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What Are Sleeping Pills?
“Sleeping pills” is a term that denotes both prescription and over the counter medications that help people with sleeping disorders like insomnia to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. These medicines belong to the hypnotic or sedative category of drugs because they extend sleep. These pills help calm brain activity to make the person fall asleep.
Benzodiazepines or benzodiazepine receptor agonists class of drugs are among the most prescribed sleep medications. If you plan on using sleeping pills for your insomnia, you should first consult with a healthcare provider because these medications can have severe side effects if not used correctly or abused.
What Can Cause Sleeping Problems?
An average adult requires between 6 and 8 hours of sleep every night. Often, a person might have problems getting an adequate amount of sleep. Usually, the issues that might cause a person to have difficulty in sleeping includes:
- Physical and meant health problems
- Medications that they might use to treat these medical problems. Especially drugs that help control high blood pressure, cold, allergies, asthma, and medicines like corticosteroids
- Excess use of caffeine, especially in the late evening
- Noisey and bright sleeping environment
- Exercising, eating, or drinking right before bedtime
- Working late or doing unusual shifts
- Sleeping non-traditional hours
- Problems related to sleep, such as obstructive sleep apnea, cause breathing to stop during sleep, restless legs syndrome – an uncomfortable or creeping sensation in the legs experienced at night and usually relieved by moving or stretching the legs.
These problems can start small, only causing sleeping issues occasionally. If you ignore them, they can become severe over time and result in sleeping disorders or insomnia.
Insomnia is among the most common sleep problems. About 48% of the Americas report experiencing some symptoms of insomnia, and more than twenty-two percent of people say they have insomnia symptoms every night or almost every night. Women are 1.3 times more likely to experience this condition than men. Insomnia is usually more common in people over the age of 65 than younger people.
Sleeping difficulties or insomnia can cause long-lasting health and lifestyle problems, such as heart disease and depression. If it is hard for you to fall asleep or stay asleep, try consulting a doctor.
What Are Side Effects Of Sleeping Pills?
Sleeping pills can have the following side effects. Try consulting your doctor about the possible adverse effects of the specific medicine you want to use before starting the treatment.
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Chronic drowsiness
- Severe allergic reaction
- Decline in performance
- Daytime memory problems
- Dry mouth
- Irregular heartbeat
- Weight gain
It’s important to note that all the sleeping pills available in the market are FDA approved, which means there is an insignificant chance of you getting the undesirable effects of these drugs. If you encounter any severe side effects of sleeping pills, stop using them, and talk to the healthcare provider.
Can I Become Allergic To Sleeping Pills?
While it is typical to use sleeping pills for sleep disorder problems, many people can suffer an allergic reaction from these medicines. The problem might lie with the ingredients used in making that particular sleeping tablet that causes an allergic reaction for you.
Substances like dyes, coatings, or binders can also contribute to activate your allergies. Check with a doctor or pharmacist to make sure that the medicine does not contain an ingredient that might end up causing an allergic reaction.
If you get an allergic reaction after taking a pill, you should avoid it. Using the tablet that can cause serious harm cannot be right for you, and might even prove fatal in some rare instances. Try reaching a hospital or call emergy service (911) if you a sleeping pill trigger your allergy.
When Can I Take A Sleeping Pill?
When all your attempts to achieve a good night’s sleep fails, prescription sleeping can be an option for you. But before you get started on consuming sleep tablets, try the following steps to ensure your safety for the adverse effects of these drugs.
Get A Medical Evaluation
Visit a doctor for thought medical exam before you start taking these pills. A doctor might be able to find the underlying cause of your condition and suggest the best medicine. Also, discuss an alternative treatment plan with them if you are using sleeping for more than two weeks and still not getting adequate sleep.
Follow The Mediation Guide
Carefully read the medication guide to understand when and how to take the sleeping pill. It can also inform you about the potential side effects of the drug. Don’t hesitate to ask your doctor or pharmacist about any doubt you might have regarding this medication.
Don’t Consume It Before You Are Ready To Sleep
Sleeping pills usually contain fast-acting formula, which means they start showing their effects as soon as you consume them. Try to avoid taking them before you are ready to go to bed, as it can be risky. The sleeping pill can make decrease your awareness of what you are doing, which can be dangerous. Complete all the work before and take the medication immediately before going to bed.
