Does CBD Help Reduce Snoring?
- CBD has been shown to have potential effects on conditions that cause or contribute to snoring.
- A study published in the journal FEBS Letters found that CBD could reduce rapid eye movement (REM) during sleep, which can cause heavy snoring(1).
- CBD also works with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) that supports functions like sleep, circadian rhythm, and mood, according to the American Sleep Association (ASA)(2).
- Existing studies focus only on the link between CBD and sleep disorders, and no evidence is available to show how the compound directly treats snoring.
- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to provide official recommendations on how to take CBD.
Snoring occurs due to several factors, such as allergies, chronic nasal congestion, alcohol consumption, being overweight, and having a low, thick, soft palate that narrows the airway. It can also be caused by a medical condition or sleep disorders.
There are many ways to help reduce snoring. Several studies have explored CBD (cannabidiol) in recent years because of its potential effects on sleep, including a 2018 research in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology that looked into how the compound helps with chronic pain and the discomfort during sleep(3).
CBD is one of the more than 100 naturally occurring cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. It is known as the second most abundant chemical in marijuana, following THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which gives the psychoactive effect or feeling of “high.”
However, there are few studies focused on how CBD helps treat conditions that cause snoring. One study published in the journal FEBS Letters found that the hemp plant extract could increase wakefulness and reduce rapid eye movement (REM) during sleep(4).
People snore more during slow-wave and REM sleep, which affect nighttime sleep and daytime functions, according to another research in The American Review of Respiratory Disease Returns(5).
Why People Are Using CBD for Snoring
Snoring is an effect of REM sleep and another condition called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Some people experience a combination of OSA and REM sleep, which could lead to heavy snoring and brief stops in breathing during sleep.
A research published in the journal Current Opinion in Pulmonary Medicine in 2017 found that rapid eye movement sleep increases sympathetic activity and cardiovascular instability in patients with OSA. Researchers said REM OSA might also increase the risk of high blood pressure, insulin resistance, and memory problems(6).
CBD works as a sleep aid by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), according to the American Sleep Association (ASA)(7). This molecular signalling system plays a key role in cognitive and physiological processes, including mood, memory, inflammation, and sleep.
ECS naturally produces cannabinoids that support other systems in the body, including those involved in sleep, digestion, pain, and inflammation. ASA said CBD potentially interacts with specific cannabinoid receptors in ECS that affect the body’s sleep/wake cycle(8).
Researchers suggested in a 2019 study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry that CBD can also support behavioral or psychosocial therapy(9).
The Pros and Cons of CBD Oil for Snoring
CBD oil may offer several health benefits to help improve sleep and reduce snoring. The extract helps:
Reduce Daytime Sleepiness. People with sleeping disorders are highly likely to feel sleepy during the day. Intake of CBD oil may help reduce drowsiness or excessive daytime sleepiness, according to a 2017 study in the journal Current Psychiatry Reports(10).
Improve Mood. CBD may also address mood disorders associated with sleep deprivation.
The chemical compound and THC could reduce stress and depression in people with sleep problems.
A 2019 research published in The Permanente Journal found that CBD could treat other forms of anxiety disorder, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and social anxiety disorder (SAD). Researchers also found the extract worked in people with anxiety-induced insomnia(11).
Side Effects of CBD
Despite offering health benefits, the intake of cannabidiol may also cause some health problems. The compound may cause nausea, fatigue, and irritability, according to Harvard Health(12).
In some cases, people may suffer from liver toxicity. A 2019 study in the journal Molecules showed that high doses of CBD caused liver damage in less than 24 hours on mice after the first intake(13).
The majority of the animals died from liver toxicity a few days after the test.
The U.S. Army also issued a report in 2018 warning consumers to avoid using vape that contains CBD oil amid the growing popularity of e-cigarettes. It said that adding CBD and other synthetic cannabinoids to vaping products may cause headaches, nausea, vomiting, palpitations, dizziness, agitation, disorientation, and seizures(14).
How CBD Oil Compares to Alternative Treatments for Snoring
Health experts commonly recommend lifestyle changes to help address snoring. Managing weight gain, getting enough sleep, and reducing or avoiding alcohol consumption can help stop making the noise during sleep.
For snoring accompanied by sleep apnea, doctors may suggest using oral appliances, like dental mouthpieces and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). They help improve the position of the jaw, tongue, and soft palate to keep the air passage open during sleep.
