If you find yourself struggling to get a good night’s sleep, you are not alone. According to the Center for Disease Control, sleep loss is a public health epidemic.
More than 2/3 of people with insomnia try over the counter sleep aids or DIY tips prior to seeking medical help. Before you use non-prescription sleep aids, here’s a few things you need to know.
Most over the counter sleep aids induce sleep because the products contain 1st generation long acting antihistamines such as diphenhydramine or doxylamine. These antihistamines induce sleep but stay in the body much longer than most commonly prescribed sleeping pills. Here are 7 facts you need to know before using non-prescription sleeping pills.
1. Antihistamines can reduce daytime functioning
2. Antihistamines can cause hypotensive episodes
3. Antihistamines cause brain fog
4. Antihistamines interfere with prescription medications
5. Antihistamines increase the risk of falls due to side effects of dizziness
6. Antihistamines can cause loss of coordination
7. Antihistamines interferes with vision
The Center for Disease Controls considers sleep deprivation a public health epidemic. Inadequate amounts of sleep are associated with depression, automobile accidents, chronic illness, decreased quality of life and increased risk of disability.
If you're still not convinced sleep is an important medical condition worthy of a trip to your doctor, consider people with insomnia are less likely to get job promotions. You should also know that compared to good sleepers, people with insomnia, on the average, much less money compared to good sleepers doing the same type of work.