Josh Chandler | April 10, 2023

Is ZZZQuil Addictive?

A Sleep Aid That Can Become a Problem

Sleep is essential for our overall health and wellness. Our bodies require time to rest and rejuvenate to promote optimal physical and mental health. When you’re experiencing difficulties with maintaining regular sleep patterns, a sleep aid can help you get much-needed rest. If you’re using sleep aids as prescribed, there is minimal risk to your overall health and well-being. However, if your use of sleep aids like ZZZQuil deviates from the prescribed, intended dosage, it can increase the risks of developing a physical or physiological dependence to sleep aids and potentially leading to addictive patterns and behaviors. Is ZZZQuil addictive? Keep reading to find out about the effects of this substance.

Taking sleep aid medications aims to provide short-term relief for sleep concerns. A person should only use sleep aids for up to 10 days. If sleep concerns persist after 10 days, it is recommended that you speak with a doctor who can provide further medical assessment and treatment for sleeping aids.

If you’re concerned about your use of sleep aids or are starting to notice the side effects and impacts of a physiological dependence to these medications, there is support and treatment available to help you safely overcome any dependence that was formed. At Muse Treatment Center, we have a diverse, experienced team of addiction counselors, physicians, nurses, and support staff that will provide you with a comprehensive treatment plan that’s centered around your specific needs and goals for recovery. As you heal from any physical dependence, you’ll be provided with medical care and assessments to assist you in developing new methods for gaining fulfilling, restful sleep each night without relying on substances or medications. After completing an addiction treatment program with Muse, you’ll be equipped to manage your daily responsibilities by gaining a healthy routine that fosters health, wellness, and quality sleep.

Click here to call Muse Addiction Center today. Our staff is available 24/7 to provide answers and begin the admissions process. Call (800) 426-1818.

What Is ZZZQuil?

ZZZQuil is an over-the-counter medication that’s intended as a nighttime sleep aid. People will turn to ZZZQuill after experiencing occasional sleeplessness and looking for a reprieve to gain a good night’s sleep. It’s important to note that ZZZQuill isn’t designed to treat insomnia symptoms but rather to support those experiencing difficulties sleeping from time to time. This medication is available in most pharmacies and can be purchased without a prescription from a doctor.

The active ingredient in ZZZQuill is an antihistamine called diphenhydramine. The use of an antihistamine is commonly used to treat allergy or cold symptoms. Antihistamines commonly cause symptoms of drowsiness which is what helps those taking ZZZQuill to have the ability to fall asleep faster after taking this medication.

How Does ZZZQuil Work?

ZZZQuil comes in various forms that can be taken orally— tablets, capsules, or liquid form. Due to ZZZQuil being an antihistamine, when you take this over-the-counter medication, it will work by blocking and binding the natural substance, histamine, that your body produces during an allergic reaction. The histamine receptors are located in your respiratory tract, abdominal tract, immune cells, and brain. Antihistamines have drying properties that treat watery eyes and runny noses by targeting and blocking the production of another natural substance produced in your body called acetylcholine. This natural chemical is responsible for several bodily functions, including muscle movement, attention, memory, and heart rate.

The purpose of an antihistamine is to block the side effects and symptoms of an allergic reaction or cold symptoms. Antihistamines are intended to reduce the impacts of histamines, a receptor responsible for controlling alertness in your brain. The dominant side effect of this is experiencing the onset of drowsiness.

ZZZQuil will create feelings of drowsiness within the user and support a person in falling asleep.

ZZZQuil Addiction

Can You Take ZZZQuil Every Night?

ZZZQuil was designed to support individuals with occasional sleep aid support. The recommended dose states that you’re to take this medication when needed and that you should avoid regular, daily consumption of this medication. There is a risk of experiencing severe side effects if you were to take this medication daily. Severe symptoms can range from dangerously low blood pressure to seizures. Research correlates long-term ZZZQuil use to the onset of dementia or Alzheimers in older individuals. You should take ZZZQuil for a maximum of 10 days to mitigate the onset of severe side effects. If you’re experiencing ongoing sleep concerns, you must consult with your doctor to discuss your concerns and explore other treatment methods.

Is ZZZQuil Addictive?

If ZZZQuil is taken outside of the prescribed dosage, there is a strong possibility of developing a dependency and addiction to ZZZQuil. The impacts from misuse of ZZZQuil are typically physiological and psychological dependence. The more someone abuses ZZZQuil, the more the risk of abusing this medication is increased to seek the intense feelings of euphoria or drowsiness associated with it. The dangers associated with the abuse of ZZZQuil include the risk of overdose.

If you’re using ZZZQuil outside of the prescribed dose, you’re at an increased risk of overdosing and experiencing severe side effects of seizures, delirium, hallucinations, tremors, or coma. If you’re concerned that your use of ZZZQuil has developed into an addictive pattern, you must seek help within a treatment program and have access to medical attention to support you in safely overcoming the physiological dependence to ZZZQuil.

25 Side Effects of ZZZQuil

Using ZZZQuil can potentially create short and long-term effects that range in severity. Side effects can impact a person’s physical and psychological health. The common areas that are impacted by taking ZZZQuil are the digestive system, respiratory system, cardiovascular health, nervous system, urinary tract concerns, and vision or hearing concerns. Side effects may include symptoms that impact those physical health areas that should be monitored and treated by a physician when needed.

  1. Nausea
  2. Loss of appetite
  3. Vomiting
  4. Constipation
  5. Feeling congested within your chest
  6. Dry, scratchy throat
  7. Difficulty urinating
  8. Experiencing pain while urinating
  9. Blurred vision
  10. Dry, irritated eyes
  11. Headaches
  12. Dizziness
  13. Muscle weakness
  14. Confusion
  15. Tremors
  16. Increased, rapid heart rate
  17. Heart palpitations
  18. Significantly low blood pressure
  19. Arrhythmia
  20. Poor focus
  21. Memory loss
  22. Anxiety
  23. Mood swings
  24. Nightmares
  25. Depression

Muse Treatment Can Help With ZZZQuil Addiction

If you’ve been taking ZZZQuil and are concerned that your usage may be leading down a path of dependence, there is support available through Muse Treatment Center. Our experienced team understands the unique nature of substance use disorders and dependency and strives to provide a treatment plan that is catered to your individual experiences and needs. We’ll create a customized treatment plan with a comprehensive treatment format –physical detox, evidence-based therapy, medical treatments, and holistic therapies. The first step is helping you stop using sleep aids within a detox program. Once you’ve safely removed the influences of sleep aids from your body, our team will work with you to identify the underlying cause of your addictive patterns and offer you medical and holistic treatments to gain stability and regularity in your sleep cycles. If you’re ready to begin the healing process of treatment and gain stability in your sleep and daily routines, call our admission team at (800) 426-1818 to hear more about drug rehab Los Angeles and take the first step towards recovery now.

Addiction,Ambien Addiction,Drug Addiction,
Josh Chandler
Josh Chandler
After growing up in Chicago and North Carolina, Josh chose to get help with substance use disorder and mental health in California because of the state's reputation for top-tier treatment. There, he found the treatment he needed to achieve more than five years of recovery. He's been in the drug and alcohol addiction rehab industry for four years and now serves as the Director of Admissions for Resurgence Behavioral Health. Josh remains passionate about the field because he understands that one phone call can alter the course of a person's life.


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