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Over The Counter Sleep Aids

Dec 7, 2007
Over the counter drugs or "OTC" drugs are one of the common sleep aid treatments that a lot of drugstores offer in a wide range of choices. Side-effects and risks to your health, however, are just one of the more common problems that people face with OTC drugs. Alarming as it may seem, a number of OTC drugs post serious hazards to an individual's health and should not be taken if you feel you are at risk of chemical dependence or special sensitivity to the side-effects.

In order to avoid the problems associated with OTC drugs, it's very important to get acquainted with the different types and classes of over-the-counter sleep remedies. Then you will be able to choose the one that will best suit your personal sleep problem.

The most common medication on the market today are the Non-benzodiazepines and they are favored because they are less addictive than their counter parts or "Benzodiazepines". The Non-benzodiazepines are short-term sedatives which include Ambien, Lunesta and Sonata. They help make an individual feel sleepy and are a little safer and more efficient than Benzodiazepine which is typically addictive.

The Benzodiazepine drugs bring about drowsiness and target the central nervous system so they are more powerful but they are a risk in terms of addiction and are therefore better avoided if at all possible. You are advised to take these only for a few days because long term use will result in dependence on the drug and also to memory gap, feelings of more anxiety and difficulty in moving around during the day. Barbiturates are also popular in this category though very seldom used because they can lead to an overdose and to serious abuse over long periods of time.

One over-the-counter alternative is a drug which targets the melatonin receptors of the brain thus resulting in a change of the body's sleep clock. This is considered to be a wiser choice in getting one to fall asleep but not necessarily as helpful in keeping you asleep. This type of drug may also post some side-effects just like the rest, but it is generally a good alternative to the OTC drugs.

Some anti-depressants are also prescribed by doctors to alter the problems with depression that often lead to the problem of not falling asleep. Anti-depressants are popular drugs but should also be taken with caution as they carry intense side effects that can also lead to further complications. Most drugs that are being used in the treatment of sleep disorder contain anti-histamines that can really make you sleepy, but they are generally used for the treatment of allergies. Brands like Nytol, Unison and Sominex are common over-the-counter drugs that contain anti-histamine.

Because there are so many drugs being sold in drugstores today, you should not have a problem finding an alternative to the drugs that you would rather avoid. Milder drugs like Tylenol PM is one option to help you treat your sleep difficulties.

It's always best that you be very careful in taking drug prescriptions. It's best that you consult your doctor about the proper way to use over-the-counter medications. It's important to be well educated and disciplined when it comes to the use of certain drugs. Limit the amount of the dosage to what was prescribed by the doctor and only take an extra dosage gradually with the doctor's consent. Don't use these drugs everyday and try to skip a dosage every now and then. Avoid using OTC drugs for a long period of time. If you follow these precautions and also try to opt for the safer treatments first, you should be able to alleviate your sleep problems successfully and be back on the road to "Dreamland" in no time.
About the Author
Over 70 Million people in the USA suffer from some kind of Sleep Disorder! There are actually hundreds of ways to improve your sleep but the first thing that is needed is to raise more awareness! If you want to sleep better tonight , you can visit this information Sleep Aid Web Site that is packed with FREE information: http://www.Sleep-Aid-Solutions.com
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