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Delta 8 THC Gummies for Sleep? What You Need to Know

By Andrew Ward

Delta 8 THC Gummies for Sleep? What You Need to Know

Sleep is an essential component of maintaining our physical and mental health. Despite its importance, countless people struggle with insomnia and numerous other sleep disturbances and disorders frequently. Prescription and over-the-counter medications may offer some improvement. However, these choices can also produce unwanted side effects, such as dizziness, nausea, and addiction. 


With ample adverse effect concerns, numerous people have turned to or are considering natural sleep aids to improve their sleep quality.

Enter: THC.


While Delta 9 THC is the iconic plant compound, additional options, including Delta 8 THC, have introduced a world of choices that may help some with sleep. 


Delta 8, a hemp-derived cannabinoid, is one of many promising cannabinoids gaining popularity in recent years. Its growing noteworthiness stems from its potential benefits, including its sedative effects that many claim help them fall asleep faster and have a better night’s rest. 


But does Delta 8 help with sleep? This article will delve into what we know so far. We’ll also touch on the intricacies of the cannabinoid and whether products like Delta 8 gummies are effective as a natural sleep aid.  


What is Delta 8 THC?

Delta 8 is a hemp-derived cannabinoid that's earned a reputation for mirroring the effects of THC in its own unique way. This minor cannabinoid is found naturally in cannabis and hemp plants and can be legally produced in the US when made from the latter. Hemp-derived production of Delta a THC was made legal in the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act, more commonly known as the Farm Bill.


Delta 8 stands out for replicating many of the effects of Delta 9 THC, most notably its psychoactive effects, which we often call a high. Unlike Delta 9, Delta 8 THC produces milder or less intense effects. In addition to the classic high, other commonly reported effects of Delta 8 include improved calming effects, including relaxation and feelings of euphoria, leading many to believe it could be beneficial in sleep and other life-improving aspects. 


But does Delta 8 THC help with sleep?  


Cannabis and the Body

Before comparing the cannabinoids, it’s crucial to understand how THC and the rest of the plant influence our bodies.


Humans experience the various benefits of the cannabis plant through the compound's interactions with the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS), a complex system of nerves and receptors responsible for regulating numerous bodily functions, including sleep patterns. When interacting with the body’s CB1 and CB2 receptors, consumers feel several effects determined by the strain and its various compounds.


THC is often the focal point for many consumers, but advocates implore people to look further into the plant. Many believe that consuming all or as close to as many of a plant's compounds as possible has the most beneficial effects. Rather than just consuming THC, it is believed by many that combining THC with CBD, CBN, CBG, and various other cannabinoids and plant compounds provides a beneficial synergistic effect often referred to as the Entourage effect.


What is the Difference Between Delta 8 THC and Delta 9 THC?

Delta 9 THC, often known as THC, is the most prevalent compound found in the cannabis plant. Its well-known psychoactive "high" effect is created when the compound binds to CB1 receptors in the brain and nervous system. Depending on the strain, these effects often include altered perceptions and feelings of euphoria, relaxation, and anxiety relief. 


Delta 9 THC has gained a reputation over the years for its therapeutic relief, helping scores of people with various types of pain as well as stomach issues and appetite stimulation. While research is ongoing to better understand THC, the plant, and other minor cannabinoids, many feel that the cannabinoid does help with their sleep. 


This thinking has led many to believe that Delta 8 could produce similar effects. As mentioned above, Delta 8 is regarded as being a subtler version of Delta 9 THC, producing similar, milder effects. These similarities are likely created due to the cannabinoids sharing a similar genetic structure. 


One of many minor cannabinoids unintentionally legalized through the 2018 Farm Bill is Delta 10 THC. The two cannabinoids have gained a significant following in just a few years, with Delta 8 regarded for its relaxation-centric effects and Delta 10 for its creativity and alertness-boosting potential. Additional clinical analysis is required for both. 


Is Delta 8 Good for Sleep?

Many feel that Delta 8 THC is beneficial for sleep. This feeling often comes from scores of anecdotal feedback and scant clinical research. 


As mentioned above, both Delta 9 and Delta 8 THC have been associated with various types of sedative and relaxation effects, with Delta 8 regarded for its milder result. While some clinical research into Delta 8 has supported its claims of milder sedative effects, much of the findings come from anecdotal feedback from users who have tried THC as a sleep aid. 


