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Additionally, in a study published in the journal Sleep in 2008, scientists discovered that high-THC cannabis decreased the frequency of REM sleep when people were dreaming. Those who use marijuana before bed tend to dream less, which means fewer chances of having nightmares, which would certainly be desirable for those suffering from night terrors or symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.
There is plenty of anecdotal evidence that marijuana improves sleep. A group of Israeli scientists recently tried to better understand whether cannabis can help chronic pain sufferers get to bed. In their study, published in the BMJ, around half of the participants were medical marijuana users and the other half were not. The researchers found that cannabis contributed in the short term to sleepless participants in the 128-person study falling asleep through the night.
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However, the study also found that patients with chronic pain may develop tolerance to marijuana. This led to insomnia and difficulty getting to bed on time. For the entire group, 24.1 percent stated that they always woke up early and could not go back to sleep. 20.2 percent said they always had difficulty falling asleep, and 27.2 percent said they had slept intermittently or constantly woke up in the middle of the night.
When comparing cannabis users and non-users, the results show that marijuana users generally didn’t wake up until the morning after falling asleep.
“[Medical cannabis] In patients with chronic pain, its use can have an overall positive effect on maintaining sleep during the night, ”concluded the study’s authors. “At the same time tolerance of potential sleep-inducing properties of [medical cannabis] can occur with frequent use. “
The scientists behind the study suggested that more research is needed to better determine how often and what effectiveness of medicine patients with chronic pain should receive when it comes to cannabis. It’s also worth noting that daily use of sleeping pills is not recommended.