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April 01, 2012

Obese people are advised against taking sleeping pills!

A new study suggests that obese people should not take sleeping pills as they are likely to meet death by intake of sleeping pills on regular basis. Even though, the obese patients are prone to insomnia, in most cases they are advised by the physicians to take sleeping pills. However, this new study said that the intake of pills may cause death to the patients.

This study was presented at the annual American Heart Association's Epidemiology & Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity & Metabolism 2012 Scientific Sessions in San Diego. The study shows that one person among the obese patients dies each year in every 100 people who were prescribed sleeping pills. Hence it becomes essential to know the link between taking of sleeping pill & death risk in the obese patients. In this nexus, Dr. Langer, a family physician & epidemiologist with the Jackson Hole Center for Preventive Medicine in Jackson said, "The associations between sleeping pills & increased mortality were present, & relatively stronger, even in people aged 18 to 54."

Daniel Kripke, M.D., a psychiatrist with Scripps Clinic's Viterbi Family Sleep Center in San Diego & co-author of the original study also confirmed the fact that obese patients appear particularly vulnerable, perhaps through interaction with sleep apnea.

The study was published online in the journal BMJ Open last February. It was conducted on almost 40,000 patients. It showed that death is more frequent in men who take sleeping pills as compared to women. The ratio is 1:2 for woman & man respectively. The study further revealed that eight of the most commonly used hypnotic drugs zolpidem & temazepam are associated with increased risk of death.

In an attempt to provide an alternative to sleeping pills, Lawrence E. Kline, D.O., medical director of the Viterbi Family Sleep Center advised that patients can avail a good sleep by developing habits such as sticking to a sleep schedule, creating a bedtime ritual & keeping the bedroom comfortable & favorable to sleep.

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