Are Sleeping Pills a Threat to Your Health?

September 23, 2019

People use sleeping pills when they have difficulty falling asleep. They are categorized as hypnotics, which promote and extend sleep. They can also be used as sedatives since they have calming effects. But, be careful – they can cause drowsiness. A doctor prescribes these pills, but you can find them as an over-the-counter medication.

The medicine classifies the most used sleeping pills and hypnotics as benzodiazepine receptor agonists or benzodiazepines. Don’t overuse or abuse them since they have the potential for severe side effects. Some studies show these pills can be dangerous as cigarettes, meaning they are a threat to your life.

One study issued in British Medical Journal Open showed those who take sleeping pills at least twice in a month have a bigger risk to die in the following 2-3 years than those who don’t use sleeping pills. And people who take a high dose of these pills have even bigger risks of dying. People who took more than 130 pills per year suffered a 35% cancer increase.

American scientists conducted this study about Pennsylvania mortality rates. One of the Z-drugs, Zopiclone, is heavily prescribed in England, which starts to cause panic among people. Hypnotics were associated with more than 300,000 deaths just in the US in 2010. So, the killer of these people may be in your bathroom.


People who suffer from insomnia use this nonbenzodiazepine hypnotic agent. After you take it, you’ll fall asleep fast and probably you won’t wake up in the middle of the night. This study wasn’t specific to this pill but was referring to other sleeping pills as Zolpidem

The recommended Zopiclone dose a day is 7.5 mg before going to bed. Elder people can take a lower dose of 3.75 mg tablets. This medication is advertised as a tablet, but those who have difficulty swallowing tablets can find it in liquid form as well.

 Your physician will direct you to take Zopiclone by mouth before you go to bed. You are supposed to take this medication for a short period; don’t take it longer than a month. Your body will easily get used to Zopiclone if you use it longer. It can cause dependence. Also, after one month, this medication will probably not have the same effects. 

Swallow the whole tablet with a glass of water; don’t chew or crush it. You can take this medication with or without food – there aren’t restrictions. But you must take right before bedtime. In case you wake up during the night, don’t take the pill. Also, you shouldn’t take Zopiclone every day. Take one just when you have real need of it.

Zopiclone will remain in your system for eleven hours after you take it. Your doctor will recommend waiting twelve hours before you perform activities that require focus and concentration.

The effects of Zopiclone can remain until the next day. Many studies have proven drivers who take Zopiclone have a decreased ability to focus and concentrate the following day, meaning the ability to drive is affected. The same goes for those who operate machinery – don’t take the tablet if you plan to operate the next day. Don’t operate machinery or drive unless you’re certain how the tablet affects your abilities and your concentration.

People with specific medical conditions like depression, breathing problems, or liver impairment must discuss with their physician if they want to start using Zopiclone. The doctor may give you alternatives for falling asleep other than the pills.

Also, don’t consume alcohol when you take these pills. You would asleep deeply and you may have difficulties to wake up. It’s advisable to consult with your doctor, whatever your reasons are for wanting to take these types of pills.

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