But more commonly, these hypnotic drugs are limited to use as anesthesia. Newer medications help reduce the time it takes to fall asleep.
Some of these sleep-inducing drugs, which bind to the same receptors in the brain as do benzodiazepines, include Lunesta, Sonata, and Ambien.
Sleep driving, which is driving while not fully awake, is another serious sleeping pill side effect.
Though rare, parasomnias are difficult to detect once the medication takes effect.
Another sleep aid, called Rozerem, acts differently from other sleep medicines by affecting a brain hormone called melatonin, and is not habit-forming.
Belsomra is another unique sleep aid that affects a brain chemical called orexin, and is not addictive or habit-forming.
It's important to talk to your doctor at the first sign of these serious side effects, including: In addition, a serious -- even deadly -- side effect of any medicine someone is allergic to is anaphylaxis. Another possible effect is angioedema, which is severe facial swelling.
Again, discuss these possibilities with your doctor if you are at risk of allergic reactions.
Sleeping pill labels warn against using alcohol while taking the drug.
Also, you should not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while taking some sleeping pills.
They also increase drowsiness and help people sleep.