These drugs “sedate” brain function by enhancing the sensitivity of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) receptors on cells in the cortex. GABA receptors decrease or inhibit brain-cell action. In higher doses, the result can be mental depression and/or impaired ability to think clearly. (Guiffre, Kenneth, MD, with Theresa Foy DiGeronimo. The Care and Feeding of Your Brain. p 33-39. NJ: Career Press, 1999.)

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