Insomnia is difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep for long enough to feel refreshed the next morning. It is a common problem thought to regularly affect around one in every three people in the UK, and is particularly common in elderly people.

If you have insomnia, you may:

  • find it difficult to fall asleep
  • lie awake for long periods at night
  • wake up several times during the night
  • wake up early in the morning and not be able to get back to sleep
  • not feel refreshed when you get up
  • find it hard to nap during the day, despite feeling tired
  • feel tired and irritable during the day and have difficulty concentrating

Occasional episodes of insomnia may come and go without causing any serious problems, but for some people it can last for months or even years at a time.

Persistent insomnia can have a significant impact on your quality of life. It can limit what you’re able to do during the day, affect your mood, and lead to relationship problems with friends, family and colleagues.

Medical Marijuana Efficacy

In recent years, scientists have become increasingly aware of the endocannabinoid system’s role in regulating sleep. In addition to maintaining a regular sleep pattern, the system, which is responsible for the effects of marijuana, has been identified as a potential target for the treatment of insomnia. Studies show that endocannabinoids increase sleepiness and that insomnia may even be caused by a dysfunctional endocannabinoid system.

Only one study has been done in the last few decades to test the effects of THC on insomniacs.

The study was published in 1973 by researchers in the United States and involved 9 test subjects that were given varying doses of THC – 10, 20 and 30mg – once a week for 6 weeks. Each dose reduced the time it took to fall asleep (sleep latency), with the most effective dose being 20 mg. 20 mg of THC was found to reduce the average time it took patients to fall asleep by more than an hour.

Related Clinical Information to Insomnia and Medical Cannabis