Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.
Sedatives and tranquilizers
Sedatives and tranquilizers are medicines that have a calming effect. Generally, sedatives and tranquilizers depress or slow down certain body functions or the activity of an organ, such as the heart.
Mild sedatives and tranquilizers may be used to reduce anxiety or other nervous system problems or to promote sleep. Low doses of sedatives can help reduce coughing, nausea, or convulsions. Higher doses of these substances may be used for severe sleep problems, severe anxiety, symptoms related to psychotic disorders (such as hallucinations or delusions), or as part of anesthesia. These types of sedatives and tranquilizers should only be used as directed by a doctor because they can become habit-forming. Abuse of some stronger substances can lead to severe health problems.
Current as of: March 1, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & Michael F. Bierer MD - Internal Medicine, Addiction Medicine & William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine