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The Best Sleeping Tablets 4 Best Over The Counter Sleep Aids That Work

A lot of this confusion comes from a lack of understanding on the difference between prescription drugs and over the counter sleep aids. While both can be used to treat severe insomnia patients, that latter is undoubtedly much safer and a far better choice for people who just have a little trouble falling asleep.

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Best Sleeping Tablets 4 Best Over The Counter Sleep Aids
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Studies by the National Sleep Foundation show that sleep problems are more commonly reported now than ever before, so it should be no surprise that demand for sleeping medications is at an all time high. There are some people dealing with sleep issues that still find themselves asking are sleeping pills safe though.

A lot of this confusion comes from a lack of understanding on the difference between prescription drugs and over the counter sleep aids. While both can be used to treat severe insomnia patients, that latter is undoubtedly much safer and a far better choice for people who just have a little trouble falling asleep.

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That is why we have created our guide to the best OTC sleep aids and prescription sleep medications. This will give you all of the information that you need to choose the perfect sleep aid to help combat any sleep disorder, optimise your sleep wake cycle, or simply just improve sleep habits, no matter your own situation.

The 4 Best Non-Prescription Sleeping Pills

Best Sleeping Pills Over The Counter - RestAgain

Best Sleep Gummy - Olly

Best Dissolvable Sleeping Tablets - Nuun Rest

Best Budget Sleeping Pills - REMFresh

RestAgain - The Best Non-Prescription Sleeping Pills Overall

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RestAgain is an over the counter sleeping pill made by FA Nutra Ltd. A very popular sleep medicine in the United Kingdom for quite some time, it has recently seen its popularity explode since being launched in the United States.

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It is designed to promote sleep schedule improvements by making both falling asleep and staying asleep significantly easier, while also improving the overall quality of sleep that you get.

The RestAgain formula is all natural and contains ashwagandha root, l-theanine, magnesium, valerian root, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), 5-htp, calcium, melatonin, vitamin b6, vitamin b12, and vitamin d.

Every ingredient has also been used in its optimal dose, to ensure that it can offer maximum efficacy without causing any side effects.

Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that is secreted by the pineal gland in the human brain. Its main function is to control your sleep wake cycle, which it does by making it easier to fall asleep, enter REM sleep (rapid eye movement sleep), the most restful kind, and then wake up feeling totally refreshed (1).

Ashwagandha and 5-htp both have potent calming and relaxing abilities and are great to treat everything from mild sleep problems to chronic insomnia, especially when taking sleeping pills that contain them both.

Ashwagandha is a root extract of the winter cherry plant that eases anxiety and stress, boosts sleep quality, mental health, and memory, helps you concentrate and focus, and lowers your blood sugar (2).

5-htp is an amino acid capable of crossing the blood brain barrier and boosting your natural production of serotonin. A hormone produced by the pineal gland, higher serotonin levels will make you calmer, improve sleep latency, quality, and your mood, and prevent anxiety, stress, and circadian rhythm sleep disorders (3).

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L-theanine is an amino acid that is responsible for the calming effect that you get from tea bags. It can help to boost the health and functions of the brain and immune system, encourage greater levels of relaxation and rest, and even counteract any of the side effects that stimulants can cause (4).

GABA is a neurotransmitter which interacts with the melatonin receptors in the brain, increasing relaxation and reducing anxiety and stress (5). Valerian root is a herb extract that improves your natural production of GABA and offers the same benefits, while the two work amazingly well when paired in one sleeping pill (6).

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The minerals calcium and magnesium can calm and relax the mind, soothe the muscles, boost mood, sleep latency, and REM sleep, and prevent mineral deficiencies, health problems, and issues that cause sleep disturbances, such as cramps, dehydration, dry mouth, jet lag, and low blood pressure (7)(8).

Vitamin b6 and vitamin b12 will improve your neurotransmitter biosynthesis, brain health, metabolism, circadian rhythm, recovery time, and testosterone production, treat depression and mental health issues, and boost your overall health, all of which are beneficial to help you stay asleep longer (9)(10).

