Why Doxepin medication is used for sleep?

Doxepin is used in the treatment of insomnia (sleeping problems). It helps the user to stay asleep longer and reduces the number of times you get up during the night. This medication belongs to a class of drugs, which is known as antidepressants. Currently, it is not known how this medicine helps in improving sleep, though it may be by blocking histamine receptors.

How to use a doxepin tablet?

First of all, read the guidelines provided by your doctor or pharmacist before you start taking doxepin and if you have any questions about the dosage and medicine, reach out to your doctor or pharmacist.

Take this medication on an empty stomach 30 minutes before your bedtime, by mouth. 

Remember, not to take this medicine within 3 hours of a meal because the effects will be slowed.

There is no need to take doxepin if you can get a full 7- 8 hours of sleep.

Dosage is usually based on your health, medical condition, age, and your body’s response towards the treatment.

Use your medication properly to get the most benefits out of it.

After 7-10 days, if your condition is still the same or getting worse, contact your doctor immediately.

Side Effects of Doxepin tablet

Remember that the doctor has prescribed this medicine to you because its benefits are far greater than the side effects. Some patients do not even show any side effects towards the medication.

Common side effects of taking doxepin are drowsiness and nausea. If either occurs, contact your doctor or pharmacist immediately.

Very few patients experience sleepwalking — patients have gotten out of bed, eating food, driving cars, making phone calls while they are not fully awake and usually they do not even have any memory of doing that. It is a dangerous state for the patients as well as for the people who interact with patients while they are sleepwalking. If you are experiencing any of this immediately contact your doctor or pharmacist because it is a dangerous state. Risk is increased If you are taking alcohol or other medication that makes you feel drowsy.

A higher dose of doxepin is used to treat depression and other mental health problems. It helps in preventing suicidal thoughts and also provides other benefits. Recent studies have shown that a small number of people (especially people below the age of 25 years) who are taking this medicine for the treatment of depression have worsened the situation. Patients are feeling more depressed, anxious with panic attacks. So after taking this medicine, if you show any signs of depression, immediately contact your doctor.

Contact your doctor immediately if you are experiencing some serious side effects like eye redness/pain/swelling, widen pupils, change in vision, blurred vision.

There is also a slight chance of having a serious allergic reaction to the medication. However, get medical help as soon as possible if you notice any of these symptoms like rash, itching, swelling, problem in breathing, dizziness.

There are also a few more side effects that are not present in the list. If you notice any other effects that are not listed in the list, contact your doctor immediately

What is doxepin for sleep tablets precautions?

Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have a previous allergic reaction to any antidepressant before taking doxepin. This medicine has some ingredients that can cause an allergic reaction or any other problems. Talk to your doctor for more details.

Tell your doctor or pharmacist about your medical history, especially if you have ever faced problems in urinating personal or family history of glaucoma.

Doxepin makes you feel drowsy and taking alcohol and marijuana side by side will make you feel drowsier. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity which requires your full attention. Also, avoid taking beverages that contain alcohol.

If you are having any surgery, you should tell your doctor about all the medicines that you are using.

During the time of pregnancy, doxepin should only be used if it’s needed. Consult your doctor to know the risks and benefits of this medicine. For babies born to mothers who were using this drug during their last 3 months of pregnancy, there is a slight chance that the newborn may develop a withdrawal syndrome that is difficulty in breathing/feeding, stiff muscles, seizures, and constant crying. If you notice any of these symptoms in your baby, contact your doctor immediately.

The medication passes from breast milk to your newborn. It is not recommended to breastfeed while using this medicine. It is important to consult your doctor before you start breastfeeding your infant.

Interaction with other drugs

It is important to share all the details about medicines (prescribed, non-prescribed, herbal) that you are taking currently. Not only with doxepin, but it is also important to share these details whenever you are starting a new medication. There is a chance that different medicines may interact with each other, which could result in some serious side effects. Do not change the dosage, start-stop the medicine without consulting your doctor.

Products that can interact with this medicine include: cimetidine

Using MAO inhibitors with this drug could cause a serious reaction that could be fatal. Avoid using MAO inhibitors with (isocarboxazid, methylene blue, linezolid, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, safinamide, tranylcypromine, selegiline). 

Do not use MAO inhibitors for 2 weeks before and after the treatment.

What if I overdose doxepin?

If you or someone you know has taken an overdose and is suffering from symptoms like Fainting, shortness of breath, hallucination, irregular heartbeat, seizures. Immediately call 911 or the poison control center, as it could be fatal.

Other important information

Keep all appointments with your doctor.

Do not change the dose without consulting your doctor. 

Do not share this drug with others. This drug has been prescribed to you due to your current situation, do not use this drug in any other illness until, and unless it is prescribed by your doctor. A different medication may be needed for that illness.

Insomnia lasts for a few days only and all you need is sleeping pills to treat it. If you are still facing problems after 7–10 days, a laboratory test or medical test may be needed to conduct to find out what is causing this issue.

It is common to face problems in sleeping when you get old, your sleep cycle changes naturally, you get interrupted several times, avoid taking alcohol and caffeine before you go to sleep, avoid daytime naps, avoid going early to bed.

Missed dose of Doxepin

If you forgot to take your medication and it is still near your bedtime, take it as soon as possible, do not take the medicine if it is way past your bedtime as you will feel more drowsy in the morning, take your missed dose next night at the same time and try to continue this cycle without breaking it. Most importantly, do not take a double dose to catch up with your missed dose — it could result in an overdose and can be fatal.

Storage of Doxepin

Store doxepin at room temperature away from the sunlight and moisture. Keep the medication out of the reach of your children and pets. Store it in a high place so that your child is unable to reach it.

Unneeded medicines should be disposed of in a way that no one is able to take it. Do not flush this medicine down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of this or any other medication is through a medication take-back program. Contact your local pharmacist or your local garbage disposal regarding this program. See the FDA’s safe disposal of medicine website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.

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