View Full Version : benadryl for sleep

03-19-2009, 02:36 PM
I been taking 25mg of benadryl at night for help me to sleep. its been working and I think I is much metter the other sleep aids like ambien and such.. any thoughts on long term use?

Angel Oliver
03-19-2009, 02:46 PM
Oh really.....it worked? I may try it.I'll try anything once. I dont usually sleep till between 3am and 8am on a bad day. So ive nothing to loose. How long you tried it for? xxx

03-19-2009, 02:48 PM
for about 3 month and helps me with allergies.

03-19-2009, 03:42 PM
Hi, I have been taking Benedryl for sleep atleast 2 years now. I like it. I switched to Tylenol PM which is Tylenol and Benedryl, because it takes care of aches that keep me up on top other junk. The only thing I can tell you is I have to take 2 now, where in beginning I took 1, and also when I don't take it I can tell! Hope I helped. Kathy

sick n tired
03-19-2009, 03:48 PM
Sometimes when I don't have something I need to do early the next morning, like drive somewhere or keep my Lexie, I take Nyquil...it works wonders. Benidryl might be a better idea. Oh course, I will have to ask my doctor.
I have flexerill, but the only thing that does is make me groggy most of the next day, but doesn't do anything for the pain.:nah:

Angel Oliver
03-19-2009, 04:20 PM
Good to know.Im back on Nitrazepam and scared of getting addicted so dont take em everyday.Maybe this is another solution.I will look into it.


03-19-2009, 04:31 PM
I told my PCP that I was taking my buddy Vick to bed with me every night to help me sleep (get your mind out of the gutter---I'm talking Nyquil) and she said Benadryl has the same active ingredient as the Nyquil. She told me I need to be careful though because they both have something in them that contributes to making the mouth drier :(

Drier mouth v no sleep--not even something I have to consider because I can't function without sleep.

Angel Oliver
03-19-2009, 04:57 PM
:shocked: ok :) its out of the gutter now:laugh:

03-19-2009, 05:20 PM
I've been taking benadryl to help me sleep for many years. I add it to my pill box just like a regular rx. If I feel sleepy before 9-10 pm I don't take it. It also seems to help my lupus. I am the side effects queen, if it has a side effect from long term use it has never bothered me.

I have tried other meds for sleep like trazadone that left me groggy in the morning. I didn't like it.

03-19-2009, 06:37 PM
The active ingredient in Benadryl is called Diphenhydramine Hydrochloride. It's a relatively safe drug to take, even on a long term basis. It's non-addictive, and is tolerated well by most people. Although I don't take it to help me sleep, (nothing helps me sleep very well) I do take it for allergies and runny nose. As it was originally designed to be an antihistamine, is does have a drying effect, although mild. Tylenol PM contains the DH as well as Acetominafen. You need to be careful that you don't take other medications containing Acetominafen while taking Tylenol PM, as an overdose can cause liver damage. Of course, be sure to ask your Dr. if the Benadryl is OK for you to take, and will not have a bad interaction with other meds you may be taking.

03-19-2009, 06:41 PM
hi Rob
It is good you back are feeling better.
According to doctor it is safest drug to take. I also noticed one thing if you cannot sleep well, ur lupus will flare up somewhat. It is better to take something than be tired from lack of sleep. I found it helped me bit in lupus.

03-19-2009, 09:19 PM
I have taken benadryl 50mg to sleep for awhile now. 25mg doesn't work for sleep for me anymore but it does help my hives. So 50 is what I take for sleep. It's cheaper to buy generic benadryl than to buy any of the sleep aids in stores usually, just check the ingredients. Diphenhydramine is the active ingredient. I was so irked the other day at the store I saw benadryl being sold for a little over 2 dollars, the generic stuff and then tylenol brand sells something called simply sleep which is like tylenol pm but without the tylenol part and that is simple diphenhydramine, the same stuff but double the cost. GRRRR It was like 5 bucks. But you pay for the name brand too I suppose.

Anyway if I'm not making sense its b/c I took my 50 mg of benadryl a little over an hour ago LOL so I'm probably tired! :):)

It does help me fall asleep but I don't stay asleep very well, not sure what to do about that. Good luck!

