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Why its vital to talk to customers about sleep

Did you know - as many as 1 in 3 people in the UK suffer from insomnia at some point?1 Lack of sleep can lead to psychological distress, and an increased risk of depression and anxiety.2 People with insomnia are 10 times more likely to have clinical depression and 17 times more likely to have clinical anxiety than those who enjoy good sleep.3 Good quality sleep, on the other hand, can improve mental and physical wellbeing.2

 

Poor sleep doesn’t have to be a fact of life

Although people may feel helpless, there is plenty they can do. Pharmacy can help. Start by offering simple advice to customers and suggesting self-care solutions, in line with NICE guidance.4

 

Step 1- self-treating

Advise customers of the importance of establishing a pre-sleep routine carried out in the same order every night. This gives the body cues to get ready to sleep. They can also make their bedroom the optimal environment for good sleep by turning off screens, making sure bedding and clothes are comfortable, and cutting out noise and light. If they suffer with nighttime awakening, breathing techniques and ‘white noise’ apps may help.5

 

Step 2 – OTC Herbal remedies

Herbal remedies are available for patients affected by temporary sleep issues (1 to 2 nights over a period of time and for less than 4 weeks).6 These are traditional herbal medicinal products containing natural active ingredients used for restful sleep,7 such as valerian,8 passiflora9 and hops.10 Some need to be taken for a few weeks for optimal effect.6

 

Step 3 – OTC Sedating antihistamines

These are designed to help patients return to normal, healthy sleep. Examples include diphenhydramine. They can be taken by people over 16 years of age. Generally, they are absorbed quickly11 and should usually be taken 20 minutes before bed.12

Customers seeking to treat their sleep problems may be concerned about side effects and wonder if treatments are safe or will leave them feeling groggy the next day, or if they can become addicted.

Like all medicines, sedating antihistamines may cause side effects, although not everybody gets them. These may include the intended anticholinergic action – drowsiness – and other effects such as dry mouth or blurred vision.12,13

OTC sedating antihistamines such as diphenhydramine may cause dependency if taken continuously for a period of time, for example, if taken every day for more than 2 weeks. To avoid becoming addicted, patients should only take diphenhydramine for a very short time, unless the doctor recommends otherwise.12

Over the counter sleep aids, such as antihistamine-based treatments approved for many decades, can offer an effective solution for acute, short-term sleep problems.6

 

Step 4 – Consult their doctor

If they have tried all the steps above and sleeping issues continue, there could be an underlying issue, which should be referred to their doctor.

 

Who might benefit from advice about sleep?

Customers may present in several ways that could indicate they may need advice. Look for customers who:

  • Look tired, with bags or shadows under the eyes, or keep yawning
  • Ask for products to give them energy
  • Talk about feeling worried or stressed
  • Mention trouble concentrating / remembering things
  • Seem anxious or low.
 
Start a conversation about sleep today

Nytol have created a training booklet and tool designed to help you start a conversation about sleep and to advise customers on how to get good quality sleep. Request your copy here.

 

Download training booklet

 

Supporting you for good sleep

As sleep health experts with over 20 years experience of helping the nation sleep better, Nytol offers a wide OTC choice of sleep solutions. Now our diphenhydramine sleep aid is also available in a caramel liquid format, for the 1 in 3 people who don’t like taking tablets14 to help even more customers get a good night’s sleep.

Full product details here.

