Sleep disorders have become common in the developed countries. There are an ever increasing number of people who are facing sleeping disorders. This is because of the ever increasing pressure in the workplace and environment that it becomes difficult for the brain to relax. Sleeping disease may be an indication of some other disease but whatever it is it should be treated immediately. Sleep disorders may include insomnia, complex sleep behavior, and excessive sleepiness during day time. Other important factor which is contributing towards sleep disorder is the dietary habit which has moved from healthy to junk and the sedentary lifestyle.
Sleep aids can help in overcoming the sleep disorders by relaxing the brain. There are different types of sleep aids present including the natural sleep aids and over the counter sleep aids. Over the counter sleep aids can help with sleep problems for short durations. These include Valerian, melatonin, doxylamine and diphenhydramine. Valerian has minimal side effect; melatonin can work effectively for long durations; doxylamine is an antihistamine and affect the central nervous system b slowing it down thus inducing sleep; diphenhydramine is also an antihistamine which is helpful in inducing sleep. These are the most effective over the counter sleep aides available.
There is also prescription sleep aid which should be taken only after consultation with the doctor. They have been approved by the FDA and are legal. These include ambien which is an effective treatment for insomnia however it may cause day time dizziness in patients. Halcion, restoril and lunesta are narcotic sleeping aid and hence require extra care while intake of these drugs.
Other sleep aids include estazolam not for long term, desyrel which is also used to treat anxiety and depression, amitriptyline a non-narcotic aid and Ativan which could be addictive and overdose of it can cause epilepsy. There are certain precautions which should be taken before taking these aids. Alcohol should never be taken while taking these aids as it could turn fatal. Common side effects of these aids are headaches, loss of memory, vomiting, heart palpitations, weakness and nausea. Reduced alertness is also a common side effect which is caused by all classes of sleeping aids.
Selection of proper sleeping aid is also important to treat the sleep disorders. The cause of sleeping problems helps in deciding the sleep aid, simple problems relating to sleep may not need the medicines or the sleeping pills and simple meditation can be effective for it. During pregnancy any type of sleep aid which is not natural can cause problems for the child. Precaution is also necessary while giving sleep aids to children. There are a lot of other natural and herbal sleep aids present which can be used as effectively as prescription and over the counter sleeping aids. Some foods may also act as sleeping aid like herbal tea can help in relaxing the mind thus inducing sleep. Exercise can also act as an effective sleeping aid. These natural methods and products should be tried first before taking any medication for treating sleep disorders.