Top sleeping pills are a popular treatment for insomnia and other sleep disorders. But which ones are the best and what are the risks? We’ve reviewed the top sleeping pills to help you decide.
The top medications that treat sleep onset and/or staying asleep include sedative-hypnotics, benzodiazepines, and nonbenzodiazepine antidepressants. Examples of the former include Z-drugs like zolpidem (Ambien, Edluar) and eszopiclone (Lunesta), as well as flurazepam (Dalmane) and temazepam (Restoril). The latter includes tricyclic antidepressants such as doxepin (Silenor) and zaleplon (Sonata) and nonbenzodiazepines such as melatonin agonists (ramelteon) and melatonin receptor agonists (zaleplon, Rozerem). These are habit forming, meaning they can lead to physical dependence. If you choose to take them, work closely with your provider and use the lowest possible dose.
Counting Down the Top Sleeping Pills: A Closer Look at Effectiveness and Safety
Antidepressants that block certain signals that cause wakefulness are another option for sleep onset problems, such as trazodone (Desyrel), escitalopram (Zoloft), nefazodone (Sertraline) and mirtazapine (Fecalfox). These can have significant side effects, including dizziness, depression, nausea, and weight gain.
Any prescription medication can have side effects, including prolonged drowsiness or grogginess the next day, so it’s important to take them only when you can devote at least seven to eight hours to a full night of sleep. They can also interact negatively with some health conditions, such as high blood pressure, liver disease and glaucoma. You can also develop a tolerance to sleeping medications over time, and stopping them abruptly can trigger withdrawal symptoms and rebound insomnia.