OTC sleeping aides

coolmamaMarch 23, 2007

The other night I tried unisom and while I felt out of it and kinda weird,it did not help me sleep really. Same with Tylenol PM.I felt like I was on drugs in a spaced out way,but couldnt sleep any better (not a pleasant feeling)

I despretely need something to help me sleep though.My sleeping schedule is completely out of wack and I need to get it back on course.Since I dont have insurance I'd prefer not to have to pay 70 dollars for a visit and however much extra for a prescription though.

My husband snores all night so I'm usually on the uncomfortable couch and cant sleep.When he leaves for work I get in bed and finally get a few hours of sleep...But I hate This schedule~there are things I'd like to be doing instead of sleeping during the day.

Any suggestions? Besides making my husband move out,LOL

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Valerian Root helps (But don't smell it, it smells like an old gym sock). Yoga, meditation or Qi-gong befor sleeping might relax you help you to sleep. Restful music, childs lullaby's (Disney's lullaby's are great) are also very helpful. Ear plugs so you don't hear your husband snoring might help also. Try NOT sleeping so you're really tired, that may help you at night. Calming teas too help (camomille) IF you like teas..not me!


    Bookmark   March 23, 2007 at 5:54PM
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What do you think the main cause of your sleeplessness is? The snoring?

Would your husband consider trying something to control the snoring? Sometimes if people sleep on their sides instead of their backs it helps. Also, there are sprays for the back of the throat (his throat, not yours) available at pharmacies which can help. I saw one for sale on Amazon too. I have a feeling you could sleep if you had quieter surroundings.

Sleeping on the sofa is just miserable. I guess you don't have an extra bed or you'd be in it! There are those inflatable beds; I slept on one once and it wasn't too bad, but I wouldn't say it was good either.

I'm so sorry you're having trouble. It's so difficult when you cannot get enough sleep.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2007 at 9:39PM
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I've had lifelong insomnia, and finally found a dr. who will give me a prescription med. I'm taking 15 mg. restoril and still don't sleep through the night, but do go to sleep, which was my biggest problem. I hope you find some relief.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2007 at 11:37PM
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For the past year, maybe 18 months, I have the same problem. I have tried every OTC sleeping aid in addition to NyQuil, with no avail. My doctor prescribed Ambien (did nothing but make me get up at 3:00 a.m. to eat). I also tried 30 mg. Restoril, which was a little better, but not enough to make me want a refill. So now I save up my Clonopin (anti-seizure, anti-anxiety drug) and take a couple of them every night, instead of 1 three x a day. If I didn't have that, I probably would not be alive today.

Being unable to sleep with nothing to do to pass the time can drive a person completely crazy.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 12:45AM
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You could try melatonin -- it worked pretty well for me.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 12:51PM
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I second Melatonin.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 6:20PM
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Do yourself a favor and if you can, get a comfortable couch. I spend a lot of nights on our very comfy couch. It sleeps much better than my bed.

Seriously, if the problem is the snoring, I have heard of attaching a tennis ball or something on the back of his shirt to keep him from getting comfortable on his back. Has he been checked out to see if he has polyps in his nose or throat that would interfer with his breathing normally?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 8:12PM
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I use Valerian Root.It calms my nerves and i sleep good.
And it is not addictiv.
I buy it at GNC for $7.99 ( 100 pills)
My husband has a very stressful job and sometimes he
take one too before he goes to bed


    Bookmark   March 25, 2007 at 5:02PM
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wow! Thanks for all the responses! One of my main problems is the snoring.Even out in the living room I can still hear him,with the door closed! Everyone in his family snores,so maybe they all have a sinus issue or something.The sprays and the strips that go on your nose dont help.
Great advice though,everyone,I really appreciate it! I'm going to look into the valerian tea and I got a yoga dvd.I will also try melatonin because although I tried it before,I only took it one night.
I guess I'm just weird cuz over the counter stuff never seems to help.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2007 at 3:29AM
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Coolmama you don't need a sleep aid, your husband needs to see his doctor and get tested for sleep apnea. Most OTC sleep aids are nothing more than plain old Benadryl relabled as a sleep aid. It's very safe but can leave one feeling groggy. Recent studies of Melatonin showed no evidence that it works as anything more than a placebo. Valerian can be risky for a small number of the population who have chemical imbalances and/or take other drugs(especially antidepressants) which can interact with the herb with harmful results.

See your doctor for a safe sleep aid if you must but it is more important that your DH see his doc for a solution to his snoring problem. Sleep Apnea is life threatening.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 3:37AM
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My husband doesn't wake me up with the snore anymore. This little thing works!


