CBD Oil and Sleep – How Stress Is Affecting You More Than You Know

It’s 3:02 am. You’re wide awake again for the third night in a row, desperate to get any sort of relief.

You’ve drank the chamomile tea, avoided the mysterious “blue light” from all of your electronics, you may even have gone so far as taking melatonin, or another sleep aid. But you’re still having troubles staying asleep.

Why does this happen? And is there anything out there that can help?

There is actually, and it’s a relatively new player on the scene. Meet Cannabidiol(CBD). If it does what the research says it does, it may just be what you need to finally get a good nights sleep.

CBD is one of the over 100 cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant. All around the world right now, there is extensive research taking place on CBD and its possible health benefits, and some of what scientists are discovering has far reaching impacts upon the medical community.

It is also one of the most studied cannabinoids, and right there with it is Tetrahydrocannabinol(THC). You know this as the thing that gets you high when you ingest it, but it is also an incredibly important compound in the cannabis plant that has a number of its own benefits.

The reason that CBD has people so interested is the vast number of claims that people have come forth with detailing how CBD has helped with all sorts of disorders. This is due to the way that CBD interacts in the body.

All of us have an Endocannabinoid System, in which cannabinoids bind to their specific receptors. The most studied and talked about, THC and CBD, bind to the receptors CB-1 and CB-2. These are located all throughout the body, brain, and central nervous system. The Endocannabinoid System plays a major part in regulating our bodies, and keeping them in homeostasis, which is a balance within the body.

When any one of these parts is out of sync with the rest, it can have a big impact on how we function in day to day life. If you’ve been following along with the blog for the past while then you’ve likely read about the effect that CBD can have on our Endocrine System and the hormones that it produces. If you haven’t you can check it out here.

You may be wondering what all of this explanation has to do with CBD oil and sleep, but just trust me on this one. It has EVERYTHING to do with it.

Before we get into how exactly CBD can help you sleep, let’s look at the factors that are causing these restless nights in the first place.

Stress, Stress, Stress….And More Stress3840b5f83e8d3fea8101e5679ff7f0af cropped optimized

“Life was so much simpler back then…”

You may have heard this a time or two from older people talking about the “good old days”. While it may have been, those days came with its own downfalls. Generation through generation, there has always been stress to deal with, and always will be, that’s just a fact of life.

Why does it seem like it’s everywhere now though?

Statistics show that work and finances are the number one causes of stress in the world today, but there is all sorts of other stress impacting our lives, and ultimately our health.

The pressure to perform, be it in the workplace, in school, and for many youths, on social media, has brought us to a point in our lives where the amounts of stress we are dealing with don’t even seem so bad anymore. It’s just gotten so commonplace that we all feel like it is normal now.

I’ve got news for you. It isn’t normal.

Our bodies are amazing things. Many of the reactions that happen within are involuntarily, and in response to something, be it internal or external. Our body’s natural reaction to stress is to produce the hormone cortisol. This hormone is secreted by the adrenal glands, and fuels the fight or flight instinct that we have. It plays an important role in regulating our immune systems, and also our metabolism. It works to help control your moods, fear, motivation, and much more.

Too much cortisol in the body can have a number of detrimental effects. It can cause lack of sex drive and irregular periods in women, cause you to gain weight and have digestive issues, increase your risk of heart disease, and has been shown to be linked with anxiety and depression disorders.

Cortisol works in the body to increase your blood sugar, regulate your blood pressure, and manages how your body uses and stores fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.

It also controls your circadian rythym(sleep/wake cycle).

This last point in particular is important to remember.

Not Getting Enough Sleep? Join The Club

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You don’t feel good? Get more sleep. You’re grouchy? Get more sleep. You’re getting sick often? Get more sleep.

Seeing a trend yet? There’s a reason behind it. More than 1/3 of us don’t get the recommended amount of sleep a night, and it’s starting to take it’s toll.

Sleep is weird. You close your eyes and your mind drifts somewhere far away, to be filled with either very pleasant, or very unpleasant images. Scientists don’t fully understand sleep, but there are a few things that they are most definitely in agreement on.

Sleep is necessary for the body and brain to properly repair itself. It is crucial in helping the immune system function at the level it is supposed to, and also helps the brain to form new pathways and connections. Without the proper amount of sleep every night, you may have a harder time concentrating, or retaining the information you are taking in.

According to the information we have available, adults should be getting at least 7-9 hours of sleep a night, children and teens even more. The reality is, most of us don’t even come close to that.

