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Do sleeping pills pose a crash risk for drivers?

Like many people in Tennessee and elsewhere, you may use prescription sleeping pills. These types of medications can be helpful in aiding you to get the rest that your body needs. Research has shown, however, that using such medications may lead to dangerous impairments if you drive.

Researchers from the University of Washington conducted a study to identify how drivers are affected by the use of prescription sleeping pills. To this end, they examined the prescription and motor vehicle accident records for over 400,000 drivers in Washington who were enrolled in a state health plan, NBC News reported. The researchers collected data on people who were prescribed one of three commonly prescribed sleep aids – temazepam, zolpidem and trazodone.

According to the UW Health Sciences Newsbeat, the study showed the crash risk for new users of prescription sleep aids was nearly twice that of motorists who do not use these types of medications. This is because sleeping pills may remain at high levels in the bloodstream well into the morning. As a result, drivers may experience impairments that hamper their ability to drive safely.

The University of Washington researchers’ findings helped to bolster prior warnings about these medications by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA suggested decreasing the recommended dosages for these medications in 2013, according to NBC News. This recommendation was made based on the potential for an increased crash risk for drivers who use these prescription drugs.

This post has provided an overview of the potential dangers of using prescription sleeping aids. It is important to keep in mind, however, that each person may respond to these medications differently. Therefore, you should take this post only as general information and not consider it as legal advice.

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