Insomnia is a medical condition that causes the victims to have difficulties in falling asleep. There are many causes that have been suggested to be behind insomnia amongst them bad sleeping habits, medications, stress, and even anxiety. Some cases of insomnia have with time subsided without the need for medication. However, doctors have prescribed drugs, particularly for insomnia cases.
It’s advisable that all insomnia medication be taken shortly before going to bed and the patients should not drive or perform other activities which require concentration after taking insomnia drugs due to the drowsiness and sleepiness these drugs cause. For optimal effects, insomnia drugs should be taken in combination with good sleep habits.
Drugs Used to Treat Insomnia
There are several drugs that have been manufactured to be used in the treatment of insomnia. Top among these drugs include:
These drugs help you to fall asleep. However, cases have been reported of some people who take them and wake up in the middle of the night. Zolpidem which is available as Ambien CR, a proprietary brand helps you to stay asleep longer. For you to take this drug, you should be able to get a full night sleep of at least 7 to 8 hours. For short-term treatment of insomnia, the Food and Drug Administration has approved Zolpimist, an oral spray version of Zolpidem.
Also referred to as Lunesta, this medication helps you to fall asleep fast. Just like Zolpidem, it is recommended that you take this medication only if you are able to get a full night’s sleep. This is because Eszopiclone can cause grogginess. The FDA recommends you start Lunesta with a dosage of not more than 1 milligram.
This medication targets the sleep-wake cycle and does not depress the central nervous system as the rest. It is prescribed for people who have difficulties falling asleep. Ramelteon can be prescribed for long-term use because there is no existing evidence of dependence or abuse.
This drug is also referred to as Sonata. Compared to all other sleeping pills, Zaleplon stays active in the body for a very short duration of time. The advantage of this is that it gives you room to try falling asleep on your own. If you still experience sleeping difficulties in the middle of the night, you can take the drug again without risking feeling drowsy in the morning.
If you have trouble staying asleep, Doxepine can help you resolve the issue. It does so by blocking histamine receptors and it is recommended you take this drug only if you can be able to get a full 7 or 8-hour sleep. The intake of this medication is based on your age, health, and response to therapy.
Apart from the above drugs, there are others such as benzodiazepines, anti-depressants and over the counter sleep aids which are generally anti-histamine based. In 2007, the Food and Drug Administration gave alerts to patients on the likely allergic reactions and complex sleep-related behaviors some prescription sleep drugs may cause.
- “Insomnia.” Mayo Clinic. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.
- “Insomnia Treatment.” National Sleep Foundation. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.
- “Antihistamines – How They Work .” NHS Choices. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.