I seldom have a sleepless night but remember an occasion when I had difficulty falling asleep. Being awake when I should have been asleep was very annoying. Since I worked at night, the problem may have been too much sunlight coming in through the window when it was time to go to bed. In the winter time, the light isn’t bright enough to be bothersome.
Light influences the production of a hormone that regulates when we get that sleepy feeling. Too much light tends to make us wake up. Unfortunately, light is only one of the factors that influence our ability to fall asleep (1). Stress, caffeine use and a host of other factors can also contribute to a case of insomnia.
Insomnia can be described as the inability to fall asleep, the inability to stay asleep or waking up too early. There are three categories of insomnia. Chronic insomnia is long term and happens most nights for a month or longer. Two to four weeks of poor sleep constitutes short-term insomnia and the transient form of insomnia lasts but a few nights.
Benzodiazepines could be prescribed to help one fall asleep on a short-term basis. Long term use of sleeping pills can become addictive.
Lorazepam is a benzodiazepine used for insomnia and anxiety relief. Lorazepam also goes by the names Lorazepam Intensol, Loraz, Alzapam and Ativan. In Canada, you might find the names Nu-Loraz, Novo-Lorazepam or Apo-Lorazepam.
There are a number of side effects that a Lorazepam user might wish to be aware of. Among them are clumsiness, drowsiness, and dizziness. Other possible side effects include decreased sex drive, difficulty urinating, nausea, constipation or diarrhea. There are more potential side effects, ask your pharmacist for more information.
The human body can be viewed as a system made up of other systems. There are many systems that work together to make up the miracle of human life. Whenever introducing an external force to one of these systems in the form of a drug, the potential to interfere with or cause problems in other systems always exists. For this reason, you should work closely with your doctor or pharmacist when taking any medication. If you are fortunate to have a doctor who is willing to entertain alternatives, this will broaden the arena of options that are available to you 2, (3).
Keep in mind that many drugs are synthetic imitations of substances that occur in nature. Sometimes a doctor who is willing to utilize these natural alternatives can be of great benefit.