By Angela Young

Insomnia and other sleep disorders are common in the United States. Lunesta is one of many sleep medications that doctors prescribe to patients suffering from insomnia. The root cause of insomnia can be one of many different issues and varies from person to person. One common reason people suffer from insomnia is due to an imbalance of chemicals in the brain.

Lunesta is a sedative that helps with this imbalance. Some physicians refer to Lunesta as a hypnotic medication. Lunesta is a sedative and the sedative effect is what helps people with insomnia get to sleep when they are having difficulty doing so.

Lunesta Warnings and Precautions

Patients should tell their physician or pharmacist of their complete medical history particularly if there is a history of liver or lung diseases, mood or mental issues, personal or family history of regular abuse of drugs, alcohol or other substances. Patients with certain medical conditions should not use Lunesta. Patients with a history of intoxication from medications that depress the nervous system or breathing should discuss their use of Lunesta with their doctor.

Patients should not drive, operate heavy machinery or participate in any activities that require alertness until the patient is sure they can perform the activities safely. Patients should avoid alcoholic beverages while taking Lunesta.

Elderly patients are more likely to experience side effects of Lunesta such as drowsiness and dry mouth.

Women who are pregnant should discuss their use of Lunesta with their physician. Woman taking Lunesta near the time of delivery may have newborns that experience undesirable side effects such as excessive drowsiness. Most physicians do not recommend breastfeeding while taking Lunesta as the drug may pass to the infant through the breast milk.

Lunesta Uses

Lunesta is a medication physicians commonly prescribe to treat symptoms of insomnia. Lunesta helps patients to fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer and helps patients get a better night's sleep overall.

Lunesta Side Effects

Common side effects of Lunesta include drowsiness, dizziness, headache, unpleasant taste, and dry mouth. Patients should stand slowly when rising from lying down or a seated position to lower the risk of falling.

Lunesta can cause drowsiness during the day. Patients experiencing daytime drowsiness should discuss it with their physician, as the patient's dose of Lunesta may need adjustment.

Serious side effects of Lunesta include mood changes such as depression or hallucinations, memory issues, loss of coordination and signs of infection that include fever, chills and sore throat.

Although it is rare, some patients taking Lunesta report instances of sleep driving or driving while not fully awake, sleep walking, preparing and eating food while not fully awake, making phone calls and having sex all while not fully awake. Most patients having this behavior do not remember the activities. Patients experiencing these Lunesta side effects should contact their physician immediately.

Rarely allergic reactions occur. Allergic reactions to Lunesta include rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness and trouble breathing.

Lunesta Interactions

Patients should tell their doctor or pharmacist of any and all medications they are currently taking including herbal supplements and over the counter medications to help avoid the risks of dangerous drug interactions. Patients taking sodium oxybate should not take Lunesta. In particular patients should notify their doctor or pharmacist if they are taking medications that affect the enzymes that remove Lunesta from the body or if they are taking anti seizure medications, muscle relaxers, narcotic pain relievers, any psychiatric medications or tranquilizers.

Lunesta Overdose

Overdose of Lunesta is possible and if an overdose of Lunesta occurs, you should seek medical attention immediately. Symptoms of Lunesta overdose include confusion, fainting or a very deep sleep from which it is not possible to wake the patient taking the Lunesta prescription.

lunesta patients sleep medications effects side insomnia include drowsiness

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