CPAP is mainly used to eliminate snoring caused by OSA. However, some people find using oral appliances uncomfortable at night.
CBD is another potential treatment for health conditions that cause snoring.
How To Choose The Right CBD for Snoring
Despite the number of studies conducted to see the effects of CBD on sleep, more efforts are required to understand further how it directly causes changes in the body to promote sleep.
People should see a doctor or a healthcare provider before taking CBD to address snoring and other sleep disorders. It is especially important for those who have existing prescription or over-the-counter medications.
How Much CBD Oil Should I Take for Snoring?
The 2017 Current Psychiatry Reports paper suggested that the effects of CBD on sleep would depend on the given dose. Researchers found that taking 160 mg per day of the chemical CBD increased the participants’ total sleep time and reduced the frequency of arousal during the night in people with insomnia(15).
“Administration of CBD has been shown to have differential effects on sleep based on dose,” the paper stated. “Indeed, low dose CBD has a stimulating effect, while high-dose CBD has a sedating effect.”
For other forms of CBD, people may take 300 mg per day for pills and 2.5 mg per day of CBD spray under the tongue, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). To first time users, Harvard recommended taking hemp-derived CBD to avoid the psychoactive effects of THC(16).
But before going to retail stores or cannabis dispensaries, it is important to know that the right dose of CBD depends on many factors for each individual. There are no recommendations or strict guidelines set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for people who use CBD oil.
How to Take CBD Oil for Snoring
Stores commonly include information on bottles or packages on how to use CBD products. It details how much CBD is in each drop and the correct number of drops to take.
CBD can be ingested by a drop of oil under the tongue, pills, or edible products like gummies or tea. Tinctures are the most popular way of taking the chemical for health conditions.
Tinctures mainly enable users to get the effects of cannabis plants without having to smoke it. Manufacturers can also add another flavor to improve the taste of the extract.
Aside from sleep issues, like insomnia, people typically take CBD oil to help treat childhood epilepsy syndromes, anxiety, and different types of chronic pain, such as lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis, according to Harvard Health(17).
CBD tincture is one of the popular ways of administering the compound. It only requires placing the oil under the tongue for a few seconds to a minute before swallowing it.
However, the tinctures are very concentrated. Users should take the oil in small amounts and check the dropper to get accurate measurements.
Snoring and Its Serious Effects
Light snoring is not unhealthy. But the conditions that make people snore may lead to serious complications.
Sleep apnea is the most common medical condition that causes snoring. It can also lead to daytime sleepiness, frequent headaches, dry mouth, and problems with breathing at night.
If left untreated, sleep apnea may cause serious health problems, such as heart problems, exhaustion during the day, and diabetes.
However, more clinical studies are required to understand the efficacy of cannabis extract further. Future efforts also need to explore the potential side effects and safety of CBD’s long term use.
There has been a growing popularity of cannabis and its compounds in the U.S. and other countries across the globe. The WHO estimated that nearly 147 million people or 2.5 percent of the global population now use or consume cannabis(18).
However, there is no available data that provides a direct link between the effects of CBD use and snoring. Existing studies focused on how the cannabis compound helps treat conditions that only included snoring as a symptom.
The plant’s chemical compound CBD is known for its anti-inflammatory effects and for providing pain relief. But growing evidence linked the compound to reduced snoring due to its effect on ECS, the body system that manages natural processes, such as sleep, mood, memory inflammation.
People interested in trying CBD to address snoring and other sleep issues should see a doctor to know its potential effects and how conditions and other medications may interact with the compound.
- Murillo-Rodríguez E1, Millán-Aldaco D, Palomero-Rivero M, Mechoulam R, Drucker-Colín R. Cannabidiol, a constituent of Cannabis sativa, modulates sleep in rats. FEBS Letters. 2006 Aug 7. DOI: 10.1016/j.febslet.2006.04.102
- American Sleep Association. CBD: FOR SLEEP AND INSOMNIA. Retrieved from https://www.sleepassociation.org/sleep-treatments/cbd/
- Vučković S, Srebro D, Vujović KS, Vučetić C, Prostran M. Cannabinoids and Pain: New Insights From Old Molecules. Frontiers in Pharmacology. Published 2018 Nov 13. 10.3389/fphar.2018.01259
- Murillo-Rodríguez E op. cit.
