When customers come to use looking for a natural, hemp-derived sleep aid, our first recommendation is either CBD or CBN.
But if you’re looking for something stronger, there’s another option: delta 8 THC.
Unlike delta 9 THC and THC-O, its psychoactive counterparts, delta 8 is able to deliver a high without causing potential adverse side effects like anxiety and paranoia — it provides just the type of relaxation you need in the evening.
In this article, we’ll explore how delta 8 can help you sleep better and how best to use it.
- Depending on why you struggle to fall asleep, yes, delta 8 may be able to help you sleep better. Anecdotal evidence suggests delta 8 is beneficial for pain and anxiety, and it has generally relaxing effects.
- Delta 8 works by interacting with the CB1 receptors in your body’s endocannabinoid system, which are responsible for regulating the pain and inflammatory responses, as well as controlling psychoactive effects.
- To promote restful sleep, a good starting dosage of delta 8 can be calculated using this formula: (0.05) x (your body weight in lbs.) = your nightly delta 8 dosage in mg.
What is Delta 8?
Delta 8 tetrahydrocannabinol (delta 8 THC or delta 8) is a psychoactive cannabinoid that naturally occurs in the hemp plant.
However, it only occurs in very small amounts, so it’s synthetically produced for use in products.
Is Delta 8 Legal?
Yes, hemp-derived delta 8 is legal in the U.S. on the federal level as of the 2018 Farm Bill.
However, it is illegal at the state level in various places: click here to check its legality in your state.
Can Delta 8 Help You Sleep Better?
There is scientific research and anecdotal evidence to suggest that yes, delta 8 can help you achieve better sleep. In addition to helping you relax, it can also address secondary problems that make falling asleep difficult.
Delta 8 May Help With Anxiety
Many of our customers people use delta 8 to address anxiety — specifically, anxiety in the evening that prevents them from getting good rest.
There’s evidence that delta 8 works. In multiple surveys, delta 8 users have reported that it works for anxiety — in some cases better than the prescriptions they were using.
Since anxiety is one of the main causes of sleep disturbances, and delta 8 may be able to address it, by extension, delta 8 also has benefits for sleep.
Delta 8 May Be Beneficial for Pain
Pain is another major roadblock to sleep, and it feeds into a vicious cycle: when you don’t sleep well, your pain is worse, and when your pain is worse, it’s harder to sleep well.
Delta 8 may be able to help with this vicious cycle by addressing physical discomfort. The surveys above, in addition to anxiety, also found that many people use delta 8 for chronic pain.
There are studies, as well, that indicate delta 8 has analgesic (pain-relieving) and anti-inflammatory effects.
One study of delta 8’s pain-relieving effects also noted that delta 8 “warrants clinical development as a novel anti-inflammatory and analgesic drug.”
All this to say delta 8 may be able to help with pain. And by extension, improve sleep quality.
Delta 8 Promotes General Relaxation
Although delta 8 has potential benefits for secondary issues that make sleeping difficult, its best benefit for sleep is its calming effects and sedative properties.
Delta 8 will get you high, and depending on how much you take, can cause feelings ranging from mild relaxation to deep drowsiness. This is a direct way delta 8 can help you fall asleep more quickly.
Delta 8 For Sleep: How It Works
Delta 8 works by interacting with your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), a receptor system responsible for regulating most vital bodily functions.
The ECS regulates sleep patterns, immune response, mood, pain response, and inflammation, among other things. Its ultimate function is to keep your body in a state of balance.
Normally, the ECS does its job well, but during times of bodily stress, it can become compromised. This is where introducing outside cannabinoids like delta 8 can help.
There are two main types of cannabinoid receptors in your ECS: CB1 and CB2.
Delta 8, like other forms of THC, predominantly acts on the CB1 receptors. CB1 receptors are primarily located in the central nervous system, and they have a hand in regulating pain and inflammation.
CB1 receptors also regulate the release of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.
By activating your CB1 receptors, delta 8 is thought to influence dopamine transmission, thereby producing a high effect, and influence your body’s pain and inflammatory responses.
Does Delta 8 Get You High?
Yes, delta 8 is psychoactive and will create a head high. However, this isn’t necessarily counterproductive to getting better rest.
A mild head high can help you relax before bed and get to sleep more quickly. An extreme head high, while helping you fall asleep, can make you feel groggy when you wake up the next morning.
How to Use Delta 8 For Sleep: Products & Best Practices
Delta 8 has many benefits and can help you achieve better rest. But only if you use it correctly.
Here’s what you need to know about choosing — and using — delta 8 products.
Onset Time: About 1 hour
The most popular type of delta 8 edible is gummies, but you’ll also find candy, brownies, and other goods depending on where you shop. The advantage of using edibles for sleep is that dosing is very consistent — you get the same amount of delta 8 in each edible.