Mary Jane
03-19-2009, 11:37 PM
I also take benedryl to help me sleep. I have dry itchy skin, and so it works for both. My 9 year old has dry skin like me, and the doctor said it was ok for her to take it too. It is true that it can make the dry mouth and eyes worse...but you just have to decide if it's worth it...a good nights sleep is worth a lot to me.:sleepy::sleepy::sleepy:

Mary Jane
03-19-2009, 11:38 PM
speaking of sleep...I'm going to bed now...good night:sleepy::sleepy::sleepy:

03-20-2009, 06:39 PM
Hi friends! It's your X-Pharmaceutical rep here...I sold Ambien for years so I am totally biased. But I also have taken diphenhyramine to sleep :laugh:

The only difference that makes any matter for us is the half life of these drugs. When you take something to sleep you want to not have it lingering in your system the next day to make you groggy.

That's why I am partial to Ambien because the half life is 2 hours or so. So by the time you wake up you have had in theory 4 half lives to get it out of your system. (In 2 hours say of the 10mg dose, 5mg is gone, then 2 hours later you only have 2.5mg left, then 2 hours later you have 1.25mg left, then 2 more hours later and you are waking up with .75mg left)

Diphenydramine's half life is about 18 hours. So when you wake up, you will still have another 10 hours before even half of your dose is out of your system. And by the time you head to bed the next night, you still haven't cleared another half life. Probably why some of us find that we need more than 25 mg after a while because the body might be building up a slight tolerance to it, etc.

But the doctors are right it is a safe drug to use in terms of side effects, etc. And with lupus, we all have some rashy hives etc. to get rid of now and then, so it's a two-fer!

sick n tired
03-21-2009, 12:05 AM
That was really interesting, jenniferlynn...I never heard of half lives of medicines...I am going to read that post again tomorrow after I have been able to sleep (it is 2 am right now and the fog is reall thick right now)

I wish I had something for sleep but I hate to take anything this late because I will be sleepy most of tomorrow morning into the afternoon...I guess you were explaining that jennifer...:cute:

03-21-2009, 07:06 AM
Hi Jenniferlynn,

You sure know your stuff! I knew what "half life" meant in the context of radioactive elements, but had no idea about about the half life of drugs in the body until my Dr. explained it to me. I have terrible bouts of insomnia. I have tried Ambien, and it didn't work well for me. Benadryl works well for me as an antihistamine, but it doesn't help me sleep. What other drugs are out there that could possibly help me? Thanks.


03-21-2009, 10:59 AM
Have you tried valerian or other natural stuff?

03-21-2009, 11:20 AM
hi jenniferlynn,

thanks for the excellent description....this gives us more knowledge when talking with dr. about our care.

03-22-2009, 05:39 AM
No problem guys and gals! I was in the pharmaceutical industry for many years and sold over 15 different drugs...sleep, cholesterol, blood pressure, you name it!!

A drug called Sonata is good for helping to get to sleep, but the half life is even shorter than Ambien so its not a good one if you are someone who wakes up at 3am.

Another one out there is Lunesta. Lunesta's half life is a little longer than Ambien, I believe.

Now, I would ask did you try Ambien or Ambien CR? The newer one CR has a second layer that releases 3 hours after the first, so it should in theory keep you asleep longer.

Also - here is some fun trivia. Ambien stands for AM BIEN or Good Morning!!

03-22-2009, 08:55 AM
what a surprise, i did not expect a bunch of lab researchers as being creative. i will always smile now when i hear am bien.... and good morning back to you jenniferlynn.

03-25-2009, 05:53 PM
That is great to know! I knew about half life of meds b/c of nursing school but never thought to read what it was for benadryl! That explains a lot. I wonder if my rheumy would prescribe something for me? She is waiting to do any more stuff until I see the endo for my thyroid level but they can't see me til late next month. Hmmmmmm...I'm gonna try calling her this week and leaving a message and asking about ambien or something.

I have a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep.

03-26-2009, 03:21 PM
Hi everyone! I opt for melatonin, its naturally created by our bodies and with lupus our bodies arent producing like it should (DHEA too!). And with ageing on some of our sides its a double wammy! LOL I take it along with my muscle relaxer from the rheumy, stay out og the light so the melatonin can take its full effect and BAM, Im out like a light! It works for me anyways , hope it can for others! I go the natural route when i can and i have found it to help A LOT! Replace what our bodies produce naturally and it does make a difference!

