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Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Specialty

Hospital Medicine

Advisor

Dr. Larry Herman, DMSc, MPA, PA-C, DFAAPA

Abstract

Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder in the general population and has largely been treated, until recently, with benzodiazepines and non-benzodiazepine hypnotics. These medications are intended to be used in conjunction with behavior modification and cognitive therapy but have become something of a public health problem as they are often over-prescribed. The search, then, to find safer, more effective medications for insomnia began. Much of the research has found that melatonin or the new dual orexin receptor antagonists may be safer and less habit-forming than hypnotics for long-term use for patients with chronic insomnia, but each with its own drawbacks. This review looks at the barriers to cognitive behavioral interventions for insomnia and the safety and efficacy of the most common adjunct pharmaceutical treatments to evaluate potential solutions for this pervasive societal problem.

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