An estimated 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders or sleep deprivation, the report said. Only a third of Americans get the recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night.
9 million use prescription sleep aid.
About 4 percent of adults 20 and older used prescription sleep aids in the last month.
CDC: Sleep aids - CBS News
See Others below
Source: WebMD
Sleep aids: Understand over-the-counter options - Mayo Clinic

Studies - Dangers:
Common anticholinergic drugs like Benadryl linked to increased dementia risk - Harvard Health Blog - Harvard Health Publishing says,
"Anticholinergic drugs block the action of acetylcholine. This substance transmits messages in the nervous system.
This includes popular Sleep aids including, Diphenhydramine HCl (Benadryl, Sominex, Tylenol PM)

You should not take these for more than 7 days in a row.

"Do Sleeping Pills Increase the Risk of Dementia?" - The People's Pharmacy says,
"Zolpidem (Ambien) or eszopiclone (Lunesta) have been linked to Alzheimer's."

Best sleeping pills for insomnia - Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs says,
"An Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) report found that benzodiazepines, sedative sleep drugs like zolpidem (Ambien and generic) work for short periods, but are not effective for chronic insomnia." CR Best Buy Drugs recommends that you first try cognitive behavioral therapy.
Consumer Reports also says the new drug Belsomra isn't much better.

If you feel a need for both a pain killer and an antihistamine to help you sleep then it is far more cost effective to buy a generic version of Benadryl and a generic form of ibuprofen or aspirin than to buy something like Advil PM or Bayer PM where they are premixed for you. Antihistamine OTC Sleep Aids | HAMS network
Trouble sleeping? Experts say skip antihistamines Baylor College of Medicine

Warm Milk:
Warm Milk, True or False? |WebMD says,
"YES, warm milk can help you get to sleep. But it's not because it contains the enzyme tryptophan, which urban legend has it will lull you to sleep (and which is often the talk at Thanksgiving when people drop like flies after a large meal heavy in tryptophan-rich turkey).

In fact, the jury is still out on exactly whether or not milk can encourage sleep. Studies of tryptophan's impact on sleep have found only one phase of sleep - the first one when you're falling asleep - is enhanced by tryptophan. Other aspects of sleep, such as the amount of deep-sleep reached during the night, can be harmed by tryptophan, especially if it's taken in supplemental form.

6 Sleep Myths Busted (Page 7) - EatingWell says,
" The theory is this: milk contains tryptophan (the amino acid best known for being in turkey), which when released into the brain produces serotonin--a serenity-boosting neurotransmitter. But when milk was tested, it failed to affect sleep patterns. "Tryptophan-containing foods don't produce the hypnotic effects pure tryptophan does, because other amino acids in those foods compete to get into the brain,"


Sleep Problems
2 Little-Known Compounds Haunt Your Sleep | Nutreance
Mattresses and sleep
Natural Sleep Aids | WebMD Sleep Supplements: Melatonin, Valerian, Kava, L-tryptophan, Chamomile | WebMD
Sleeping Pills & Natural Sleep Aids: What's Best for You? What You Need to Know About Sleep Aids and Sleeping Pills
Why You Shouldn't Ignore Insomnia Symptoms WebMD
6 Sleep Myths Busted - EatingWell

last updated 8 Oct 2015