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Although older people are more likely than younger people to complain of sleep disturbances, studies
have shown that falling asleep does not increase with age, and total sleep time decreases very little, if at
Insomnia most often take place in older people who go to bed early and, more over, often sleep during the
day. Thus, experts conclude that you need to give up day time sleep instead of treating the night time
insomnia caused by it.
At the same time, excessive or erroneous prescription of sleeping tablets leads to the fact that about half a
million people take “tablets for sleep” every day for at least a month, putting their health at risk for no
Another danger is the excessive dosage. A study of dosages of sleeping pills showed that the majority
(almost 80%) of people 65 years and older take an increased dose of flurazepam (350 mg), although a
dose of up to 15 mg is recommended for older people. Commenting on the specifics of the use of
hypnotic drugs in the elderly, doctors say: “Regular and prolonged use of this group of drugs is of
particular concern, which has in itself a dubious therapeutic efficacy and leads to an increased risk of the
development of pessimistic effects from taking sleeping pills”.
Remember: sleeping tablets should be taken only in a limited number of cases, the ever-increasing
frequency of prescribing these medicines to older people, especially for long periods of time, is a serious
threat to their health.
The most common side effects of taking sleeping pills include:
development of amnesia,
increased risk of accidents,
deterioration of motor coordination and learning ability,
and even death.
This is especially likely when taking these medicines with alcohol or other drugs that depress the central
Effects of admission
The consequences of these studies show that do not depend on age. However, the body of the elderly
can not remove such drugs as quickly as in young people. Older people are also more careful to the
side effects of drugs. However, despite the evidence of this fact, people who are sleeping tablets in older
age are prescribed more often than people of middle age and young man. More over, they usually get a
standard rather than reduced dose, which greatly increases the risk of side effects. Yes, and they take
such drugs for much longer session of time. Therefore, it is hard to call the fact that older people are
more at risk of negative effects, and the severity of such effects is more.
Old age is not the cause
One of the most serious obstacles to identifying and overcoming such problems is that they are mainly
associated with the aging process, and not with taking medications. The deterioration of thinking
processes, amnesia or loss of coordination in young people while taking the drug is perceived as an
alarm signal. If the same symptoms appear in the elderly, especially if they develop slowly enough, then
the doctor’s reaction often comes down to remark: “Well, he she, has already grown old, what did you
expect?”. And endorse continuing the course of previously prescribed drug therapy, which
slowly affects the weakened health of the elderly, aggravating all the dismissive side effects from
taking the sleeping pills themselves.
Breathing and lungs
The second most important and serious problem when taken benzodiazepines is respiratory depression.
Older people often experience sleep apnea during sleep, when breathing stops temporarily after falling
asleep. And if such people take sleeping pills, holding their breath in a dream becomes less controlled
and longer. And the probability of death increases, ultimately, several times.
Another possibility associated with the respiratory system is lung disease. People with such diseases should
not use benzodiazepines. These drugs inhibit the respiratory center, which in pulmonary diseases can be
life-threatening. Avoid taking sleeping pills and tranquilizers especially recommended for asthmatics.