Compare Sonata vs. Silenor

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

Sonata
(zaleplon)

Silenor
(doxepin)

Helps you sleep. Sonata (Zaleplon) helps you fall asleep, but it's not as good for staying asleep. It also interacts with a lot of diseases and other drugs.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.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
3.79Sonata
Reviews for Sonata
42%
of people (All ages) say Sonata is worth it
23%
say it works well
27%
say it's a big hassle
175 reviews
Have you used Sonata (zaleplon)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

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Have you used Silenor (doxepin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
SonataSilenor
  • Abdominal pain 3%
  • Drowsiness 1%
  • Eye pain 2%
  • Tingling sensation 2%
  • Menstrual cramps 1%
  • Amnesia 1%
More Sonata side effects »

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

FDA side effect reports for Silenor »
How it works
SonataSilenor
Sonata (Zaleplon) is in a class of drugs called sedative-hypnotics. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it interacts with your brain to make you relaxed and sleepy.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.
Type of medication
SonataSilenor
Prescription only
Available as
SonataSilenor
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Used for
SonataSilenor
  • Alcoholism Anxiety Depression Anxiety Depression Anxiety Depression Psychoneurotic Personality Disorder Insomnia Pruritus Moderate
Risk factors for serious side effects
SonataSilenor
  • Continuous use for 2 weeks or more
  • Alcohol
  • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • Less than 7 hours of sleep
  • Undiagnosed psychiatric conditions
Detailed Sonata (zaleplon) risks & warnings »
    Coming soon.
    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.

    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.

    Interactions
    SonataSilenor
    • Interacts badly with many other medications.
    • Doxepin can interact with many different medications, vitamins, and alternative treatments.
    Alcohol
    SonataSilenor
    • It works best if taken without food and avoid taking it with alcohol or drugs.
    • Stay away from alcohol while taking Doxepin, because it can slow your brain, and stop your breathing.
    Kidneys and liver
    SonataSilenor
    • Might not be safe if you have problems with your liver, kidneys, lungs, or if you have a history of depression.
    No kidneys and liver related info.
    Sleep
    SonataSilenor
    • Only take it if you have time to sleep for at least 7 hours.
    • Can cause headache, drowsiness, or dizziness.
    • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster.
    • People have sleep-walked, sleep-driven, and sleep-eaten while on Sonata (Zaleplon).
    No sleep related info.
    Weight
    SonataSilenor
    No weight related info.
    • Doxepin can increase your appetite, leading to weight gain.
    Upsides and benefits
    SonataSilenor
    • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster.
    • Doesn't last as long in the body as some other sleep medicines, so it's okay to take it in the middle of the night as long as you enough time to sleep. (But be sure to discuss it with your doctor first.)
    • 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.
    Downsides and risks
    SonataSilenor
    • Not typically used for long-term treatment since it can be habit-forming.
    • Doesn't last as long in the body as other sleep medicines, so it's not as good at helping you stay asleep.
    • Interacts badly with many other medications.
    • Not a good option if you're pregnant or breast-feeding.
    • People have sleep-walked, sleep-driven, and sleep-eaten while on Sonata (Zaleplon).
    • Might not be safe if you have problems with your liver, kidneys, lungs, or if you have a history of depression.
    • It's easy to become reliant on sleep medicines. In the long run, it's better to learn good sleeping habits and behaviors so you can sleep better naturally.
    • 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.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    SonataSilenor
    • Take 30 to 45 minutes before bedtime.
    • Only take it if you have time to sleep for at least 7 hours.
    • It's very addictive and meant for short-term treatment. Dependence can start to form after using it daily for 2 weeks.
    • Can cause headache, drowsiness, or dizziness.
    • It works best if taken without food and avoid taking it with alcohol or drugs.
    • Withdrawal symptoms usually get better in 1 to 2 days.
    • Tell your doctor about any sudden confusion or changes in thoughts or behavior.
    • 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.
    Learn more
    More about SonataSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Sonata (zaleplon)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it
    More about SilenorSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Silenor (doxepin)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it