Adequate sleep is crucial for good health, and Westerners lack sleep – about half of American adults experience one or more symptom of insomnia a few nights each week, and it is estimated that up to 10% of Americans took prescription sleep aids in 2010.1,2
Insomnia itself can be dangerous because in many cases it often causes daytime fatigue. However, new research has shown that the drugs used to treat insomnia are even more dangerous.
Drugs called “ hypnotics ” are prescribed to induce sleep in those experiencing insomnia. Some commonly prescribed hypnotics include zolpidem (Ambien), exzopiclone (Lunesta), temazepam (Restoril), and alprazolam (Xanax). These medications have been generally regarded as safe, especially when used only for short-term relief of insomnia.3
Elevated risk of death at low levels of use, and risk increases with number of pills taken
This is not the only study to report an increased risk of death associated with hypnotics. The authors cite 24 previous studies on the topic, of which 18 reported a significant increase in risk of death, plus 4 studies specifically reported increased risk of death from cancer.2
How might hypnotics increase risk of death?
Insomnia is often secondary to other conditions such as anxiety or depression, or a stressful life situation.1 Addressing these underlying factors by using my natural depression solution below plus establishing sleep-promoting habits will help to improve sleep.
My natural depression solution has produced excellent results, alleviating or eliminating symptoms for many depression sufferers. The interesting point here is that this same protocol is also effective for insomnia, even when the insomnia is not associated with depression.
Some additional sleep-promoting strategies:
1. National Sleep Foundation: Can't Sleep? What to Know About Insomnia [http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/sleep-related-problems/insomnia-and-sleep]