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Non Habit-Forming Sleep Medicines
Non Habit-Forming Sleep Medicines
We all know the cliché "sleeping pills" Ambien, Lunesta, Benzodiazepines, even alcohol. But there's a problem with these: they are all addictive, and ironically enough, have a negative impact on sleep architecture (reducing sleep quality!) These also seldom treat the underlying problem: be it allergies, pain, depression, anxiety or even DSPS.
Here are a few basic types of non habit-forming sleep aids that are not only appropriate for long term use, they are more likely to treat the underlying condition (whatever it may be): sedating antidepressants, first generation antihistamines, melatonin and its only receptor agonist on the market, Rozerem.
Even though these are not without side effects of their own, they are better long-term solutions to sleeplessness than the ones you see on the television, 24/7.
Rx 1 Trazodone, an antidepressant (unrelated to any others) with hypnotic, anxiolytic and analgesic properties. This drug may be useful in treating withdrawal induced insomnia. It is also indicated for fibromyalgia pain.
Rx 2 Surmontil, (available in the USA only in name brand and not widely carried by pharmacies - but they will order it for you) is a tricyclic antidepressant with sedating, anxiolytic and analgesic properties. This one may be another good choice for someone with chronic sleeplessness caused by pain. There is some debate as to whether this drug may be more helpful in cases of opioid withdrawal-induced insomnia than others---conjecture at this point.
Rx 3 Remeron, a tetracyclic antidepressant with sedative (and many other) properties
Rx 4 Phenergan Tablets, a first generation antihistamine with markedly sedating properties, a good anxiolytic drug where benzodiazepines are undesired or contraindicated.
OTC 5 Doxylamine, a 1st gen. antihistamine, arguably the most effective OTC sedative available in the U.S.
Rx 6 Vistaril, a 1st gen. antihistamine with sedative, hypnotic, analgesic properties and practically no abuse potential.
OTC 7 Diphenhydramine, a 1st gen. antihistamine with moderately sedating properties.
OTC 8 Chlorpheniramine, a 1st gen antihistamine with relatively minor sedating properties
Rx 9 Doxepin, a tricyclic antidepressant indicated for insomnia and depression
Rx 10 Rozerem, a melatonin receptor agonist indicated for circadian rhythm disorders
OTC 11 Melatonin, a serotonin derivative produced by the brain's pineal gland, responsible for regulating the day/night, wake/sleep cycle. The oral form may be useful in regulating that cycle.
Rx i Inderal, a beta blocker: This may be good for preventing pre-speech jitters or stage fright. It does have a long list of potentially serious drug-drug interactions so be sure to double-check with your doctor all your medications. The only reason I include this on a list of sleep medications is it may treat an underlying cause of insomnia (performance anxiety.)
This is not a complete list but I thought it would be a good start for those either tired of shelling out big bucks for Lunesta or just want to avoid the pitfalls of "getting hooked."
Last edited by PeterRabbit2; 06-02-2010 at 12:31 PM.
Just a bump. Anything added from anyone will be helpful. Maybe this would be a good thread to keep alive.
Strange that nobody has responded to this thread. I found the information to be very helpful, as I've had issues with sleep for years. Thanks for posting!
Thanks for saying thanks!
I just realized, (in the interest of full disclosure) these aren't without their effects, side or otherwise.
Isn't Phenergan a anti-nausea medication?
Doxylamine has really helped me over the past few days. I wonder if I could also say that a year or so ago, I got some Lunesta samples from my doctor and it worked, but the horrible taste I had in my mouth for the next 36+/- hours was not worth it. I even emailed the company about it because I couldn't eat or drink anyrthing. Even water was putrid tasting. The lady at the company said that some people do experience that as a side effect. Then, she asked if she could send me a coupon for a free month of Lunesta and I told her no thank you. The OTC doxylamine works wonders for me most of the time. There have been a few times when it didn't work, but overall I am most happy with it occassionally taking it when I can't sleep.
Last edited by Somekindah$ll; 07-06-2010 at 01:16 PM.