    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 8:35AM
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Hi coolmama,
I've always been hesitant to try sleep aids, since I'm so sensitive to any meds. I remember quite awhile back, being put on Nortriptyline. I was totally unconscious the entire night......but still didn't feel rested in the morning.
I have sleep apnea, but have chosen not to use that mask. I'm a very light sleeper too. My husband was nice enough to move into my daughter's room (away at college), and that has helped alot. (Plus, the dog and cat when with him, and they bugged me alot).
Do you have anywhere else in the house you could put a twin bed, or a comfy couch? Because of my fibromyalgia, I've been sleeping on a couch for years, and its soooooo nice. Maybe you need to buy a better couch??
I don't like this suggestion myself, but how about ear plugs? Or how about getting one of those small sound machines that will drown out other noises? (I feel that to be safe, I need to hear all the noises).
Do you drink caffeine? I've found that it wakes me up early the next day, even if I drink it early in the morning, and it keeps me from sleeping deeply.
Don't do anything stimulating or eat anything after dinner.
I'm afraid I have to agree with the others, and think your husband should be checked out for his snoring problem. I've heard that its pretty common that this bothers the spouses almost more than the snorer.
Good luck.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 9:04AM
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I've decided to make the couch my permanent home,LOL. I tried sleeping with him last night and it was a big mistake. I was poking him and trying to roll him over all night long and today I'm exsausted!
I guess I should just buy a more comfy couch,although this one is only about 3 years old.

Earplugs dont help much by the way. I can still hear him snoring and I can hear my heartbeat and stuff which kinda weirds me out,LOL.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 4:31PM
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Melatonin never worked for me either, but NyQuil is wonderful! A lady at work said to drink warm milk and take a bath in a tub full of lettuce and hot water. Yeah, sure I'll be trying that one tonight... whatever! I have neighbors in the apartment above me who have a 3 year old that RUNS across their floor (my roof!) every night at 3 am until about 6 am. I have to sleep with ear plugs in, and I always have a fan blowing right in my face. It really helps me sleep. The air feels great and the white noise is wonderful. I use Macks silicone ear plugs which are like wax and you actually press them over the ear hole to the seal openning. It isn't perfect but it helps. I used to date a guy who snored, so I know that ear plugs really do NOT work against snoring. He tried the Breathe Right strips and the spray. Neither worked, so I usually went out and slept on the living room floor. Then he got offended and asked me why I came over if I was going to sleep in another room. I closed the bedroom door and could hear him through the wall. I stopped coming over! NOTHING is more annoying! Especially when tired! So glad my kitty doesn't snore! I used to go to the gym and I remember that if I excercised an hour before bed I slept like a baby. Others will tell you that it gets your adreniline going and makes it difficult to sleep... I guess it's different for everyone. One thing I do is if I can't sleep, I don't force myself. I have no shame in getting up at 3 AM and making a batch of chocolate chip cookies. Sometimes I even run to Wal-mart (it's right there) and do the shopping in the middle of the night. As much as I hate shopping there, the crowds aren't bad at night and it's pretty convenient. When I'm done with that I usually can sleep better. Another lady at works said that she smokes a cigarette before bed and that's how she goes to sleep. She doesn't smoke during the day and only doesn't it before bed. Said she can't sleep without it! I've never smoked before, but I thought nicotine was a stimulant. I told her that if she keeps that up she'll go to really sleep one day... for good. Good luck... hope you find some relief! How's that for a nice off topic rant!?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 7:40PM
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I can't stand to hear my heartbeat either, when I have earplugs in!
Can you put your less-comfortable couch in another room, and just bite the bullet and buy a new one? And really try them out in the store.......lay down on them and make sure you can comfortably fit end to end. Also, don't get detached back pillows, or you will be fighting with them all night.
Here's another option, although I don't know if you'd have space for it.....how about one of those inflatable mattresses? if you didnt' want to buy a new couch.
I feel sort of weird always sleeping on a couch.....but its comfy. What I ended up doing though was putting a big feather comforter on the seat of it, so my butt wouldn't constantly fall inbetween the pillows.
Is your house too small to get any farther away from your hubby? Is the bedroom door closed?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 8:56PM
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Hi coolmama, have you ever tried Benadryl? I take one capsule sometimes @ night to help me get to sleep & it really does help. About an hour after I take it I can't keep my eyes open ( i watch TV in bed) My husband doesn't snore so I can't relate to that, but sometimes i just toss & turn. Try Benadryl, it won't hurt you, and maybe it will help. When i take it i sleep straight thru...don't even wake up to go potty til morning.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2007 at 7:13PM
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I just recently found something that has been working wonderfully for me -- it's called Rescue Sleep. It's by the same people who make Rescue Remedy, which I've used for my cats to calm them down. I normally have a lot of trouble falling asleep, and then staying asleep -- I spend a lot of time thinking repetitive thoughts (work, bills, etc). This stuff really calms me down, and basically knocks me out. It's been a lifesaver; can't recommend it enough if you're having the same kind of sleep problems (repetitive thoughts/anxiety, not noise issues). Just thought I'd mention it, in case anyone else comes to this thread looking for sleep aids...

