Ambien, otherwise known as Zolpidem/Zolpidem tartrate is a sedative or hypnotic medication used to treat sleeping disorders or insomnia. Patients suffering from insomnia have difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep. Ambien has proven effective in the short term treatment of this condition and is the most widely prescribed sedative on the market. Is has a short release as well as a slow release to help both falling asleep and staying asleep.
It is available in 5mg or 10mg tablets and is effective for up to 8 hours. The medications is FDA approved.
As with all medication, there are precautions to consider. Always consult a doctor before taking any medication and follow the prescription correctly.
- Do use Ambien if you have consumed alcohol.
- If the patient suffers from any of the following, it is strongly recommended discussing the suitability of Ambien with your doctor:
- History of alcoholism or drug abuse
- Pregnant or planning to be pregnant
- Has a breathing condition (bronchitis, asthma or emphysema)
- History of liver or kidney disease
- Has myasthenia gravis (nerve disorder resulting to weakening of muscles)
- Allergies to any ingredient in Ambien/Zolpidem tartrate
- Has recurring personality disorder or depression
- Has sleep apnea
- Elderly patients
As with all medication, some side effects have been reported. Some patients present with an adverse reaction resulting in swelling of the lips, face, throat and tongue and breathing difficulty.
Ambien is a short term treatment and should not be used for more than 4 weeks continuously.
Withdrawal symptoms after longer periods of use can include vomiting, nausea, anxiety and stomach cramps. Once the medication is discontinued, patients could experience rebound insomnia and again have difficulty sleeping. This normally only lasts a day or two.