What Cannabis Strains Help You Sleep: Best Sleepy Strains  

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Added 08 December 2022

Sleep is essential for a healthy brain and body function, yet, many of us experience difficulty falling asleep. The reasons for this can range from minor issues to major ones — some find it difficult to sleep when they work till midnight, watch an exciting movie, or drink a rather strong cup of coffee at night.

On the other hand, many people experience sleeping difficulty due to their health conditions like chronic pain, injury, insomnia, anxiety, depression, etc.

Whether you're simply looking to get some good sleep or want to alleviate your chronic pain so you can sleep better, you are in luck. Your favorite herb might just be what you need to fall asleep faster and sleep better and longer. 

No, we are not talking about chamomile, we are talking about cannabis. You can try one of the many cannabis strains that can promote good sleep since it's one of the most effective sleep aids out there.

But how effective is it, what are the best sleepy strains, and how to get the best results? Read this article till the end to know all about using cannabis for sleep along with the best cannabis strains for sleep.

Does Cannabis Help You Sleep?

Does Cannabis Help You Sleep?

Cannabis is used as a sleep aid among many medical and recreational users, but does it actually help? According to experts, it does.

According to surveys, among the people who use cannabis for medical reasons, 85% claim that it improved their sleep along with providing other health benefits. And among recreational users, 70% of users report that they consume it to get a good sleep.

Additionally, cannabis also seems to improve sleep for users in other cases. People suffering from certain conditions, like chronic pain, PTSD, and multiple sclerosis find it easier to sleep if they have consumed cannabis — they can fall asleep faster, better, and for longer. 

Another study has also found that people suffering from restless legs syndrome can also find relief and a good night’s sleep with cannabis. 

Many users also use cannabis to self-treat anxiety, pain, and insomnia. While the effectiveness of cannabis is ambivalent, many users still report relief from their symptoms and better sleep thanks to cannabis. 

But there is a flip side to this coin — some studies also show that daily users of cannabis are likely to experience more sleep problems than those who use it occasionally. 

How Does Cannabis Work as a Sleep Aid?

How Does Cannabis Work as a Sleep Aid?

Experts believe that cannabis helps users get better sleep thanks to the cannabinoids and the way they bind to the cannabinoid receptors present in the brain. When you consume cannabis, the cannabinoids from the plant bind to the CB receptors, signaling the brain to produce more adenosine while suppressing the brain’s arousal system — this helps you feel sleepy or sedated.

Cannabis has two primary cannabinoids — tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) — which work in different ways. Typically, THC is more sedative in nature, but for some people, especially those taking it for the first time or in high doses, it can have a stimulating effect. 

On the other hand, CBD makes you more alert at lower doses and more sleepy at higher doses. 

While the effects of these two cannabinoids may also depend on the strain you use, dosage, and timing, cannabis can work as a sleep aid. It can help you get better sleep for sure.

Does Cannabis Affect Sleep Quality?

Does Cannabis Affect Sleep Quality?

Cannabis not only makes you fall asleep faster, but it can also alter your sleep architecture — how long you spend in different sleep stages during the night. 

According to research, if you are an occasional cannabis user, it may increase the time you spend in deep sleep, which helps you feel more refreshed upon waking up. 

On the other hand, THC tends to decrease the time spent in the rapid eye movement (REM) stage, where you dream, cement memories, and process emotions. The decreased REM can be a benefit for some, especially those suffering from PTSD, which is associated with nightmares. 

So, while it does affect your sleep quality, it is not always in a negative way. Most often, it can benefit you as long as you are not overdoing it. 

What Type of Cannabis is Best for Sleep?

What Type of Cannabis is Best for Sleep?

Not all cannabis buds are alike — some are sleepy strains whereas others may be giggly strains! Some even make you energetic. So, if you want to use cannabis as a sleep aid, you need to pick the right strain — otherwise, you’ll just end up watching Netflix the entire night.

