BAD DREAM – Whether you have prescription or over-the-counter, sleeping tablets are far from harmless little magic pills. In an off-series, 60 million consumer magazines warn about their dangers, regardless of whether they are addicted or possible side effects.
– Charlotte Anglade
In France, one in three people says badly or does not sleep enough. For good reason, we lost for fifty years 1h30 of sleep a day. And falling into Morpheus's arms for good, ten million French people resort to sleep pills. Over-the-counter or recipes, they are far from harmless.
In its latest special edition, it appears on kiosks on Friday, November 9th, 60 million consumers have studied with the help of specialists on the hidden side of these subjects, as many studies claim they are hardly more effective than placebo.
Significant side effects
There are currently three prescription sleeping tablets on the market: Dornomyl, Lidene and Phenergan. Anyone can cause significant side effects. For example, dornomyl has a prolonged soothing effect. It takes about ten hours for the concentration of the product in the blood to decrease by half 60 million consumers. The risk of accidents due to sleepiness today is therefore very real. Like the members, it may rarely expose to near-sighted disturbances or indigestion (constipation). Fenergan can cause dizziness, poor coordination or an allergic reaction like photosensitization.
For prescription sleeping pills, side effects should be taken seriously. They range from reduced concentration to sleepwalking, delusions and aggression to suicide attempts. Consumption of alcohol during treatment may greatly exacerbate these effects. Some studies suggest, on the other hand, that these drugs may be a trigger for Alzheimer's disease and some cancers.
The dangers that led the Association of Assistance to Accidents and Disease-related Illnesses (AAA-VAM) victims to seize the Highest Authority for Health (HAS) 2016. Thereafter, HAS and ANSM have proposed the Ministry of Health an action plan for the correct use of benzodiazepines (one of the most important the substances used for sleep pills), intended for healthcare professionals and the public, including a communication campaign or limitation of length of the recipe.
An addiction that comes in a gallop
No matter what type of sleeper aids, 60 million consumers note that they are consumed systematically for a much longer period than recommended. Normally, sleeping pills are prescribed for no more than one month. They are actually taken on average over seven months. To take sleep pills in the counter, it should not exceed fifteen days but it actually reaches about six months. A danger when the physical or mental addiction happens very quickly: after a month only. Difficult then to get rid of this addiction. "When they do not take the pill before they go down, the urgent discontinuation of treatment causes an insufficient syndrome. The insomnia syndrome increases tenfold and is accompanied by anxiety attacks, headache, nightmares … and sometimes cramps and hallucinations," describes the newspaper. Thus, for a treatment of a few months, a refusal of a year, with the help of a doctor, may be necessary.
Melatonin, a substance that should not be taken easily
Melatonin, whose fashion comes directly from the United States, is still very rare in France a few years ago. It has today become an important part of the pharmacy. This hormone that interferes with the regulation of the biological rhythm and synthesized in the form of dietary supplements or medication, is very popular with insomniacs or people who want to recover quickly from a jet lag. Or exactly 60 million consumers, taking melatonin, which is naturally excreted up to the age of 55, is effective and useful only from that age. An elderly person can simply disturb his bike and worsen his sleep problem.
The second problem spelled out by the newspaper and the newspaper prescribe is the dose. Melatonin is really recommended as a drug from a dose of 2 milligrams per dose. Many dietary supplements contain 1.9 mg. An almost equal amount that can induce the same side effects, without medical supervision of the drug: syncope, sleepiness, headache, cramps or various types of rash and indigestion disorders.