This Sunday brings the end of Daylight Savings. While we all look forward to an additional hour in bed, even the small time difference in routine can have a huge impact on your sleep quality as you adjust.
We all know fall is in full-effect when you look outside at 5 PM and it’s pitch black. Enter the end of Daylight Savings: the favored event of the season as we all get an extra hour of sleep; However, moving the clock back an hour in the fall doesn’t just affect your schedule — it also can throw off your body’s internal clock as well. While that extra hour may feel great on the first day, it can set you off on the wrong foot for the winter season with grogginess and sleep schedule problems.
The good news is there are numerous ways to keep the changing daylight hours from throwing you off your sleep pattern. Some research and anecdotal evidence suggest that CBD can also help you get a good night’s sleep and set your schedule up for success.
What Causes Bad Sleep?
- Mental health disorders, such as anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression
- Medication, which can disturb your sleep-wake cycle
- Physical conditions, such as chronic pain and restless leg syndrome
- Caffeine, especially when consumed late in the day
- Environmental factors, such as loud noises or an an uncomfortable bed
- Disruptions to regular sleep schedules and changes to your circadian rhythm (your biological clock)
How Does CBD Help With Sleeping?
To understand how CBD is helpful in aiding sleep, we also have to understand the endocannabinoid system and how it supports homeostasis in the body. Essentially, it works by interacting with the different cannabinoids in our bodies. To give you a visual of how this works in the body, imagine that each cannabinoid is a “key” that fits into and “locks” onto the cannabinoid receptors in our bodies.
Instead of melatonin (our sleep hormone) production increasing, CBD actually combines and connects to the cannabinoid receptor, which is where the feeling of relaxation is produced. While melatonin may work well for users who need a little help to fall asleep every once in awhile, it will not completely resolve any issues that prevent people from falling asleep or staying asleep – for example an imbalanced endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is one of the most, if not the most, important system to regulate and maintain biofeedback in the human body. The ECS is composed of several cannabinoid receptors, the body’s most numerous neurotransmitters known as CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are mainly located in the brain, and they are also distributed in other important regions of the body. CB2 receptors are mainly distributed throughout the body and have a lesser presence in the brain. These crucial neurotransmitters provide the necessary communication within the systems of the body to regulate and maintain homeostasis.
What the Research Says
- Research published in 2019 looked at whether CBD could improve sleep and or reduce anxiety. The study involved 72 subjects, with 47 experiencing anxiety and 25 experiencing poor sleep. The subjects were each given 25 milligrams (mg) of CBD each day. In the first month, 79.2 percent of the patients reported lower anxiety levels and 66.7 percent reported better sleep.
- Pain, which may also cause sleep problems, can be helped by CBD as well. A 2018 review in Frontiers in Pharmacology noted that there’s a fair amount of evidence to support the claim that CBD soothes pain. The authors note that by reducing chronic pain, CBD can improve sleep.
- Other research tells us that CBD affects the sleep cycle. Research from 2014 looked at four patients with Parkinson’s disease. It found that CBD improved the symptoms of REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD), a disorder in which a person acts out their dreams. RBD is associated with poor sleep and nightmares.
- A 2017 review also noted that CBD may be helpful in treating RBD, and that it shows potential for treating excessive daytime sleepiness.
- Grogginess, another symptom of insomnia, might also be affected by CBD. A 2014 review found that CBD could have the potential to promote wakefulness, based on both human and animal research.
How to Use CBD for Sleep
After taking CBD oil, it will probably be about 20 minutes before you start to feel the effects. For some, it could take a little longer, so we would recommend taking CBD up to an hour before bedtime to start winding down and letting go of the day’s stresses. CBD can be administered in several ways, including orally via CBD Oil Tinctures and topically via CBD skin products. The dosage of CBD you use, and the time you take it, will depend on a number of factors. It’s worth noting that CBD studies show it takes up to a month to feel a noticeable difference, so be patient as you begin to incorporate CBD into your daily routine.
Other Practices to Ensure a Smooth Transition into Winter
If you’re someone who finds it difficult to adjust to the seasonal time change, planning ahead might help.
The Sleep Foundation recommends taking the following precautions to prepare your mind and body for the changes ahead:
- Practice Good Sleep Hygiene: Sleep hygiene refers to practices that can influence sleep for better or worse. In order to ease the transition of the time change, you should avoid caffeine up to four hours before bedtime. Also, refrain from consuming alcohol before bed. While drinking can cause you to feel sleepy initially, alcohol also causes sleep disruptions and leads to poor sleep quality. Heavy dinners and snacks before bedtime can also negatively affect how well you sleep that night.
- Establish a Consistent Sleep Routine: Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day – including the weekends – is a healthy sleep hygiene practice that can also prepare you for time changes. Make sure you get at least seven hours of sleep each night before and after transitioning to or from DST.
- Gradually Alter Your Bedtime: Two to three days before the transition between Standard Time and DST in early March, sleep experts recommend waking up 15-20 minutes earlier than usual. Then, on the Saturday before the time change, set your alarm clock back by an additional 15-20 minutes. Adjusting your wake-up time can help the body make a smoother transition when the time change occurs.
- Spend Time Outdoors: Since natural light is a driving force behind our circadian rhythms, exposure to sunlight can alleviate feelings of tiredness during the day that often accompany time changes. Spending time outside during the day also suppresses the production of melatonin, a hormone released in the evening to help you feel tired and ready for bed.
- Nap in Moderation: People who experience sleep debt as a result of DST may find some relief by taking short naps during the day. These naps should never exceed 20 minutes in length; otherwise, you may wake up feeling groggy. Rather than adjusting your wake-up time on Sunday morning immediately following a time change, consider a nap that afternoon instead.
While we can’t avoid the shorter days and long, colder nights, we can be proactive in helping ease the symptoms of Sunday’s time change. If you’re looking to regulate your sleep schedule, CBD could well be a natural solution and also provide dozens of other health benefits.
At Lost Range, we understand the difficulties associated with sifting through the variety of sleep aids offered on the market, and to distinguish which are the best natural options. If you would like to know more about our products, our product ingredients and our brand, the team is always at your service for any questions you may have. Contact us here today.