Science did not discover the inherent medicinal traits of cannabis. For thousands of years, and based on anecdotal evidence in the last decades, its use as a sedative agent is widely accepted. Thus, in this regard, the goal of researchers is to uncover the mechanism in which it works. Doing so could potentially lead to the development of new medicine.
Cannabis as a Sedative
Contemporary scientific research has shown compelling evidence that cannabis consumption does help improve sleep quality. Moreover, it helps cut sleep latency. Cannabis strains, though, differ in the intensity of tranquilizing effects. Depending on the variety and the composition of cannabinoids and terpenes, it can be either stimulating or relaxing.
The sedating properties of cannabis are these compounds:
CBD. Cannabidiol is non-psychoactive and mainly responsible for promoting relaxation. Such calming effects help in managing insomnia and other sleep disorders. Research on its role in sleep has established that it does improve sleep quality without affecting the sleep-wake cycle.
CBN. Cannabinol is a lesser-known cannabinoid, but it is just as effective when it comes to inducing a tranquil mental state. Some research suggests that it is non-psychoactive, whereas others purport that it has mild mind-altering effects. Nonetheless, its powerful sedative qualities are quite promising as it has been shown to prolong sleeping time. Combining it with THC also enhances these effects.
THC. Tetrahydrocannabinol is the main psychoactive component in cannabis. Aside from offering euphoria and pain relief, it also exhibits sedative properties that help patients fall asleep - easier and faster. Research also suggests that THC helps improve breathing during sleep, which makes it useful in combatting obstructive sleep disorders such as sleep apnea.
This compound also reduces the time spent in the rapid eye movement (REM) phase while increasing the time spent in slow-wave sleep. Less time spent on the REM stage equates to fewer dreams, which is favorable for PTSD patients who often have disturbing nightmares.
Terpenes. These aromatic compounds are mainly responsible for the distinct flavors and fragrances of a particular strain. However, like cannabinoids, it also exhibits therapeutic properties. For one, it affects sleep by promoting relaxation and drowsiness. Hence, proving to be a valuable aid in managing symptoms of insomnia.
Among the most common terpenes identified as helpful to sleep are myrcene, caryophyllene, limonene, terpineol, and linalool.
7 Best Sedative Strains for Sleep and Insomnia
Homegrown Cannabis Co. hand-picked the best sedative marijuana strains in its meticulously curated seed catalog. Do note that most of these are high-THC varieties, so sticking to the recommended dosage is imperative. Otherwise, the effects could turn out to be overwhelming and anxiety-inducing.
There is nothing more gratifying than savoring this splendid post-dinner dessert at the end of a tiring day. Tahoe Kush - a slightly Indica-leaning hybrid - invigorates the mind with a euphoric cerebral kick before lulling the senses into an utterly relaxed state. With up to 22% THC, its paralyzing yet blissful high effectively washes away stress and fatigue, and eventually leads to feeling of drowsiness. This commanding soporific high is particularly pleasing for insomniacs who are struggling to catch some Zs.
Growing a personal stash of Homegrown Cannabis Co.'s feminized Tahoe Kush is an easy endeavor that practically anyone can undertake. This robust plant thrives in any cannabis-friendly setting and does not require much maintenance. Nevertheless, it rewards growers with an abundant harvest of 300 grams per square meter (indoors) or 400 grams per plant (outdoors) at the end of the 10th week of flowering.
The legendary Northern Lights is an Indica-dominant strain with a reputation for pleasant flavors and relaxing effects. With 18% THC, its effects not only last hours but are also quite profound. Moreover, its remarkable sedating properties can swiftly send one into a blissful, deep slumber.
This widely acclaimed strain bears the superior genetics of two prominent landrace strains - Afghanistan and Thai Sativa. Hence it should come as no surprise that it is incredibly sturdy and productive. In as little as 6-8 weeks, it produces as much as 500 grams per square meter (indoors) or 600 grams per plant (outdoors) of dense buds covered in gooey trichomes.
Blackberry Kush is a mostly Indica strain that is as fragrant and sweet-tasting as its namesake. It delights the senses with sweet berry aromas and hints of hash and fuel. Flavor-wise, it tastes like a cocktail of berries with a tart while leaving an earthy aftertaste. Mainly responsible for the delicious scents and flavors is a rich terpene profile. In addition to the "entourage effect", these terpenoids - myrcene, limonene, caryophyllene, and pinene - also happens to have soporific effects. Even at moderate doses, it is capable of cradling one to a tranquilizing slumber.
Expert skill is not necessary to cultivate this strain. Homegrown Cannabis Co. has taken measures to ensure that the feminized Blackberry Kush seeds are easy to germinate. Steadfast adherence to quality also resulted in reliable genetics and superb growth patterns. In as little as 8-9 weeks of flowering, it produces 450 grams per square meter (indoors) or 550 grams per plant (outdoors) of resin-caked buds.
The delicious Cherry Pie is not only a dessert staple; it is also an effective remedy for sleepless nights. Taking a whiff of this delectable strain is as delightful to the senses as it is to the palate. With 16-24% THC levels, Cherry Pie can mentally power up busy bees on a hectic day before providing a soothing post-work relaxation. It is also abundant in caryophyllene, myrcene, and limonene, which accounts for its body melting high, easing one into a deep, peaceful slumber.
Cherry Pie enamors with sublime effects and outstanding horticultural properties. Being a beginner-friendly strain, it only requires routine maintenance along with constant feeding. When grown under optimal conditions, it gifts 450 grams per square meter (indoors) or 550 grams per plant (outdoors) of pastry-scented buds.
Do-Si-Dos is a mostly Indica hybrid featuring up to 30% THC - an ungodly level that would most certainly remedy pretty much any health concern. It excels at delivering a highly sedating body stone - one that instantly obliterates stress and pains. Moreover, it ushers forth an overwhelming desire to drift off to dreamland.
Cultivating this insanely potent strain from Homegrown Cannabis Co. is rather easy. With an inherently sturdy build, it only needs standard gardening care to prosper. Moreover, it only takes 8-10 weeks to reap 500 grams per square meter/per plant of beautiful buds brimming with crystalline trichomes.
Anyone who claims to be a cannabis connoisseur has surely encountered Purple Kush a couple of times. This legendary strain's purple-tinged buds are not only aesthetically pleasing to look at; these are also incredibly delightful to savor. Aside from exuding a heavenly sweet aroma and flavor, it also pacifies discomforts with a euphoric buzz and all-consuming sedation. Its 22% THC and the terpenes - Pinene and Myrcene - work in synergy to usher forth deep, restful sleep. Such traits make it particularly useful in remedying sleeplessness in insomniacs.
Purple Kush, aside from powerful sedative effects, is sought-after for its easy-to-grow nature, hardiness, and sizeable yields. In just 6-8 weeks of flowering, this plant can yield up to 500 grams per square meter (indoors) or 600 grams per plant (outdoors) of incredibly resinous flowers.
Bubba Kush Auto
This prominent Indica-heavy strain is favored worldwide for its powerful sedative effects. With up to 22% THC, Bubba Kush Auto ensnares the senses with a sweet, earthy taste underscored with lemony Kush notes. Then, it engulfs the mind with euphoria while providing head-to-toe relaxation. The comforting embrace of its sedation combined with caryophyllene, limonene, pinene, and myrcene's soporific effects work wonders in combatting even the worst cases of insomnia.
As an option to buying dried flowers, it is also possible to grow this auto at home. It is beginner-friendly, and more importantly, produces 450 grams per square meter or 50-150 grams per plant of incredibly dense flowers.