cannabis is being used by more seniors to sleep

Cannabis Is Being Used By More Seniors To Sleep

Cannabis As a Sleep Aide?

My dad spent the last two years of his life in a skilled nursing facility. He’d complain about the nightly noise—the screams, shrieks and cries of dementia patients—that made sleeping difficult. My dad liked biscuits. I like cannabis.

One day I made hashish biscuits and delivered them to my dad around dinner time. I returned the next day and asked my dad how he slept.

“I slept goooooooood,” he said.

I told my dad I’d dosed him. An old Mexican who sold opium to village elders as a boy, he knew the curative powers as well as the political and cultural propaganda surrounding marijuana. But he asked me not to make these biscuits again, fearing he’d be kicked out of the home if the administration found out. He returned to sleepless nights.

A Real Alternative for Seniors

Insomnia is a nagging affliction for many people who suffer conditions such as anxiety, chronic pain, PTSD, depression and restless leg syndrome. Cannabis, according to doctors, nurses and caregivers who work with seniors, is an effective treatment for elderly people and others who suffer from insomnia.

In this week’s episode of “Eyes Wide Open,” the Zana/Leafly podcast about cannabis and insomnia, hosts Jeremy Kossen and Seth Lorinczi explore many issues specific to seniors and insomnia. You can hear the full episode here:

As part of our focus on seniors and insomnia this week, we sought out stories and perspectives from four people in the San Francisco Bay Area—a dispensary owner, a nurse, a doctor and a retired political aide—who use and endorse cannabis to treat insomnia.

Seniors Rarely Sleep Through the Night

Sue Taylor is a former Catholic school principal turned expert on senior citizens and cannabis. Licensed by the state of California to educate doctors and nurses on the use of cannabis as medicine, she also serves as a county commissioner on aging. Taylor is working to open a cannabis dispensary in Berkeley this summer aimed at specifically serving senior citizens.

In a recent interview with Leafly, Taylor said insomnia is a common ailment among the seniors she meets at the educational events she conducts at senior communities and care facilities.

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