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How to Talk to Your Doctor About Medical Marijuana for Insomnia

Restless nights, foggy mornings, and irritable afternoons: for some, this is a distant nightmare. For you, it may be a painful reality.

If you’re currently suffering from insomnia, you’re not alone. About 10% of adults worldwide qualify for an insomnia diagnosis, and about a third of the population experiences insomnia symptoms.

Whether you’re just looking into treatments or you’ve tried other treatments with little success, medical marijuana may hold the key to blissful sleep. But how can you bring up cannabis for insomnia with your doctor?

Your healthcare provider won’t always be up to date on the latest medical marijuana research. The key to productive conversations on the topic is having a strong understanding of both your insomnia symptoms and how medical marijuana can alleviate them. Keep reading to learn more.

Insomnia: An All-Consuming Sleep Disorder

Most people know that insomnia causes trouble sleeping, but they may not realize how adversely it can affect every other aspect of your life as well.

Nightly insomnia symptoms can include any combination of the following:

  • Trouble falling asleep
  • Sleep disturbances during the night make it difficult to fall back asleep
  • Waking too early and being unable to fall asleep

These symptoms cause sleep deprivation, which can impact your daily functioning with:

  • Slowed reactions and mental processing
  • Fogginess, tiredness, and mood swings
  • Memory issues and confusion

Insomnia is an incredibly common condition. It can be triggered by life changes, stress, or mental health conditions, or it can develop on its own. Despite insomnia’s prevalence, many patients go untreated or are unsatisfied by their current treatment plans. When Insomnia Becomes a Real Issue

There are two types of insomnia: acute and chronic. While both conditions deserve to be treated effectively, it’s especially important for people with lasting symptoms to seek medical attention.

A concerning symptom of insomnia is microsleep, which is when you fall asleep during the day for short periods of time. This can be particularly dangerous when driving or operating machinery.

You don’t have to suffer in silence. If you’re experiencing symptoms related to insomnia, it’s best to speak to your doctor so you can learn more and formulate a plan of action.

Current Treatments for Insomnia

After getting a diagnosis from a doctor, the next step to relief is receiving treatment. Currently, the most popular treatments for insomnia include:

  • Prescription sleep medications
  • Practicing good sleep hygiene (e.g., limiting screen time before bed)Brunette woman with mental problem visiting therapist
  • Therapy

While sleep medications can help with insomnia, they have many undesirable side effects that are worth considering, like:

  • Dizziness and headaches
  • Nausea
  • Tiredness that persists throughout the day
  • Possible dependence on medication for sleep

If you aren’t satisfied with the results of prescription medication, medical marijuana may be the best treatment for you. It’s currently helping many people find relief from insomnia and take back control of their waking lives—without harmful side effects or risk of dependence.

The Unique Benefits of Medical Marijuana for Insomnia Treatment

Can weed help with insomnia? For many patients, the answer is a resounding yes.

While traditional insomnia medications typically treat symptoms, they often fall short, especially due to their unwanted side effects. Medical marijuana is an effective solution that fosters holistic healing.

Marijuana can ease insomnia on two fronts: it will make you drowsy, and it will soothe feelings of stress and anxiety. Many people experience insomnia due to racing thoughts, so this dual relief is particularly advantageous.

Marijuana products are also diverse and can offer different benefits depending on product type, cannabinoid content, and dosage. Two main cannabinoids to consider in a conversation about cannabis and insomnia are:

  • Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – THC is the psychoactive compound in marijuana. It can produce feelings of euphoria, ease pain, and cause drowsiness, which can aid in falling asleep.
  • Cannabidiol (CBD) – CBD offers calming effects without the “high” that comes from THC. While it doesn’t always make you drowsy (every patient responds differently to CBD and cannabis as a whole), CBD can quiet the mind and soothe the body to promote a more relaxed state.

Your doctor can help you decide if marijuana is right for you and offer specific suggestions for what to take, how much to consume, and how frequently to dose. But first, you’ll need to bring up the topic at your next appointment.

The Keys to a Productive Conversation about Marijuana with Your Doctor

Even though we know how effective marijuana can be for treating insomnia, there’s still a lingering stigma surrounding its use. Unfortunately, many doctors are not well-versed in the benefits of medical marijuana for treating insomnia.

To make sure your voice is heard at your next appointment, follow these tips:

  • Come prepared – Before speaking to your doctor, it can be helpful to brush up on the topics at hand. It’ll make you feel more confident and in control of the conversation. Use your own knowledge about your insomnia symptoms as well as what you know about the benefits of marijuana to make your case.
  • Explain your needs – If you’re currently using other treatments or medications that aren’t doing the job, explain this to your doctor using specific details. Then, bring up medical marijuana and how you believe it could be a better fit for you.
  • Use examples – If you know someone who’s had a positive experience with medical marijuana for treating insomnia, you can use their story to start off the conversation in a productive way. If you don’t know anyone personally, many patients talk candidly about their medical marijuana experiences online. Just look at the testimonials on TeleLeaf’s website to see how many people have found relief through medical marijuana.

You know yourself better than anyone—if you believe medical marijuana is worth trying to treat your symptoms, it’s important to speak up so you can start your healing journey.

How to Get a Medical Marijuana Recommendation for Insomnia

Can I get a medical card for insomnia? The answer depends on your state, but your providers also play a key role.

Conversations with your doctor are usually the first step in the process of obtaining a medical marijuana recommendation. However, depending on your state’s laws, your primary care provider may not be authorized to recommend medical cannabis.

Instead, they can refer you to another doctor, or you can find your own—and TeleLeaf can help.

TeleLeaf is an online service that makes it easy to find and connect with compassionate doctors who are certified to give medical marijuana recommendations. They understand your pain and will help you find the relief you’ve been searching for.

The process is simple:

  1. Make a virtual appointment.
  2. Meet with your doctor and explain your symptoms.
  3. If medical cannabis is right for you, get approved for a recommendation.

It’s important to note that medical marijuana laws vary by state, and some states are more restrictive than others. Your TeleLeaf doctor can help you become more familiar with your state’s rules and how you can obtain medical marijuana for insomnia.

And your relationship with your doctor doesn’t end after you’ve obtained your medical marijuana card. They can also help you find dispensaries near you and create a treatment plan that includes the best types and dosages of marijuana to take.

TeleLeaf Is Here to Help You Take Back Your Life

If insomnia is taking over your sleeping and waking life, it’s time to draw a line—and you don’t have to face this battle alone. It’s TeleLeaf’s mission to make medical marijuana recommendations more accessible to those who need them most.

You can learn more about the benefits of medical marijuana on our blog, or by reaching out to us directly. Plus, chatting with our providers is simple: all appointments are held virtually for your comfort and convenience.

Don’t wait—make an appointment with one of our licensed doctors and get approved for a medical marijuana recommendation the same day.


Cleveland Clinic. Insomnia.

Mayo Clinic. Prescription sleeping pills: What’s right for you?

Verywell Health. What Are Cannabinoids?

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