Medical Questions > Mental Health > Sleep Disorders Forum

prescription sedatives addiction

If you...
a) agree that people are popping too many pills in this world, or
b) want to sleep better yourself, or
c) you just have an interest in helping people improve their lives then I invite you to read on…

When I was working as a family doctor, and now as a counselor, one common issue people have is trouble sleeping.

They can’t get a good night’s rest.

When they come to me I offer them stress reduction, sleep hygiene, hypnosis, meditation among other self help methods.

But like it or not, many people want to pop a pill.

Sleeping pills are in fact a growth industry. Over the past decade the sales of prescription sedatives, much of which is sleeping pills, has doubled to $4 Billion in 2006 in the US alone.

The prediction is for an explosion to $5 Billion in the US by 2010. The rest of the world is following this frightening trend.

Even worse, remember that this is just on prescription pills. The dollar amounts are WAAYY bigger if you add in all the non-prescription sleeping pills, potions, sprays, etc, etc.

Most people worry about the side effects, but here is the real issue.

These pills are not recommended to be used longer than 2-4 weeks!

Yet whether prescription medication, natural, herbal, alternative or whatever, people end up taking them for months, years, and sometimes the rest of their lives!

This is unforgivably horrendous.

But what can be done?

It’s easy to just say “Don’t take the pills”, but that message won’t stop this pill-popping avalanche.

People take sleeping pills because they want sleep and the pills work.

If they used them short-term it would be okay, but people don’t.

Many people end up taking them long-term. They don’t want to, but if they simply follow the instructions on the packet and pop a pill each night for 2-4 weeks they find that when they stop the pills, more often than not, their sleeping problems come straight back.

They don’t even have to be physically addicted to the drugs, it’s just that they haven’t broken their habit of poor sleep.

So they go back on the sleeping pills again.

What do you think about sleeping pills? Are you addicted too?
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replied November 29th, 2018
Thank you for asking at Ehealth forum!

I read your question and I understand your concern.
Sleeping pills shouldn't be used for more than 2 weeks. Non sedative hypnotics can be used for long time. Melatonin is a good alternative.
I hope it helps. Stay in touch with your healthcare provider for further guidance as our answers are just for education and counselling purposes and cannot be an alternative to actual visit to a doctor.
Take care
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