If you’ve ever spent a night tossing and turning as you dread going to work in the morning on a whopping two hours of sleep, you’ve got plenty of exhausted company. Personally, I’m baffled by the fact that Unsolved Mysteries never devoted an episode to investigating why our beds are infinitely more comfortable when that damn alarm clock goes off than they are when we’re, you know, trying to fall asleep.
According to recent research out of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 1 in 4 Americans experiences insomnia each year, so it’s not surprising that millions turn to prescription sleep medications like Ambien in an effort to get that much-needed shut-eye. But in addition to long-term risks like developing a dependence, there’s a major downside that hits immediately: These medications leave many people feeling completely groggy and out of sorts in the morning.
Although people with severe, long-term insomnia may need to take a prescription sleep medication, it’s not necessarily the best place to start. SheKnows spoke with experts about the best natural sleep aids to take before bed.