With the raging allergies we get in L.A., many people turn to decongestants to help them breathe better. These drugs will often cause drowsiness during the day, but that can seem like a desirable side effect at night. And many doctors will recommend the same decongestants for mild cases of insomnia.
The most common ingredient is Diphenhydramine, commonly known as Benadryl. This is probably one of the standbys in many medicine cabinets, for any kind of congestion or allergic response, including sleep issues.
But is it safe? Past studies have raised concern, and described mild cognitive impairment and delirium as side effects. But a new study from the University of Washington determined that people who chronically take Benadryl-containing medications have an increased risk for dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Over seven years, 23% of the subjects developed Alzheimer’s, although none had it at the beginning of the study. The risk was 77% higher in the subjects who took Benadryl-type medications, known as anticholinergic drugs. The findings were part of the ACT or Adult Changes in Thought study, which looked at cognitive changes over the long-term. http://holisticprimarycare.net/topics/topics-h-n/healthy-aging/1768-anticholinergic-meds-bad-news-for-aging-brains.html
This is a lesson that ALL medications have back doors, and may produce side effect with serious long-term consequences. We don’t always know all the risks for years after the drug has been on the market. Your safest policy is to always seek the natural treatments that support and safeguard your health, relieving symptoms because there is genuine improvement, and not a masking effect.
There are safer alternatives that do not put you at risk for Alzheimer’s or Dementia. Many of our patients have gotten relief taking Allerplex for decongestant purposes. It also seems to help other types of inflammation that lead to insomnia.
Many people do not realize that their sleep problems are stemming from congestion. It is not always obvious that sinuses are blocked, if the condition is chronic and has built up over time. Taking Allerplex, Sinu Pro sinus probiotic, or Albizia herbal supplement, can relieve congestion and make for a more restful night.
Let us help you minimize your risks and maximize your health with the right natural medicine. Email me if you have questions or call the office to order. 818-562-1400.
The safest sleep is the most restful sleep, in the long run.