19 Aug

Quiz: How Much Do You Know about Ambien?

How does it work?

Ambien is a sedative-hypnotic medicine, also called as Z-drug. It directly works on the brain and enhances the effects of chemical transmitter GABA. It is a different medicine than benzodiazepines. 

Forms of Ambien

Ambien is used to treat short-term treatment of sleeping problems or insomnia. It comes in different forms, such as immediate-release or extended-release form. Its extended-release form called Ambien CR, which has two layers; first dissolves quickly to make asleep, and the other one dissolves slowly to stay asleep longer. 

Ambien is available in generic such as Zolpidem.

Ambien over the counter

Ambien over the counter (OTC) pills are accessible for their cost, availibility, and ease in use. Ambien a sedative-hypnotic medicine is gaining its popularity from a decade, where the doctor also prescribes this for short-term use in sleep problems. 

What medications are similar to Ambien?

Lunesta is also commonly prescribed medication like Ambien for short-term use in sleep problems and insomnia. It is a brand name for eszopiclone, while Ambien is a brand name for zolpidem.

Respond and Effectiveness of Ambien

Ambien’s effect and lasting validity depend on its form, whether it is immediate or controlled release, but ranges from just over half of an hour. 

Ambien lasts for up to 8 hours after its last dosage, while in the patients who are suffering from the poor liver function, it lasts up to 14 hours.

Interactions of Ambien that you should know before starting its medication

Some of the medication that interacts with Ambien can decrease its effects and increase side effects. Interaction of drugs doesn’t mean you should stop taking the other medicines, but sometimes it must. Before taking any medication, you must know about its interactions to avoid severe side effects.

Some of the medications that may interact with Ambien are:

  • anti-anxiety medicines like benzodiazepines, such as diazepam and oxazepam
  • valproate
  • antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, imipramine, nortriptyline
  • antifungal medications, such as itraconazole, or ketoconazole
  • antihistamines that cause sedation, such as diphenhydramine
  • selegiline
  • isocarboxazid, or phenelzine
  • codeine, oxycodone, and morphine
  • muscle relaxants such as cyclobenzaprine
  • rifampin
  • scopolamine
  • barbiturates
  • ciprofloxacin
  • duloxetine
  • sleeping pills, such as eszopiclone
  • clozapine 
  • thioridazine
  • tramadol.

Taking alcohol, along with Ambien, may worsen its side effects and gives severe drowsiness.
What side effects can Ambien give when misused or taken more than weeks?

When it overdosed it can give some side effects that include

  • lightheadedness
  • loss of interest or pleasure
  • shakiness and unsteady walk
  • tiredness
  • trouble in concentrating
  • trouble in sleeping
  • unsteadiness
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • Chest pain
  • confusion about identity, place, and time
  • discouragement
  • a false or extraordinary sense of well-being
  • fast, irregular, pounding or racing heartbeat
  • fever
  • a general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • irritability
  • lack of appetite

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