The scores of anecdotal feedback are starting to be assessed in clinical settings. One study into the efficacy of cannabis oil found that 96% of patients surveyed considered the oil to be a suitable sleep treatment [1]. 


Studies into cannabis' efficacy on conditions such as multiple sclerosis have also regarded the sleep potential of various cannabinoids. 


A 2017 review of numerous cannabinoid studies and their effect on sleep concluded that cannabis can aid in sleep treatments, including helping people sleep faster and serving as a short-term treatment for sleep apnea [2].


Studies into Delta 8 remain limited. However, a recent study noted the minor cannabinoid was considered an adequate sleep aid for many of its participants [3]. 


At this time, Delta 8 may help with sleep. Still, a lack of clinical analysis makes it impossible to confirm any medical claims. Despite this lack of findings, numerous consumers have opted for smoked Delta 8 flower for near-immediate effects and Delta 8 edibles for mild, prolonged effects. 


Potential Benefits and Risks of Delta 8 Gummies

Scores of anecdotal feedback and growing clinical research into cannabis, specifically Delta 8, give us a growing understanding of the plant and this intriguing minor cannabinoid. While Delta 8 research is ongoing, we know that the compound mirrors Delta 9 THC effects more mildly. Reported beneficial effects include:

  • Improved sleep quality
  • Nausea relief
  • Hunger stimulation
  • Pain relief
  • Improved mental health 


While primarily considered advantageous, THC of any kind may produce adverse short- and long-term effects, such as:

  • Confusion
  • Anxiety
  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness
  • Changes in heart rate
  • Numbness
  • Low blood pressure
  • Hallucinations or psychosis
  • Vomiting
  • Addiction


The long-term effects of THC, especially concerning minor cannabinoids like Delta 8, continue to be largely unknown. With hope research will provide us with a more definitive answer in the coming years [4].


Is Delta 9 THC Better Than Delta 8 THC?

Choosing between Delta 8 and Delta 9 is a largely subjective choice. Your pick will likely vary on several factors, such as:

  • Natural or Semi-synthetic: While delta 8 products are often labeled as natural, the use of acids to convert hemp (CBD) into delta 8 often earns it a "semi-synthetic" distinction [5].
  • Effects: With similar effects, Delta 8 is considered the “light” version of THC
  • Abundance: Delta 9 is the most abundant compound in cannabis, while Delta 8 is legally derived in the US from the second most prevalent, CBD.
  • Legality and Access: Delta 8 is legal thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill. However, several states have rolled back access. Delta 9 remains federally illegal but is legal in most US states on a medical or recreational level.
  • Lab Research: Research into cannabis remains limited, but we are starting to understand more about THC as legalization lowers research barriers. While little clinical analysis into Delta 8 has been conducted, many in the public have gleaned much from Delta 9 studies. 


Who Should Take Delta 8 Gummies?

Any adult should take Delta 8 gummies, that is, if it works for them.

Sleep is no doubt an essential pillar to maintaining our health and wellness. Yet despite all the studies into the importance of sleep, countless people struggle with this complex challenge nightly. Many pharmaceutical, over-the-counter, and natural sleep aids have been introduced and utilized for eons. With numerous options coming up short for many people, additional options have been sought. 


THC has emerged as a possible option. But does Delta 8 or Delta 9 help with sleep?

While backed mainly by anecdotal findings, clinical research is showing some signs that cannabis may play a role in positively affecting our sleep quality. Still, additional research is needed to understand the actual potential and risks. 


However, with millions of Americans needing relief, many have turned to the plant rather than waiting for an official clinical analysis. Products like Delta 8 gummies have been considered a practical option for individuals seeking a milder result than traditional Delta 9 THC while also receiving prolonged, increased effects from an edible. Those seeking quicker relief and a shorter duration of effects may want to consider a smoked or vaped Delta 8 option.


In any case, each individual experiences cannabis differently and has their own unique needs and preferences. If you are struggling with sleep, it is strongly encouraged that you consult with a trusted medical professional to discuss if Delta 8, Delta 9, or any other sleep aid would be suitable for you.


Ultimately, the decision between the two cannabinoids comes down to personal preference and individual needs.

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