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peace and goodwill
one day at a time
A Peace Aid: Benadryl 
18th-Jan-2008 05:53 pm
Benadryl* is the trade name for Diphenhydramine, a safe, common, over-the-counter, inexpensive antihistamine. It is commonly advertised to treat allergies, however it offers many other benefits. It is commonly used in households to treat the following, in addition to allergies:

· Insomnia If taken ~15-20 minutes before laying down to go to sleep, it aids greatly in both going to sleep and getting a sound, restful sleep, without making the user overly-groggy (like with prescription sleep aids)

· Anxiety/Depression/Fluctuations in Mood A compound in Diphenhydramine is isolated and strengthened to make the prescription drug Prozac. It is less intense in Diphenhydramine-form but still provides benefit to the user.
Due to the drowsiness side-effect, it is often recommended that a half dose (usually one tablet; two tablets being a full dose) be taken during the day, and most of the time, the user does not feel drowsy.

Louisiana state prison medical ward has access to whichever sort of prescription drugs they want, but they choose over-the-counter Diphenhydramine to aid with insomnia and bouts of depression in their patients.

Diphenhydramine is often used in self-medication and as a household remedy because it:

· Has no long-term harm to the body, even when taken daily
· Does not cause dependency (also, has no withdrawal symptoms)
· Doesn't seem to build up tolerance
· is inexpensive, commonly found, and highly effective

Personal testimony
My sister has a diagnosed anxiety disorder. My parents tried her on Prozac and later, Buspirone (aka, Buspar). The Prozac was too strong and therefore, not effective, and the Buspar didn't seem to help much and also started making her hair fall out (a common side effect of Buspirone). They took her off both of them and began giving her a half dose of Benadryl at each meal and found that it worked to keep her much more emotionally stable during the day.

My dad has had perpetual insomnia and trouble falling asleep all his life. He also has bad allergies. Although he can't take Benadryl during the day (he's sensitive to drugs and even Dayquil can make him sleepy, even though it... isn't supposed to do that...), he takes it at night before going to bed and is able to both fall asleep in a fairly short amount of time, but also get a solid and restful sleep. He says that it's the first time in his life he's been able to do this. He's been taking it to help him sleep for more than a year now with no problems, and enjoys the help it provides. ... It also helps his allergies (at least, during the night. ... He has bad allergies, too).

My mom can't take it because she takes heart medicine and the warning on the bottle says that it's not for people with heart conditions. (She doesn't have allergies or problems going to sleep, though, so it's all good in the neighborhood.)

I don't suffer from allergies; I have personally been taking Benadryl to help me sleep at night for over a year. I notice when I forget to take it - I don't get to sleep as easily. Although I was never a light sleeper, it would often take me up to an hour to finally get to sleep, and I find I can relax my mind and get to sleep a lot easier at night when I take Benadryl first.

Although I have never been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder or depression (because I've never been to a doctor), I would often go into deeply anxious or depressed moods throughout the day. I would notice my mind buzzing with thoughts that were distracting and prevented me from thinking clearly. I also used to react much more emotionally, whether the mood was extreme enthusiasm (too much enthusiasm, an unhealthy amount) or panic or frustration. My family has a history of bipolar disorder, hypomania, and depression. One night, I took a full dose to go to sleep, but ended up staying online. I found that I was discussing a highly emotional topic and staying calm, and thinking very clearly about it. So I started taking a half dose of Benadryl every 5-6 hours during the day, to see if it would clear up the occasional bouts of depression and the anxiety.

Admittedly, the first day was rough, but not as rough as it had been, and by the second day, my emotions had evened out and my mind had settled amazingly. I did not have the anxiety that I had before and have since been able to do a lot of things that would have caused me to be nervous in the past, with no internal hindrance. I am very, very happy with Benadryl, and so is my family, which is why I'm sharing it. It has brought about a lot of peace in my day. ^_^ I have been on it during the day for less than a month as of the time I write this, but usually I would get depressed around once every day (usually in the evening), sometimes twice, or feel a profound sense of loss, and I have not felt that since I started on Benadryl. I would never have wanted to take a prescription drug and trusted this one very much because I had been using it to get to sleep.

To read more about Diphenhydramine, check out its wikipedia article.

To read more about self-diagnosis and medication, check this article.

Please, read all warning labels (and follow them) if you are thinking about taking anything. Do not consume with alcohol. Do not take if you have a heart problem. May impair your ability to drive, depending on the dose you're on and your body's sensitivity to it.
You are responsible for your own health and safety. Take good care of it - don't harm yourself or others by doing something stupid.
Always read and obey warning labels.

*it's called "Benadryl" in Canada and the United States; elsewhere, it's known as Dimedrol; however, it can also be called by its generic drug name, Diphenhydramine, and it is the same product

Did Diphenhydramine help you? Spread the word by linking back to this article somewhere on your site, or to Diphenhydramine's wiki entry, or to your own personal account. Spread the word of things that help you in case they can help other people, too.


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Thank you very much for your time and contribution.
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