We live in a drug culture. Over the counter and prescription medications are taken for practically every minor symptom we experience, including our moods and, of course, insomnia. Herbal remedies are also very popular, particularly for sleep.
While these options may be tempting, they do not treat the root of the problem. So, you will probably find yourself back where you started if you decide to stop taking sleeping aids. And because sleeping pills can affect your sleep style, they may actually exacerbate your sleep problem.
In addition, they can impair your daytime functioning, and regular use of sedative-hypnotic often leads to dependency. Although sleep aids can be helpful on a short-term basis when you are experiencing excessive stress, they are not a good long-term solution.
Fortunately, you can learn drug-free ways to sleep better at night without putting your life and the well-being of your family in jeopardy . Before we tell you how to deal with insomnia without sleeping pills, we first want to tell you the risks involved with sleep medications.
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What Researchers Say About Sleeping Pills
Sleeping pills are dangerous! If you have trouble sleeping, sleeping pills are not the answer . Unfortunately, some people are so desperate that they resort to taking any of the long list of pharmaceuticals in an effort to help them to get a good night’s sleep.
Regrettably, these helpers are available with a long list of associated dangers, including addiction. And that list of dangers just got longer. Research has proven that the use of sleeping pills has been associated with an increased risk of cancer and death.
The most troubling part of research is that it is not just daily users who are at risk, but those who use them less than twice a month are also at risk . It can take a while for the side effects to surface. Therefore, the harm may not be immediately noticeable.
Most researchers have found that the more sleeping pills that people take the greater their risk of death from all causes. Shockingly, people who take one to eighteen sleeping pills annually are three and a half times more likely to die within a two and a half year follow-up period.If you take nineteen to a hundred and thirty two pills a year, you are four and a half times more likely to die. If you take more than one hundred and thirty three pills a year, you are about five and a half times more likely to die.
According to studies, the above outcomes do not differ whether you are using earlier versions of sleeping pills or newer ones, which are marketed as being shorter acting and safer. Studies have also found an increased risk for all major cancers.
There is an increased risk of about 20% among any users who take nineteen to a hundred and thirty pills annually. There is also an increased risk of approximately 35% for users who take more than a hundred and thirty two pills a year.
Now, while the aforementioned results do not prove cause and effect; they certainly reveal a very unsettling association. This is very significant because about 10% of the American adult population take sleeping pills. That is quite a significant number of people.
Can an Overdose of Sleeping Pills Kill You?
Basically, most suicidal women use an overdose of sleeping pills as a way of committing suicide. These silent killers act slowly by interfering with body functions. They chemically sooth you to sleep by forcing your body muscles to relax.
Theoretically, an overdose of sleeping pills is supposed to shut down your entire body, including the cardiovascular, the respiratory, and the nervous systems. All of these scenarios would in the long run lead to death.
Thanks to the anesthetic and tranquilizing properties of the medications, an overdose can certainly kill you without agony or pain. This is mainly why sleeping pills overdose is quite popular in suicide cases.
An overdose of sleeping medication does not always lead to death. Most sleeping medications that are strong enough to be used by suicidal people are no longer in the market. However, some fairly high dosage medication might still be available in medical centers for anesthetic use during major surgeries.
According to manufacturers, the sleeping pills that are currently in the market contain milder chemicals that are not potentially lethal compared to sleeping medications that were manufactured some years back.
They claim that the current generation of sleeping pills are purposefully and chemically made to be safer. The main objective of the manufacturers is to make the sleeping medication less potent, so as to ensure that an overdose of sleeping pills seize to be an effective method of committing suicide.
The newer medications might be less potent, but that does not mean that they are safe. Regardless of the milder chemical contents, these pills are still a threat to your life.
Side Effects of Sleeping Pills
Before you die of sleeping pills here are the things that you are likely to experience
In a Short-Term:
- Dry mouth
- Abnormal depression and thoughts
- Memory loss
In a Long-Term:
- Addiction (craving for pills)
- Tremors or shaking
- Rebound insomnia
- Stomach cramps
- Cancer and possibly death
The abovementioned side effects are among the many experiences you will have if you do not keep off sleeping pills. Craving for sleeping medication is the most common problem most people experience. It is not normal for your body to crave for foreign chemicals.
Therefore, if you find your body craving so much for a sleeping medication, then it is a clear sign that you have become addicted. Addiction pushes you closer to death from sleeping pills. When you are addicted, you get to experience both short and long term effects.
In most cases, abuse of sleep medication can induce serious memory loss. This may be followed by slurred speech, a lack of coordination, and inability to focus. All these combined are a recipe for disaster. You might even lose your job because of sleeping pills.
So, What Can You Do To Avoid Sleeping Pills
There is but one thing to do, exercise sleep hygiene. Try to engage in relaxing activities for at least an hour before bedtime. This means nothing too stimulating, such as working, making phone calls, answering emails, or anything stressful.
Instead, consider relaxation, exercises, stretching, yoga, deep breathing, engaging in a quiet conversation with a family member or friend, or taking a warm, therapeutic bath. Avoid stimulating, long TV shows or movies that may force you to stay awake.
Basically, you should create a sleep reserve. If getting refreshing sleep is a high priority for you, then you need to take significant actions to treat it as such. The bedroom should be for one thing primarily – sleep.
Get at least one houseplant to improve the air quality in your home, and go from there. The pros of having a houseplant are simply too good to pass up. Just make sure it is something that suits you and not an additional stressor.
If you share a bed with someone else, come up with an agreement to keep office work out of the sleep sanctuary. This is a revered space for both of you, and normally it just takes a heart-to-heart conversation to make sure that everyone is comfortable.
The food that you eat can affectedly influence the quality of sleep you get. Remember, food is not just food, it is information.
And the types of food that you eat, along with the nutrients they contain, automatically spur processes that determine what your body, health, and sleep will look like. The environment in your stomach can either make or break getting a good night’s sleep.
Here are some essential good sleep nutrients you must make sure you are getting on a regular basis: Vitamin B6, melatonin, omega 3S, Vitamin D, calcium, potassium, tryptophan, Vitamin C, and selenium.
It goes without saying that the foods you eat to get these nutrients would ideally be organic and minimally processed (especially after learning what chemical additives can do to your health). All the aforementioned nutrients are incredibly valuable.
Life is precious, and staying healthy is the only way you will know how valuable it is to stay hale and hearty. Before you swallow that first sleeping pill, take a good look at your family, and decide whether or not it is worth taking the risk.
Sleeping pills provide the easy way to force a good night’s sleep, but they do not provide a health way to get to sleep. As we earlier mentioned in this post, sleep medication is dangerous. It does not matter whether you are taking nineteen or a hundred pills a year.
The chemicals will still get to you. Death is the ultimate outcome, but before you reach there, you are likely to undergo some serious problems (addiction being one of them). No need to risk your health and the well-being of your family.
If you have a tenacious sleep problem, you should simply consult your physician for a safer evaluation and treatment.