Manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline Group of Companies, Nytol Herbal is a natural alternative to the original Nytol, which contains the active ingredient diphenhydramine hydrochloride. Available in tablet form, GlaxoSmithKline recommends taking two tablets approximately one hour prior to your normal bedtime. Unfortunately, natural doesn't always mean better. As with many over-the-counter medications, Nytol Herbal, which contains valerian, hops and passion flower, does have potential side effects, some of which can be quite unpleasant.
Valerian or Valeriana officinalis is an herbal sedative that dates back to ancient Greek and Roman medicine. Valerian mimics the manufactured drug oxazepam, known for its calming effect. Colorado State University considers valerian an herbal sedative, which requires repeated use for peak effectiveness. Unfortunately, for Nytol Herbal users, repeated use can also become habit forming. As with other sedatives, dependency is possible with continued use lasting longer than two weeks.
If you are taking propranolol for conditions such as hypertension, migraines, angina or tremors, you may want to think twice about taking Nytol Herbal for sleep. According to the Mayo Clinic, visual disturbances such as tunnel vision and halos and lights are a possible side effect of propranolol. There is an increased risk of such disturbances while taking Nytol Herbal.
Superliving reports that Nytol herbal can produce additional side effects including gastrointestinal disturbances, headache, nausea and vomiting, fever, fainting and heart palpitations. The University Of Maryland School Of Medicine claims that valerian is associated with these side effects, in addition to dizziness, sedation and confusion. The university recommends consulting a physician before taking any over-the-counter medications containing valerian, especially if the patient is already taking prescription medications for other conditions.