Benadryl as a Sleep Aid

Benadryl® (diphenhydramine hydrochloride) is an antihistamine medication available both over the counter and with a prescription. It comes in many different forms and is used for a variety of purposes. Although the medicine is most commonly used as a treatment for allergies, many people also use Benadryl as a sleep aid.
Only prescription Benadryl products and certain non-prescription diphenhydramine products are approved for the treatment of insomnia. Not only is Benadryl an antihistamine, but it also works as a sedative. Although this action has made the medication useful as a sleep aid, it also limits the usefulness of the medication for other uses (since drowsiness can be a bothersome side effect).
(Click Benadryl for more information about using Benadryl as a sleep aid, to learn about other approved uses for this medication, and to find out what side effects may occur with this particular antihistamine.)
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