Cannabis’ REM Sleep-Suppressing Properties Could Prove Useful in Banishing Nightmares

The cannabis plant has been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments, but its use in sleep medicine is still relatively new. Research suggests that these benefits could extend beyond insomnia and help people who suffer from nightmares.—

The “cbd rem sleep” is a compound found in cannabis that has been shown to have the potential to reduce REM sleep, which can help with nightmares.

Cannabis’ REM Sleep-Suppressing Properties Could Prove Useful in Banishing Nightmares

Have you ever awoken with beads of perspiration on your brow, your bed blankets coiled about you in a fiercely protective grasp, and the recollection of a terrifying dream? If that’s the case, you’re one of the 50 percent to 85 percent of individuals who have nightmares during REM sleep.

The intensity and frequency of nightmares are much higher for many persons. In fact, according to Recovery Village, 30 percent of the world’s population has nightmares at least once a month. According to the Sleep Foundation, nightmares are most prevalent in youngsters between the ages of 3 and 6, although they become less common as they become older.

This isn’t to argue that grownups are immune to nightmares. Millions of people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), such as veterans and military personnel, relive their horrific flashbacks and experiences while sleeping.

The good news is that cannabis may be able to help you sleep better. Contrary to widespread belief that the plant causes nightmares (an incorrect notion likely fueled by the fact that cannabis includes psychoactive characteristics), research reveals that it may actually help people sleep better.

What Exactly Is REM Sleep?

Transitional light, light, deep, and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep are the four basic phases of sleep, in case you didn’t know. These phases of sleep occur many times during your sleep cycle, with REM being the most remembered.

REM sleep, often known as “dream sleep,” usually occurs 1 to 1.5 hours after falling asleep. It occurs when the eyes rapidly change directions without transmitting any visual information to the brain. People who are anxious or stressed throughout the day are more likely to have nightmares during REM sleep.

Many habitual cannabis users don’t recall their dreams after consuming the drug because it suppresses REM sleep. It’s worth noting that most cannabis users have a REM rebound after being muted by the drug—a regular occurrence among individuals who take a tolerance break from cannabis.

The Relationship Between THC and REM Sleep

THC is the most important factor in preventing REM sleep. Dreaming is less likely to occur after ingestion because it lowers the amount of time spent in REM sleep. This fact contrasts sharply with popular perceptions of THC, which may create paranoia in less tolerant users.

THC also lengthens the duration between falling asleep and entering REM sleep, a phenomenon known as “REM latency.” The mind-altering cannabinoid may also heighten the bizarreness of a user’s dreams.

With this in mind, THC-rich cannabis might be a useful addition to the life of someone who suffers from nightmares on a daily basis. On the other hand, for “dreamers” who like navigating the sometimes weird dream world, this isn’t so enticing.

A chemical comparable to THC has also been discovered to aid with the repeated nightmares linked with PTSD, according to research. This chemical is nabilone, which is a THC homologue.

Is CBD Good for REM Sleep?

CBD is the second most widely discussed cannabinoid after THC, therefore it’s worth investigating its impact on sleep-related concerns as well. CBD has been shown to alter REM sleep in dose-dependent amounts, according to study.

“CBD effectively reduced anxiety-induced REM sleep reduction,” according to a 2012 research published in the National Library of Medicine. Furthermore, early study suggests that CBD might help persons with excessive daytime drowsiness, REM sleep behavior disorder, and insomnia.

Anecdotal research suggests that CBD may help people have more lucid and vivid dreams, as well as improve their dream recall skills. However, the effect of cannabis on REM sleep is dose dependent: Low dosages are normally energizing, whereas large amounts are usually sedative.

Cannabis and Sleep: Conflicting Evidence

Someone who suffers from sleep disorders on a regular basis—nightmares are known to cause worry, tension, and sadness in individuals who experience them—may report a bad quality of life. Cannabis may provide a feasible alternative for persons who suffer from nightmares on a regular basis, while it cannot be called a cure.

Because cannabis generates such a diverse range of molecules, it’s probable that we’ll learn more about the effects of additional cannabinoids on REM sleep in the future–especially now that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has begun examining cannabis research applications.

Based on the evidence we have gleaned from scientific studies so far, THC has been shown to suppress REM sleep, meaning that it could offer some respite from unpleasant dreams. Furthermore, a 2019 study published in the Journal Psychiatry & Neuroscience revealed that nabilone—the synthetic analog of THC—could improve sleep and reduce nightmares. And a 2021 study suggested cannabinoids could help people with insomnia achieve rest.

These encouraging results provide a light of hope for people who suffer from nightmares on a daily basis. Adults who used cannabis 20 or more times in the previous 30 days were 64 percent more likely to have affected sleep of fewer than six hours per night and 76 percent more likely to sleep in excess of nine hours per night, according to a separate research from 2021.

These contradictory results, as well as the fact that medical cannabis research is currently sparse, highlight the significance of using cannabis with prudence. A doctor’s consultation is a sensible initial step.


Bethan Rose is a cannabis activist, writer, and nomad who has no fixed address. She is now located in Bali and can typically be found on her hammock collecting cannabis material.

The “best cbd for nightmares” is a drug that can be used to help with the symptoms of nightmares. The cannabis plant has been used for centuries, and it has recently been found that it also has REM sleep-suppressing properties.

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