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What is Silenor (Doxepin) prescribed for?

It generally depends on the person, but most adults need 7 to 8 hours of sleep. While children and teens need more. It’s well known that if you didn’t sleep well last night you may need to catch up on your sleep the next day. As one gets older you will begin to notice how your sleeping pattern has changed, with lighter and shorter periods of shut eye.

Everyone undergoes through a rocky night of sleep every now and then, and many things accumulate to that, including stress. However, if it becomes much more persistent you may want to speak with your doctor. Since a sleeping disorder can happen to anyone.

Insomnia is a sleeping disorder in which you have problems falling and staying asleep. The condition can be short term or it can last a long time. It may also come and go. Acute insomnia last from one night to a few weeks. Whereas, it becomes chronic when it happens at least three nights a week for three months or more.

This medication is used to treat a sleeping disorder known as insomnia. When taken, it may help you stay asleep longer and reduce the number of times you wake up during the night. Doxepin belongs to a class of drugs known as tricyclic antidepressants. It is not know how this medication improves your sleep, thought It may be due to blocking histamine receptors.

This medication is taken by mouth, usually once at night within 30 minutes before your bedtime on an empty stomach. Or as directed by your doctor. Do not take it within 3 hours of a meal because the effect of the medication will be delayed.

Do not take this medication unless you are able to get a full night of sleep, which is 7 to 8 hours, before you must be active again. Remember those dosage is based on your medical condition and your response to the treatment.


Before taking this medication, it is best to advise your doctor if you are allergic Doxepin; or to other tricyclic antidepressants (such as amoxapine); or to any other medications or allergies in general. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.

It is best to inform your doctor of your medical history. Therefore, it is best to speak with your doctor if you have ever suffered from any of the following; problems urinating (urinary retention), personal or family history of glaucoma (angle-closure type).

Side Effects

While minor, some of these side effects may occur. They are as follows; Drowsiness or nausea may occur. However if any of these persist or worsen, it’s best to speak with your doctor right away.

Rarely, after taking this drug, people have gotten out of bed and driven vehicles while not fully awake ("sleep-driving"). People have also sleepwalked, prepared/eaten food, made phone calls, or had sex while not fully awake. Often, these people do not remember these events. This problem can be dangerous to you or to others. If you find out that you have done any of these activities after taking this medication, tell your doctor right away. Your risk is increased if you use alcohol or other medications that can make you drowsy while taking doxepin.

At higher doses, doxepin is used to treat a variety of other conditions, including depression and other mental/mood disorders. It can help prevent suicidal thoughts/attempts and provide other important benefits. However, studies have shown that a small number of people (especially people younger than 25) who take antidepressants for any condition may experience worsening depression, other mental/mood symptoms, or suicidal thoughts/attempts. Therefore, it is very important to talk with the doctor about the risks and benefits of antidepressant medication (especially for people younger than 25), even if treatment is not for a mental/mood condition. Tell the doctor right away if you notice worsening depression/other psychiatric conditions, unusual behavior changes (including possible suicidal thoughts/attempts), or other mental/mood changes (including new/worsening anxiety, panic attacks, irritability, hostile/angry feelings, impulsive actions, severe restlessness, very rapid speech). Be especially watchful for these symptoms if a new antidepressant is started or when the dose is changed.

Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: eye pain/swelling/redness, widened pupils, vision changes (such as seeing rainbows around lights at night, blurred vision).

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.


What is Doxepin?

Doxepin is the active ingredient found inside the brand-name medication Silenor. It belongs to the drug class called tricyclic antidepressants, but some argue that it belongs to the drug class of hypnotics. In the form of Silenor, Doxepin is available in a variety of strengths, including 10, 25, 50, 75, and 100 mg. Each capsule is taken by mouth, metabolized in the liver (while creating metabolites), and excreted through human waste with a half-life averaging at about 15 hours. You will require a valid prescription to obtain this medication.


What is Doxepin used for?

Doxepin (Silenor) is used for the treatment of insomnia. Insomnia is the medical term for difficulties sleeping, which may include a hard time falling asleep as well as staying asleep. Of course, everyone experiences difficulties sleeping at times, but when it lasts for a few weeks, you may have acute insomnia; you may have chronic insomnia if it occurs at least three times per week for three or more months. Using Doxepin can help you fall asleep easier and keep you from waking up throughout the night.


How does Silenor work?

The exact mechanism of action for Doxepin when it comes to insomnia is complex and unclear. Many doctors believe it may be due to the blocking of histamine receptors. Scientists have already concluded that histamine is a chemical that sends signals to the brain to make it awake, which is why blocking histamine receptors may help improve insomnia.


How long does Doxepin stay in your system?

The amount of time Doxepin stays present in the system for will vary between each individual. However, you can use the medications half-life to estimate the amount of time it may take; by multiplying it by 5. With an average half-life of 15 hours, Doxepin will likely remain in the system for around 75 hours (a little over 3 days) following your last dose.


How long does it take for Doxepin to work for sleep?

Improvement in sleep using Doxepin occurs fairly quickly for most; after the first few days of treatment you should notice an improvement in your sleep schedule. If your sleep does not improve after 7-10 days of treatment, you may want to consult your doctor.


What are the side effects of Doxepin?

The most commonly reported side effects of Doxepin include drowsiness, feeling tired, nausea, or cold symptoms (like stuffy nose or sore throat). There are additional side effects that may occur that are not listed here. If side effects become unmanageable, consult with your doctor.


How much does Silenor cost?

At My Drug Center, we carry the generic alternative, sold as Doxepin, for an affordable price. A supply of 100 – 10mg tablets cost around $69.00, which equals to about $0.69 per tablet. To order, all you need is a valid prescription.  

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