03-26-2009, 05:09 PM
My doctor put me on visteril, it is the same as benadryl I take 2 at bed time, but it doesnt work well for me.So when im really desperant I take a phenagan which my Dr put me on to stop the vomiting.

03-26-2009, 05:26 PM
hi jeannette,

can you give us more information of melatonin. i am interested in natural aides, but don't know a lot about the options. thanks

03-26-2009, 06:48 PM
Hi Phyllis! Melatonin is something our bodies produce naturally at night that helps us to sleep. It nosedives as we get older or have an illness. It can only aid in our sleep at night if we remove ourselves from bright light, the bright light tells our bodies its not time for sleep so it wont be released. I take 3 mg at night about a half hr before i plan on sleeping but like i said it works its best when i have no lights on and im not in front of the TV. I love it but that doesnt mean it will work for everyone im sure. I will get a SOLID 8 hrs with it. Give the DHEA a try too. It helps to rejuvinate cells in our bodies that deteriorate as we age or from illnesses. Its released naturally from our bodies in the morning hrs so i take it around 9 or 10. From the age 35 to 50 its recommended to take 25mg, after age50 its 50 mg. Its replaceing what is supposed to NATURALLY be released in our bodies. I hope some people can get some benefits from the natural route as well as meds from their drs.

03-27-2009, 04:43 AM
thanks jeannette,

i have received conficting information about DHEA.

i look forward to learning about natural options from you

03-27-2009, 04:05 PM
YOure very welcome Phyllis! I know there are alot of opinions on DHEA, i guess people can give it a try and you pay attention to what you feel like afterwards, chart it, and if you dont feel "right" then stop it. Ive had some trial and errors that way. Our bodies are different in many ways but alike in many ways too, especially with certain types of illnesses. Its inevitable what will happen to our bodies when we have a certain disease,hormones are all over the place,we arent replenishing the protein and the Positive Nitrogen Balance in our cells,organs get weaker.............. You know the deal unfortunately. I just want to do what i can naturally along with what meds i KNOW i HAVE to HAVE. I hope i can help some people along the way!

03-28-2009, 06:35 AM
thanks jeannette,

i am so happy to know that you are here. i will definitely be calling on you for natural options/supplements.

hope your weekend is good.

03-28-2009, 10:55 AM
You can read this link:

and read the precaution part for lupus:

03-28-2009, 11:07 AM
Another over the counter is melatonine. You can get it in the vitamin section. I have used 3mcg about an hour before trying to sleep and it will put you right to sleep. You should make sure that you have at least 8 hours for sleep otherwise you will get up all hung over! Melatonin from what I have been told is what your brain normally produces to make you sleep.

It was something that a doc recommended when we had problems with one of my daughters sleeping. He told us to use it since it is something that our body nermally produces.

(I put this in before that I realized that there were two other pages and someone already mentioned this. I am just going to leave it though)

03-28-2009, 11:21 AM
Hi Phyllis! Youre VERY WELCOME! Just to let everyone know,i've had Drs. who have been extremely happy with my herb and vitamin supplements, and i've had others whom dont believe in it at all. Those have been the drs. throwing 2-4 meds through the pharmaceutical companies at me. They have to make their $ and keep their partners in crime happy. Im not saying ALL meds are bad cuz im on some but im sick of these drs answers being to throw more meds at me when somethings wrong. Ive found healthier alternatives for me personally and my drs who really care and have been good to me tell me they would rather have me on as few or no meds at all because that s better for me. The FDA doesnt want to back up proven facts on the NATURAL route because they wouldnt make any money off of them. Turmeric is a GREAT example on that. Just wanted to share!


03-29-2009, 12:19 AM
Hi, I have been taking Benedryl for sleep atleast 2 years now. I like it. I switched to Tylenol PM which is Tylenol and Benedryl, because it takes care of aches that keep me up on top other junk. The only thing I can tell you is I have to take 2 now, where in beginning I took 1, and also when I don't take it I can tell! Hope I helped. Kathy

Tylenol PM works great and they now have a sleep aid from Tylenol called Sleepy Time. That works great!!!!! It is not keeping me a sleep so I have been using 1/2 of an Ambien right now and this ALWAYS helps me sleep!!!!!!!!

03-29-2009, 12:22 AM
Another thing you might want to try is taking pure melatonin. That is the natural thing our body releases to help us sleep and if it is not producing enough, you can't sleep! You can get this at the local pharmacy and even health food stores carry it! It also works pretty well and it is putting something you body naturally produces back into your system!!!!