Only Use It When If You Have Ample Time To Rest
The effects of a sleeping pill can last for up-to 7-8 hours. Before you take medicine, make sure you have at least 8 hours to rest. If you wake up earlier, you can face the extreme drowsiness and inability to focus on the work.
Some sleeping tablets help prevent the middle of the night awakenings. These generally have shorter action span, so you can use them if you don’t have adequate time to rest.
Strictly Follow The Prescription
Doctors usually prescribe sleeping pills for short-term use only. If you find that the drug is not working as intended, don’t try to increase the dose without consulting with a medical professional. If the recommended dosage does not have the desired effects, ask the doctor to change the drug or prescribe an alternative treatment.
If you decide to stop using sleeping pills, let your doctor know. Some medicines can cause withdrawal symptoms if you abruptly stop consuming them. Make sure to follow your doctor’s advice to avoid getting the withdrawal effects of sleeping pills. You should also be aware of the short-term rebound insomnia that you might experience for a few days after quitting this medicine.
What Happens When I Take Sleeping Pills With Alcohol?
Doctors advise against mixing any drug with alcohol. If you take sleeping pills with alcohol, your mind will feel extreme sedation. Alcohol can increase the hypnotic effects of this drug, and it also enhances the side effects of sleeping pills. Using even a small amount of alcohol with these tablets can cause drowsiness, confusion, and might make you faint.
You can find different types of sleeping medications available in the market as of now, including:
- Non-benzodiazepine sedatives,
- Over the counter antihistamines, such as Benadry
Because each of these medicines belongs to different categories and classes of drugs, their side effects also vary drastically. One type of sleeping pill might cause radically different side effects than the other when mixed with alcohol.
Combining intoxicating substances like alcohol with certain sleeping pills can result in dangerously slowed breathing or unresponsiveness. Not only did it increases your risk of getting harmful effects but can also cause insomnia, completely negating the reason why you took the sleeping pill in the first place.
Using alcohol and sleeping pills together can also increase your chances of having memory loss, sleeping walking, or engaging in odd behaviors like driving and doing something and not having a memory of it later. It can also increase the risk of blackout periods and might have potentially fatal results for the user.
The mixture of sleeping pills and alcohol can also result in some physical side effects, including slowed heart rate, slow breathing, disorientation, lowered blood pressure, difficulty breathing, drowsiness, increased risk of overdose, and even death.
If you or someone you know gets addicted to alcohol and sleeping pills, keep in mind that help is available. Various programs out there are working to help people with addiction or a history of substance abuse to get better. If you decide to overcome your addiction to these substances, try doing it under a professional’s supervision. Both alcohol and sleeping pills can cause severe withdrawal symptoms if you are using them for a prolonged period.
Can I Depend On Sleeping Pills?
Sleeping pills are excellent to use if you cannot get the required amount of sleep due to traveling, stress, or any medical problem. These medications help you relax and help you get the rest that you need.
While these sleeping pills can work great for the occasional use, one should not get dependent on them. Studies found that sleeping pills over prolonged use become more of a problem than a solution to a problem. Medicines like benzodiazepine and benzodiazepine agonists can stop being useful as your body builds a tolerance to these drugs.
Building tolerance is one thing, but you might also develop a physical or mental dependency on these drugs if you use them over extended periods. People who get dependent on sleeping pills can find it anxious going to sleep without these pills. It may become difficult for these people to fall asleep without the aid of sleeping pills.
Studies also point out that long-term use of these medicines can interfere with sleep patterns and cause sleep quality to deteriorate over time. The best way you can avoid building a physical or psychological dependence on sleeping pills is to stick to your doctor’s guidelines and stop consuming them when recommended.
If you have chronic insomnia and sleeping pills cannot help you over short-periods, you may consider opting for some other treatment options. Ask the healthcare provider about cognitive behavioral therapy and lifestyle changes that you can make to combat chronic insomnia symptoms.
