Can CBD Help You Sleep Better? CBD Oil, Lotions and Edibles Compared

Over the last few years, CBD (cannabidiol) has been propelled to nationwide stardom. Bolstered by a wave of legalization (even in states where other forms of marijuana are still fighting for legal recognition), promising research and expanding public awareness, CBD is being positively discussed as a possible treatment for everything from seizures to the social symptoms of autism.

While a lot of research remains to be done on the effects of CBD and the conditions that it can treat, there is one area where it really stands out for the people who have tried it: Restfulness.

Many people have reported that after taking CBD, they find it easier to relax before bed, stop tossing and turning, and overcome insomnia to achieve deeper sleep. How is it that these results are possible? That’s something we’re going to explore right now.

In this guide, we’re going to introduce you to some of the research and reports behind CBDs effects on restfulness. We’ll start with the research that’s already gone into exploring the connection between CBD and restful sleep, and then take you through all of the options that are available.

Or, maybe CBD isn’t the best option for you. At the end of this guide, we’ll also tell you how sativa or indica-based marijuana products may also be capable of confronting your sleeplessness and provide you with some examples of strains that you can try.

How CBD Effects Insomnia and Restlessness

Is cannabidiol the sleep treatment that you’ve been waiting for? It’s possible. There are a significant amount of prescription and non-prescription sleep aids on the market, but most of them come with side effects that many insomniacs and troubled sleepers would prefer to avoid.

Antihistamines have some unpleasant effects on attention and short-term memory. Benzodiazepines that are used as a sleep aid, such as Ativan and Xanax, are known to cause their own memory problems, in addition to being notoriously addictive. Barbiturates are used in the most extreme cases but are powerful enough to be dangerous without very careful dosage.

It’s easy to understand why someone would want an alternative, but is that alternative CBD? is there even any evidence that the effects so many have reported are real and not just a fading placebo effect?

In fact, there is medical evidence already available that CBD has the effects that its current fans have documented. In clinical trials as early as 1981, those who were given doses of CBD were found to have slept significantly more hours than those in the control group who were given nothing.

But does that mean it makes you sleepy? Not exactly. The effect that CBD has on the body is a different one. Instead of overpowering your bodies current chemical makeup, cannabidiol connects to the bodies existing cannabinoid receptors and seems to provide a tool that your body is already ready and waiting to use.

CBD doesn’t need to override your systems in order to replace wakefulness with sleepiness. instead, during its interactions with receptors in the brain, CBD restores proper function to overworked stress response systems. Instead of making you feel sleepy, it corrects existing imbalances so that your body is naturally ready to rest when you intend to rest.

Now that you understand how CBD interacts with your body, it’s time to look at some of the different ways that you can take it in. You can try oils for faster action, lotions for localized aches or edibles for a slower but heavier effect. Here’s everything you need to know about when and how to use each option.   

CBD Oil Tinctures

Oil is a very common delivery mechanism. Most CBD products you’ll find on the market are blended into oils. The oil is often sold in a bottle with an attached dropper (a tincture), or inside capsules with a dissolving shell.

This is one of the most popular options, and it’s often clear why when you’ve been introduced to when to use oils and how.

When to Use Oils

If you would prefer to take your dosage right before you go to bed, then oils are likely going to be the best option for you. Depending on how you take the oil, it should take effect relatively quickly. Oils are the best option if you care about fast-acting results along with potency.

Using oils also allows you to control your dosage very closely, in a way that you can’t do as easily with creams or edibles. By using the tinctures or the capsules, you can easily determine how much you want to take, and then adjust it as needed.

So use oils if you are unsure of your dosage, and may want to experiment with kicking it up or cutting it down until you get the results you’re looking for.

How to Use CBD oils

Most tinctures and capsules are sold with specific recommendations for use, and you can find this information easily by checking the packaging or asking our friendly staff for assistance. Most tinctures are taken sublingually and placed directly under the tongue to sit for 30-90 seconds.

CBD Oils to Use for Insomnia

There are important differences between the oils that are available on the market. Most of them are defined by the ratio of the CBD and THC in the mixture, with some containing only a trace amount of THC.

Balanced 1:1 Sublingual Drops

Balanced CBD oils contain a roughly equal proportion of THC and CBD. These mixtures are best for people who want both the muscle-relaxing effects of the CBD and the psychoactive, mood-altering effects of THC.

High amounts of THC can affect work performance and may inhibit affect the ability to drive. For that reason, these mixtures should be used by those who are staying home, such as those recovering from an injury or those who are otherwise planning to relax for the day.

They are reported by many users to be effective for insomnia. The psychoactive effects of this blend may make it more effective than high-CBD dops for those who are having trouble sleeping for reasons such as stress, anxiety or mourning.

High CBD Ratio Sublingual Drops

These blends exist for those who would rather avoid the psychoactive effects that come with added THC. That makes these products a better option for those who want to be active throughout the day, or for those who simply find the psychoactive effects to be uncomfortable.

There are plenty of blends to choose from if you are looking for the perfect mix of psychoactive and muscle-relaxing effects. All of the following ratios and more are available.

  • 8:1
  • 18:1
  • 20:1
  • 30:1

Topical Lotions

Lotions are another option you can try if you want to experiment with how CBD affects your sleep. Lotions are designed to be rubbed directly onto the skin in order to treat localized pain or to assist in the healing of skin conditions.

