Nothing quells the demons of insomnia quite like a quick rip of indica, but what are the exact benefits of some pre-sleep smoking? Interestingly enough, as found in a recent Mic report, there is no consensus among noted experts other than the obvious: weed definitely helps you pass out.
However, as for the actual quality and length of sleep one may experience when stoned, that’s entirely up to you. According to Dr. Perry Solomon, a chief medical officer at HelloMD, the third stage of the sleep cycle—deep sleep—is where the body appears to repair itself from the previous day’s damage. Describing this stage to Mic's Max Plenke as "the most sensitive" to weed, Solomon argues that consumption of said weed "seems to make that stage longer," meaning you feel like you get a "more restful sleep."
Another expert, Dr. Kevin Hill of the Substance Abuse Consultation Service, argues that any singular improved portion of the sleep cycle likely comes at a cost. "You might optimize stages prior to REM, but if you cut into REM, you’re hampering your efforts," Dr. Hill says, adding that humans "need it all" in terms of sleep.
Though some caution against one’s reliance on weed as a sleep inducer due to an ironic risk of insomnia should one choose to stop enjoying weed, Mic notes that the science behind this and other aspects of marijuana research remains relatively inconclusive due to its baffling classification as a Schedule 1 drug. For those not in the know regarding what the hell a Schedule 1 anything is, this means that weed is still considered by the Drug Enforcement Administration to be an absolute equal to actual drugs like heroin.
While we wait for the proverbial Powers That Be to wake up and reschedule marijuana, your options for a potentially weed-aided sleep are apparently as follows: indica and self-disciplined research. Sweet dreams indeed.