Hypnotic (from Greek Hypnos, sleep) or soporific drugs are a class of psychoactive drugs whose primary function is to induce sleep and to be used in the treatment of insomnia (sleeplessness), or surgical anesthesia.This group is related to a very similar group of drugs called sedatives. Whereas the term sedative describes drugs that serve to calm or relieve anxiety, the term hypnotic generally describes drugs whose main purpose is to initiate, sustain, or lengthen sleep.
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