Vitamin d will then improve your mood, nutrient absorption, recovery time, and ability to relax, while helping to prevent you from becoming vitamin d deficient or your body being damaged. This will stop you from developing any sleep problems, help you to fall asleep, and make sure you wake up feeling refreshed (11).

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By using so many different proven sleep aids in a single sleeping pill, RestAgain can help to treat the root of the problem. This will not only stop you from having trouble sleeping, but it will also significantly improve your sleep quality in the future as well.

When you then add in its very fair price tag, high quality ingredients, optimal dosages, and reasonable serving size, RestAgain is easily the best over the counter sleep medicine on the market today, as well as one of the most effective sleeping pills in general.

Pros

  • One of the strongest sleeping pills available over the counter
  • Not known to cause any side effects or adverse reactions
  • Every ingredient is high quality, optimally dosed, and proven to benefit sleep
  • Very reasonably priced
  • Helps with falling asleep, staying asleep, and enhancing your quality of sleep

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Cons

  • As one of the newer sleeping pills on the market there are a limited number of reviews available from past customers

Olly Sleep Gummies - The Best Gummy Over The Counter Sleep Aid

Olly Sleep Gummies are an ideal choice for people who do not want to take sleeping pills or capsules or have trouble swallowing them. With its gummy design and pleasant taste, users can instead chew them to reap the benefits that they offer to your sleep latency, quality, and schedule.

The Olly Sleep Gummies formula again consists of only natural ingredients. It includes melatonin and l-theanine, both of which were present in RestAgain, as well as chamomile flower extract, lemon balm extract, and passionflower extract.

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Like before, melatonin and l-theanine will both prevent you from having any trouble sleeping by encouraging rest, relaxation, REM sleep, and better brain and immune system health and functions, while preventing daytime drowsiness and optimising your sleep schedule.

Chamomile flower extract is put in sleeping pills as it boasts a chemical called apigenin. This aids calmness and relaxation, reduces anxiety, stress, and inflammation, improves sleep latency and duration, optimises your sleep cycle, and combats ongoing insomnia and sleep disturbances, without causing side effects (12).

Lemon balm extract comes from a plant in the mint family rich in vitamin c and minerals that can help make you feel relaxed, improve your mood and cognitive functions, and reduce anxiety and stress levels (13).

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Passionflower extract has long been used in traditional medicines and sleeping pills as it is purported to be capable of boosting your natural production of the neurotransmitter GABA. This would allow it to prevent or treat anxiety, hysteria, insomnia, and seizures, and make it much easier to fall asleep and stay asleep (14).

The active ingredients in Olly Sleep Gummies are then supported by various colours, flavors, sweeteners, and stabilisers, which are all used to make the bulk of the gummies and give them their Blackberry Zen flavour.

There are a few issues with Olly Sleep Gummies that unfortunately do need to pointed out though.

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For starters, lemon balm extract and passionflower extract both have no conclusive evidence to show that they are actually capable of producing the benefits that have been linked to them.

Then there is the fact that the dosages of chamomile flower extract, l-theanine, and melatonin used are all also much lower than what you will find in the most potent sleeping pills on the market as well.

These issues aside though, if you are looking for an over the counter sleep medication that is reasonably priced, enjoyable to use, will not cause side effects, and does not require you to take sleeping pills, while still being able to help treat insomnia, then Olly Sleep Gummies are one of the best natural sleep aids to try.

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Pros

  • Three of its ingredients have been proven to be beneficial in sleep aids
  • A pleasant tasting gummy is a great option for people who can't or don't like swallowing sleeping pills or capsules
  • Gluten free and very reasonably priced
  • Very unlikely to cause any side effects

Cons

  • Some of the ingredients have not been proven to be useful in a sleep medicine
  • All of the proven ingredients are present in dosages that are lower than what you will find in the most potent sleep aids

Nuun Rest - The Best Dissolvable Non-Prescription Sleeping Pills

Nuun Rest is another sleep medicine that is ideal for people who don't like taking sleeping pills or worry about side effects.

