Welcome to our A to Z of sleep aid medicine, pain relief medicine and anxiety tablets section, in which we outline the UK's relationship with sleeplessness, its many causes including anxiety and pain, and how to cure insomnia using sleep aid medicine, anti-anxiety tablets, or pain relief pills.
Studies show that the term ‘sleep aid’ is currently searched online in the UK over 8,000 times per month; and when this is compared with just 400 monthly searches back in 2012, it is a clear indication of the increased cases of insomnia in the UK, the increased popularity of sleep aids in the UK, and the increased use of online pharmacies by UK patients.
The sleeping pill is among some of the first medicines ever discovered. In the middle ages in the UK mixtures containing alcohol and herbs known as drowsy syrups were commonly used as a sleep aid.
Nowadays the importance of getting a healthy sleep is well documented. Insomnia is closely associated with a reduced quality of life and mental health problems such as anxiety and depression among its victims.
All this has kept chemists and pharmaceutical companies on their toes searching for an insomnia cure for centuries, and nowadays the terms ‘insomnia treatment' and ‘how to cure insomnia' have also become increasingly popular online searches.
An insomnia cure often comes in the form of a lifestyle change, such as a better diet or more regular exercise, and sleep education.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy, or CBT for insomnia (often called CBT-I) is a form of sleep hygiene training, or sleep education, that should be explored before turning to medication to cure insomnia.
Cognitive behavioral therapy helps patients develop habits such as stimulus control, relaxation training, sleep restriction and cognitive control, which when practiced can help promote a healthy sleep.
For example, patients are taught that the bedroom is only for sleep and sex; and that all other activities such as watching TV or YouTube videos, checking Twitter or Facebook, and even reading a book should be avoided.
Patients are also taught to restrict the time spent trying to get to sleep by only going to bed when they feel very sleepy. If patients are not asleep after around 20 minutes they should get out of bed and do something relaxing – only returning to bed once they feel sleepy.
By learning about good sleeping habits and by practicing them on a regular basis, patients stand a good chance of getting a better night's sleep. The only downside with CBT-I and lifestyle changes is that the results can often take a long time to become noticeable.
When patients are unable to make lifestyle changes due to an underlying medical condition, or if they are unable to attend CBT-I sleep hygiene training sessions due to work commitments, then sleep aids can help patients effectively treat and cure insomnia in a short time.
Over the years the go to sleep aid for patients has changed drastically and it is quite an interesting journey.
Chloral hydrate is classed as a hypnotic and was first synthesized by a German chemist in 1832, then given to patients as one of the first ever sleep aids.
Chloral Hydrate Oral Solution, also known by the popular brand names Welldorm Elixir and Triclofos, are central nervous system depressants that act quickly, and make patients feel sleepy and fall asleep in around 30 minutes.
Triclofos and Welldorm tablets contain the active ingredient chloral betaine which the body converts to chloral hydrate. This medicine should be taken about 30 min before bed with water and should not be mixed with alcohol.
This powerful hypnotic medicine still has some clinical uses in the UK but it is not considered a first-choice sleep aid nowadays, due to the negative side effects such as drowsiness the next day, and a high chance of developing dependence on the medicine.
Bromides (sodium bromide [NaBr] and potassium bromide [KBr]), come from the anticonvulsant class of medication, and were first invented in 1857 by Charles Locock an English chemist and used to treat epilepsy.
In 1864 a German doctor called Otto Behrend discovered that potassium bromide was an effective sedative leading to its popular use as a sleep aid at the end of the nineteenth century.
In a book called Without a Paddle: Tales from the Tyne and Rivers Far Away, published by David Moffatt in 2016, it states that generations of British servicemen believed that bromide was added to tea and porridge in the NAFFI in order to damp down the troops' sexual urges!
As the exact mechanism of action for this medication is still uncertain, and due to the high chance of patients developing dangerous side effects such as bromide toxicosis, this medication is very rarely prescribed by doctors or pharmacists to treat insomnia nowadays.
Barbiturates are a sedative drug that slows down the central nervous system (CNS) and are often called barbs and sleepers.
It is a synthetic medication, and it used to be widely prescribed by doctors and pharmacists as a sleep aid for the treatment of insomnia, as well as an anti-anxiety medication and a medication for depression.
Barbiturates were originally advertised as being completely safe for extended use and without any negative side effects or potential for abuse.
This was unfortunately not the case as in 1966, barbiturates became a popular street drug and the UK seen 16 million barbiturate prescriptions diverted from the medical supply chain and sold on the black market.
When estimated to be the cause of 27,000 barbiturate overdoses in the UK between 1959 and 1974, doctors started to prescribe tranquilizers, or benzodiazepines, as a sleep aid instead.
Benzodiazepines, that remain widely used today, were first discovered accidently by Leo Sternbach, an Austrian chemist in 1955, and then developed by the Swiss pharmaceutical company Hoffmann–La Roche, into the well-known diazepam (Valium) in 1963.
