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Ambien

Ambien and Ambien CR: Uses, Side effects, and Dosage

Ambien and Ambien

Ambien and Ambien CR: Uses, Side effects, and Dosage

What is Ambien and Ambien CR?

Ambien is the brand name for Zolpidem, and it is prescribed to treat sleeping disorders like insomnia, where you have difficulty falling and staying asleep. Ambien is a part of a class of medication called sedative-hypnotics that acts in the brain to produce a calming effect. Ambien is said to affect chemicals in the brain that may be unbalanced in people with insomnia. It is available as an immediate-release tablet and an extended-release from Ambien CR

How do Ambien and Ambien CR function?

Ambien is a sedative known to interact with a GABA-BZ receptor complex, and Ambien is known to bind to receptors selectively and helps induce sleep. The immediate release tablet works to help you sleep faster, while Ambien CR has two layers, the first dissolves to help you fall asleep, and the second layer dissolves to help you stay asleep. Ambien may also significantly reduce the number of times you wake up in the middle of the night.

What are the possible side effects caused by Ambien?

The common side effects are-

  •  Daytime drowsiness
  •  Dizziness or Drowsiness
  •  Loss of coordination

The common side effects should decrease with time, and it is advised that you inform your doctor if you notice them getting worse.

The severe side effects include-

  •  Chest pain 
  •  Irregular heartbeat
  •  Trouble breathing
  •  Feeling like you may pass out
  •  Thoughts of harming yourself and other sudden behavior changes

The severe side effects of Ambien are unlikely, and it is advised that you call for medical help if you notice them.

A serious allergic reaction to Ambien is rare, and it is advised that you inform your doctor and call for immediate medical assistance if you notice rashes, itching, or swelling of the face, throat, or tongue, severe dizziness, and difficulty breathing. In the case of an older adult, you may be more susceptible to the side effects of Ambien, and it is advised that you monitor your dosage and side effects regularly.

Precautions to be taken while using Ambien

  • Ambien can be addictive and habit-forming. It is suggested that you use your dosage in moderation and store your prescription away from children.
  • If you have been using Ambien for a long time, you may develop a dependence or tolerance, and it is advised that you inform your doctor if you think the dosage prescribed to you isn’t working instead of increasing it on your own.
  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women are likely to be advised against Ambien as it can harm the baby. 
  • You should inform your doctor about your medical history, especially liver and kidney disease, mental disorders like depression or suicide ideation, sleepwalking, breathing problems, and substance use disorder.
  • Ambien can make you dizzy or drowsy, and it is advised that you abstain from alcohol, cannabis, and other CNS depressants that can aggravate your side effects.

 

The dosage prescribed for Ambien and Ambien CR

Ambien is orally administered to patients with the sleeping disorder insomnia. You should avoid having Ambien after a heavy meal as it works best on an empty stomach. Ambien has a short onset, so it is advised that you have it right before you go to bed. If you do not have 7 to 8 hours to sleep, you are advised not to have Ambien. 

The dosage of Ambien prescribed to you will be based on your medical condition, age, gender, and response to treatment. Ambien is available in two dosage strengths of 5mg and 10mg, and the adult dosage is 10mg, to be taken once at bedtime. The dosage for people 67 years and above are given 5mg to be had once at bedtime. If you are prescribed Ambien for a prolonged period, it is suggested that you taper your dosage before discontinuing it to avoid withdrawal symptoms.

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