2 minute read

Does promethazine help you sleep?

By Joe Young | Medically reviewed by Lauren Sien

Still awake after counting a truckload of sheep? If you struggle for high-quality sleep, it’s time to do something about it. There are many treatments available along with lifestyle changes - one of the potential treatments is promethazine.

Let’s see how it works. 

How does promethazine work?

If you’ve ever been knocked out by cold medicine, it might be down to promethazine. It’s the reason why you’re able to sleep with a nose more congested than Oxford Circus in rush hour. Promethazine restricts histamine, a chemical studied in the regulation of wakefulness. With promethazine at play, this alertness diminishes, facilitating easier sleep. Sleep plays a crucial role in your health, so it's important to get enough of it.

What are the side effects of promethazine?

Every medication, regardless of its benefits, carries potential side effects. Promethazine can cause daytime fatigue, nightmares, and occasional dizziness. For any severe side effects, medical intervention is paramount. 

Promethazine should be used cautiously, and you should always read the Patient Information Leaflet before taking it. It’s typically meant for short-term use. Taking as needed rather than every day for no more than three months reduces the risk of psychological dependence.

How does promethazine compare to melatonin?

Melatonin has long been the main player in sleep aids - it’s a natural hormone in the body, which regulates our internal clocks and signals when it’s time to sleep. You can take clinically prescribed melatonin tablets (the synthetic version of the hormone) to help reset your natural sleep cycle. It works with the body's internal rhythms, signalling it's time to wind down. 

Promethazine offers a more direct intervention for those with severe sleep disruptions. While both have their merits, it's essential to understand their distinct mechanisms. By completing a consultation, a clinician can decide what treatment is the most safe and effective for you.

Here’s a simple breakdown:

Promethazine: An antihistamine that regulates wakefulness, ushering in sleep. 

Melatonin: A hormone that tells your body it’s time to wind down. 

The numan take

Sleep issues shouldn’t be brushed under the rug, Especially when solutions are out there like promethazine, an effective remedy for sleep disturbances. Boost your days by bettering your nights.