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While it may look like a normal sleeping pill, albeit a very large one, it is designed to be dissolved in water and consumed as a drink, rather than swallowed whole. It is intended to help you mentally and physically relax, feel calm, unwind, reduce restlessness, and help you doze off much quicker and then sleep deeper.

The Nuun Rest formula contains two active ingredients, which are magnesium and tart cherry juice powder. There are, however, then a number of flavours, colours, sweeteners, and preservatives added to the sleeping pills as well, which are included to make it more enjoyable to use.

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Magnesium provides the same benefits it did in RestAgain, which is to relax the brain, body, and muscles, calm the nerves, enhance recovery, and prevent issues like dehydration and cramps, to help optimise sleep conditions and prevent a variety of health issues that could impair your wellbeing or quality of sleep.

Tart cherry juice powder is said to have anti inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which can enhance your production of melatonin, quality of sleep, sleep cycle, physical recovery and performance, and muscle functions, and relieve muscle soreness, inflammation, sleep disorders, and certain health conditions (15).

Being keto friendly and free from dairy, gluten, GMOs, soy, or artificial additives means it can be used by the vast majority of people. Being available in a choice of two great tasting flavours, Blackberry Vanilla and Lemon Chamomile, also makes it an appealing sleep medication for everyone from kids to older adults.

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However, there are some issues with Nuun Rest that do need to be pointed out.

First off, both ingredients are present in low dosages, while there is little conclusive evidence to prove that all of the claimed benefits of tart cherry juice powder are actually true.

Then there is the fact that you have to dissolve the sleeping pill in water and take it right before bed. This could be an issue if you already suffer from either frequent urination or urinary retention, as you will be drinking a lot of water, so could make both issues worse.

Despite that though, if you are seeking a reasonably priced sleep medication that is mild, enjoyable to use, free from side effects, and does not require you to swallow any pills or capsules like most other medications of this kind do, then Nuun Rest could be one of the best sleeping pills for you to try.

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Pros

  • Can help you relax, feel calm, and enjoy a better quality of sleep
  • Contains only natural ingredients that are proven to be of use in a sleep medication
  • Fairly priced and available in a choice of flavours
  • Keto friendly and free from dairy, gluten, GMOs, soy, artificial additives, and side effects

Cons

  • There have been complaints about a chalky taste, it not dissolving well in cold water, or leaving a residue in your cup
  • Drinking too much liquid right before bed can cause urinary issues for some users
  • Not all of the benefits of tart cherry powder have been conclusively proven

REMfresh - The Best Budget Non-Prescription Sleeping Pills

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Unlike the other medications on this list, REMfresh sleeping pills use a formula that contains only a single ingredient, the sleep hormone melatonin. While this does somewhat put all of its eggs in one basket, there is not a better choice if you only want to use one ingredient to deal with your sleep issues.

REMfresh sleeping pills are designed to help you naturally optimise your sleep cycle and routine, improve your sleep onset and quality, make it easier to enter REM sleep, and ensure that you wake up feeling fully refreshed each and every morning.

As is common with many sleeping pills though, there are a couple of issues that do need to be mentioned.

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Not only do some studies on insomnia suggest that supplemental melatonin is at its most effective when used in sleeping pills that feature more than one compound, but the quantity of melatonin present here is also lower than what you will find in some of the more potent sleeping pills on the market today.

Regardless of that though, there are two very good reasons that we included it on our list of the best natural sleeping pills, which are its very affordable price tag and lack of any side effects.

Make no mistake, REMfresh is not a great choice for people who need a really strong sleep aid. However, if you are shopping for sleeping pills on a tight budget and want something that is proven to work and has a very small serving size, it is still one of the best options that you have at your disposal.