 

References

  1. Insomnia. Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/insomnia/ Accessed June 2019.
  2. Mental Health Foundation. Sleep Report. Available at: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/sleep-report Accessed June 2019.
  3. The Complex Relationship Between Sleep, Depression & Anxiety. Available at: https://www.sleepfoundation.org/excessive-sleepiness/health-impact/complex-relationship-between-sleep-depression-anxiety Accessed June 2019.
  4. NICE guidance NG127. Suspected neurological conditions: recognition and referral. Available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng127/chapter/Recommendations-for-adults-aged-over-16#sleep-disorders-in-adults Accessed August 2019.
  5. National Sleep Foundation, Relaxation Exercises for Falling Asleep. Available at: https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/relaxation-exercises-falling-asleep Accessed September 2019.
  6. ICP Independent pharmacist; Defeating Sleep deprivation; ICP February 2019; page 32.
  7. Gyllenhaal C, et al. Efficacy and safety of herbal stimulants and sedatives in sleep disorders. Sleep Medicine Reviews 2000;4(3):229-251.
  8. Bent S, et al. Valerian for Sleep: A systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Am J Med 2006;119(12):1005-1012.
  9. Miroddi M, et al. Passiflora incarnata L.: ethnopharmacology, clinical application, safety and evaluation of clinical trials. J Ethnopharmacol 2013;150(3):791-804.
  10. Franco L, et al. Effect of non-alcoholic beer on subjective Sleep Quality in a university stressed population. A Physiol 2014;101(3):353-361.
  11. Nytol One-A-Night, Summary of Product Characteristics. Available at: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/medicine/19778 Accessed September 2019.
  12. NHS. Diphenhydramine. Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/medicines/diphenhydramine/ Accessed September 2019.
  13. NHS. Antihistamines. Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/antihistamines/ Accessed September 2019.
  14. Hall & Partners U&A Segmentation study 2013.
 

Nytol One-A-Night (P) contains diphenhydramine hydrochloride. An aid to the relief of temporary sleep disturbance. Adults and children 16 years and over: 1 tablet taken 20 minutes before bed. Children under 16 years: Not recommended. Do not use for more than 2 weeks without medical advice. Avoid concomitant use of alcohol or other antihistamine-containing preparations.  Do not drive or operate machines. Contraindications: Stenosing peptic ulcer, pyloroduodenal obstruction, known hypersensitivity to ingredients. Caution: The elderly, pregnancy/lactation, myasthenia gravis, epilepsy or seizure disorders, narrow-angle glaucoma, prostatic hypertrophy, urinary retention, asthma, bronchitis and COPD, moderate to severe renal or hepatic impairment, intolerance to some sugars. Interaction with CNS depressants (including alcohol), monoamine-oxidase inhibitors, anticholinergic drugs (e.g. atropine, tricyclic depressants), metoprolol, venlafaxine. Side effects:  Fatigue, hypersensitivity reactions, confusion, paradoxical excitation, sedation, drowsiness, dizziness, dry mouth, GI disturbances, muscle twitching, headache, blurred vision, tachycardia, palpitations, convulsions. PL 02855/0070. MAH: Omega Pharma Limited, 32 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 2SA.  RRP (Inc. VAT): 20s £6,89 SPC: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/medicine/19778

Nytol Original 25mg Tablets (P) contains diphenhydramine hydrochloride. An aid to the relief of temporary sleep disturbance. Adults and children 16 years and over: 2 tablets taken 20 minutes before bed. Children under 16 years: Not recommended. Do not use for more than 2 weeks without medical advice. Avoid concomitant use of alcohol or other antihistamine-containing preparations.  Do not drive or operate machines. Contraindications: Stenosing peptic ulcer, pyloroduodenal obstruction, known hypersensitivity to ingredients. Caution: The elderly, pregnancy/lactation, myasthenia gravis, epilepsy or seizure disorders, narrow-angle glaucoma, prostatic hypertrophy, urinary retention, asthma, bronchitis and COPD, moderate to severe renal or hepatic impairment, intolerance to some sugars. Interaction with CNS depressants (including alcohol), monoamine-oxidase inhibitors, anticholinergic drugs (e.g. atropine, tricyclic depressants), metoprolol, venlafaxine. Side effects:  Fatigue, hypersensitivity reactions, confusion, paradoxical excitation, sedation, drowsiness, dizziness, dry mouth, GI disturbances, muscle twitching, headache, blurred vision, tachycardia, palpitations, convulsions. PL 02855/0071. MAH: Omega Pharma Limited, 32 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 2SA.  RRP (Inc. VAT): 20s £4,89 SPC: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/medicine/14222

Nytol Liquid Caramel Flavour 10mg/5ml oral solution (P) contains diphenhydramine hydrochloride. An aid to the relief of temporary sleep disturbance.