Not getting enough sleep can take a serious toll on a person, both mentally and physically. Sleep deprivation is no joke, and comes with some pretty awful consequences:

  • Fatigue
  • Lack of motivation
  • Increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and other disorders
  • Clumsiness
  • Low sex drive
  • Inability to concentrate and difficulty learning
  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Weight gain, and increased carbohydrate cravings
  • Weakened immune system
  • Increased anxiety and depression

These are just a few of the possible effects that a lack of sleep can have on you, there are many more.

Cortisol has a direct impact on our sleep cycles, as mentioned above. It is a necessary hormone that is responsible for waking us up and making us feel alert throughout the day, and as it decreases, makes us feel more tired.

In a normal person, cortisol levels are at their highest in the morning, and gradually reduce until later that evening, when your ready for bed. But when your stress levels are high, and your body is producing more cortisol than it needs, it can make it difficult to nod off. You may also find that you have difficulty staying asleep, and wake up multiple times in the night.

The longer that you’re in this state, the more cortisol your body is producing, which leads to even less sleep. It’s a vicious cycle that can be extremely hard to break, and hugely contributes to many anxiety and depression disorders.

The Effects Of CBD Oil On Cortisol

CBD and THC work within our Endocannabinoid System, which affects our Endocrine System. The Endocrine System is made up of all of the hormone producing glands in our bodies.

There are a high number of cannabinoid receptors located in the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, which are the main glands that oversee the production of hormones.

As detailed in this study, CBD oil can have a direct effect on cortisol levels in the body. Once CBD was administered, cortisol levels dropped significantly. By taking CBD you can lower your levels of this hormone, and ultimately get a better sleep.

CBD can also raise the levels of melatonin in your body, which is another hormone that is necessary for healthy sleep. Melatonin production amps up in the dark, and decreases in the light, which is why it is recommended to avoid electronics and other forms of light at night before bed

Don’t Underestimate The Other Important Cannabinoid…THC1b9781712872bbe304c039597bbe121d1558731147 cropped optimized

CBD has been getting all of the attention lately, and for good reason, but THC also has a part to play in all of this as well.  Anandamide is a cannabinoid that our bodies naturally produce, and is commonly referred to as the “Bliss Molecule”. It is directly related to the level of happiness that you experience.

It has anti-anxiety and anti-depression properties, helps to stop cancer cells from reproducing, and is synthesized in parts of the brain that control memory, moods, motivation, appetite, and more.

Anandamide breaks down fairly quickly in the body, and a lack of it can cause a few different issues, many of them having to do with mood and memory. THC closely mimics this natural cannabinoid in the body, and studies have shown that it doesn’t take much to achieve results from it.

Using a Full Spectrum CBD oil, which has traces of THC in it, can naturally boost up the levels of Anandamide in your body, making you feel happier and less stressed. 

Less stress = Better sleep.

Do Your Research Before Buying02c298aee0a20bbdb3916a6a39f6fd701558730805 cropped optimized

You may be getting excited after reading on the different ways that CBD oil can help with sleep, and want to rush out to the nearest store and buy some, but there are a few different things you need to know before you do so.

The CBD industry is currently unregulated, so you need to look at companies that have third party testing available. All organic products are a must as well, as you don’t want any toxins or pesticides hiding in it. How it is extracted is also going to have an effect on the quality of the end product as well. You can check out the full list of here.

As stated, Full Spectrum oil contains traces of THC. Broad Spectrum oil and CBD Isolates do not contain this, and may not work as well for sleep and anxiety issues. Due to the slight possibility of a fail on a drug test, however, Full Spectrum can not be taken by everyone. Broad Spectrum oil is the next best choice in this case.

CBD also comes in many different forms, not just oil. There are capsules, CBD vape juice, gummies, topicals, even transdermal patches. Take some time in looking at different products, and make sure to read up on the bio-availability of each method.

CBD Handle


Mallory Milne

Mallory is a mom of two. as well as the main content writer and owner of CBD Handle. She has been a consumer advocate and CBD user since 2018, and strives to relay accurate, easy to understand information and to educate others on the health benefits of CBD.

16 thoughts on “CBD Oil and Sleep – How Stress Is Affecting You More Than You Know

  • May 25, 2019 at 9:30 am

    This post really resonate with me, I have had trouble sleeping in the past and not known what to do about it. I tried everything from meditation to crystals, it helped yes but I still struggle now and again. You have really broken the facts and statistics down for me nicely, and I feel much more informed about this oil. I’m glad I found it, something I need to follow up I do see how this could really benefit someone with sleep trouble. I like that this product seems to do a lot to balance things out. I will book mark this page and be coming back, thanks for the insight. My only question is around the THC could you explain a bit more about this or share an article dedicated to this? THC is something a lot of people have views on both good and bad, out of interest and education I’d like to be fully informed. Great post.

