How Does Sleeping Pill Addiction Develop
Sleeping pill addiction will usually occur after continuous use over an approximate frequency of just seven days or after taking a higher dosage of sleeping pills than needed or prescribed. Of course, this range will vary from person to person.
Addiction to sleeping pills, more often than not, stems from using sleeping pills as a coping mechanism. Factors such as anxiety or depression may cause short-lived relief. For that reason, seeking help for addiction to sleeping pills is the best option, as this deals with the underlying issue that caused you to seek out sleeping pills in the first place.
While it is best to take sleeping pills as prescribed, many users dont opt for a professional recommendation and end up purchasing over-the-counter sleeping pills. These put you at the same risk of addiction as prescribed medication. Some sleeping pills, unfortunately, are habit-forming, and sleeping pill addiction is a growing problem in the UK. As well as accessing them through prescriptions, users can get from countless illicit sources including many sites on the dark web and from street dealers.
The Danger Of Overuse Of Sleeping Pills
Occasionally using a sleeping pill under the direction of your doctor is unlikely to lead to serious impacts on your well-being. If you end up taking sedatives more regularly though, it will put you in more danger. Some of the most serious consequences of becoming dependent on this type of drug include:
- inability to sleep without night sedation
- feeling groggy in the mornings
- problems with balance people can feel as if they are drunk
- addiction to sleeping pills
Once addicted to sleeping tablets, the dangers increase to include:
- depression and suicidal thoughts
- increased risk of accidents due to being regularly groggy
- a reduced ability to make good decisions
- abusing this drug long-term can cause damage to body organs
- the individual may overdose accidently this is due to the need to keep increasing the dosage in response to tolerance
- the desperation to keep obtaining more of the drug can mean that the person becomes willing to break the law
- eventually the addicted person is likely to have to turn to the black market to feed their habit this can mean fraternising with dealers who may persuade them to also try harder drugs such as heroin.
Signs And Symptoms Of Sleeping Pill Overdose
In cases where sleeping pills are consumed beyond the prescribed limit, there is a potential risk of experiencing an overdose. Early symptoms of this might include:
- Speech becomes slurred
- Breathing changes occur
- Changes in emotions and thinking
It is important to seek immediate medical assistance if these emerge. Severe cases of sleeping pill overdoses can result in death.
Side Effects Of Prescription Sleeping Pills
Always ask your health care provider about potential side effects before deciding which sleeping pills to consider taking. Depending on the type, prescription sleeping pills may include side effects such as:
- Dizziness or lightheadedness, which may lead to falls
- Prolonged drowsiness, more so with drugs that help you stay asleep
- Severe allergic reaction
- Sleep-related behaviors, such as driving or eating when not fully awake
- Changes in thinking and behavior, such as hallucinations, agitation, trouble remembering events, suicidal thoughts and bizarre behavior
- Daytime memory and performance problems
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Brentwood Springs Detox is a premier provider of detox services for people who need sleeping pill addiction treatment in the Nashville area. Our dedicated professionals can help you take this vital step on the path toward a healthy future. After youve finished our detox program, we can develop the aftercare plan that best meets your needs. Contact us today to learn more about our programs and services.
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Sleeping Pills Effects And Abuse
Sleeping pills are used to treat short-term insomnia, though many of them can lead to abuse and addiction. Although they do have a legitimate purpose, sleeping pills also come with significant side effects and risks that many people do not realize. If you can identify the signs of addiction, you could save someones life.
Many users underestimate the powerful grip that sleeping pills like Salata or Ambien have over their lives and the dangers of abusing them. Many people who abuse sleeping pills will experience concentration and memory problems.
How Does Addiction Start
Just like any drug, taking in too much of anything is bad for you, including sleeping pills. For people who have suffered greatly due to lack of sleep, the sudden relief brought by just one night of continuous, good quality sleep may be enough reason to keep taking the meds.
OTC sleeping pills are generally considered safe. However, while taking one or two OTC sleeping pills occasionally to cure your jet lag may be harmless, taking these OTC drugs every night can be habit-forming and may lead to psychological dependence and addiction. OTC sleeping pills are often recommended as a temporary solution and should not be taken for more than two weeks.
Prescription sleeping aids should be taken while being closely monitored by a medical professional. There are accounts from people who continuously used Zolpidem and became overly dependent on the drug. They found that they are not able to sleep without the aid of the drug and as they developed tolerance for the drug, so increasing the doses became the natural next step.
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Sleeping Pills And Older Adults
If youÃ¢â¬â¢re 65 or older, experts suggest that you avoid all sleep aids. This includes over-the-counter drugs and the newer Ã¢â¬ÅZÃ¢â¬ï¿½ drugs like eszopiclone , zaleplon , and zolpidem .