Never hurts to get checked out by the doctor if you're having sleeping problems, too. I found out I had thyroid issues when I went in complaining of insomnia last year.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 7:26PM
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Benadryl brand name for diphenhydramine, which is the active ingredient in most OTC sleep aids like Tylenol PM and Unisom. If those didn't work Benadryl won't either. And some people get groggy from it (and a few actually get hyper from it.) Google sleep hygeine. and get your husband in post-haste for an evaluation for sleep apnea.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 3:16PM
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Absolutely Edselpdx. Thanks for reiterating what I posted above. I am simply astounded at how much the sleep apnea issue is simply being ignored on this thread.

"I have sleep apnea, but have chosen not to use that mask".

Huh??? Do you folks realize sleep apnea may be a LIFE THREATENING CONDITION?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 7:07PM
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I think more of what coolmamma is saying is WHAT CAN SHE DO. You can't force someone to take a sleep test or to use their CPAP if they do decide to get one, so as the person who has to put up with the snoring, what can SHE do to get some sleep. And it is sad the person with possible sleep apnea is not concerned enough about their health to do something about it, but it is a fact of life. It took DH 20 years to finally get his sleep tested and find out he stops breathing 47 times an hour...yes 47 times. FINALLY he got a CPAP, not to get him use it consistantly would be nice. But we take things one step at a time.


    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 8:01PM
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Vickey, Coolmama never said her DH had a sleep apnea test nor did she say he wouldn't use the CPAP if he did. If you read her 2nd post she said:

"One of my main problems is the snoring.Even out in the living room I can still hear him,with the door closed! Everyone in his family snores,so maybe they all have a sinus issue or something.The sprays and the strips that go on your nose dont help".

Sounds like she is not even aware of the issues of sleep apnea. Even if she doesn't urge her DH to get tested and even though there will always be stubborn fools who won't go or won't use their machines doesn't mean other who read this thread won't learn something.

If anyone is a chronic heavy snorer or has a family member that snores it is very important that the snorer seek medical advice.

If they refuse to see a doctor or won't use their potentially life saving equipment then the next best thing would be to make sure you have a good life insurance policy paid up on the snorer.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2007 at 3:44AM
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Wildchild...very true..love the statement about the life insurance policy! Subtle but true.


    Bookmark   April 7, 2007 at 8:53AM
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My DH balked at using his for a long time too. He would try it for a night,take it off and not use it for several days before trying again. I finally convinced him to try it EVERY night for just ten minutes. If it bothered him he could take it off and I promised not to say a word. The second night he fell asleep with it and slept all night. There were a few nights it bothered him and he would take it off in the middle of the night. By the end of the month he realized how much better he felt during the day. Now he can't sleep well without it. (except on the sofa LOL) He even takes it with him on fishing trips.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2007 at 5:49PM
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Hey,everyone.The reason my husband hasnt been tested yet is because we dont currently have health insurance.I have heard the machines for sleep apnea also cost a whole lot of money.Otherwise,he doesnt have a problem with getting tested,or wearing the mask thing.He would just like for me to start sleeping with him again at night.Hopefully in about 2=3 months we will be able to get insurance.

As of now,I'am still up nearly all night every night. What started off because of his snoring,has turned into what I think is just a very messed up sleeping pattern. I actually feel energetic at night now and sleepy during the day. And because of that I'am often quite grouchy and withdrawn.
I'll fall asleep early from exsaustion some nights,but then I wake up and am WIDE awake for the rest of the night.
Anyways,who do you see about sleep apnea? A regular doctor?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 5:08AM
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You need to see a sleep disorder specialist and have an all night sleep study done.

Sleep apnea is a dangerous disorder that can raise blood pressure, put severe strain on the heart, lead to heart attacks and strokes.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 2:56PM
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