What is Ambien?
Ambien is a drug which is a sedative or hypnotic medication. It works by changing the unbalanced chemicals in the brain or central nervous system to promote sleepiness. The main ingredient of this medication is Zolpidem and sometimes it can be combined with other medication to use as an off-label medication.
For medical use, Ambien dosage strengths of 5mg to 10mg is available and these doses are approved by U.S. FDA
Is Ambien a narcotic? This is totally based on the person how he/she uses the medication. In the majority of cases, around 53% of people found that the drug really works well and promotes sleep effectively and around 13% people reports that they got addicted to the drug. In spite of the fact that this sleep aid medication is certainly not a narcotic medicate, it can possibly cause an addictive impact on a person.
What are the uses of Ambien?
In the USA, Ambien is sold in the name of Zolpidem. Ambien is a sedative drug and the primary target of the medication is to treat various types of sleep disorders. This medication would be prescribed for other medical conditions as well that have been listed in the following:
- Chronic Insomnia or repeated waking up at night
- Jet lag disorder
- Restless legs syndrome
- Shift work sleep disorder
Ambien medication has been used for recreational purpose too. A euphoria effect is the well-known side effects of Ambien and this can be eliminated when you use this medication correctly. Thereby, consult with your healthcare professional before you take this sleep aid to know the exact dosage strength and to avoid unwanted effects.
Working of Ambien
Ambien works by enhancing or altering the unbalanced chemicals between the nerves and the brain. But the drug has different types of targets in the brain. The working of the targets involves balancing certain chemicals such as norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin in order to enhance the Melatonin hormone in the brain that promotes sleep.
Like hypnotics, sedatives, antidepressants, and Benzodiazepines, Ambien will start to work on your central nervous system within a maximum of 30 minutes. But lasting effect or half-life of the medication will change according to the version that you have taken.
The immediate-release tablets will make you sleep quickly, while the extended-release tablets take a little extra time to react when compared to the immediate-release version. The lasting effects are 3 to 4 hours and 4 to 6 hours for 5mg and 10mg respectively. Consult with your doctor to know more about the working of the drug.
Ambien is available in two common dosages, 5mg and 10mg, in which 5mg for women and 10mg to men is the prescribed one. An individual should consult with the doctor before procuring this medication. He/she will advise you for the duration of the dose to be taken. Mostly between 4 or 5 weeks maximum.
Ambien Vs Ambien CR
Ambien comes in two forms: Ambien and Ambien CR, or controlled-release. Each form has particularly favorable circumstances as well as detriments. Hence, people should take either Ambien or Ambien CR with caution and under the health care specialist supervision only.
Ambien CR has one more extra layer than that of Ambien formulation, which is an extended or modified version of original Ambien formulation according to the pharmaceutical manufacturer Sanofi-Aventis. The purpose of the extra layer is to lengthen the effect of the medication.
The major advantage of Ambien CR is the steady concentration in the central nervous system for more than 4 to 6 hours which is a longer duration of action than Ambien.
Belsomra vs Ambien
Belsomra and Ambien, both are working as a sleep agent.
Belsomra – The is one of the best alternative medication for sleep disorders, and it is helpful for the patients when other sleep aids such as Ambien failed to produce an effective result. This drug can work quickly when taken on an empty stomach. The drug is available only in the capsule form. Belsomra has the potential to cause sleep paralysis so that patients should not take the drug when they plan to sleep for at least seven hours.
Ambien – It is very effective in treating sleep disorders, particularly insomnia which is why this medication has been prescribed by most of the healthcare professionals globally. This drug is available in both brand as well as generic version and also have advanced forms of tablet called Ambien CR or controlled-release. Hence, patients who want to sleep for a long time can opt for Ambien CR formulation. It is available in different forms such as a pill, oral spray, and sublingual pill, hence, people can choose their suitable form.
Even though Ambien is considered as the best sleep aid when compared to Belsomra, it can be habit-forming and more likely to cause a side effect. Thus, having a word with your doctor before starting the course of treatment is highly recommended.
Lunesta vs Ambien
Lunesta and Ambien fall under the group of drugs known as Z-drugs. Both the medications are intended for sleep disorder treatment. Ambien and Lunesta don’t require a strict drug plan; the patient needs just to commit an entire 8 hours to rest and let the pill produce results.
