Ambien, which is also known as Zolpidem, is a sedative or hypnotic drug that works by changing the chemicals in the brain to allow it to induce sleep. Thus, it is a very successful treatment for insomnia. There are 2 different types of the drug, the immediate release type is used to help you fall asleep as soon as you go to bed but the extended release work to keep you from waking up over night, ensuring that you get a full night of undisturbed sleep.
There are many side effects associated with using Ambien and because it acts on the chemicals in the brain these effects can be a little strange. The drug can impair your reactions and decision making abilities, the effects can also linger for a while after you wake up so you may still feel very sleepy and out of sorts. Some people who take Ambien have been known to take part in activities throughout the day which they then have no recollection of later. This is a very serious problem and anyone who experiences this should stop taking the drug and visit their physician immediately.
Ambien is unfortunately a highly addictive drug and levels of addiction around America are rising steadily. The problem with Ambien and other similar drugs is that it is easy to build up a tolerance to them, a normal dose will start to wear off sooner or just will not work at all. As lack of sleep can be extremely disruptive to normal life and effect mood as well as day to day activities, many people turn to Ambien in times of desperation. They will increase their dose and if they cannot get enough of the drug from a doctor they turn to the internet or other illegal drug dealers to get more and more. Obviously taking higher doses can have a serious effect on other parts of your health as well as increasing your risk of serious overdose.
Who Gets Addicted?
You might think that those who are addicted to Ambien have bought it off of the internet or the street but whilst this does happen, surprisingly it is more common for those who have been prescribed the drug by a physician to become addicted. This is because it takes regular use of the drug on a daily basis for addiction to occur.
Treatment for Ambien addiction involves a slow withdrawal. You cannot just quit the drug cold turkey because this puts you at a much more increased risk of seizures due to the effect the drug has on the brain. Instead, the dose will need to be lowered very slowly over a set period of time until the drug is completely stopped and the system is free of all the toxins. It is not an easy process as insomnia may return very severely and an addict will probably feel completely miserable and very tempted to relapse. However, once the drug is out of the system it will be possible to look at other ways of treating sleep disorders.