Compared to younger people, older adults have a greater chance of health problems on sleep meds. When youÃ¢â¬â¢re older, sleeping pills tend to stay in your system longer. Drowsiness can last into the day after youÃ¢â¬â¢ve taken them. Confusion and memory problems are also a known side effect. For older adults, this could result in falls, broken hips, and car accidents.
Other symptoms of some over-the-counter sleep medications can be especially hard for older adults to handle. Your mouth may be dry. You may also be constipated and find it hard to pee.
Before you decide to take sleeping pills, talk to your doctor. They may recommend a medical exam to help you figure out the cause of your sleep problems, like depression, anxiety, or a sleep disorder.Ã Your doctor will also suggest ways to treat sleeplessness without drugs.
Intervention And Next Steps
If someone you care about exhibits the signs and symptoms of having an addiction to sleeping pills, whether its Lunesta, Sonata, or Ambien, its time to talk to them about getting help. According to research staging an intervention is one of the best ways to show an addicted person that you are on their side and that its okay to get help.
The goal of intervention is to get the addicted person in treatment immediately. Some families hire an intervention specialist for help managing the situation. Specialists can also help you figure out what to say to your loved one and outline consequences if they refuse to get help.
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Are Sleeping Pills Addictive
Yes. Many sleeping pills are extremely addictive. With an estimated 4% of the United States using sleeping pills of some kind, its difficult to track how much so. However, all common sleeping pills including Ambien, Zolpidem, and similar have a profile for abuse. In one study, users showed a preference for sleeping pills over money, even after only a few days of recreational sleeping pill abuse.
However, most people become addicted to sleeping pills over time, through prescription use. Here, tolerance and psychological dependence combine to create a seeking effect, similar to that of other addictions.
Chemical Tolerance Tolerance is the process of the body adjusting to a substance. This means that you need more of the substance to achieve the same result, have to take the substance more often to maintain effects, or get less results when taking the same dose. This tolerance pushes many people to increase their dose, sometimes without consulting or even informing their doctor. This is important, considering many people are prescribed sleeping pills because they cannot sleep. People who have obligations, who have to be places in the morning, and who have to work need sleep. Facing this, it can seem harmless to simply take more of a medication than is recommended. Over time, this process exacerbates addiction and increases the likelihood of developing a problem.
The Signs Of Medication Misuse
Misuse of sleeping pills occurs when an individual consumes them against the doctors prescription. It may include taking the sedatives without recommendation, taking increased dosages than what you were prescribed, and using them for a more extended period than your treatment plan dictates.
Its challenging to identify people abusing sleeping pills, but common symptoms may include unsteady pace, euphoria, poor concentration, memory issues, balance problems, and slurred speech.
Misusing sleeping pills may become a habit and cause addiction, leading to an uncontrolled craving for the medication. Addiction to a prescription drug is a problem you need to address before it escalates into harmful side effects.
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How Can I Tell If I Am Addicted To Sleeping Pills
As individuals become addicted to sleeping pills, they begin to display certain changes in their behavior and demeanor. Go down this checklist of sleeping pill addiction symptoms to see if they fit:
- Do I need higher doses to achieve the same effect?
- Do I have a desire to take the pills even if it is not time to take them?
- Have I gotten prescriptions for sleep meds from more than one health provider?
- Am I still taking sleeping pills although the initial reason for taking the pills has passed?
- Have I tried to quit and was unable to because of an overwhelming need to take the sleeping pills ?
- Do I experience withdrawal symptoms when I stop taking sleeping pills?
What Is Samhsa’s National Helpline
SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.
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What Emotional Symptoms Occur During The Withdrawal Phase
Patients will experience generalized anxiety, and sometimes go on to have full-blown panic attacks once they stop taking sleeping pills. Patients will also experience rebound insomnia. Confusion and hallucinations may occur, and depression may start to manifest about three weeks after cessation. If people dont get help for their sleeping pill addiction, they can experience deep, clinical depression, putting them at-risk for relapse and suicide.
Signs And Symptoms Of Sleeping Pill Addiction
In addition to tolerance and withdrawal, other possible signs and symptoms of sleeping pill addiction include:
- Muscle weakness
- Trying to buy, borrow, or steal sleeping pills meant for someone else
- Doctor shopping
- Using sleeping pills in a manner that is unsafe, such as when drinking alcohol or taking other drugs
- Trying to stop using sleeping pills, but not being able to quit
A person who has become addicted to sleeping pills should consult with a doctor or another qualified healthcare provider. This professional can assess their needs and recommend appropriate treatment options.
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Is Sleep Addiction A Real Condition
According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society, the average adult requires at least 7 hours of sleep every night. This refers to actual sleep, not just time spent in bed.
When you consistently dont feel rested after a 7-hour sleep and crave naps during the day, you may begin to feel like you have a sleep addiction.
However, excessive drowsiness could be a sign of another issue. For instance, mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety or certain medications can have a similar effect.
