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Antihistamine for Sleep

Q. I have a history of sleeping problems. I just started taking half an acetaminophen PM tablet (1/4 the adult dose) just before bed. This allows me to sleep through the night. Is this safe?

A. If pain is not an issue, you don’t need the acetaminophen. The PM part of the pill is diphenhydramine (DPH). This is the antihistamine found in Benadryl and it makes people drowsy. At the dose you are using, there should be few, if any, side effects.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.”.
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