[vc_row type=”in_container” bg_position=”left top” bg_repeat=”no-repeat” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left”][vc_column width=”1/1″ animation=”none” column_padding=”no-extra-padding” background_color_opacity=”1″][vc_column_text]One of the biggest concerns that prospective medical cannabis patients voice regards cannabis’ effect on sleep cycles. Sleep is a delicate process, and many people experience trouble with, and frustration towards, sleeping even without taking any medications. It is only natural, then, to be curious about the ways in which medical cannabis consumption impacts your sleep patterns. Before looking at cannabis’ impact on your nightly routine, let’s look at the science of sleep on the whole.


Understanding the Sleep Cycle


The modern medical establishment divides sleep into two broad categories: non-REM, which comprises the vast majority of sleep time, and REM. Within the non-REM category, there are four subcategories, aptly labeled NREM1 – NREM4. Of course, each of these five total stages are slightly different:

  • NREM 1: the lightest stage of sleep, you would recognize NREM 1 as the hazy time between sleep and wakefulness. Though sleep always begins in NREM 1, it is possible to “jump” back to NREM 1 if you are disturbed while sleeping.
  • NREM 2: this is considered “total sleep” and makes up the majority of your time spent asleep—usually 45 – 55 percent in adults.
  • NREM 3 and 4: earlier classification systems coupled stages 3 and 4 together, and for our purposes they might as well be one unit (the differences between them are highly technical). NREM 3 and 4 are the deepest levels of sleep, in which sleep is most restful, and they typically comprise 15 – 25 percent of sleep time.
  • REM: perhaps the best-known stage of sleep, REM actually only comprises 20 – 25 percent of the cycle. The reason for REM’s notoriety is that it is the stage in which dreaming occurs.

Over the course of the typical night, people cycle through these stages four or five times.


Cannabis’ Effect on the Sleep Cycle


According to studies, regular cannabis use—q.v. medicinal cannabis users—has a twofold effect on sleep. One the one hand, THC, the active compound in cannabis, has been shown to decrease the amount of REM sleep that users undergo. On the other hand, that lost REM sleep is filled in by longer periods of NREM 4. In other words, the studies found that regular cannabis users will have fewer dreams but will have deeper, more restful sleeps.


For more information on medical cannabis use, and to apply for pre-qualification, check out CannaConnect online![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]