Different Types Of Sleeping Pills
You might be after a good night’s sleep, but your insomnia can get in the way. Sleeping pills can be the best option that you have to achieve your goal and get some rest. You can choose from plenty of options available in the market, including:
- Suvorexant – Belsomra
- Zolpidem – Ambien, Edluar, Intermezzo, Zolpimist
- Zolpidem extended-release – Ambien CR
- Zaleplon – Sonata
- Triazolam – Halcion
- Temazepam – Restoril
- Ramelteon – Rozerem
- Eszopiclone – Lunesta
- Trazodone – Desyrel
- Triazolam – Halcion
- Flurazepam hydrochloride – Dalmane
- Estazolam – Prosom
These prescription sleeping pills can help you fall asleep faster or make you stay asleep for longer or have both the effects. The risk and possibility of adverse effects can differ significantly among different prescription medications. A doctor may typically go through the following steps to determine the right prescription sleeping pill for your particular condition.
- They can ask you questions to get a clear understanding of your sleep patterns.
- They might also order some tests to narrow in on the underlying conditions responsible for causing sleeping issues.
- They can tell you about the options for using prescription sleeping tablets, including when to take them, how often, and in what form.
- They may prescribe a medicine for a limited time to analyze its benefits and side effects on your body.
- They can also change the drug if the first one did not have the desired results after you take it for the prescribed duration.
- They may also provide you the information about the generic versions of the popular medications, as these are generally less experience compared to their brand-name counterparts.
While selecting which sleeping pill you should buy, you must also consider the insurance policy you currently have. Many insurance providers may put restrictions on which sleeping pills they cover under the policy. They may also require you to try other treatments to your insomnia before reaching out for the prescription sleeping pills.
Most Popular Sleeping Pill – Ambien
Ambien is among the most prevalent prescription sleeping pills. It is readily available throughout the United States. People usually prefer to buy Ambien online, as it is more convenient, and often they can find great discounts while purchasing drugs online.
Authorities regard it as a controlled substance as per the schedule IV of the controlled substances act, making it hard to buy Ambien online without prescription.
How it works?
Ambien helps adults as it affects their brain chemicals to induce a calming effect and help them relax. It usually interacts with GABA, a neurotransmitter in the brain responsible for transferring information between neurons. This drug enhances GABA’s effects to speed up the flow of information, which reduces the strain and relaxes the mind.
Ambien is available in both quick-release or short-acting formula and an extended-release form. The immediate-release version of this drug starts releasing its contents as soon as you consume it. In contrast, this medicine’s extended-release variant consists of two layers; the first one starts to dissolve after you take it and make you feel sleepy immediately. The second layer releases its contents at a slower pace to keep you asleep throughout the night.
Using Ambien can make you experience the side effects of sleeping pills. Though these side effects rarely occur, you should know about them to be better prepared.
Common side effects
- Muscle pain
- Chest pain
- Dry mouth
Serious side effects
- Allergic reaction
- Depression and other mental issues
- Abnormal behavior like agitation or impaired thinking
- Memory loss
- Breathing problems
Stop using it and inform the doctor if you encounter any of the adverse effects of this medicine.
Precautions To Take While Using Ambien
The best way to protect yourself against sleeping pills’ side effects is to take some reasonable precautions. Knowing about what to do and what to avoid helps you significantly minimize your risk of facing the adverse effects. Try to keep the following in minds if you plan to take Ambien:
- Consult a doctor to determine the best dose for your condition before starting the treatment.
- Don’t forget to tell them about any other drugs you are using.
- Mental and physical medical issues that you may have can alter sleeping pills’ functioning on your body and tell the healthcare provider about any medical condition you have before taking this medicine.
- These medicines require you to get at least 8 hours of proper sleep. Don’t use it if you don’t have adequate time to rest because if you wake up earlier than recommended, you might suffer from extreme drowsiness and other unpleasant symptoms.
- Avoid giving this drug to children without a doctor’s recommendation.
- Substances like alcohol and marijuana can worsen this drug’s side effects, so avoid consuming them while using it.
- It can also harm unborn babies and infants’ health, so it will be best to avoid this medicine if you are breastfeeding or pregnant.
If you take all the precautions and reach out to the doctor in case of any side effects, you can use these sleeping pills to put an end to the restless and sleepless nights.