I have a friend who prides herself on how little sleep she needs to get each night. She boasts often about how five hours a night is plenty, and that she's busy working when most of America is still hitting the snooze alarm. I think she's crazy.
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I need eight hours of sleep. Warm, toasty, comfy, peaceful, dreamy sleep. I can do with less, but my mood and my productivity are directly related to how much of that magic 8 hours I get each night.
My husband has a job that has required him to travel, internationally, at least 50% of the time since we were married. For years it didn't seem to bother me, but about two years ago, I began having trouble sleeping when he wasn't at home. I'd toss and turn, hour after hour, and end up with just a few hours sleep each night. A sleepy Francesca equals an unhappy Francesca, and as my kids will attest, "If mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." The lack of sleep had me dragging, irritable and generally feeling lethargic. I hoped this new phobia would just pass, but it didn't. Then a friend suggested Tylenol PM.
I was pretty sure Tylenol PM wouldn't work. I couldn't imagine an over-the-counter medicine having enough zing to put me to sleep. My first night I was amazed at how quickly it put me to sleep, and how soundly that sleep was.
What Is Tylenol PM?
Tylenol PM is the usual Extra Strength Tylenol, with an added ingredient that helps combat sleeplessness. The actual ingredients and amounts are 500mg of Acetaminophen and 25mg of Diphenhydramine.
Tylenol PM is intended to treat headaches and other aches and pains, along with trouble sleeping.
Recommended dosage is 2 tablets at bedtime or as directed by a physician. It is not to be taken by children under 12.
The label has some significant warnings and instructions. Rather than reprint the entire label, read all warnings and instructions thoroughly before use. It is also advisable to check with your physician before you begin to take this or any other drug. Finally, don't forget that your pharmacist can be a fountain of knowledge, and should be able to answer any other questions you might have.
How It Works For Me
The first night I took two caplets as recommended. Within 30-45 minutes I was drowsy enough to hit the pillow and fall right asleep. Seven hours later, when the alarm went off, I could barely wake myself up enough to turn it off. Getting out of bed was difficult, and I felt drowsy and lethargic for most of the morning.
Since then, I have altered the dosage to work best for me. Now, I take 1 caplet about 1 hour before I want to go to sleep. I am still able to fall asleep quickly, and when I wake up, I feel refreshed and ready, without any pharmaceutical effects.
Tylenol PM has allowed me to get a couple of nights of necessary sleep that I wouldn't otherwise, without any negative side effects.
Can I Get Addicted To This Stuff?
About a year ago, after telling someone I used Tylenol PM, they told me that the active ingredient in it was highly addictive. When I had first purchased the product, I had mentioned it to my physician. She didn't seem concerned. After this warning, I called her again. Her response was that the sleep aid in Tylenol PM is the same as what is in Benadryl. It is not habit forming, and there was no need to be concerned. However, she did once again state that the label must be followed exactly, and that it is to be used occasionally, not as a nightly product.
Tylenol PM is reasonably priced. 100 caplets is about $9.00.
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