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The Best Medical Marijuana Strains in Ohio for Sleep

On average, we will spend almost a third of our life sleeping. At least, we would if we could get a full eight hours every night. Unfortunately for many, this isn’t normal, and both falling and staying asleep can be more difficult than it should be. This can be very frustrating and potentially harmful, but medical marijuana can help. If you are interested in medical marijuana and want to find a nearby certified Ohio medical marijuana physician, the DocMJ website offers online bookings and a quick survey where you can find out instantly if you pre-qualify for a recommendation!

The Science of Sleep

We all know sleep is important, but what actually happens when we are asleep? Scientists have been asking this question for a while now, and there have been huge strides in our understanding of the importance and mechanisms of falling and staying asleep. 

To start, our bodies have an internal clock that generally tells us when we should be awake and when we should be asleep. This is called our circadian rhythm and it has been identified in not only humans, but other animals and even plants. The dictation of our circadian rhythm is complex, and can be thrown off by seemingly inconsequential events like eating too late or too early and certain hormone cycles, but it generally reflects the sun. If the sun is up, so are we. Of course, this can be changed depending on our own schedule and may not be true for everybody, but a “normal” circadian rhythm will follow the same pattern as the sun.

Biologically, melatonin and cortisol are the main players when it comes to falling asleep. Melatonin is secreted by the pineal gland and is usually found in very low levels during the day. As it gets darker, however, levels rise, and we get tired. Cortisol is nearly the opposite, with peak levels near when we wake up and slowly dropping over the course of the day. 

Sleep itself can be broken up into several stages of varying complexity but we will consider the overall four stages of sleep consisting of stages one through three and REM sleep. Stages one through three compose non-REM sleep with stage one being the transition from wakefulness to sleep, stage two being marked by slowing brain activity and is the stage we are in most often, and stage three being the deep sleep that gives us the well-rested feeling. REM sleep is where our dreaming occurs and has higher brain activity than the other stages, resembling that of a waking state. 

Marijuana and Sleep

So, sleeping is complicated, but many people aren’t getting the amount of sleep they need and some of them have been unsuccessful using traditional sleep-aids. Fortunately, research has found that the two main cannabinoids in marijuana, CBD and THC, can help address this. 

CBD has already been found to lower stress and anxiety in many users, already making it useful as a sleep aid for those who have trouble falling asleep due to racing thoughts or tension. On top of this, studies have CBD to be beneficial for those with insomnia and chronic pain in falling and staying asleep [1]. Other studies have substantiated this result, and found that high doses of CBD have increased the duration of sleep [2]. This may be due to CBD’s effect on cortisol, which was found to decrease significantly after administration [3]. Many other studies of CBD’s effects on sleep directly have been done on animal models with exciting results. 

THC is a slightly more mixed bag, with a great potential for use by those needing help falling asleep tempered by its seemingly shortening sleep duration in some people. One study found that, in people with PTSD-induced nightmares and insomnia, nabilone (synthetic THC) both increased the number of hours slept and reduced the average number of nightmares per week [4]. On the other hand, a review of many studies showed that, while sleep latency was reduced, sleep quality may be impared. So, some experimentation may be necessary to find what strain and dosage works best. 

Best Strains for Sleep You Can Get in Ohio

The dispensaries in Ohio offer a wide selection of strains and products that may change depending on the season, demand, and many other factors. That said, these listed strains are very popular and should be found at your local Ohio dispensary. 

    • ACDC: ACDC is a very CBD-dominant strain with nearly no THC to be found. It has a nearly fourteen percent average CBD concentration and is known for helping users relax and reduce pain and anxiety. If you have trouble falling and staying asleep due to racing thoughts or high stress, ACDC can probably help.
  • Sweet and Sour Widow: Sweet and Sour Widow is an Indica that has a high CBD concentration along with a sizable amount of THC, separating it from ACDC. The combination of CBD and THC allows users to both lower the barrier to sleep and increase sleep duration. This is a good choice for those who are looking to fall asleep quickly without some of the psychoactive effects of more THC-dominant strains.
  • Shark Shock: Shark Shock has a near 1:1 ratio of CBD to THC, meaning that it may have users who are more used to higher CBD products feeling a bit more “heady” than usual. That said, there are a couple of strains that may be go by Shark Shock, so pay close attention to the relative concentrations listed on the product itself, as the others have much higher THC levels than this one. 
  • Ohio 47: Ohio 47 is grown by Grow Ohio, a cultivator and processor located in Zanesville. Technically, it is known as AK-47 in most other places, but the product is the same, it is THC-dominant with almost no CBD. Because of this, it is recommended for helping people fall asleep quickly.
  • Chocolope: Chocolope is a very high-THC strain that is recommended for those who have already tried strains with lower THC concentrations. It contains high levels of myrcene, a terpene that has been found to have highly sedative effects which may help counteract some of the euphoric effects from THC itself. Careful dosing is recommended for those looking to use this strain solely as a sleep aid. 

In Conclusion

Difficulty sleeping is all too common and many people would prefer an alternative to pharmaceutical sleep-aids. Luckily, marijuana may be able to help many people fall asleep and stay asleep. By experimenting with different strains and CBD or THC concentrations, you can dial-in the exact effects that help you the most. If you have questions, speak with one of our Patient Care Coordinators today at (877) 899.3626 or use the Live Chat feature on our website. Don’t forget to take our easy, online eligibility survey to find out in just a few minutes if you pre-qualify for an Ohio medical marijuana card.

Resources

[1] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28349316/

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6326553/

[3] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8257923/

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4165471/