He small-scale study designed to look at how cannabis might be able to help improve sleep suggests that combining its active ingredients with melatonin could be a game changer for some people who have trouble sleeping. The study was commissioned by The Cannigma but conducted by MoreBetter.
Cannabis has been touted as a sleep aid for hundreds of years. Proponents say that both CBD and THC can have a relaxing effect on people struggling to get sound sleep. Likewise, scientists have been studying melatonin’s effect on sleep patterns for decades. Melatonin’s association with sleep has been long documented.
So what if you combined melatonin, CBD, and THC into a single sleep aid? That is what The Cannigma wanted to find out. They invited readers willing to use a commercially available cannabis-infused sleep aid to give it a try for four weeks and report how it worked out for them.
Significantly More Sleep
The study was admittedly small, with only 105 readers ultimately completing it. Each participant was surveyed about sleeping patterns prior to the start of the study in order to establish a baseline. Thereafter, participants completed follow-up evaluations each week for a total of four weeks.
So how did it go? First of all, researchers relied on the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) to establish the sleep difficulties each patient was experiencing at baseline. The average sleep disturbance among participants was 58.67 on the PROMIS scale.
At three weeks, the average score had decreased to 52.87. That is good. Whenever the score goes down, that means a person’s sleep is improving. But why stop there? It gets better.
Study participants reported significantly more sleep by the end of the four-week study. How much more? On average, patients reported an additional 68 minutes of quality sleep per night. In other words, they were sleeping slightly more than an hour longer.
Not a Conclusive Study
Fairness requires acknowledging that the study’s extremely small-scale means that its results are not conclusive. In addition, the study was conducted without a control group. Researchers relied entirely on self-reporting among participants who were already followers of The Cannigma website. Do what you will with all that information.
Nonetheless, participants reported that taking a sleep aid combining melatonin and cannabis’ active ingredients improve their sleep. It is worth noting that the amount of THC in the aid was negligible. It wasn’t even enough to promote the usual high.
A Basis for Future Research
At the very least, the study could form the basis for future research involving a larger study size control group. Similar results could impact medical cannabis regulations and recommendations in states like Utah, where insomnia is not currently on the qualifying conditions list.
The operators of the BeehiveFarmacy.com in Utah say that patients often report sleeping better after beginning a medical cannabis regimen. But of course, they are using medical cannabis to treat something else. Chronic pain and PTSD are the two most common conditions. But if cannabis can help patients suffering from either one sleep better, that is certainly a bonus.
Any future research proving that a combination of melatonin, CBD, and THC can help improve sleep could represent a major breakthrough that allows patients otherwise taking prescription sleeping pills another option. It would be similar to giving pain patients a cannabis option to prescription narcotics.
If you swear by CBD and THC to help you sleep, there is now some limited evidence to suggest that you are not imagining things. Have you ever tried combining your cannabis sleep aid with an over-the-counter melatonin product?