One of the more popular medications for the treatment of insomnia, trouble sleeping and interrupted sleep these days is Lunesta. A prescription medication, Lunesta is not available to all people, but for those who can acquire the product, there is a lot to consider before committing to it. Lunesta is not an all natural product like many herbal options available are, and as such, does not work as well with the body's natural rhythms as one would hope. Only a short term solution, Lunesta poses some risk to those who choose to take it, and anyone interested in obtaining a prescription for Lunesta should carefully evaluate the product as well as all other options available.
When you fall to sleep naturally, it is due to melatonin and serotonin, two substances produced naturally within the body that encourage the body to drift to sleep naturally as well as prolong the restful, deep sleep periods of the sleep cycle. Oddly, Lunesta contains neither of these ingredients, nor any ingredients designed to take advantage of the body's natural chemistry. A more easily obtained, less expensive quality herbal sleep aid product will most often contain both.
Instead of natural ingredients, Lunesta contains Eszopiclone as an active ingredient. The Eszopiclone contained in Lunesta makes the product fall solidly into the category of medications referred to as hypnotics and sedatives. As a sedative, Lunesta does not rely on the body's natural processes, but instead, completely overrides them to force the body to sleep quickly. While trouble falling asleep is a common complaint that Lunesta is designed to address, disrupting the natural cycles of sleep does not promote the restful and rejuvenating sleep needed to feel awake and alert in the morning.
Lunesta has some low grade side effects that should not present too much of a hassle to those who are seriously in need of a sleep aid. For example, Lunesta has been shown to cause an unpleasant taste in the mouth, headache, dry mouth or drowsiness. Oddly, unlike many similar products, Lunesta has also been shown to occasionally cause heartburn or viral infections, like urinary tract infections.
More seriously, some people who are sensitive to strong or harsh medications have experienced more severe side effects from the use of Lunesta such as chest pain, strange behavior, hallucinations or even suicidal thoughts. There are also sexual side effects such as decreased libido, breast enlargement in men and painful monthly periods for men. Lunesta offers a long and potentially painful or harmful list of side effects that are not present when choosing a more natural, herbal solution for sleep disturbances.
One of the main obstacles presented by Lunesta is that it is a prescription only product. This means doctor visits, follow ups, time off work, loss of pay or vacation time as well as just the plain aggravation and annoyance of waiting to be seen by a doctor. That is all on top of the cost of the visit to the doctor as well as the cost of the Lunesta itself. For those who do not have medical insurance, whose medical insurance declines to cover Lunesta, or who do not have prescription coverage, Lunesta is even more expensive, difficult or impossible to obtain. Some doctors may be able to offer a short term free sample of Lunesta, but the cost of the prescription will depend totally on the medical insurance of the person holding the prescription. Out of pocket, without medical insurance, Lunesta, like many medications, is prohibitively expensive.
Lunesta cannot be considered as a long term solution for any kind of sleep troubles or disturbances. By disrupting the natural sleep rhythms even more than they already had been, Lunesta creates a cycle of dependence upon the sleep aid by helping the user get to sleep, but not actually providing any restful sleep. Many who take Lunesta awake even more tired, distracted, confused and uncoordinated than they were when they went to sleep.
Aside from the fact that Lunesta only provides a patch solution instead of a long term solution, there are the side effects to consider. Possibility of infection, breast growth in men, painful heartburn or headaches is just a few of the negative side effects that are possible with Lunesta. All in all, those who take the time to look closely at Lunesta are likely to find that they will be happier and healthier in the long term with a more natural, herbal product to solve their bedtime troubles.