This article looks at Diphenhydramine addiction. Diphenhydramine, better known by the brand name Benadryl, is an over-the-counter medication used to treat allergies and insomnia. Many sleep medications can become addictive, so people often wonder if Benadryl can be addictive. The short answer is no -- while you might become dependent on Benadryl, diphenhydramine addiction is not an addiction in the traditional sense.
People who regularly take diphenhydramine (especially for sleep) may find that they have become tolerant to the effects of the medication. However, this is simply a physical response to the medication; it does not mean you are addicted to diphenhydramine. If you have been taking Benadryl as a sleep aid regularly, you may also find that you have trouble sleeping when you stop the medication. This also does not mean you are addicted to diphenhydramine.
Many people believe that if they need Benadryl to get to sleep, then they must have a diphenhydramine addiction. But often times that dependence is psychological, not physical, so it does not meet the definition of addiction.
Having said all of this, many people do abuse Benadryl, and these people need help from qualified physicians. But for the rest of us wondering about a diphenhydramine addiction:
If you are merely worried that taking Benadryl for several days in a row will result in addiction, rest assured that this is not a problem for most people.