Experts are warning that the sleep drug zopiclone may become addictive if used for more than a few weeks, according to The Huffington Post.

“Z drugs” – the name given to a group of drugs used to ease symptoms of insomnia – can be prescribed by a doctor for short periods of time. Zopiclone is one of these drugs.

According to the study authors, the use of zopiclone appears to be increasing. In 2013-2014, zopiclone was the sixth most common drug among enquiries to the UK National Poisons Information Service’s online database, TOXBASE.

Z drugs, such as zopiclone, are not normally prescribed for more than two to four weeks because of concerns about dependence and addiction.

To investigate the availability of zopiclone, the researchers identified 37 websites selling the tablets in quantities of up to 2000.

A total of 35 of these websites also sold similar drugs and 15 offered bulk purchase discounts.

Most (24) provided information and warnings about dosage, but 22 clearly stated that no prescription was necessary for purchase, while 14 made no mention of this at all.

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