There are over-the-counter sleeping pills and sedatives, as well as those that must be prescribed by a doctor. Prescription Only benzodiazepines and Z-substances increase sleep quality, but they are highly addictive and come with a slew of negative effects. There hasn’t been much research into how well other treatments help with sleep disorders.
When a pronounced sleep disorder is identified, simple measures such as changing sleep habits often reach their limits. Some people then hope that sleeping pills and sedatives will help them sleep better again and get through the next day. However, medications can only be a temporary means of regaining some strength. They do not eliminate the causes of the sleep disorder.
Strong sleeping pills and sedatives like Benzodiazepines must be prescribed by a doctor (See how to buy Xanax online without a doctor’s prescription). They usually only come into question when the suffering is great and no other therapy has helped enough – also no cognitive-behavioral therapy. In the case of a sleep disorder, experts recommend primarily cognitive-behavioral therapy.
What sleeping pills are there?
Some sleeping pills are available over the counter; This means that they can be obtained without a prescription, for example in a supermarket, drugstore, pharmacy, or on the Internet. Other sleeping pills must be prescribed by a doctor – especially if they have severe side effects or are addictive.
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All sleeping pills and sedatives can make you tired during the day and reduce your ability to react. Activities such as driving a car, which require concentration and quick reactions, can then be risky depending on the means. The risk of falling increases in older people.
The following are used as sleeping pills, for example:
- herbal products (phytopharmaceuticals) such as valerian
When are antidepressants considered?
If the sleep disorder is accompanied by depression or depression causes sleep disturbances, the use of antidepressants may be considered. Sometimes the doctor may suggest a low-dose antidepressant even though there is no depression.
Antidepressants are designed to improve the availability of neurotransmitters in the brain that nerve cells need to transmit stimuli. Some antidepressants have a sedative effect and, unlike benzodiazepines, are not physically addictive. Little is known about their side effects when used to treat sleep disorders. There are also many unanswered questions about tolerability and long-term effects.
Antidepressants used to treat a sleep disorder
In the US, only the low-dose antidepressant Zoloft (Sertraline) is approved for the treatment of a sleep disorder. Studies suggest that Zoloft can help with sleep disorders in the short term: Participating people who received Zoloft rated their sleep quality better after one to three months of use than people who took a dummy drug (placebo) revenue. With Zoloft, the participants slept a little longer.
Little is known about the side effects of low-dose Zoloft. It has also not been investigated whether Zoloft can relieve sleep problems over a longer period of time.
Antidepressants and off-label use
When antidepressants other than Zoloft are prescribed for sleep problems, it is an “off-label use.” This means that the drugs are prescribed for a condition for which they are not approved.
For the treatment of a sleep disorder, antidepressants are usually given in lower doses than for the treatment of depression.
Antidepressants that are occasionally used for sleep disorders are, in addition to Zoloft, for example, Escitalopram, amitriptyline, mirtazapine, and Antidepressants from the group of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Little is known about their benefits and harm in insomnia because of the lack of good scientific studies.
Studies on the antidepressant Sertraline (Buy Sertraline online) suggest that the drug slightly improved subjective sleep quality over the course of a few weeks: People who received Sertraline (Zoloft) rated their sleep quality slightly better than people who took a dummy drug (placebo) revenue. In the studies, all participants had a sleep disorder, but none depression (See Medications For Depression). Side effects of Zoloft have not been adequately studied with this application. Studies are also lacking on long-term use.
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of benzodiazepines?
Benzodiazepines are strong sleeping pills and sedatives with an anti-anxiety, dampening, and anticonvulsant effect. They reduce the sensitivity of certain nerve cells in the brain by preventing the transmission of stimuli. Benzodiazepines must be prescribed by a doctor. Currently, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Clonazepam, and Lorazepam are mainly used.
Studies show that benzodiazepines can help with sleep disorders for a short time. For example, they may shorten the time it takes to fall asleep, increase sleep duration, or improve sleep quality. However, they do not eliminate the cause of the sleep disorder and may be taken for a maximum of four weeks. That’s why it’s good to have a plan for what happens afterward, even before using them. See Clonazepam for anxiety and panic attacks
The effects of benzodiazepine last for many hours or even a few days. Therefore, those who take benzodiazepines tend to feel sleepy rather than refreshed the next morning or day. Attention, concentration, and reaction time may decrease significantly. This limits driving ability and makes operating machinery dangerous. Because benzodiazepines also relax the muscles, they also increase the risk of falls in older people. Benzodiazepines have numerous other side effects, some of them severe, and are quickly addictive.