According to a new survey, about half (49%) of Americans have lost sleep due to staying up past their bedtime to use marijuana. This is more common among younger generations, with more than half of millennials (58%) and those in Generation Z (56%) and 44% of Generation X respondents saying they have lost sleep due to marijuana use, as opposed to just 16% of baby boomers and 19% of those in the Silent Generation.
The survey, commissioned by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, also found that a quarter of Americans (25%) occasionally or regularly use marijuana to help them fall asleep or stay asleep – and that more parents with children under 18 living at home (30%) than non-parents (19%) turn to marijuana as a potential sleep aid.
“Some people think that using marijuana will help them sleep, but research has actually shown that marijuana use is associated with impaired sleep quality,” said Dr. Andrea Matsumura, a sleep medicine physician and spokesperson for the AASM. “Getting at least seven hours of healthy sleep each night is crucial to allow our bodies to recharge, repair and rejuvenate.”
One study found that any history of cannabis use was associated with an increased likelihood of reporting difficulty falling asleep, struggling to maintain sleep, experiencing non-restorative sleep and feeling daytime sleepiness.
Instead of relying on outside substances, the AASM recommends the following tips to improve your sleep routine and achieve healthy sleep:
Disconnect from Technology: Avoid checking social media, news updates or any other technology that may trigger worries before bedtime.
Create a Soothing Sleep Environment: Keep your bedroom lights dim and keep the room at a comfortable, cool temperature. Also, use a comfortable pillow, mattress and bedding that promotes restful sleep.
Establish a Relaxing Bedtime Routine: Try reading, taking a relaxing bath or meditating to unwind before going to bed.
The AASM recommends that adults sleep seven or more hours per night on a regular basis to promote optimal health. (Newswise/RNP)