Does marijuana affect dreams?

Published Mar 7, 2019 03:10 p.m. ET

Marijuana is known for its mind-altering qualities. Any of us that uses marijuana knows or should know that. I think it is safe to say that most of us partake while awake. So, the mind-altering qualities are experienced while we are awake.

What do you think is happening with those mind-altering effects while we are sleeping? I'm talking about taking that last joint before bed. Maybe it'sfor aid for sleep or just purely recreational but how mind-altering is it when you are sleeping and furthermore is it affecting your dreams?

Cannabis withdrawal dreams

Has this happened to you when consuming certain strains of marijuana? Will I have no trouble at heading off to la la land and relatively quickly as well? I do not remember if I have had dreams, nonetheless “marijuana dreams”. It certainly is not memorable if I did. On the odd occasion when I have not partaken for a few days, I notice that dreams and sometimes vivid ones are now in my dream space, could these be one of those so-called cannabis dreams? Maybe.  

Does weed make you stop dreaming?

The cycle of sleep plays an important part in our dreaming. Sleep is divided into two main parts. REM and non-REM sleep (rapid eye movement). Dreaming will occur when you are in REM sleep. However, if you are consuming marijuana, you will not be experiencing this stage of sleep.


We commonly use Indica strain of marijuana to help us with sleep issues. This type of strain has sedative effects, which can assist in sending us off to sleep. The problem occurs when the cannabinoids in the marijuana interact with the various receptors in the endocannabinoid system resulting in the lack of any dreams.

So perhaps your dreams are from the withdrawalof cannabis. There are certain signs that present themselves and indicate REM rebound effect. This presents with an increase in REM and sometimes can lead to vivid and disturbing dreams.

The main thing to know is that REM sleep is important it is a time for the brain to have increased activity and is a time to promote learning. REM sleep occurs after 90 minutes of sleep and usually lasts for 10 minutes. In the last phase of REM of which you may have had a few, the cycle could be increased to 90 minutes.

On another health issue, marijuana is well known for use is PTSD. This mental health condition can be assisted with the use of marijuana. There is also instant relief for those suffering from anxiety associated issues from PTSD, which may induce vivid horrible dreams or nightmares. Picking the correct strain will be paramount in enabling you to have a well-rested night sleep. You will not wake up in a cold sweat from the dreams. Northern Lights is a good Indica strain that will relax your muscles, provide relief from pain and block those dreams from interrupting your sleep.

So yes, I think that marijuana does affect dreams both positively for medical reasons by diminishing the REM part of the sleeping pattern and negatively perhaps if abused. The body needs time to rest and recuperate; dreamspace is when this takes place.



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