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votes

Anybody use sleeping pills? How bad are they? Are there less bad ones?

Answered on October 04, 2017
Created May 23, 2012 at 9:25 PM

I have had sleeping issues (trouble falling asleep, trouble staying asleep, wake up easily) for the last year, the onset was initiated by an increase in workout intensity/frequency. I've cut back significantly on the workout frequency to address the sleeping issues in the last 3-4 months but have had no success.

Ive been using Melatonin supplements at 3-6mg sometimes with 5HTP but the consistency of a good nights sleep is still varied. On average, I can have one night of 7-8 hour sleep every other day, and the other night i will get 2-3 hours. I've stopped exercising almost completely in the last 3 weeks but have seen no improvement and as such am contemplating sleeping pills of higher potency. Though I am worried about side effects, I am tempted to think that getting a full nights sleep is outweighs the risks? Please advise!

80890193d74240cab6dda920665bfb6c

(1528)

on May 25, 2012
at 05:24 AM

Valerian, passionflower, l-theanine, 5HTP, GABA, inositol, time-release melatonin. It's trial and error to find what combo works for you, but that's your basic playing field.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 24, 2012
at 03:28 PM

Kasra, "safest" is a joke in the sleeping pill world. None of them are safe.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 24, 2012
at 03:26 PM

Acupuncture really helped me learn to sleep without the medication.

F15e0bae42dbf0b8cfc71e62902497b4

(2036)

on May 24, 2012
at 03:58 AM

http://psychcentral.com/quizzes/anxiety.htm or see your MD

8cbb06eb84dad8d2db56fcc4d8bdc0ba

on May 24, 2012
at 01:21 AM

Already did, she said don't use sleeping pills but melatonin is OK

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on May 24, 2012
at 12:37 AM

Ask your doctor. He will prescribe you the safest and most appropriate medication.

8cbb06eb84dad8d2db56fcc4d8bdc0ba

on May 24, 2012
at 12:33 AM

I don't thnk I have depression but I can be prone to high anxiety; how do I get screened?

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15 Answers

5
6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on May 24, 2012
at 12:23 AM

Wearing orange lenses about 2 hours before bed times helps me out. I fall asleep faster on the days I remember to wear them before bedtime. The glasses supposedly helps with circadian rhythms. Take them off before going to bed.

http://www.amazon.com/Uvex-S1933X-Eyewear-SCT-Orange-Anti-Fog/dp/B000USRG90/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1337818764&sr=1-1-catcorr

5
870fdea50f2a9f1cd2890c8e22549300

(2056)

on May 24, 2012
at 12:00 AM

Hm. You might want to reexamine your sleep hygiene (google sleep +hygiene +tips, which is a list of boring stuff your mom always told you, but important). Your circadian rhythms may have gotten messed up.

In particular, getting up at the same time seven days a week, and trying to go to bed at the same time seven days a week is really important. However, if you go to bed and can't fall asleep, get up and don't go back to bed until you're sleepy.

Reliance even on melatonin long-term can be somewhat problematic (concerns that the body might stop producing melatonin on its own). Avoid light in the blue end of the spectrum from two hours before bedtime: blue-blocking glasses, f.lux on the computer, no TV/iPhone. Try to get some daylight exposure first thing in the a.m. every day--regularizes circadian rhythm.

Try giving up coffee.

Have yourself screened for depression (the terminal insomnia). Have yourself screened for anxiety (the sleep-onset insomnia).

Do you snore? Any possibility it might be sleep apnea?

There's also something called "sleep state misperception," which is when one sleeps for normal durations, yet severely overestimates the time taken to fall asleep. Someone might believe they slept for only four hours while they, in fact, slept a full eight hours.

F15e0bae42dbf0b8cfc71e62902497b4

(2036)

on May 24, 2012
at 03:58 AM

http://psychcentral.com/quizzes/anxiety.htm or see your MD

8cbb06eb84dad8d2db56fcc4d8bdc0ba

on May 24, 2012
at 12:33 AM

I don't thnk I have depression but I can be prone to high anxiety; how do I get screened?

