Cautions And Warnings Associated With The Use Of Sedativehypnotics

a. Ambulatory patients (those patients able to walk) should be warned to avoid activities that require mental alertness, judgment, and physical coordination while taking sedative-hypnotics.

b. Alcohol should not be consumed with sedative-hypnotic agents. This is because both the alcohol and the sedative-hypnotic would both act to depress the central nervous system.

c. Caution should be observed when these drugs are given to patients who have impaired liver function, since the sedative-hypnotics are broken down in the liver.

d. Sedative-hypnotic agents are probably best prescribed and taken only on an irregular basis when needed. Some physicians believe that a short (that is, week long) course of scheduled sedative-hypnotic therapy is the most desirable. The aim is not to offer the patient the opportunity to become physically or psychologically dependent upon the drugs.

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