Oh, sleep. It’s just so hard to get enough, isn’t it ladies? Whether it’s stress, over-caffeination or ironically, exhaustion, that’s preventing you from getting the slumber you need; we know by now that it’s having serious consequences on your health.
If you struggle to sleep, you’ll likely have tried everything from no screen time before bed to lavender oil on your pillow and breath work exercises as you try to nod off. But, if none of that worked, it might be time to call in the bigger guns—like melatonin supplementation or the latest trend—CBD oil for sleep. While both have their merits, however, you should know the difference before jumping on. Here’s the deal.
Melatonin for sleep
Melatonin is a hormone that’s produced by the brain’s pineal gland that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle. While it doesn’t necessarily help you to fall asleep, it helps to send the signals to your body that it’s bedtime; which is why they’re a good choice if you’re experiencing jet lag or another situation where your natural circadian rhythm has been disrupted—such as night shift work or short-term sleep pattern change.
If however, you’re experiencing that irritating awakeness at 3am where you can’t switch your brain off, melatonin might not be the thing to reach for. This is because it takes about 90 minutes to kick into action; meaning it can take that long to signal to your brain to start getting sleepy—and can last up to 6 hours; which can mean that nasty hangover-style feeling the next morning when it’s time to get up for work.
Also, because melatonin is considered a dietary supplement, they don’t receive much in the way of regulation—which can mean supplement amounts that are drastically inconsistent with what’s advertised on the bottle.
Just like most health problems, one of the main reasons you might be wide awake at night is because of inflammation in the body. As we health-junkies well know by now, CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid compound—and is thought to be a super-effective natural anti-inflammatory. No wonder it’s gaining popularity when it comes to enhancing sleep!
A 2017 literature review on the value of using CBD to improve sleep suggests that CBD may have therapeutic potential for the treatment of insomnia and excessive daytime sleepiness, however—as with most things in the wellness world—everyones responses to the compound will differ. Some suggest that if insomnia is a result of anxiety, taking CBD could really help!
The bottom line
Sleep aids aren’t for the occasional bad night’s sleep. They’re for people who consistently struggle to fall, or stay, asleep and the consequences of which are having a negative impact on their health. If you’re considering taking CBD or melatonin for sleep, it’s worth noting the differences between them in order to inform the best choice for you when it comes to improving your sleep. Happy zzz-catching, ladies!