You’ve done everything you can to get adequate sleep, including sleeping on a schedule, avoiding coffee and afternoon naps, walking regularly, avoiding flashing screens before bed, and handling stress.
Even so, it’s been weeks, and a restful night’s sleep is still so far. Is it time for sleep aid devices that you can find over-the-counter? If you’re thinking about taking drugs to help you relax, here’s what you should do. So before you look for “brain-sensing headband” let’s read the article.
Sleep Aids Aren’t Magic Cure
For a single sleepless night, over-the-counter sleep aids may be helpful. However, there are a few caveats.
Antihistamines are used in most over-the-counter sleep aids. Antihistamines will easily gain tolerance to their sedative effects. Still, the more you take them, the less likely they are to make you tired.
Furthermore, some over-the-counter sleep aids will leave you dizzy and sick the next day. This is known as the “hangover effect.”
Medication interactions are still a possibility, and many of the efficacy and usefulness of over-the-counter sleep aids are still unclear.
Sleep Aids: What Are Your Options?
Sleep supports are readily accessible. Some common aids are:
- Diphenhydramine is a common alternative with possible side effects. Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine that causes sedation. Daytime drowsiness, dry throat, distorted vision, constipation, and urinary dysfunction are also possible side effects.
- Doxylamine Succinate. Doxylamine is also an antihistamine that causes sedation. Diphenhydramine-like side effects are present.
- This plant’s supplements are also used as sleep aids. While a few findings suggest a medicinal advantage, others haven’t seen the same results. Valerian does not seem to have any negative side effects.
- Melatonin is a hormone that aids in the regulation of your natural sleep-wake cycle. According to some studies, melatonin supplementation can be useful in curing jet lag or reducing the time it takes to fall asleep, though the effect is usually minor. Headaches and sleepiness during the day are potential side effects.
Important Safety Considerations
Follow these measures while using over-the-counter sleep aids:
- Consult with Your Physician. Inquire with the doctor about the risk of the sleep aid conflicting with other drugs or underlying problems, as well as the necessary dose.
- Do Remember to Take Care. People with closed-angle glaucoma, hypertension, a chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, sleep apnea, severe liver disease, digestive system obstruction, or urinary retention should avoid diphenhydramine and doxylamine. Besides, sleep aids can raise the risk of strokes and dementia in women who are pregnant or breastfeeding and in people over the age of 75.
- Taking Each Day as It Comes. Insomnia should be treated with over-the-counter sleep aids as a temporary fix. They’re not meant to be used for more than two weeks in most cases.
- Avoid Consuming Alcoholic Beverages. Never combine sleep aids with alcohol. The sedative effects of the drug can be amplified by alcohol.
- Side Effects Should Be Avoided at All Costs. When taking sleep aid devices, avoid driving or engaging in any behaviors that include alertness.
A good night’s sleep is beneficial to all. If you’re still having trouble sleeping, see the doctor. He or she could consider behavior counselling in addition to behavioral changes to help you develop better sleep patterns and how to make your sleeping space more conducive to sleep.