What are the unknown side effects of sleeping pills?

Sleeping pills

Most of the people will think that taking sleeping pills is an effective way to end sleepless nights (insomnia). Yes, a sleeping pill will help you to slip into short-term sleep after a few minutes. But it is imperative to know everything about sleeping pills. Remember, sleeping pills not only have legitimate uses, but it also comes with significant side effects, which most of the people won’t recognize. If you use these prescribed medicines in a limit it is fair. Nevertheless, when you use them improperly you may have a problem. Never take sleeping pills that have been prescribed for others. Usually, doctors will suggest these pills to treat a sleeping problem. Would you like to know the side effects of sleeping pills?

Ok! Before discussing that, firstly we will have to understand what causes sleeplessness and what are the reasons behind that.

Here are some of the common reasons:

  • Acute stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Headache
  • Intake of excessive nicotine
  • Job pressure and insecurity
  • Taking caffeine before going to the bed
  • Hyperventilation
  • Loss of appetite

There are many other ways to induce sleep, but most of them opt for sleeping pills as the best option. Clinically, sleeping pills are called sedative hypnotics which include benzodiazepines, Xanax, Librium, Valium, Halcion, barbiturates and many others. These medicines are addictive and may cause diverse effects on memory and attention. This can be severe when you use it improperly and for a long period. The impact of side effect varies from individual to individual, and it also depends on the quantity of intake.

What are the side effects of sleeping pills?

Like other medications even sleeping pills have several side effects. But, you may not experience in some cases until becomes severe.

Causes of depressed breathing:

Taking pills to battle insomnia seems to be good initially. But, when you take sleeping pills continuously for a long term, your body will get addicted to the drug. When your body resists it leads to the high dosage for inducing sleeplessness. Overdosage causes depressed breathing when you are in sleep, in some cases it may lead to death. Refrain from taking a high dosage for a long period, take for one or two weeks. If you are suffering from a short-term sleep disorder, try using other ways. Using sleeping pills for more than 15 days may cause diverse side effects.


Some studies revealed that people who took sleeping pills in the night to battle sleeplessness experienced sleepiness even after waking up. Drowsiness in the morning can be an obstacle for activities such as driving. This is a risky experience for most of the men and women. For women (who wake up early in the morning) it may affect negatively. To avoid this situation, consult a doctor and take necessary action. After taking the sleeping pill, a person should sleep for at least 7 hours.

Parasomnia/Erratic behavior:

This is one of the effective side effects of sleeping pills. Taking benzodiazepines such as triazolam may cause Parasomnia, which leads to a semi-conscious state. This state causes effects like sleepwalking and amnesia. It means affected people will walk in the night, but they don’t recall anything after waking up. This can be extremely risky. If you notice this kind of problem while taking sleeping pills, stop and consult the doctor.

Leads to addiction:

Once the person starts taking sleeping pills continuously, they get addicted to medication. They will find it difficult to sleep without taking the pills, it becomes an unavoidable habit. So, it is not recommended to the people who have a general sleep problem. It is prescribed only to the people who suffer from insomnia. If you experience any symptoms, it is better to consult with a doctor as early as possible.

Regular Faint:

The people who took zolpidem pills for more than four times were likely to faint frequently when compared to normal people. This is more likely in elderly people and also one of the common side effects of sleeping pills observed in seniors.

Leads to early death and cancer:

A recent study concluded that the people who take sleeping pills are at high risk of early death and cancer than those who do not take it. It does not mean that they definitely cause negative effects. Consuming sleeping pills for the long term may develop cancer cells. Restoril and Ambien are the two pills which create a risky combination.

Mood swings:

Some women feel tedious to sleep without taking this medicine as they are addicted to the dosage. The continuous taking of these pills leads to irritation and mood swing according to researchers.

These are some of the side effects of sleeping pills and knowing about these may make you feel nervous. It is best advised to try for other safe alternatives in order to fight the sleepless nights. Some of the techniques are:

  • Go for yoga and meditation
  • Take a glass of warm milk while going to bed
  • Avoid caffeine
  • Take a bath
  • Create a warm environment in your bedroom by removing high focused lights


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1 Comment

Shujath Pasha

Very informative and learn few things were unknown.


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