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Definition of «Sedative»

Sedative: A drug that calms a patient down, easing agitation and permitting sleep. Sedatives generally work by modulating signals within the central nervous system. These sedatives can dangerously depress important signals needed to maintain heart and lung function if they are misused or accidentally combined, as in the case of combining prescription sedatives with alcohol. Most sedatives also have addictive potential. For these reasons, sedatives should be used under supervision, and only as needed.

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