Anyone else addicted to this crap?
I'm on night 5 trying to break the habit and it's really starting to mess with me.
The dizziness and fatigue is terrible.
What symptoms did you experience? How long did it take you to physically recover and feel "normal"?
Seems like you should be googling the problem to find a protocol that works. Are you limiting your caffeine intake after 5? Have you tried a bath before bed? Staying off the computer/smart phone for a couple of hours before bed? You should also google "sleep hygiene" for suggestions that help with a good night's sleep. I am not minimizing your problem, but there are things you can do to set up a routine that will help you get the best night's sleep.
Omg no puter and smart phone a few hours before bed? What am I supposed to do?
[quote]Omg no puter and smart phone a few hours before bed? What am I supposed to do?
Oh, I don't know, maybe pick up one of those things called "books" and read a few pages?
I slept with twenty whores. Still on Ambien, but lets keep that out of the press.
Nice try R1 but you've never had the lifetime probably of getting to sleep.
Here's how I beat Ambien-
Cheap CVS caplet sleeping pills. They practically dissolve in your mouth and can get stuck in your throat. Swig a cold not caff drink to get them down. Then immediately drink cups of sleepy time tea. This will dissolve them in your stomach. Also, a cup of hot soup with slivers of lettuce garnish. Heated lettuce acts like a light opiate. The wild opiate lettuce that works even better can be found all over your property as weeds. When cut it emits a thick white paste. Look up the identifier for this. Really though, most lettuce has this effect when boiled. Good luck.
Maybe you are experiencing rebound insomnia. Immediately stopping something like Ambien can make things worse. You should read the product PI, which can be easily searched.
From Wiki: "When drug tolerance and physical dependence to zolpidem has developed, treatment usually entails a gradual dose reduction over a period of months to minimise withdrawal symptoms, which can resemble those seen during benzodiazepine withdrawal".
It should be off the market. The blackouts people have are dangerous.
I switched to 2-3 pipe puffs of Indica weed every night and a bit of telly, and I sleep soundly with no blackouts, no sleepwalks, and no hangover.
Ambien is not dangerous if it's used the way it's supposed to be used. As in, you take it, go directly to bed, and sleep for 8 hours.
But it's true that it's hard to quit using if you've been using it for more than a couple of weeks. Benadryl works. So do the OTC sleeping pills someone mentioned. Just be prepared to drag for a few days because of the antihistamines. And cut out caffeine after noon, not 5 pm.
After I take an Ambien, the strongest one out there, 12.5 mg Ambien CR, I'm still wide awake for 2-3 hours and only then get some fitful sleep but some is better than none. Thank goodness I've never had a side effect. There were times I took 2 of those at a time, and still no side effects, but the two didn't work any better than one so why waste them.
It's the same with Ativan, I use that 4 nights a week and the Ambien 3 trying not to get hooked on either, or maybe I'm hooked on both. Anyway, I take 4 mg Ativan and I'm wide awake for hours. When I finally sleep again it's fitful at best but at least it's sleep.
Before I didn't sleep more than 5 minutes at a time a few times a night, getting maybe 40 - 60 minutes of sleep a day. I've had insomnia since I was a young child but it was getting this terrible.
It's a psychiatrist who gives me the scripts. My PCP refused to after 1 script for Ambien CR when I was facing having surgery.
I tried various other psychiatric meds like mild doses of anti depressants and some might have been anti psychotics perhaps used off label. All I know is they all made me feel horrible and didn't help me get to sleep. This is the first combo that works even a little.
Any time I have had surgery they have had a hell of time putting me to sleep. They don't know why. There is just something very weird going on with my brain I guess.
I love ambien. The most I ever ingested at once was 4 and I zonked out on a plane with my butt on the air
I still wake up in the middle of he night after taking a,boen. Is this normal?
I was so addicted to Ambien that I went to 30 day treatment for it. After a week of a regimented schedule I was fine....and I was to the point of needing 30mgs a night to sleep. I did some crazy sh*t when I was on the stuff.
OP I have been taking 10 mgs per night since they went on the market. They work very well, and it is nearly impossible to get off them without an inpatient stay or a strictly ordered physician withdrawal protocol. Please be careful. Much like benzos, withdrawing can cause seizures which can be very bad for your brain. It can be done, but it's hard as hell. Plus, after spending 2 weeks in a facility trying to break the habit, I found myself unable to sleep, and went right back on them. I go to a very expensive MD here in FL who will prescribe them indefinitely for a "medical management fee" of $200 per month. And no, this isn't an example of one of the now dead famous FL pill mills dispensing opiates. This doc won't go near pain meds in order to stay in business.
Sincere question: If you take an Ambien every night, are you going down the road of Judy Garland and Neely O'Hara? Or are these different than the "dolls" of the past?
I really do wish you the best. But, sometimes you just have to tell a good joke. It is said that the great Tallulah Bankhead once said, "Sleeping pills addictive? Darling, I have been taken them every night for 20 years, and they are not addictive!"
OP . .there are far, far, far worse things to be addicted to other than Ambien.
I've taken Ambien for years and have had no problems. (Every now and then, I have to take a dosage and a half but that doesn't happen on a regular basis.)