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Pros

  • A very reasonable price tag makes it a great choice for people on a budget
  • Contains only pure melatonin, which is proven to help you sleep better
  • The dose of melatonin used will not cause any side effects
  • The small serving size is ideal for people who can't or don't like swallowing sleeping pills or capsules

Cons

  • Containing only one ingredient means it can't produce such a diverse range of effects
  • The low melatonin dosage means it won't work as well as it could
  • Contains many non-active ingredients that offer no benefits but may cause side effects or allergic reactions

The 3 Most Popular Prescription Sleeping Pills

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Benzodiazepines

Benzodiazepines are a type of depressant drug that includes the majority of the most popular prescription sleeping pills. Sold under brands like diazepam, Valium, and Xanax, they are widely used to help people suffering from anxiety, seizures, sleep disorders, and even jet lag to combat their symptoms.

They work by interacting with GABA neurotransmitter receptors in the brain, to produce hypnotic, relaxing, sedative effects. They are so widely prescribed as they are deemed to be among the most effective sleep medications available, but they also have a number of serious safety concerns linked to their use (16).

If you use them for over 4 weeks, you put yourself at great risk of experiencing severe side effects, such as aggression, dementia, depression, panic attacks, a lack of impulse control, and becoming physiologically or psychologically dependent on them.

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They can also cause withdrawal symptoms or rebound insomnia when you stop taking them, while their efficacy also begins to diminish the longer you use them.

Zolpidem

Non benzodiazepine sleeping pills obtained with a prescription are called z drugs, and Zolpidem is perhaps the most popular kind. Commonly sold as Ambien CR, it can help you to fall asleep quicker and stay asleep longer by binding to the GABA neurotransmitter receptor, which creates a sedative and hypnotic effect.

Only usually prescribed after cognitive behavioural therapy has been tried, many people can use these sleeping pills safely for up to six weeks, although they should never be used by those who suffer from liver or kidney disease, sleep apnoea, or a variety of other physical and mental health conditions (17).

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Using it for more than 6 weeks will cause severe side effects though, like headaches, dizziness, diarrhoea, chest, back and abdominal pain, sinusitis, lethargy, a dry mouth, a sore throat, constipation, depression, light-headedness, heart palpitations, rashes, amnesia, flu symptoms, abnormal dreams, or sleep disorders.

Zopiclone

Zopiclone is another of the most common and effective z drugs that is usually sold as its generic version. A sedative that can depress and tranquilise the central nervous system, it interacts with the brain's GABA receptors in much the same way as Zolpidem to combat sleep disturbances.

It's one of the more popular z drugs with users, as it is known to cause less frequent or severe side effects if taken as directed, although it can cause allergic reactions. Unlike other z drugs though, it is a very short term solution, as it can only be used to help treat sleep disorders for a maximum of three weeks at a time.

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It is also very heavily controlled, as people who use it for any longer than this have a high chance of either developing a drug dependence or experiencing withdrawal symptoms or rebound insomnia when they stop taking it. It should also never be used by older adults or anyone who is suffering from liver problems (18).

Final Thoughts On The Best Non-Prescription Sleeping Pill To Combat Sleep Disorders

No matter if you are suffering with mild sleep issues or long term insomnia, worse days are ahead if you do not find a way to combat the issue and help you get a full night's sleep. Prescription sleep aids and herbal supplements both have their own selling points, but the latter is the safer, better sleep aid for most people.

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As far as OTC sleep aids go, RestAgain is the best option on sale today. Full of optimal doses of many high quality, proven ingredients, available for a very reasonable price, and not linked to any side effects, it can help virtually everyone safely treat insomnia or simply boost their ability to get a good night's sleep.

If you feel that certain drugs will help more than over the counter sleep medications, follow the instructions set out by the food and drug administration (FDA). Stop taking sleeping pills and call a doctor immediately if you get any side effects and never mix sleeping pills with z drugs or use either if you plan to drink alcohol.

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resources:

  1. https://www.endocrinology-journals.org/What-Is-Melatonin.html
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8462692/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8181734/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9017334/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7527439/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4394901/
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3866235/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3703169/
  9. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6727359/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8123316/
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8912284/
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2995283/
  13. https://examine.com/supplements/lemon-balm/
  14. https://www.mountsinai.org/health-library/herb/passionflower

Disclaimer: The above is a sponsored post, the views expressed are those of the sponsor/author and do not represent the stand and views of Outlook Editorial.

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