UPenn Study: Pot Might Be What’s Screwing Up Your Sleep

And here we thought it was the cocaine keeping us awake.

On Wednesday afternoon at the SLEEP 2014 conference in Minneapolis, University of Pennsylvania psychiatrist and sleep specialist Dr. Michael Grandner presented findings from his recent study that showed that marijuana use could lead to trouble sleeping.

According to the study, which included respondents between the ages of 20 and 59, any history of marijuana use at all was associated with sleep-related problems including having trouble falling or staying asleep and feeling sleepy during the day.

But the strongest correlation was found in people who started using the drug before age 15. Those people were twice as likely to have severe sleep problems, with the researchers defining “severe” cases as those reporting sleep difficulties at least 15 days out of the month.

“As more people have access, it will be important to understand the implications of marijuana use on public health, as its impact on sleep in the ‘real world’ is not well known,” Grandner said in a statement released by Penn.

“The most surprising finding,” added fellow Penn researcher Jilesh Chheda, “was that there was a strong relationship with age of first use, no matter how often people were currently using marijuana. People who started using early were more likely to have sleep problems as an adult… While prior research has shown that many people report using marijuana to relax and possibly as a sleep aid, this latest study found that current and past marijuana users are more likely to experience sleep problems.”

And there you have it.