Onset Time: About 1 hour
Swallowable capsules, like edibles, offer a consistent way to dose delta 8 before bed. However, if you require a lower dose of delta 8, capsules may not be the best option — it can be hard to find capsules that only contain a small amount of delta 8 in each piece (you can’t exactly split them in half).
Vapes & Flower
Onset Time: 10-20 minutes
Smoking delta 8 flower or using a delta 8 vape provides optionality, as there are tons of different flower strains and vape juices to choose from.
Inhaling delta 8 is also very high-potency, since the cannabinoids go straight to your lungs instead of passing through the digestive system.
However, dosing inhaled products is difficult, since you can’t really measure how many milligrams of delta 8 you’re getting in each puff. Vapes and flowers can require a bit of trial and error.
Onset Time: 20-30 minutes
Oils (also called tinctures), like inhaled products, are also very potent since they’re absorbed under the tongue instead of digested.
Since oils come with a metered dropper, you can measure very precise doses — useful if you need a very specific amount of delta 8.
The one downside of oils is taste — the somewhat bitter flavor of hemp can take some getting used to.
Delta 8 For Sleep: Best Practices
With the right delta 8 product in hand, follow these tips to sleep better:
- Be careful with the dose — Taking too much delta 8, especially if you’re new to it, creates an overpowering high that’s miserable, rather than relaxing. As a result, start with a small amount and increase it based on how you feel (more on dosing in the next section).
- Get the timing right — Depending on the delivery method, a delta 8 high can last 3-8 hours. Because of this, take your dose 2-3 hours before you want to sleep so that when you go to bed, you feel the relaxing tail end of the effects, not the peak. Taking delta 8 too close to bedtime makes falling asleep difficult.
- Don’t use it every night — If you can, avoid taking delta 8 every night. Instead, just use it on the nights when you feel like you need it, due to anxiety, pain, or other reasons. This will help you avoid building a tolerance for it or becoming dependent on it for sleep.
- Be careful when supplementing prescriptions — If you’re using delta 8 to supplement sleep prescriptions, do so carefully and under the guidance of your doctor. Only substitute small amounts at first, and be sure delta 8 won’t cause contraindications with the medicines you’re taking.
Delta 8 Dosage For Sleep
Now that you know which delta 8 product to use and how to use it, it’s time to figure out how much you should take.
Generally, we recommend starting with a low-strength dosage of delta 8 for sleep. You can calculate it using this formula:
(0.05) x (your body weight in lbs.) = your starting evening dose of delta 8 in mg.
For example, if you weigh 150 lbs, you’d start with 7-8mg of delta 8 each night.
Using a formula (versus following a broad suggestion) ensures that your dosage is tailored to your body and your needs.
Delta 8 vs. Delta 9 For Sleep
Delta 9 THC provides a high that is roughly twice as strong as delta 8. However, this isn’t necessarily better for sleep.
Some delta 9 users report that it causes anxiety and paranoia, and that delta 8 doesn’t create these effects. This could make delta 8 preferable for sleep.
Additionally, delta 8’s effects are more body-focused, while delta 9’s are more head-focused. So if you’re struggling to sleep due to physical discomfort, delta 8 may be the better option.
If you’re looking for a high, though, delta 9 is your best bet.
Delta 8 vs. CBD For Sleep
Delta 8 and CBD (cannabidiol) both have upsides and downsides for sleep support.
CBD’s benefit is that it is mentally and physically relaxing, and it won’t create a dependency as delta 8 might.
However, CBD won’t get you high and it isn’t as powerful as delta 8, so it may not be as effective for anxiety or pain.
Delta 8 vs. Prescriptions for Sleep
Delta 8 isn’t a replacement for sleep prescriptions, but it can be used to reduce the amount you need to take.
Based on anecdotal evidence, delta 8 can perform similarly to prescriptions without causing nearly as many negative effects.
Lunesta, for example, is a common sleep prescription. It has a laundry list of nasty side effects. The most common are:
- Dry mouth
- Bitter or metallic taste in the mouth
- Difficulty waking up in the morning
- Cold-like symptoms, such as runny nose or cough
- Grogginess throughout the next day
But it can also cause:
- Thoughts or behavior such as aggression, confusion, hallucinations, severe depression, or suicidal thoughts
- Memory loss
- Somnambulism (sleepwalking)
By contrast, delta 8’s most common side effects are much less severe:
- Red eyes
- Dry mouth
- Trouble with coordination
- Slowed reaction times
- Rapid heart rate
Delta 8 may also cause anxiety or memory loss if used consistently in very large amounts, but the amount you’ll need for therapeutic purposes isn’t likely to cause these problems.
In terms of adverse effects, then, delta 8 is much better than many prescription sleep medications. However, it shouldn’t be used wholesale as a replacement — substitution should be done gradually and under the guidance of a doctor.
Delta 8 Strains for Sleep: Indica or Sativa?
If you’ve chosen to use delta 8 flower for sleep, you may be wondering which type of strain to use: Indica, sativa, or hybrid?
