Letter from Pr Henri Joyeux no 154
Until the sleep-wake system was discovered, the cause of the paradoxical adverse effects of benzodiazepines and related drugs was unknown. The listing in the official journal of 10 January 2017 of Zolpidem (Stilnox and its generic equivalents) as a narcotic drug is an opportunity to explain why all these sleeping pills and anti-anxiety drugs are narcotics. They have unacceptable adverse effects, known as “paradoxical”, as they actually exacerbate the effects they are supposed to treat.
As we will explain, benzodiazepines and related drugs are in fact psychostimulants, which is why they are considered narcotics.
Before you read this letter dedicated to the problems posed by the use of benzodiazepines and related drugs in the treatment of sleep disorders and anxiety, we recommend that you watch the following video: “Sleep disorders and how to treat them”, Pr J.B. Fourtillan and Pr H. Joyeux (YouTube: duration 16 min 25).