Lunesta – Lunesta has 3 dose variations: 1, 2, and 3 mg, additionally in tablet frame. Youngsters have generally endorsed 2 mg daily. Lunesta tablets are round and can be white, light blue, or dull blue. Lunesta produces results immediately, rendering up to 8 long hours of sleep. It is likewise prescribed to be taken for 7 to 10 days, however, endures up to a half year as far as viability.
Ambien – Ambien comes in tablet shape with measurement variations of 5 mg and 10 mg. The prescribed dosage for adults is 10 mg, taken once daily by day promptly before sleep time. An Ambien tablet is curved with the letters ‘AMB’, trailed by a ‘5’ or ’10’, demonstrative of the dose. The pill can be pink or white. Ambien starts to act in your central nervous system and results in up to 8 hours of sleep. According to controlled clinical investigations, Ambien has been appeared to diminish sleep disorder for up to 35 days. This is more than enough evidence why people prefer this medication for treating their sleep disorder.
Ambien is intended to be taken to help with troubles falling and staying asleep, but only for the short-term period and patients have to keep that in mind. Taking Ambien for prolongs period or regularly will make your brain to be depended on the drug and your brain cells carve for the medication to produce GABA at a healthy level. Once dependency has been formed, you will start to experience withdrawal symptoms
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports the accompanying as potential reactions of Ambien withdrawal:
- Vomiting or Nausea
- Stomach issues and pain
- Rebound insomnia
- Mood swings
Ambien withdrawal can be avoided by taking the right treatment with the help of healthcare professionals. However, the duration of Ambien withdrawal treatment is based on the following factors:
- How long Ambien was taken
- Method of use
- Dosage levels
- Biology and genetics
- Environmental aspects
- Co-occurring disorders
- Polydrug abuse
To know more about the Ambien withdrawal and its treatment, consult with your doctor.
Ambien medication is a prescription-only drug so it is totally safe when you use this sleep aid as indicated by healthcare specialist, otherwise, it can lead you lethal effects. For example, when you have taken higher doses or larger doses than the prescribed level or mixing with other sleep aids will cause Ambien overdose, which can lead to unwanted side effects.
Signs and symptoms of Ambien overdose include:
When a person overdoses Ambien, he or she will experience some serious severe effects.
Some of the serious effects of Ambien overdose include:
- Severe drowsiness
- Slowdown in breathing
- Decreased heartbeat
- Loss of consciousness
In case of overdose, call or seek emergency help right away to avoid severe adverse effects. Otherwise, ask your relatives or friends to do the followings precautions:
- Make sure that the airway is clear
- Make sure that the patient breathing rate is normal
- Monitor patients breathing and also check discoloration.
- Get the help of your doctor or get medical support from your locality immediately.
Side effects of Ambien
There are numerous reports convincing that prolong use of this medication can cause an unwanted impact on individuals. The reactions may change from individual to individual however they include:
Tolerance: Bout 3% of user who uses Ambien undergoes this side effect. This medication has a plausibility of creating Tolerance as it works through altering the mind’s science and it has a high probability of creating Tolerance. As your brain starts to adjust to this medication, patients would likely to take high doses in order to experience the sedative effect.
Cognitive Decline: Many sedative or hypnotic drugs are associated with psychological mutilation and moderate reaction times. Doing a portion of the entangled works with the use of this medication turns out to be hard and you should avoid them, particularly while driving.
Physical Dependence: Likewise, Tolerance, many individuals get addicted to this medication when they used it for a long period of time significantly. Their body will begin to adjust to this medication and consequently, it is required to influence them to work appropriately.
Dependence and Tolerance to Ambien will end up in dependence on this medication. A lot of individuals have been accounted for of misery from the Ambien abuse and subsequently, they should begin taking the medication just as a prescribed amount to fix them and gradually quit it. Get immediate help from your doctor if you feel that you are getting dependent on the drug.
Side effects of Ambien
Some of the common and serious side effects of Ambien include:
- Nasal irritation
- Daytime drowsiness
- Dry mouth
- Visual changes
- Muscle pain
Ambien should not be taken by children below 16 years of age unless being prescribed by the doctor. Likewise, pregnant woman and breastfeeding women should consult with their doctors before using Ambien to improve the safety of the individual.