Many consumers believe that Indica strains are better for calming you down and making you feel sleepy, whereas Sativa chemovars are more stimulating. But as recent studies have shown, the difference between Indica and Sativa strains is not so concrete and based on subjective experiences. Thus, you can’t pick a strain solely based on whether it is Indica or Sativa. 

So, what can you do? You narrow down your search and look for specific strains that other people have found to be helpful and try them for yourself. Here are some of the best cannabis strains for sleep.

1. Hindu Kush

Hindu Kush is a potent Indica strain, originating from the Hindu Kush mountain range between Afghanistan and Pakistan. And its origins are what makes this strain so potent — in the hilly, cold conditions, the plant evolved to be covered in crystals — more cannabinoids for you!

With a THC level of 15% to 32%, this strain offers a sweet, earthy aroma thanks to the terpenes caryophyllene, myrcene, limonene, and humulene. And it evokes a calm, sedative high that is bound to help you sleep faster and better.

As this is a potent strain, especially for flowers with high THC content, this is only recommended for moderate to experienced users. 

2. Northern Lights

Another legendary cannabis strain, Northern Lights, is also quite popular among users who use cannabis to sleep better. This strain has a high THC content of around 18%, making it a potent sedative strain. 

This strain contains pinene and myrcene, which not only give it a sweet and spicy aroma with a slightly earthy flavor but also gives you a relaxing yet euphoric high. So, if you want to sleep better, Northern Lights should definitely be on your radar.

Like the Hindu Kush, this strain is also quite potent and only recommended for experienced users. Even if you are an experienced user, a few puffs are all you need before you call it a day.

3. Granddaddy Purple

Grandaddy Purple is actually purple in color, but more importantly, it is a terrific sedating strain that not only relaxes your mind but also your muscles. But this is also one of the most potent Indica strains out there, so expect THC levels to be around 25% to 32%.

Thanks to the high THC percentage and terpenes like myrcene, this strain will keep you locked to the couch as you fall asleep. 

Again, newbies are warned — Granddaddy Purple is an excellent sleep aid strain, but it is potent and only recommended for experienced users with high THC tolerance. If you are new, you should keep this strain for later once you build up some tolerance.

4. Purple Kush

Since Purple Kush is a cross between the Hindu Kush and Afghani Kush, it is bound to carry the sedative benefits of the former, making it a great alternative to the Hindu Kush. 

Considered one of the best cannabis strains for sleep, Purple Kush is popular for its unique, sweet flavor of grapes and berries with a THC content of around 22%. So, this is a moderately strong strain that can help you sleep better while also soothing your pains and aches. 

This strain is recommended for you if you suffer from chronic pain or inflammation, which hamper your sleep. One joint will take all your pain away, metaphorically speaking.

5. Girl Scout Cookies

For many cannabis users, Girl Scout Cookies is the go-to cannabis strain for various reasons. And if you want cannabis for sleep, this could be the choice for you, too. 

This strain is Indica-dominant with a THC content of 25% to 28%, with terpenes like caryophyllene. With just a few puffs, this strain will keep you glued to the couch (or the bed), making you fall asleep faster.

In fact, many users claim this strain has helped them combat insomnia, so that’s another reason to use this strain for sleep.

Another way this strain might surprise you is its flavor profile. Within the dark chocolate finish of OG Kush-dominant terpenes lies a sweet undertone.

6. Mochi

Mochi is the underdog when it comes to sleep-aid cannabis strains. Named after a Japanese dessert, this strain is a cross between Girl Scout Cookies and Sunset Sherbet, giving it a sweet aroma with a touch of herbal undernotes. 

Mochi’s large, colorful flowers are an amalgamation of green and purple tones due to myrcene and pinene terpenes, giving you a slow yet progressive high that peaks with a head rush and flushing cheeks. This strain will sedate you. 

While many cannabis users may have never heard of this strain, it is quite popular among users suffering from anxiety or sleep disorders thanks to its sedating high.