- Hoffstein V1, Mateika JH, Mateika S. Snoring and sleep architecture. The American Review of Respiratory Disease Returns. 1991 Jan. DOI: 10.1164/ajrccm/143.1.92
- Alzoubaidi M, Mokhlesi B. Obstructive sleep apnea during REM sleep: Clinical relevance and therapeutic implications. Current Opinion in Pulmonary. 2017 Nov 1. doi: 10.1097/MCP.0000000000000319
- American Sleep Association op. cit.
- Chye Y, Christensen E, Solowij N, Yücel M. The Endocannabinoid System and Cannabidiol’s Promise for the Treatment of Substance Use Disorder. Frontiers in Psychiatry. 2019 Feb 19. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.00063
- Babson KA, Sottile J, Morabito D. Cannabis, Cannabinoids, and Sleep: a Review of the Literature. Current Psychiatry Reports. 2017; doi 10.1007/s11920-017-0775-9
- Shannon S, Lewis N, Lee H, Hughes S. Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series. The Permanente Journal. Published 2019 Jan 7. doi.org/10.7812/TPP/18-041
- Harvard Health Publishing. Cannabidiol (CBD): What We Know and What We Don’t. Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476
- Ewing LE, Skinner CM, Quick CM, Kennon-McGill S, McGill MR, Walker LA, ElSohly MA, Gurley BJ, Koturbash I. Hepatotoxicity of a Cannabidiol-Rich Cannabis Extract in the Mouse Model. Molecules. 2019, 24(9), 1694; doi.org/10.3390/molecules24091694
- U.S. Army Public Health Center. Health Effects of Vape Oils Containing Unknown Substances. Published 2018 April 25. Retrieved from https://phc.amedd.army.mil/topics/healthyliving/tfl/Pages/VapeOils.aspx
- Babson KA op. cit.
- Harvard Health Publishing op. cit.
- World Health Organization. Management of substance abuse: Cannabis. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/substance_abuse/facts/cannabis/en/
This sleep condition happens when an individual stops and starts breathing during the night. This often happens many times and can cause some serious health problems. There are three main types of this condition:
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea: This sleep condition, which is the most common of the three, happens when the muscles in the individual’s throat relax. This obstructs the airway. People who are overweight or who have a large neck circumference are most likely to snore.
- Central Sleep Apnea: This sleep condition happens when the brain is unable to send the right signals to the breathing muscles, resulting in sleep that starts and stops.
- Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome: Individuals who suffer from both conditions have this syndrome, where the throat muscles relax, and the brain cannot control the breathing muscles.
There are several symptoms of this sleep condition, and they can sometimes overlap, making it difficult for the individual to determine what type of disorder he or she has.
- Daytime Sleepiness: Because the individual is not getting enough sleep during the night, he or she will most likely feel sleepier during the day. Feeling tired in the afternoon every now and then is normal but feeling sleepy during the day every day could be a sign of this sleep condition.
- Headache: Often, not getting enough sleep can lead to a headache when the individual wakes up in the morning.
- Not Breathing at Night: If the patient shares a room with another person at night, the other person may notice that the patient has episodes of starting and stopping breathing at night. This is one of the main symptoms of this sleep disorder.
- Loud Snoring: This is another symptom of this sleep disorder. Snoring happens when the tissues in the throat relax and vibrate as the individual breathes in and out. However, it is important to note that not everyone will have this symptom.
- Dry Mouth: One study found that over 31 percent of individuals who have this sleep condition have a dry mouth when they wake up, while only 3 percent of people without the sleep disorder have a dry mouth in the morning. This is most often caused by sleeping with the mouth open during the night.
In sleep apnea, the muscles in the back of the throat relax, obstructing the airway. This means the individual cannot get enough air in every breath he or she takes. This results in a lower amount of oxygen in the blood.
The brain detects that the body is not getting enough oxygen and so it rouses the individual from sleep. This usually is short enough that the individual does not remember it in the morning. However, it is enough to disturb REM sleep, the deepest stage of sleep.
When the brain wakes up the body, the individual may snore, gasp for air, or even choke. This may happen five to 30 times per hour throughout the night.
While this is the most common cause of this sleep disorder, a less common form of the disorder can happen when the brain does not send signals to the body that it needs to breathe. This means the individual is not breathing at all for a short period. He or she may wake up gasping for air and struggle to get back to sleep.
