Portland Naturopath: Over-the-Counter Sleep Medications Not Effective Says FDA

pills

The topic of sleep and the lack thereof is quite the hot topic. Studies found that consistently sleeping for fewer than six hours each night may cause an early death. Ironically, too much sleep can also cause problems.

New research analyzed data from 16 separate studies. People who habitually slept for less than six hours a night were 12 percent more likely to experience premature death.

While people who consistently sleep more than nine hours a night can also be more likely to die early, the oversleeping may be an indicator of underlying ailments rather than a cause.

According to the British newspaper The Guardian:

“The study noted that previous research into lack of sleep had shown it was associated with ailments including heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes.”

Its no surprise that many people suffering from poor sleep turn to sleeping pills to get relief. Unfortunately, it now appears that reaching for a sleeping pill in order to get a good night’s sleep is pointless.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has had data for 15 years which shows that over-the-counter sleep medications such as Tylenol PM and Excedrin PM don’t offer any significant benefit to patients. It is not unclear why the FDA took 15 years to evaluate the data.

According to CBC News:

“An analysis of the data suggests the combination products are statistically better than a placebo but not by much.”

Furthermore it does not appear likely that any action will be taken against the makers of these medications regarding advertised claims which have now been proven untrue.

Sources:

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It’s a sad state of affairs when drug companies have such a strong influence on the medical system that they get to dictate how a physician practices medicine, but when they offer such blatant financial incentives, you have wonder if you are seeing a doctor or a drug salesperson.

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Acetaminophen and Increased Asthma Risk in Children

Hello ThereNov. 5, 2009 — The popular pain and fever reliever acetaminophen may be linked with an increased risk of asthma in children and adults, according to a new research review of previously published studies by Canadian researchers.

But the manufacturer of Tylenol — the brand-name version of acetaminophen — says the painkiller has a well-established safety record.

Researchers pooled the results of 19 clinical studies, with a total of more than 425,000 participants, to see if the association between the pain reliever use and asthma (and wheezing in children) held up. It did.

(more…)

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