ACDC is a Sativa-dominant hybrid that contains high levels of CBD and relatively low levels of THC. This strain contains up to 20% CBD and 6% THC, which ensures a mild high that is just enough to relax your mind and help you fall asleep faster. 

Plus, thanks to the low THC and high CBD content, this strain is the perfect starting point for beginners. And apart from its sedative effects, this strain also has some pain-relieving benefits — a win-win situation. 

Its aroma is sweet, earthy, and skunky, with a slight hint of fruit, and when you take a puff, be prepared to detect some undernotes of lemongrass and cherries, too. 

8. Blue Dream

Blue Dream is a Sativa-dominant strain that is excellent if you want a strain that relaxes your mind, soothes your anxiety, and helps you fall asleep faster without all the brain chatter. 

Blue Dream is a cross between Blueberry and Haze, containing around 25% THC and delicious flavors of sugar and blueberries. With its colorful looks and sweet flavor, this strain gives you a cerebral rush that quickly turns into a calm, dreamy high.  

9. God’s Gift

Cannabis is a gift to mankind, but this particular strain is the almighty's gift to those experiencing trouble falling asleep. God's Gift is a blend of Grandaddy Purple and OG Kush, making it a potent strain.

Many users claim that this dreamy strain makes them fall asleep like a baby and helps them sleep longer without any effort. 

With a THC content of 18% to 25%, this strain invokes a fast yet relaxed high that will clear your mind up and lock you to the couch. Also, you may experience some munchies, so be prepared and avoid eating sugar as it can keep you awake.

10. GG4

Originally known as Gorilla Glue, but changed to GG4 due to a copyright infringement, this is another one of the best cannabis strains for sleep that is known for being ultra-relaxing. GG4 contains three dominant terpenes: caryophyllene, myrcene, and limonene, which gives this a spicy, herbal, and citrusy flavor profile. 

Along with the flavor profile, this strain contains around 25% THC, but you may even find some buds with up to 32% THC content, which gives you a euphoric and relaxing high that will get you to sleep faster than you would expect.

11. Wedding Cake

Wedding Cake, also known as Triangle Mints #23, is a potent hybrid strain with a sweet, earthy flavor profile due to the terpenes caryophyllene, myrcene, and humulene. And with a THC content of up to 25%, this strain acts as a neuromuscular regulator — it can help you deal with anxious thoughts and depression while reducing symptoms related to fibromyalgia and muscular sclerosis. 

The result? Whether you want to clear your mind or find some pain relief, this strain can help you by relaxing your body and mind, so you can fall asleep a lot faster. 

Tips to Use Cannabis for Sleep

Tips to Use Cannabis for Sleep

But using cannabis for sleep isn’t as simple as smoking a joint — you need to take some more steps to get the right results. Otherwise, you might end up with munchies or an energetic high, which may defeat the purpose of falling asleep. 

So, to help you better, here are a few tips to help you use cannabis to sleep more efficiently.

1. Use the Right Consumption Method

There are many ways to consume cannabis — you can eat it, smoke it, or vaporize it. And each of these ways has different benefits (and downsides). 

This is because your mode of consumption affects the bioavailability of THC to your CB receptors. For example, when you smoke cannabis, THC directly enters your system, but when you eat cannabis as edibles, a significant amount of THC is lost during the digestive process. 

When you smoke cannabis, nearly 56% of THC gets transferred into your system, but the same for edibles is 4% to 20% for a typical user. 

In most cases, smoking cannabis is the best method of consumption as it ensures a quick onset of high within 15 minutes, but if you prefer not to smoke cannabis, you can choose any other method. 

In that case, you can consume cannabis via edibles, but you would need to eat it an hour before bedtime. Edibles take longer to kick in. And despite having low bioavailability of THC, edibles tend to hit a lot harder than smoked cannabis.

2. Consume Cannabis at the Right Time

Speaking of timing, you need to choose the right time to consume cannabis, whether you are smoking it or eating it. 

