Compare Silenor vs. Tofranil

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Silenor
(doxepin)

Tofranil
(imipramine hydrochloride)

Helps you relax, and sleep. Doxepin is a non-addictive way to help people stay asleep, but it comes with a list of side effects.Improves your mood and stops bedwetting in children. Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) is one of the first choice medicines used to treat depression, but it can cause weight gain and sleepiness.
Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Silenor (doxepin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

Not enough reviews for this treatment. Help someone out, leave a review!

Have you used Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
SilenorTofranil

We haven’t found good data for Silenor side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Silenor »

The Tofranil FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Tofranil side effects »
How it works
SilenorTofranil
Doxepin is a tricyclic antidepressant. It keeps norepinephrine and serotonin in your brain longer, helping you relax, and sleep. It also blocks the chemical that causes itch, and wakefulness.Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) is a tricyclic antidepressant. It raises the amount of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain, 2 chemicals that are known to regulate mood. It's not known exactly how Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) treats bedwetting.
Type of medication
SilenorTofranil
Prescription only
Available as
SilenorTofranil
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
Used for
SilenorTofranil
  • Alcoholism Anxiety Depression Anxiety Depression Anxiety Depression Psychoneurotic Personality Disorder Insomnia Pruritus Moderate
Risk factors for serious side effects
SilenorTofranil
    Coming soon.
    • Under age 24
    • History of heart disease
    • Overactive thyroid
    • High blood pressure
    • History of seizures
    Detailed Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

    Interactions
    SilenorTofranil
    • Doxepin can interact with many different medications, vitamins, and alternative treatments.
    No interactions related info.
    Alcohol
    SilenorTofranil
    • Stay away from alcohol while taking Doxepin, because it can slow your brain, and stop your breathing.
    • Don't drink alcohol while taking Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride).
    Sleep
    SilenorTofranil
    No sleep related info.
    • Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) can make you feel sleepy, so don't drive or do anything requiring concentration until you know how it affects you.
    Weight
    SilenorTofranil
    • Doxepin can increase your appetite, leading to weight gain.
    • Compared to other medicines for depression, Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) can make you more likely to gain weight and have changes in blood sugar. If you have diabetes, your doctor might need to change the doses of your medications to make sure your blood sugar stays controlled. Talk to your doctor to see if you should take another medicine besides Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride).
    Upsides and benefits
    SilenorTofranil
    • In a clinical trial Doxepin was able to significantly improve sleep quality.
    • Doxepin helps improve your appetite, energy level, and sense of well-being, which increases your interests.
    • Once your body gets used to Doxepin, most of the side effects go away.
    • Doxepin comes in a generic form, so it is pretty cheap.
    • Doxepin is not addictive.
    • Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) is part of the first choice of medicines used to treat depression.
    • Available in generic.
    • Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) is usually taken only once a day.
    • Available in 3 different strengths.
    Downsides and risks
    SilenorTofranil
    • Some people taking Doxepin walk, drive, eat, and have sex while sleeping. Be sure to tell your doctor if this happens to you.
    • Doxepin can increase your appetite, leading to weight gain.
    • Taking Doxepin can make emptying your bladder difficult.
    • Some people have suicidal thoughts when taking Doxepin.
    • Doxepin can interact with many different medications, vitamins, and alternative treatments.
    • Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) can lower your sex drive and cause more weight gain than other similar medicines for depression.
    • You might be more sensitive to the sun and have a higher risk for heat stroke while taking Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride).
    • If you have a history of heart conditions, your symptoms might get worse with Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride). Talk to your doctor to see if Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) is right for you.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    SilenorTofranil
    • Take Doxepin 30 minutes before bedtime so it starts working when you get in bed.
    • Avoid activities that need you to be fully alert like driving, until you know how Doxepin affects you.
    • Follow up with your doctor so he or she can make sure Doxepin is the right medication for your depression.
    • Stay away from alcohol while taking Doxepin, because it can slow your brain, and stop your breathing.
    • Some people get dry mouth, or constipation when taking Doxepin. Sugar free gum or candy can help the dry mouth, and drinking more fluid can help with constipation.
    • Avoid direct sunlight while taking this medication. When you can’t avoid it, be sure to use sunscreen. It’s also important to put on a long-sleeved shirt, pants, hat, and sunglasses.
    • You might need to take Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) for a few weeks before you notice any changes in your mood.
    • Don't drink alcohol while taking Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride).
    • If you miss your bedtime dose, skip it and take your regular dose the next evening. Don't take extra medicine to make up for the missed dose.
    • You might be more sensitive to the sun while taking Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride). Make sure to drink plenty of liquids, wear sunscreen, or cover your skin if you'll be out in the sun.
    • Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) can make you feel sleepy, so don't drive or do anything requiring concentration until you know how it affects you.
    • Don't stop taking Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride) without talking to your doctor first.
    Learn more
    More about SilenorSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Silenor (doxepin)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it
    More about TofranilSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it