Adults and children 16 years and over: 10 to 25ml at bedtime, or after retiring when sleep is not readily achieved. Children under 16 years: Not recommended. Avoid concomitant use of alcohol or other antihistamine-containing preparations. Do not drive or operate machines. Contraindications: Stenosing peptic ulcer, pyloroduodenal obstruction, known hypersensitivity to ingredients. Special warnings and precautions: The elderly, pregnancy/lactation, myasthenia gravis, epilepsy or seizure disorders, narrow-angle glaucoma, prostatic hypertrophy, urinary retention, asthma, bronchitis and COPD, moderate to severe renal or hepatic impairment, intolerance to some sugars. Interaction with CNS depressants (including alcohol), monoamine-oxidase inhibitors, anticholinergic drugs (e.g. atropine, tricyclic depressants), metoprolol, venlafaxine. Side effects:  Fatigue, hypersensitivity reactions, confusion, paradoxical excitation, depression, sleep disturbances, sedation, drowsiness, dizziness, disturbance in attention, unsteadiness, dry mouth, GI disturbances, muscle twitching, headache, blurred vision, tachycardia, palpitations, arrhythmias, paraesthesia, dyskinesias, convulsions, urinary difficulty, urinary retention, thickening of bronchial secretions. PL 02855/0313. MAH: Omega Pharma Limited, 32 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 2SA.  RRP (Inc. VAT): 300ml. £10,99 SPC: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/10392

Nytol Herbal Simply Sleep & Calm Elixir (GSL) contains extract of valerian. A traditional herbal medicinal product for use in the temporary relief of symptoms of mild anxiety and to aid sleep, exclusively based upon long-standing use as a traditional remedy. Adults over 18 years: For mild anxiety: two 5ml spoonfuls three times a day with water or fruit juice if desired. To aid sleep: two 5ml spoonfuls 30 minutes before bedtime with an earlier dose during the evening if necessary. Maximum dose: 4 single doses per day. Take continuously for 2 - 4 weeks. Seek medical advice if symptoms persist after 4 weeks. Avoid concomitant use of alcohol, hypnotics or synthetic sedatives. Children under 18 years: Not recommended. Contraindications: known hypersensitivity to ingredients. Precautions: Caution in glucose-galactose malabsorption, pregnancy/lactation. Contains alcohol (up to 2.5g ethanol per dose) which should be taken into account in high-risk groups such as those with liver-disease or epilepsy. Harmful for those suffering from alcoholism. Side effects: GI disturbances. THR 28255/0017. THR Holder: Rutland Biodynamics Ltd, Town Park Farm, Brooke, Rutland, LE15 8DG.. RRP (Inc. VAT): 100ml £x5,99, . SPC: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/medicine/30104

Nytol Herbal Tablets (GSL) contains extracts of hops, valerian and passion flower. A traditional herbal medicinal product for use in the relief of temporary sleep disturbances exclusively based upon long-standing use as a traditional remedy. Adults over 18 years: 2 tablets approximately 1 hour before bed. Children under 18 years: Not recommended. Take continuously for 2 – 4 weeks. Seek medical advice if symptoms persist after 4 weeks. Avoid concomitant use of alcohol, hypnotics or synthetic sedatives. Precautions: Caution in glucose-galactose malabsorption, pregnancy/lactation. Side effects: GI disturbances, tachycardia. THR 20894/0073. THR Holder: Brunel Healthcare Manufacturing Ltd, William Nadin Way, Swadlincote, DE11 0BB. RRP (Inc. VAT): 30s £5,49 SPC: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/medicine/30107

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