Pill-induced Memory Loss is Not the Same as Quality Sleep

Posted by Lauren Zimmerman on
There is a pill for almost any ailment. Got a headache? Take a Tylenol. Feeling queasy on the cruise ship? Pop some Dramamine. Brain too active? Slug down a sleep aid.

Our society is filled with people who believe pills are the answer to many problems. But when it comes to sleep aids, have you ever wondered if they actually work? Surprising evidence shows that many sleep medicines do not improve the quality of rest.

A study by the National Institutes of Health showed that patients taking popular prescription sleeping pills fell asleep just 13 minutes faster than those given a sugar pill and slept for only a total of 11 minutes longer. Only 11 minutes longer.  

Other recent studies show that drugs, such as Ambien and Lunesta, offer no significant improvements when it comes to quality of sleep. Think about: quality sleep is far different than quantity of sleep. It’s often much better to get seven quality hours of sleep versus eight hours that are dominated by tossing, turning, and interruptions.

People tend to overvalue the effectiveness of sleeping pills. This is in part due to the placebo effect. It is also because sleeping pills cause short-term memory loss. People don’t remember the tossing and turning throughout the night, so believe they had a flawless night’s sleep. So while pills may offer short-term relief, they almost always causes long-term problems.

What To Do When You Can’t Fall Asleep?
People need to practice good sleeping habits, such as using the bedroom only for sleep, keeping a sleep schedule, and going to bed when tired. If you lay in bed and cannot fall asleep, get up and don’t just lie there. Read a book or partake in another relaxing activity until you feel tired enough to try again.

To learn more tips and tricks for coaching customers on getting a good night’s sleep, sign up for Geek U.



About Lauren

Lauren Zimmerman has experience in social media, content creation, online community management, and evaluating analytics. She enjoys reading, watching movies, trying new restaurants, and spending time with family and friends. View all articles by Lauren
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