If left untreated, this sleeping condition can cause serious health problems.
- Heart Problems: Because the levels of oxygen in the individual’s body keep dropping, the heart and cardiovascular systems may become strained. This strain can lead to problems such as heart attacks, strokes, or atrial fibrillation. It can also lead to high blood pressure in some people.
- Exhaustion During the Day: Because the individual is not getting enough sleep at night, this sleeping condition can lead to constant fatigue during the day. Individuals may be more irritable during the day or have difficulty concentrating. They may also feel drowsy while doing normal activities such as watching TV or even driving.
- Diabetes: Having this sleep condition can even raise an individual’s chances of developing type 2 diabetes.
Another problem with this sleep condition is that roommates or significant others who share a room will have trouble sleeping because of the individual’s loud snoring. When this happens night after night, it can lead to a strained relationship.
For obstructive sleep apnea, one treatment is a continuous positive airway pressure device (CPAP). People wear this mask over their nose and mouth, and it gently blows air into the airway while the individual is sleeping. This keeps the airway open throughout the night. There are a few other treatments a doctor may recommend:
- Dental Appliances: These appliances work to reposition the tongue and lower jaw so the airway will remain open.
- Losing Weight: Being overweight can cause the airway to become blocked during the night because the individual’s neck is large.
- Quitting Smoking: Cigarettes can cause the tissue in the upper airway to swell, making it more likely to become blocked during the night.
- Avoiding Alcohol: Alcohol is another cause of this condition because it can also cause the upper airway to swell.
- Laying on the Side: Sometimes, it can be helpful for individuals to lay on their sides at night instead of on their backs.
- Surgery: In severe cases, a doctor may recommend surgery to remove excess tissue in the airway.
While it is important to treat the underlying condition, CBD oil can help relieve some of the problems that sleep disorders can cause.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is an extract from the cannabis plant that has been mixed with a carrier oil, most often hemp seed oil. This product can be sold as it is, or it can be added to other products such as gummies, topicals, and edibles. The CBD and other cannabinoids form the active ingredients.
Many people associate cannabis products with getting high. However, this is not always the case. The chemical compound tetrahydrocannabinol is what causes a psychoactive effect on users. However, many CBD products on the market today contain only CBD oil. Even full-spectrum products, which contain many cannabinoids from the plant, can legally only have 0.3 percent of THC in them. This small amount is not enough to make a user high.
How CBD Oil Can Help With Sleep Disorders
There is some preliminary research that shows that CBD oil may be helpful for people who suffer from sleeping disorders. A 2002 study from the University of Illinois looked at the breathing patterns of mice during sleep.
This study focused on how two cannabinoids that are found in the marijuana plant, THC and oleamide, affected sleep. The researchers concluded that the more of these cannabinoids the mice received, the more the respiration of the mice was stabilized during sleep.
After this study, the lead researcher performed another trial on humans using cannabis medication Dronabinol. This medication contains similar cannabinoids to the ones the mice received. In this clinical trial, there was a 32 percent decrease in sleep apnea overall. This study concluded that patients who received higher doses of this medication experienced greater relief from symptoms.
While Dronabinol is currently sold for relief from nausea and vomiting, in the future, it may also be sold for sleeping disorders.
Other Ways CBD Can Help
There are other ways that CBD oil can help reduce the symptoms of sleeping disorders. Research has found that CBD can help people with Parkinson’s disease as it reduces REM behavior disorder. This disorder disrupts the REM sleep cycle and causes people to act out their dreams instead of being paralyzed in sleep. While more research is needed on the effects of CBD on deep sleep, this discovery may be helpful for people whose deep sleep cycle is disrupted at night. Other research has found that CBD can help increase this deep sleep in people who have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
CBD oil can also be used as a sleep aid to help individuals fall asleep faster and to promote deeper sleep. This can be a better alternative to sleeping pills, which can become addictive and cause problems such as dizziness and sleepiness during the day.
Another benefit of CBD oil is that it can help people feel more alert during the daytime because it helps to reduce drowsiness. This is helpful for people who are sleepy during the day because of a sleeping disorder. Increasing one’s alertness during the daytime will also help them fall asleep faster and get a deeper night’s rest.
CBD oil can also help treat mood disorders that may result from sleeping problems. Anxiety and depression are both common problems resulting from these sleeping issues. Many studies show that CBD can help people feel less stressed and depressed.