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Dormidina (psicofármaco): uses, effects and controversy

Dormidina (psicofármaco): uses, effects and controversy

March 26, 2024

Dormidine is a very popular drug, which is best known for being used to fight insomnia for its sedative effects.

Did you know that this drug is really a first generation antihistamine? Some will ask ... what does that mean? Well, it is a medicine that was originally used to treat allergy since one of its side effects is that it acts as a sedative. Dormidina makes you sleep, but not with a good night's sleep. With this medication it is usual to get up drowsy and with a feeling of bottling. Its generic name is doxylamine.

  • Related article: "Haloperidol (antipsychotic): uses, effects and risks"

First generation antihistamines: what are they?

Dormidine contains an active substance called doxylamine succinate, which is a first generation antihistamine. . Antihistamines are used for the treatment of allergy, but the first generation, that is, the old ones, also cause sleep. In contrast, the new antihistamines do not cause this drowsiness effect.

The first antihistamines are relatively cheap and widespread. Both doxylamine and other first generation H1 antihistamines cross the blood-brain barrier, causing drowsiness by inhibiting H1-stimulating wakefulness receptors. But they are non-specific drugs, which, in addition, have effects on other receptors (for example, cholinergic receptors).

This lack of selectivity for the receptor is the basis of the poor tolerance profile of some of these products, especially when compared to the second generation of antihistamines H1. The dose of doxylamine to induce sleep can be as low as 6.25 mg, but it is usually effective at doses of up to 25 mg.

Uses of doxylamine

Doxylamine, therefore, is not only used as anti-allergic, but is part of other drugs such as Dormidina or Normodorm, used for occasional sleep. Although, undoubtedly, the Dormidina is the most popular, since its manufacturers have carried out a great marketing campaign turning it into a well-known product .

Dormidina: consult the doctor if ...

Despite the possibility of acquiring it in pharmacies without a prescription, it is always advisable to talk to a doctor if you suffer from insomnia. Likewise, it is almost obligatory that you consult a specialist in these cases:

  • If you are pregnant or you intend to stay pregnant
  • If you take other medications without a prescription , herbal preparations or dietary supplements
  • If you have food allergies or other medications
  • If you suffer from sleep apnea , asthma, bronchitis or other pulmonary or respiratory conditions
  • If you have stomach problems , for example: ulcers
  • If you have difficulty urinating , diabetes, glaucoma, high blood pressure, thyroid or other medical diseases

Interactions with other medications

Some medications can interact with Dormidine so special care must be taken, for example, with GHB, by increasing the duration of sleep or promoting respiratory depression; or with the Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs), because adverse effects can be increased, for example, high blood pressure.

  • Related article: "Sertraline (antidepressant psychodrug): characteristics, uses and effects"

Some considerations

The Dormidina does not stop being a medicine and therefore can produce different reactions . If you are going to consume this drug, during periods of heat it is necessary to be well hydrated because it can aggravate the symptoms of dehydration.

Also, older people are more likely to suffer side effects. Dormidine should not be consumed for a period longer than 7 days without medical review.

Side effects of Dormidina

All medications produce side effects and it is necessary to see the doctor if some of those shown in the following list appear :

  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Constipation
  • Blurry vision
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Increase of the mucus of the bronchi
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

But in serious cases, such as those shown below, you should go to your health center as soon as possible:

  • Skin rash
  • Decrease in blood pressure
  • Double vision
  • Inflammation of arms and legs
  • Noise in the ears
  • Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea

Some adverse effects that rarely occur but have been manifested by some individuals are:

  • Anemia
  • Decrease in platelets
  • Decrease in white blood cells
  • Tremor
  • Seizures
  • Excitement

Solutions to sleep better (without drugs)

Drugs are an extreme measure for when insomnia manifests itself. Many times, it is our own habit that makes it difficult for us to sleep. Therefore, here are some tips to improve your sleep hygiene:

  • Create an appropriate environment to rest
  • Watch your diet
  • Follow a ritual to sleep
  • Avoid stimulants like coffee after mid afternoon
  • Do physical exercise
  • Do not abuse the nap
  • Do not devote the previous hours to go to sleep to look at a screen.
  • Do not drink alcohol before sleeping
  • Take care of your schedules

If you want to delve into these tips, in our post "10 basic principles for good sleep hygiene" you will find all the information you need.


Dormidine is a drug that was initially used for the treatment of allergy, but because it also caused drowsiness it was marketed as a sleeping drug. This strategy is not new, and in fact it is a common practice of pharmaceutical companies. Another clear example is that of paroxetine, an antidepressant drug that tried to sell itself as a remedy against shyness.

Definitely, It gives us reason to reflect on how money premiums over our health .

¿Son buenas las pastillas para dormir? (March 2024).

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