When you smoke cannabis, you will feel the effects almost instantly, and the high generally peak about 10 minutes later. On the other hand, edibles take up to an hour to show effects, and the high builds up gradually. 

Therefore, you need to consume cannabis at the right time, so the high coincides with your bedtime. Otherwise, you may either not feel sleepy at the right time or feel sleepy while you are still finishing up your before-bedtime chores. 

3. Start with a Low Dose

When consuming cannabis, especially a strain with high THC content, it is recommended to start with a low dose and build your way up to a stronger dose in the following sessions. This is because consuming too much THC can be overwhelming if your body is not accustomed to it.

Plus, consuming too much THC in one go is a recipe for a bad trip, where you might feel nausea, dizziness, dry mouth, confusion, anxiety, paranoia, etc. To avoid this, you must start with a low dose and see how your body reacts to it before moving on to stronger doses.

4. Choose Between CBD and THC as per Your Preferences

Some strains contain a lot of CBD while others only contain THC — both affect your sleep in different ways. 

For most users, THC works best to fall asleep faster because THC inherently is more sedative in nature, whereas CBD tends to promote more alertness.

However, a study conducted on 72 adults suffering from poor sleep and anxiety found that ⅔ participants found CBD to be helpful as a sleep aid, but others did not. So, CBD’s role is somewhat of a grey area when it comes to promoting sleep.

If you don’t want to get high to fall asleep, you can try using a CBD-dominant strain with little to no THC content. That might work for you and help you fall asleep better. 

5. Use Natural Remedies to Maximize Cannabis’ Effects

Cannabis is great to make you fall asleep, but if you want to further improve the effects, you can pair it with other natural sleep aids. For example, hops, lavender, and chamomile contain some terpenes that are also found in cannabis but in a much higher concentration.

Using such sleep aids with cannabis can improve the effects and help you fall asleep faster. Your best bet is to pair your joint with a cup of lavender tea or bubble bath. 

6. Try Using Cannabis Occasionally

As mentioned earlier, long-term use of cannabis can reduce its effects and even make your sleep reliant on cannabis. This can worsen your sleep if you ever stop consuming cannabis. So, it is recommended that you only consume cannabis when it is necessary for falling asleep, otherwise, you should rely on other methods to fall asleep, which are discussed in the following section.

7. Maintain a Healthy Sleep Hygiene

Whether you use cannabis or not, you should still maintain a good schedule that will improve your sleep. Here are some things you can try:

  • When you wake up, expose yourself to natural light first — this will reset your body clock and make you feel sleepy around nighttime.
  • Avoid harsh light before bedtime, especially from screens — such lights suppress your melatonin levels, which is responsible for priming your body for sleep. Ideally, you want to avoid harsh light, especially blue, and screen light 90 minutes before bedtime. 
  • As your bedtime approaches, make your bedroom cooler, darker, and quieter. The best temperature for falling asleep is around 60°F to 65°F (15.556°C to 18°C).
  • Consider using blackout curtains, earplugs, and eye masks while sleeping.
  • Cut off large meals, sugar, exercise, and caffeine during the night as they can keep you awake for longer.

Summary: What Cannabis Strains Help You Sleep: Best Sleepy Strains

If you want to sleep better and longer, look no further than cannabis. It is a terrific remedy, and when you choose the right strain as recommended above, you can expect to fall asleep quicker and stay asleep longer.

However, you must keep a couple of points in mind. Cannabis is effective at making you fall asleep as it is a potent sedative, you need not rely on it every night. This will build up your tolerance and may even cause cannabis reliance. 

Instead, consume cannabis only when necessary and take the right steps. Don’t take a dose too big, start with a smaller dose, and build your way up. At the same time, ensure your bedroom is comfortable and cool, your tummy is full of food, and you are well hydrated.

Follow the tips mentioned above and you will sleep like a baby, literally. 


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