HAVE YOU BEEN HARMED AFTER TAKING A SLEEP AID?
Sleeping pills, also known as hypnotics or sedatives, are a class of medication prescribed to people struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep. People suffering from sleep disorders such as insomnia seek out these pharmaceutical drugs to help restore normal sleep patterns. In 2012, approximately 60 million prescription sleep aids were administered in the United States.
There are several subtypes of sleeping pills available on the market:
- Benzodiazepines (Restoril, Dalmane, Doral, Halcion, ProSom)
- Non-benzodiazepines (Ambien, Intermezzo, Lunesta, Sonata)
- Barbiturates (Amytal, Nembutoal, Seconal)
- Antihistamines (Benadryl, other over-the-counter medications)
- Antidepressants (Trazodone, Doxephin)
- Antipsychotics (Seroquel, Risperdal)
SERIOUS SIDE EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH SLEEPING PILLS
Prescription sleep aids are generally prescribed after all other non-prescription options have been exhausted. This is because many sleeping pills are habit forming and can cause dependency if taken for an extended period of time. Sleep aids should be taken for only as long as they are necessary.
Besides dependency, sleeping pills can also cause:
- Daytime drowsiness
- Unusual dreams
- Impairment (morning after taking pill)
A serious problem with sleeping medications like Ambien is parasomnia, in which a person is in a state of semi-consciousness. People using Ambien have reported doing activities, such as driving, walking, and eating, while half awake and half asleep. This is incredibly dangerous and has led to many automobile crashes and other accidents that have resulted in severe injuries and death.
A 2014 study in The BMJ claims a link between benzodiazepines and Alzheimer’s disease. The results showed a 51 percent higher risk of developing the degenerative condition in those who have used benzodiazepine drugs. The findings focused on long-term users of the sleeping pills, which further emphasizes the importance of only taking these drugs as needed. Those taking benzodiazepines for less than three months did not exhibit an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED DANGEROUS MEDICATION ATTORNEY
If you or a loved one were injured after taking a dangerous sleeping medication, contact our experienced team of drug injury lawyers. We are available 24/7, nights and weekends to evaluate your claim. Thomas J. Henry has the resources necessary to develop your case to its fullest extent. Don’t wait — call us today for a free case review.