a sleep aid

While CBD is generally considered safe and well-tolerated, there are side effects that users should be aware of. These can include dry mouth, decreased appetite, dizziness, and drowsiness.

In some cases, CBD may also cause changes in blood pressure or heart rate. It’s important to note that the severity and frequency of these side effects can vary depending on the individual and the dose of CBD used.

Taking CBD with other medicines

CBD can interact with certain medications, such as blood thinners, antipsychotics, and antidepressants. When this happens, it can interfere with the medicine’s functioning, leading to unwanted effects.

Similarly, those with liver disease may also need to be cautious, as CBD can interact with liver enzymes and potentially worsen liver function. It is best to talk to your doctor before taking CBD in such cases. Pregnant or breastfeeding women should avoid using CBD due to the lack of research on its safety in these populations.


CBD shows potential as a natural sleep aid due to its effects on anxiety, pain, and inflammation. While research is still limited, the available evidence suggests that CBD may improve the quality and quantity of sleep in some individuals without causing significant side effects.

More long-term studies with larger sample sizes are needed to fully understand the efficacy and safety of CBD for sleep. If you’re considering using CBD for sleep, talk to your doctor first, especially if you’re taking any medications or have a history of medical conditions. With proper guidance and cautious use, CBD may be a useful tool in improving sleep and overall well-being.