03-29-2009, 09:09 AM
thanks jeannette,

i went to "wallyworld" today, and found the Melatonin...i sleep fairly well unles in a flare, but i will have it when needed. my dr. is really open to alternatives, so i feel comfident that she will help me incorporate natural treatments....i can't stand taking all of these meds.

with the heart issues that i have along with lupus, i am overwhelmed at the pills i have to take.....yuk.

04-01-2009, 01:38 PM
this is so strange....i do not remember buying Melatonin at Walmart....if i did, i certainly can not find it....i am now perplexed about this, and will have to search around the house.:hissyfit: lupus, please leave my brain alone.

jeannette, i spoke with my rheumy yesterday about melatonin for sleep, and she highly recommended that i try it. she was pleased that this is the option that i want to try first,

thanks for the info.

now i have to find it (if i truly bought it)

04-02-2009, 12:21 PM
Hi PHYLLIS! Funny, we "misplace" things all the time dont we. Im glad you got a positive response from your doc! I hope you find it helpful!!!:sleepy:

04-08-2009, 03:01 PM
since there have been a few questions about sleep lately, i thought i would bring this thread back.

thanks to all

04-08-2009, 11:04 PM
I'm sitting here reading this and it's 2:00am can't sleep.:hissyfit: I think I might try some Benadryl.:yes: I have some for allergies, But haven't try it for sleep.:sleepy: A couple of you have wrote me about it.:laugh:

05-20-2009, 05:37 AM
this thread is brought back for LaLa.....hopefully you can find other sleep aid options from these posts.

05-20-2009, 09:06 AM
Wish I had thought of this sooner, I definitely will be trying it on my next sleepless night.
Thank you!!

02-07-2010, 10:56 AM
I take Benedryl for sleep, usually two.

I have also taken it for anxiety when I had nothing else available.

02-07-2010, 12:51 PM
Hi Everyone -
As some of you here may remember, I have been in recovery for 3+ years and, therefore, have to be very careful what I take both prescribed and over-the-counter. I am a fan of Benadryl as well and was actually given it in the hospital a few years back to help me sleep. It is a safe and non-addictive drug. I also use it for nausea when needed. My Mom swears by Melatonin and that was suggested to her by her oncologist during her cancer treatments. Now with Nyquil, however, though it does contain the same DH that is in Benadry, it also contains almost 40% alcohol. It is listed in Inactive Ingredients (why inactive? I dont know). In any case, there is alot of alcohol in this medicine, and in some other OTC as well. Now, dont get me wrong, this med is great - I gave it to my daughter (19 yrs old) with her last bad cold/flu. But for someone like me, it is a NO NO. Just an FYI

I am also prescribed Trazadone (by my last rheumatologist) which is to help with STAYING asleep v. FALLING asleep. This drug is technically an anti-depressant, but is more often used off-label for people with fibromyalgia CIDS, and other illnesses where studies have shown that the brain never reaches the "Delta" or restorative level of sleep. This is the cause of one of the MAIN symptoms of those illness where ppl can sleep for 18 hours and wake up TIRED. The brain goes to sleep, but not to level where its actually restoring/replenishing the body. For years I was able to FALL asleep but would wake up ALL night long, or if I did sleep - I didnt feel rested., In any case, this med is commonly used for this purpose, and it works GREAT for me. But to fall asleep, I use Benadryl.
One more interesting fact - there is another all-natural prodict you can buy called Dolomite. This is the chemical found in turkey meat and is the reason we feel tired after eating a turkey dinner! Weird, huh? I think this is also sold at health/vitamin stores.
Wellness to all

02-07-2010, 09:15 PM
Jeff and I were just discussing Dimetap today. We used to give it to the kids when they were sick, and it really helped them to sleep. He was wondering if it would help me to sleep. I'm not sure if it has the same active ingredients as Benedryl or not. My concern with either of these is the antihistamine action, though. My eyes are already dry enough.

02-08-2010, 12:32 AM
Jeff and I were just discussing Dimetap today. We used to give it to the kids when they were sick, and it really helped them to sleep. He was wondering if it would help me to sleep. I'm not sure if it has the same active ingredients as Benedryl or not. My concern with either of these is the antihistamine action, though. My eyes are already dry enough.

it does dry you up a bit so maybe it would not be good for your dry eyes.