3
61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 23, 2012
at 10:05 PM

Prescription sleeping pills are highly addictive and should only be used in very short-term scenarios, but I recommend avoiding them like the plague. I learned the hard way that there is no "weaning" off of the pills. Once I realized what I was doing to my body, I stopped them, which was incredibly painful. I researched the different pills and every single one I looked at mentioned they were to be used for a short period of time (like two weeks).

Health food stores (brick and mortar stores and online) carry various forms of melatonin and tryptophan.

3
11838116de44ae449df0563f09bd3d73

(655)

on May 23, 2012
at 09:56 PM

Try timed release melatonin. It works for me. With regular melatonin I woke up after a few hours. I take 2 x 750mcg of Life Extension six hour timed release melatonin.

2
77fcbf8bece61c60e3ff430d4bb5de66

(383)

on May 24, 2012
at 12:00 PM

They are seriously addictive, try GABA, it helps with sleep, it helped me and there is no nasty side effects if you decide to stop taking it

1
Medium avatar

on October 04, 2017
at 11:42 AM

Yes, i have used sleeping pills. However, i would suggest you not to take sleeping pills as they come with a host of side effects like bleeding of the intestines, gastric irritations etc. The best thing for you would be to try out other alternatives like Cetrizen, Ayurvedic treatment such as Ashwagandha, Tagara.

1
Medium avatar

on September 13, 2017
at 05:06 PM

Talk To Your Family doctor and see what all things he recommend.

1
901d843c6a01089575ef1751a9e6e9fd

on May 24, 2012
at 07:06 AM

Try ZMA thirty minutes before you go to bed.

0
C83cdafb8510fbc02bed4d5f24167d94

on September 19, 2017
at 01:57 PM

Stay away from 5HTP -- take 5mg of melatonin to get to sleep, 1200 mg Valerian to stay asleep.  If they don't work get a prescription for Temazapam - it's a generic and it works pretty well for me to occasionally get to sleep. 

0
Medium avatar

on December 11, 2015
at 08:47 AM

Every sleeping pill will have different side effects on different people. Some sleeping pills are very bad in taste; you may sometime vomit. Sometimes you become addicted to sleeping pills and cannot sleep even for a couple of hours without taking it. If you took it for few times, it doesn’t really help. You may feel restless, rather it may make you feel even groggier in the morning. If you use sleeping pills as per your doctor’s instructions, you are less likely to experience unwanted side effects or drug reactions.

0
7116c5a028636c23980e6502b8aadec5

on May 25, 2012
at 12:09 AM

Over the counter anti histamine works for me, I cut the pill into quarters, it is just enough to help me fall asleep when I need it and doesn't leave me groggy the next day.

0
D7ec5ab98a0b971f9e24b4e654abfa7d

on May 24, 2012
at 10:10 PM

Failing all "natural" remedies and sleep hygiene adjustments, you could try diphenhydramine aka Benadryl. Not usually considered habit forming.

0
9f52676bb212e66300578c4ea2d3d673

on May 24, 2012
at 06:10 PM

I sometimes drink Chamomile tea before i go to sleep and I find that helps. Thats more of a natural way compared to pills/medication.

0
7e36094a0f7a2fbad24290225405220b

(2064)

on May 24, 2012
at 07:17 AM

Every now and then I take an anti histamine before bed. It makes me drowsy enough to sleep fairly well but I don't like to take it too often.

0
B41cdb2253976ba9b429dd608d02c21f

(1495)

on May 24, 2012
at 12:15 AM

I'm so glad someone asked this. I've been taking a medication to sleep for some time (I think 1.5 years) and I really want to get off it...however as previously said, it's about impossible to make a comfortable transition from relying on them to sleeping without them. I installed the blackout curtains, I tried to wean off them while dosing melatonin...neither works. Even with the medication, I'm such a light sleeper that my husband's heavy deep sleep breathing wakes me. I can't decide if not sleeping is the greater evil, or if taking the medication is the greater evil. I mean, I don't often feel rested when I wake. I recently heard a great description of what sleeping pills do - they make you forget your thoughts - so true, but forgetting my thoughts doesn't let me feel rested. However, I once had 4 months of insomnia before getting any relief and I can tell you that it wrecked me. I know I don't want that to happen again. If I were to do it again, I would try anything and everything before taking a medication to sleep, including letting a doc do a sleep study on me.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 24, 2012
at 03:26 PM

Acupuncture really helped me learn to sleep without the medication.

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