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Sleep is an essential part of life. It’s a process that helps the body and brain regenerate and form new pathways, and it’s a foundation for overall physical and mental health. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests that the average adult requires seven to nine hours of sleep per night — though demanding schedules and long work hours can make that challenging. If we don’t get enough sleep — or enough deep, uninterrupted sleep — we may be irritable, have trouble concentrating, or increase our chances of accidentally getting hurt. If the lack of sleep continues, we’re at risk of developing more serious conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and heart attack.
For some people, getting enough sleep is more of a challenge than just devoting enough time to it. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, around 22 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, a disorder in which breathing continually starts and stops. There are other conditions that affect sleep, as well, like insomnia and circadian rhythm disorders, each of which can be treated or managed after talking to a doctor.
If you have trouble sleeping but aren’t diagnosed with a sleep disorder, you can try making lifestyle changes like not drinking caffeine later in the day, reducing naps, putting your phone or computer away well before bed, or taking a melatonin supplement. Studies have shown cannabis can shorten the time it takes to fall asleep, as well as lengthen the time spent in deep sleep. At cannabisMD, we’re here to bring you everything you need to know about healthy sleep, sleep disorders, and possible sleep aids, including medical cannabis and CBD.