Benzodiazepines, or "Benzos", are much safer and less addictive than barbiturates. Benzodiazepines such as diazepam (Valium) have sedative, hypnotic, anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, and muscle relaxant properties making them useful for doctors treating patients with anxiety, insomnia, muscle spasms and even seizures.
While benzodiazepines provide patients with a sedative, calming effect that makes them feel sleepy and fall asleep, they can be highly addictive due to their habit-forming chemical properties.
Naturally, patients will develop a tolerance for benzodiazepines, and as such, over time patients will require a higher dose of benzodiazepine medication to experience the same calming effects.
The medical term to describe the abuse of benzodiazepines is called 'hypnotic, sedative, or anxiolytic use disorder'. Patients are advised to follow the usage and dosage instructions on the patient information leaflet carefully to lessen the chances of experiencing the physical and psychological symptoms of benzodiazepine abuse.
Non-benzodiazepines are similar to benzodiazepines and considered a much safer treatment option especially among the elderly (patients 65+ years old).
This is because 'Z drugs', or 'Z hypnotics', have a shorter half-life, and leave the body much faster than benzodiazepines, and patients are less likely to experience the side effect of daytime drowsiness.
Top Three Non-benzodiazepines for Insomnia:
|Imidazopyridines:||includes the well-known medication Zolpidem (also known as Ambien / Stilnoct)|
|Pyrazolopyrimidines:||includes the well-known medication Zaleplon (also known as Sonata)|
|Cyclopyrrolones:||includes the well-known medications Eszopiclone (also known as Lunesta) and Zopiclone (also known as Imovane / Zimovane).|
While non-benzodiazepines (or Z drugs) and benzodiazepines are similar in terms of benefits and risk of side-effects, they have a completely different chemical structure and as already mentioned they leave the body much faster.
Non-benzodiazepine drugs are generally only used as a sleep aid to treat insomnia, whereas benzos are useful for treating a wider range of illnesses such as anxiety, muscle spasms, seizures and alcohol withdrawal, as well as some various types of insomnia.
Z drugs, are specially designed to make patients feel sleepy and fall asleep quickly, in order to help them correct their sleeping pattern in a short time. These medications, with the exception of Eszopiclone, can be addictive and should not be taken for more than 2 – 4 weeks.
Are you a UK or European citizen that is suffering from insomnia, pain or anxiety? Are you sick of tossing and turning at night? Are you searching for the best sleep aids to cure insomnia?
If you live in almost any European country, including but not limited to France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Poland, Sweden, the Netherlands & the UK, then you can order from our website hassle free.
Patients in the can buy sleep aid medication, pain relief medication and anti-anxiety medication from our online pharmacy without a doctor's prescription.
If you already know what medication you need for your treatment then feel free to browse product list, select the quantity of medication that you require, and complete payment for your goods.
All orders are sent in plain, padded envelopes using a recorded delivery service. Orders are sent for packing and dispatch the next day on weekdays.
Final delivery to UK wide addresses, and the Republic of Ireland, generally takes no longer than 3 – 5 working days.
If you are unsure which medication would be best for your treatment, or if you have any questions about our products or website, we have customer service agents available 24/7 to guide and assist - feel free to start a live chat or send us an email any time, day or night.
When insomnia is caused by an existing medical condition such as chronic pain then a doctor may prescribe pain relief medication, to dull the pain and allow patients to feel more relaxed and more comfortable.
The most common complaints of pain that prevent patients from getting a good night's sleep include lower back pain, shoulder pain, knee pain, and more recently armpit pain.
In many cases chronic pain such as back pain, can prevent patients from getting a healthy night's sleep for long periods of time. When patients are unable to sleep due to pain for a prolonged period, doctors may prescribe medicine for fast, effective pain relief.
Doctors will generally also be able to offer advice on the different exercises that can help with certain forms of pain, along with any herbal remedies that can be useful, or they may recommend a good old-fashioned soak in the tub.
When you have exhausted all avenues and simply need pain relief medicine to help you sleep then our painkillers section will be useful for you.
In some cases, when insomnia is caused by negative thoughts filled with worry and stress, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety should be explored. Patients that suffer from panic attacks and insomnia due to anxiety can opt for therapy to help them identify, challenge and replace negative thoughts.
In meetings that can be conducted in groups or a one-on-one basis, a therapist will teach patients how to overcome negative thoughts and promote positive thoughts. Unlike anti-anxiety tablets, anxiety therapy can help patients identify the underlying causes of worry, stress or fear.
In cases where patients experience crippling panic attacks that begin with little or no warning, anxiety tablets can come in handy.
Anti-anxiety tablets are specially designed to provide patients with a calming feeling that can be very useful when experiencing insomnia due to anxiety.
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