Thursday, March 16, 2006

Ambien ambivalence

So guess what... Ambien is feeling the heat. With recent reports about Ambien's effects on driving and night-time somnambulant binge eating, the insomniac is once again facing tough choices. What about Lunesta, Valium, Klonopin or the old stand-by Halcion? The truth is all of these drugs are associated with unwanted side-effects. I can remember my uncle Howie telling me that there's no such thing as a free lunch as he pilfered the lego set that came with my happy meal. Well, I learned that lesson then and it's still true. If you are going to trick your body into sleeping with powerful sedative-hypnotic drugs you can expect to pay the price. In order to truly return to natural sleep you need to be willing to make some changes. While pharmacological sleep aids can play an important role in treating insomnia, one should also consider running around outside for an hour or so per day. Both exposure to sunlight as well as exercise are excellent ways to help your body normalize its sleep schedule. So until the perfect sleep aid is released (Somnera now available!,) consider some exercise, or lock up your fridge...

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