Almost 9 Million Americans Rely on Prescription Pills to Fall Asleep

Illustration for article titled Almost 9 Million Americans Rely on Prescription Pills to Fall Asleep

I am pretty much a gold-medal-level sleeper—I've slept through earthquakes, smoke alarms, wolf fights (PROBABLY, HOW WOULD I KNOW?)—so I don't have any prescription supplements to usher me off to snoozeville. But once in a while, when one crosses my path, oh my god is that velvety blackness ever awesome. So it doesn't surprise me at all that nearly 9 million Americans report having taken a prescription sleep aid within the past month. That's a lot of ghost-butterflies on a lot of faces.

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Americans—especially women—are apparently sleeping like shit.

Between 2005 and 2010, about 4 percent of U.S. adults aged 20 and older popped popular prescription drugs such as Lunesta and Ambien in the previous month, say government researchers who tracked 17,000 people to their homes and peered into their medicine cabinets.

...That may reflect the strain of modern life, with people, particularly women, trying to juggle the growing demands of work and family, only to find it takes a toll on their sleep patterns, said Dr. Roneil Malkani, an assistant professor of neurology at the Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

“We know that insomnia is more prevalent among women than men,” he said. “I think that there are people who don’t get enough sleep because they have responsibilities and jobs and expectations.”

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Ugh, thanks for reminding me, sleeping pill article. BRB, Zzzquil shopping.

Images via Getty.

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DISCUSSION

Does melatonin count? Cause if so, pretty much every night. I will never get on the Ambien train, thanks dad, for your propensity toward abusing prescription drugs and RUINING Ambien for me with your terrifying waking dreams. Nana is not coming over for grilled cheese, she's been dead for 40 years!