A report from The Columbus Dispatch examines the use of antihistamines, such as benadryl, for sleep.

A study published in January in the Journal of the American Medical Association also raised questions about the risk of regularly using antihistamines. It found that people who took the most prescription and over-the-counter antihistamines, antidepressants and drugs used for overactive bladders also were at a higher risk of developing dementia.

Such dosages — the equivalent of one Benadryl taken at bedtime every night for six years — aren’t conclusively linked to mental decline. And the study focused on older patients

Still, “There are really wonderful and effective approaches out there to help your sleep that are much safer,” said Dr. Sascha Dublin, a study co-author and associate investigator with the Group Health Research Institute, a Seattle-based nonprofit health system.

Alternatives can start with some changes to your sleep environment and lifestyle, including regular doses of exercise.

Get the full story at www.dispatch.com