An addiction is a brain disorder that involves compulsively craving a substance or behavior that may lead to the obsessive pursuit of a reward or payoff.
According to the National Health Service , addiction is most commonly associated with gambling, drugs, alcohol and smoking, but its possible to be addicted to just about anything.
But can this apply to sleep?
According to Gregory Potter, one of the United Kingdoms leading specialists in nutrition, sleep, circadian rhythms, and metabolism, probably not.
Sleep addiction is not a medically recognized condition, he says.
According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, people with addiction use substances or engage in behaviors that become compulsive and often continue despite harmful consequences.
Sleep is a biological function and isnt fundamentally harmful.
, psychotherapist at Plumm, agrees.
In short, you probably cant be addicted to sleep.
How Do I End Ambien Use
Addiction programs like Black Bear Lodge treat you as an individual. We listen to your unique concerns and work with you to come up with real solutions. We help you reestablish healthy sleep habits.
We address any co-occurring physical or mental health concerns. Treatment should be integrated. It should be in-depth and comprehensive. We see you as a whole person. We address your addiction as a complex but treatable health concern. Call Black Bear Lodge at to learn more about your options for a unique and effective treatment experience.
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Learn More About The Signs Of Sleeping Pill Addiction At Womens Recovery
Are you concerned that you may be addicted to sleeping pills? Talk to the specialists at Womens Recovery. Every day, we help women from all walks of life determine if theyre affected by addiction. We also provide the customized treatment you need to recover your sobriety. To learn more about how Womens Recovery can help, call us today at or complete our online information form.
Using Medication: What Can Help When Trying To Stop Taking Sleeping Pills And Sedatives
The best way to stop taking sleeping pills or sedatives is to gradually reduce the dose with the guidance of a doctor. Psychological or therapeutic support can help.
Situations can arise where you feel like you can no longer cope: A serious illness or the breakup of a relationship, for example, can lead to a crisis and be extremely distressing. People in situations like that may feel very unsettled, anxious, exhausted or have problems sleeping.
Many people find ways to cope with this stress. But others find that problems like insomnia just do not go away. Some take or medications containing zolpidem or zopiclon during phases like this. They are some of the most commonly prescribed sleeping pills and sedatives.
Benzodiazepines can relieve cramps, relax the muscles and make people feel calmer and less anxious. They are also used to help people fall asleep and sleep through the night better. Z-drugs are said to particularly help people fall asleep.
Sleeping pills and sedatives can have very strong side effects, including problems with memory or concentration, drowsiness, muscle weakness, abnormal behavior and sleep disorders. They can also affect peoples ability to drive and, particularly in older and unwell people, increase the likelihood of falling.
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What Are The Physical Symptoms Of Withdrawal
Physical symptoms of sleeping pill withdrawal are incredibly distressing, and include the following:
- Increased heart rate
These symptoms manifest during the first 24 to 72 hours after cessation and peak around the one week mark. They may linger for up to three weeks after the last dose of sleeping pills was taken. These physical symptoms can trigger anxiety and panic attacks in some users.
How Dangerous Are Sleeping Pills
Even without an addiction, sleeping pillsboth prescription and over the countercan cause a range of unpleasant side effects, such as confusion, dry mouth, constipation and difficulty urinating. A particularly dangerous side effect is daytime drowsiness, which can cause even more impaired functioning than a sleepless night. Studies have shown that people taking prescription sleeping pills were twice as likely to get into car crashesabout the same increased risk as driving drunk. One way to avoid this effect is to make sure to never take a sleep aid without staying in bed for at least seven to eight hours afterwards.
Another side effect of sleeping pills is impaired coordination and balance. Many people suffer dizziness and falls as a side effect of sleeping pills, especially older adults, who are at greater risk of fractures and other injuries if they fall.
Sleeping pill addiction amplifies all these side effects and more. In addition to potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms such as delirium and seizures, people addicted to sleeping pills often experience depression and suicidal thoughts and intent. Long term effects of sleeping pills include blurred vision, respiratory difficulty, and damage to body organs. In addition, individuals addicted to sleeping pills may resort to risky behavior such as breaking the law after a doctor refuses to keep writing prescriptions.
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Can I Be Allergic To Sleeping Pills
Yes. People can have an allergic reaction to any medicine, which could be related to either the active ingredient of the medicine itself or to any of its inactive ingredients . People who have anÃ allergic reactionÃ to a specific sleeping pill should avoid it. It’s important to talk to your doctor at the first sign of these serious side effects, including:
- Blurred vision or any other problems with your sight
In addition, a serious — even deadly — side effect of any medicine someone is allergic to is anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is an acute allergic reaction. Another possible effect is angioedema, which is severe facial swelling. Again, discuss these possibilities with your doctor if you are at risk of allergic reactions.