By Bailey Rahn - Cannabis and Sleep Cannabis can be a splendid sleep aid, which is why many consumers keep a go-to favorite by their bedside. Even people with the most stubborn insomnia can find their escape to the dream world with a nice sedating indica. While most consumers are aware that cannabis can help you get a good night’s sleep, there’s a lot more to that relationship than you might think. For example, did you know older dried cannabis makes you sleepier than fresh bud? And did you know that marijuana inhibits dreams? Get ready to learn a thing or two about the ways cannabis can help or hinder your nightly hibernation. CBD and THC Affect Sleep Differently By now you probably know that there are different types of strains: some get you high (high-THC, low-CBD), some don’t (high-CBD, low-THC), and others keep your buzz at a minimum (equal or near-equal parts THC and CBD). It’s worth first noting that most sleep studies – as well as the facts to follow –pertain to high-THC strains, as CBD strains are significantly harder (if not impossible) to find in some areas of the U.S. So what effect do high-CBD strains have on sleep? A 2006 study tested the effects of CBD on animal models in both lights-on and lights-off environments and found that this non- psychoactive cannabis compound increased alertness with the lights on and had no discernable effects on lights-off sleep. The study’s authors concluded that CBD might actually hold therapeutic promise for those with somnolence, or excessive daytime sleepiness from a not-so-good night’s rest. Indica Strains Tend to Be Better Sleep Aids Popular opinion maintains that indica strains tend to induce heavier, sleepy effects while sativas are known to be uplifting, even energizing. Take a look at our top-rated sleepy strains and you’ll see a wall of indica purple patched with a little hybrid green. Although chemical and DNA testing have yet to show exactly why indicas typically make better sleep aids, some theorize that it has to do with the terpene content – that is, the aromatic compounds that contribute to each strain’s special effect fingerprint. In other words, indicas may contain more of the relaxing, sedating terpenes than its sativa relatives. Aged Cannabis Makes You Sleepier No, really. When THC degrades over time, it converts to a sedating chemical known as cannabinol, or CBN. This cannabis compound is five times more sedating than THC, though it’s fairly slow to form. Chief Research Officer Rev. Dr. Kymron deCesare of Steep Hill Labs elaborates on this process. “As d9-THC degrades through both isomerization and/or oxidatively, only a small portion of it turns into CBN. As a result, CBN is a bit difficult to collect in large quantities for usage. My experience is that if I take cannabis that is about 20% THCA, and I wrap in in plastic and let it sit in the garage for 3 years (in summer heat and dry), it results in a 3-5% production of CBN. Yes, I use ‘old weed’ to make sedative medicinals.” Natural Remedies Help Maximize Cannabis’ Sleepy Effects. Cannabis is a great way to ready yourself for sleep, but pairing it with other natural sleep aids can make for an even more restful night. “Other terpenoids are extremely synergistic with CBN, some in the cannabis plant, some I add from other herbals,” Rev. Dr. deCesare told us. “Hops, chamomile, and lavender contain important terpenes also found in cannabis, but found in much higher concentration. These inclusions in the medical remedy will make for a greatly enhance sedation efficacy.” So next time you bust out your favorite sleepy 10 Things to Know About Your Herbal Nightcap