Indica strains tend to be more relaxing and calming and act more on the body, while sativa strains have euphoric, uplifting effects on the mind. Hybrid strains combine the genetics of indica and sativa strains to produce effects that are somewhere in the middle.
Generally, we recommend going with indica strains for sleep. With a relaxing profile, they’re perfect for promoting good quality rest.
However, no matter which type of strain you choose, here are some ideas (these are mainly known as marijuana strains, however, many CBD shops and dispensaries carry delta 8 and delta 9 versions):
- Granddaddy Purple — This strain delivers a fusion of euphoria and physical relaxation, with couch-locking body effects and dreamy mental effects. Granddaddy Purple is commonly used for pain, stress, and insomnia.
- Bubba Kush — This strain delivers deep mental and physical relaxation, all with sweet flavors of chocolate and coffee. Bubba Kush is commonly used for stress and anxiety.
- White Buffalo — This strain provides powerful uplifting, energizing, and euphoric effects and has a sweet and sour flavor. White Buffalo is a great strain for daytime use though, be cautioned, it can be hard to find in many dispensaries.
- Sour Diesel — This strain delivers uplifting, dreamy effects with a pungent flavor profile. Per its name, it smells like diesel. It’s common among therapeutic users for depression, pain, and stress.
- OG Kush — The “OG” in OG Kush stands for “Original Gangster,” but it’s not certain whether it’s been named this because of its authenticity or powerful effects. Either way, OG Kush delivers a mixed heady and body effect that’s perfect for stress, and it’s not so overwhelming that it can’t be used in the evening. OG Kush features a lemon pine flavor profile.
- Wedding Cake — This strain provides euphoria and relaxation for both the body and mind. Featuring a rich, tangy flavor with notes of pepper, Wedding Cake is a common choice among therapeutic users for pain and anxiety. However, it’s important to go easy on this strain, as it has a high THC content.
Where to Buy Delta 8 For Sleep
If you’re ready to try delta 8 for sleep, it’s time to start looking for products.
The question is, where?
You can visit your local CBD shop or dispensary, but they might not have the products you want. Or, you could go to a gas station, which we don’t recommend. Gas stations are breeding grounds for ineffective and dangerous products.
In most cases, the best place to shop for delta 8 is online — you’ll have a better selection, and you can do thorough research on each product. But which company should you choose?
We’re a bit biased, but we think you should choose us.
We carry a wide selection of 3rd-party lab-tested, American-made delta 8 edibles and oils online.
Thousands of people have used our products over the past four years to achieve a better quality of life — and our products are backed by hundreds of reviews.
And we’re not just an online store — we have six brick-and-mortar locations in the Houston, Texas area. This means we get in-person feedback every day from customers that we use to make our products more effective.
In short, we offer what many online CBD and THC companies can’t: high-quality products based on real-time feedback from thousands of people each month!
If you’re interested, click here to shop our delta 8 collection. (Or, use the button below).
No more weak, ineffective, and potentially dangerous products. It's time for high-strength, American-made delta-8 THC products that have been 3rd-party lab tested.
Conclusion: Delta 8 For Sleep
Lots of people are using delta 8 for sleep support, often to substitute or even fully replace their prescription medications.
Delta 8 cannabinoid provides a stronger alternative to CBD or CBN for sleep, while not being as powerful as delta 9 or THC-O.
It may be the right fit for you — just remember to start low and slow and not be afraid of experimenting with different doses and products until you find what works for you.
Delta 8 For Sleep: FAQs
Here are some questions customers commonly ask us about using delta 8 for sleep.
Is delta 8 or delta 9 better for sleep?
Some people find delta 8 is more effective than delta 9 for sleep support and insomnia because it provides physical and mental relaxation without the side effects like anxiety or paranoia.
Is delta 8 or CBD better for sleep?
Since delta 8 provides a mild head high and CBD does not, some people find it’s better than CBD for sleep support. However, it may cause dependency if used too often. This is not a risk with CBD.
Which delta 8 is best for sleep?
There is no best delta 8 product for sleep, however, edibles, oils, and capsules offer consistent, precise dosing, which can be beneficial if you’re using delta 8 therapeutically.
Is delta 8 indica or sativa better for sleep?
Generally, indica delta 8 strains are better for sleep, as they promote mental and physical relaxation and calming. Indica delta 8 can address both mental and physical discomfort, both of which commonly contribute to sleep issues.
Is there delta 8 for sleep?
Yes, there are delta 8 products for sleep. Straight delta 8 can promote mental and physical relaxation, and delta 8 and CBN combined can provide deeply calming, slightly drowsy effects that are ideal for sleep support.
Does delta 8 make you groggy the next day?
In most cases, no, delta 8 will not make you feel groggy the next day after, as prescriptions or melatonin do. However, delta 8 can cause morning grogginess if you take too much of it before bed.