    • May 25, 2019 at 9:35 am

      Glad that you found the article useful, it has been a really big help with me personally when it comes to getting a better sleep. The stigma behind marijuana and THC is still very much alive, despite everything positive that has come out about it in the past year, and more countries legalizing it. It’s not the demon that it has been made out to be in the past. This article goes over the pros and cons of it:


      Thanks for stopping by!

  • May 25, 2019 at 9:36 am

    Interesting read this is for me. Actually, I make use of CBC oil products consistently due to my work stress and I cannot thank it enough for how blissfully it works to suppress my fatigue. Before I got to know about cbd, my life was a living hell. I got tired sometimes of getting stressed out by my work no matter how I try to be cautious in my activities but it just seemed inevitable. Cbd does has its effects but definitely, its pros outweighs its cons. Thanks

    • May 26, 2019 at 5:47 am

      Glad to hear it is working great for you.

  • May 25, 2019 at 9:38 am

    Hi Mallory,

    I have been having some problems to sleep often. I used to sleep at 4 or 5 am, then wake up at 8 am because I need to go to work. Anyways, after reading the benefits you can get from the CBD that will not only give you a healthy life and help you sleep, I need to try this for sure. It seems the best option healthy option that you can find instead of industrial pills that may be a problem for your health.

    I didn’t know the effect that can cause the lack of sleep now I’m feeling more afraid and convinced that I have to try this product as soon as possible.

    Thanks for all this information.

    • May 26, 2019 at 5:47 am

      It can benefit you in a number of different ways, not just for getting a better sleep. It is also one of the best alternatives to prescription medications if you want to try a more natural approach. 

  • May 25, 2019 at 9:39 am

    Having been a sleep sufferer many years ago I am always interested in reading about possible solutions should I ever have the problem in the future. When I was studying my own problems (which were mainly caused by to much alcohol in the evenings) I never came across the connection with Cortisol. This was an eye-opener and now makes a number of things much more clear and make more sense. I have a feeling that the THC is not an active ingredient in the UK versions of CBD oil, is that the case ? Or have I misread it somewhere. Are the CBD oils without this ingredient going to be as effective do you think.? Either way the information you have given on the outcomes of higher levels of cortisol are extremely poignant and I thank you for that.

    • May 26, 2019 at 5:45 am

      UK THC levels have to be 0.2% or less I believe. There isn’t a whole lot of THC Full Spectrum, but it does have some benefits, due to the Entourage Effect. Choosing a Full Spectrum oil over one that has had the THC removed will be more effective in a lot of cases.

  • May 25, 2019 at 9:40 am

    This is a very interesting read, and such a common experience. I feel as though so many people experience sleep troubles. I know friends of mine that suffer from sleep deprivation and try to self medicate, sometimes with little success. CBD oil sounds like a much better alternative opposed to self medicating especially when people turn to smoking cannabis. Your post particularly outlines the health benefits that CBD oil has over inhaling the smoke. Thank you for taking the time to gather and compare different brands and highlighting the importance of doing your own research before purchasing! I would never have thought to consider aspects such as pesticides and the method used to extract the CBD.


    • May 26, 2019 at 5:42 am

      Choosing a company that has all organic methods, from growing to producing, is so important. Until we have better standards and regulations in the industry, 3rd party testing is the only way to verify this. Thanks for reading!

  • March 6, 2020 at 2:52 pm

    I have such a hard time sleeping. I have anxiety, depression and PTSD and Arnold-Chiari Brain Malformation which I’ve had brain surgery for. It would be wonderful if CBD helped with my chronic insomnia.

    • March 6, 2020 at 5:41 pm

      Many people have gotten relief using CBD for insomnia. There are normal formulas and formulas designed specifically to help in that area. We would recommend going with a full spectrum product for the best results if you’re able to take full spectrum.

  • March 29, 2020 at 1:28 pm

    I suffer from anxiety, panic disorders and insomnia, this information is very important and informative to me.
    Thank you.

    • March 31, 2020 at 9:10 pm

      Glad you found it helpful!

  • April 1, 2020 at 8:40 pm

    A great read and need to do some more research to see if this would help for me. I am lucky to get 5 hours a night sleep hypothyroid and always tired

    • April 7, 2020 at 6:07 pm

      It’s definitely worth a shot!


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