If you’d like to try lotions, it may be helpful to know when they are the best option and how they should be used.

When to Use Lotions

If pain, soreness or skin/muscle tightness is preventing you from getting the rest you need, lotions may be the best way for you to try CBD. Lotions should be used when there is a specific area that you want to treat or when there is a specific area where you want the results to appear.

CBD lotions aren’t only used for active pain, but also to help stimulate healing on skin that has been scarred, burned, dried out or recently tattooed. If the discomfort resulting from any of these conditions is affecting your sleep, you may get the best results from using CBD lotions.

How to Use Lotions

Lotions should always be used as directed, and finding the proper instruction on the packaging is often simple. If you have any questions about any of the lotions we carry, you can contact us directly about proper application.

In nearly all cases, you simply take a small amount and rub it gently into the skin until it is fully absorbed. The effects may be nearly instantaneous but can also take up to an hour. Topical lotions and CBD itself are safe enough that you can repeat this process as often as you need to.

CBD Lotions to Use for Insomnia

There are many different types of lotions available, and different options may be preferable depending on your needs. Some lotions are blended with THC for mixed effects, while others contain only trace amounts of CBD along with other natural additives to aid sleep.

Blended Lotions

Some lotions are blended with THC. THC is absorbed through the skin very slowly, and the effects only become noticeable when it has traveled through the bloodstream and reached the brain. For that reason, THC has only slow and mild effects when applied through a lotion. This can make lotions the perfect option for those who want to treat a topical area and experience muted psychoactive effects.  

Scented lotions for Sleep

If you are treating insomnia or other restlessness, you may be best served by a lotion that has been formulated for sleep. These lotions often include natural additives like and lavender or chamomile scents that signal to the brain that it is time to rest.


Edibles are another popular option that is available if you’d like to try CBD for insomnia or restlessness. Even before CBD was widespread and popular, edible marijuana was known for producing stronger effects including a strong urge to sleep.

This may be because the chemical components of marijuana interact differently with the stomach than they do with the brain. The stomach absorbs these chemicals more slowly, leading to a delayed, but often longer-lasting effect. The effects can be more intense, and lead directly to drowsiness.

Edibles are also preferred by many who don’t enjoy the experience of smoking or vaping. They are also popular with those who want longer-lasting effects than oils provide or desire a more full-body experience than lotions are known to provide.   

When to Use Edibles

Because of the potent effects and long-lasting results, edibles may be the best option if you are dealing with serious pain, or in recovery from a serious injury. If you have a problem with waking up before you intend to, the drawn-out effects of edibles may be able to prevent fitfulness during sleep.

Edibles are also a good option if you have had trouble inhaling smoke or vapor, or if you find the experience of holding oil under your tongue to be unpleasant.

How to Use Edibles

Edibles come in many different forms, and you can have your pick depending on whether you prefer a sweet or flavorless experience.

To find the effect you’re looking for, examine the packages to determine the CBD content. This information is typically listed in milligrams (mg). Low doses start around 10mg, which is a common concentration for individual pieces. You can up the dose by taking multiple pieces at a time. Entire packages may contain anywhere from 100mg to nearly 1000mg of CBD.

CBD Edibles to Use for Insomnia

Most edibles are going to be somewhat effective for sleeplessness. it’s best to experiment with low doses first to see how they affect you, and then move up to more or stronger edibles as needed.    

You have many options to choose from when you are shopping for edibles.

Sweet Treats

Those who want a pleasant experience when ingesting edibles can find almost whatever treat they like. Edibles come in everything from cookies to gummies, trail mixes, and chocolate bars—even suspended in honey.

Our selection of edibles will give you an excellent idea of what’s available, as there are too many to list, and what’s available is changing all the time.


CBD can also be pressed into pill form for those who want to have comfort without the calories. These still come in many flavors as standard vitamins do.

Alternatives to CBD — How Sativa and Indica Strains can Help

CBD is believed to help many people get the sleep they need, but restlessness can be caused by many things. If you’re experiencing trouble sleeping, it may be because you have general anxiety, because you have muscle pain, because you’re having trouble clearing your mind or because you’re just too wired late at night.

If you have any of these problems, you may get more out of a sativa or indica strain than you would get out of one that was cultivated or concentrated with CBD. Below, you’ll find explanations of how either sativa or indica can resolve different symptoms to help you get the rest you need.

Indica Strains to Relax and Clear Your Mind before Bed

Indica may help you sleep if your problem is that you’re having trouble getting comfortable in bed, or if you find that your mind is too busy to drift off to sleep. Indica is famously helpful when you need your entire body to feel loose and when you want to slow your thoughts down.

If you’re not getting the results you need by using CBD, you may find the relief you need with one of the following indica-heavy strains.

Sativa Strains for Stress Relief and Positive Feelings before Bed

Sativa may help you sleep if rest is eluding you because of temporary misery or depression. Sativis is famously helpful when you need to feel euphoric for a while. If you’re having trouble dealing with sad or stressed thoughts, the euphoric pick-up that sativa strains provide may be just what you need to forget about your sadness for a bit and drift off to sleep.

Here are some of the sativa-heavy strains that may give you the relief you need.