90% of the time I take the exact dosage as prescribed and I never drink alcohol with them.
What happens if you take one when you've been drinking?
OP, the fact that you are concerned about the med is enough for you to be talking with your physician about this. The posters who said that the med works when used as directed is correct, as are the posters who stated that discontinuing it can be difficult for some and discontinuing it suddenly can indeed produce adverse effects. Seizures are rare, though certainly possible depending on dosage, how long you've been using the med, what other meds you take, etc. The rebound effect mentioned by another poster is quite common.
Do not be quick to dismiss non-pharmacological treatments as many are very effective. One that is quite common is melatonin, a substance that your body produces naturally to cue your brain that it's time for sleep. Talk to your physician about this--or about any treatment--before doing so.
The key take-away is that this is an effective medication, and for the majority of people can be used and can be discontinued without deleterious effects; however, each person is different, and your anxiety about the topic of discontinuing the medication itself is reason enough for your physician to be consulted.
I did check out some other pages on the inter webs and I guess I'm not as bad as some out there. But I want off.
I've been taking them (just one pill) every night for over a year and I think it's fucked with my brain. I cut back to 1/2 a night for about a month and this weekend I stopped completely. I figured this was a good time since it's a long weekend.
Of course, it's been really difficult to sleep and I only cat nap but I haven't felt moody or had seizures. But I have been very dizzy and slightly paranoid.
We had discussed this before and I wondered how other people had managed to get off of the things.
Daily use affects your memory and your mood. Definitely a depressant.
OP here - I'm on night 6 without ambien. Most of the dizziness is gone but I still feel a little dizzy in the morning.
One thing I realized is that I no longer know when I'm tired. I was just so used to taking the ambien when I wanted to go to sleep that I *forgot* how to read my body signals.
Since I can't really share my "addiction" with anyone else, I had to say it here. Night 6. Hopefully it will keep getting easier.
My BF is a Dr. and he gives me something to make me sleep (I was having insomnia and anxiety) but I don't know what it is because I am afraid of side effects so I asked him not to tell me.
On the nights I don't take it I get sick and feel crazy and panicky. Could it be Ambien?
You nailed it OP in the R21 reply. People forget how to read their own body signals. Its so easy and convenient to decide when you are going to sleep take a pill and big it works.
In the real world, you cant usually just decide you are going to sleep at X hour, you have to be sleepy.
Another tip to watch out for is cat naps. Avoid them at all cost if you want a good night sleep. Sure they fell good and again easy to let yourself go but they are not good for you.
Doctors and Nurses do this a lot because they have 12 hour shifts and so a double shift is like 24 hours at work. It refreshes them enough to yet deprives their body of the required rest.
If you are sleep deprives say 5 hours a day instead of 8, your body you dont need to replace all those missing hours. A cat nap of 15 minutes can do it. But if you do that on a regular basis you body and brain and emotional attitued will pay the price.
Cranky, bitchy, head in a fog, age much faster.
OP. I hope you are doing well and I have my fingers crossed for you, but I need to let you know that the seizures I mentioned in my post are deep brain seizures and you would not be aware that you were experiencing them. They are far more dangerous and common when one is withdrawing from benzos. As bad as some may feel zolpidem is...it's not even close to Ativan or Xanax to shake.
For the poster who asked the Valley of the Dolls question: before benzos and ambien, people were stuck with barbiturates for sleep: seconal, tuinal, phenobarbital, nembutal.
They are horrid! When I was in an facility trying to get off the ambien, after 5 nights w/o sleep, my addictionologist MD gave me a Nembutal. It just made me feel sick and had a reverse effect by making me hyper. That was the official end of my attempting to shed the ambien habit. Like someone else said, there are worse things than ambien dependency.
Wow, r24, I feel for you.
Yes, there are worse things than Ambien but I don't want to be on them. I don't like hiding them from my family and friends or wondering when I would be able to get more. So I quit.
Last night I slept fine. Altho I'm finding now I want to sleep a lot and I dream much more. But I guess that's a side effect.
We'll see how it goes this weekend when I'm visiting some friends and sleeping in a new bed.
I had no trouble stopping. I reduced the amount I was taking and then stopped. Had a bit of trouble falling asleep for a couple of nights. That's it.
Ambien IS a benzo. You will NEVER stop taking sleeping pills, once you have convinced yourself you NEED them! I know, I have no possible idea about your unique and special insomnia, and how crippling it is to your full life of specialness. All I know is that everyone in the world wants to convince themselves of the need for more sleeping pills.
Ambien made me short temmpered and made me feel anger. I got the doc to take me off it years ago. Now I take only 1mg of alprazolam and I go right to sleep. No side effects.
Zolpidem isn't a benzodiazipine.
R27 is wrong. Ambien is NOT a benzo but it is very similar and obviously very addictive. I've tried ambien, trazadone, seroquel and klonopin for sleep. Ambien is more for when you are looking for help with falling asleep, whereas trazadone and seroquel help you stay alseep.The only one that ever gave me a full night's sleep was 12.5 mg seroquel (the lowest dosage offered) but it made me feel like a zombie all day. It was hard not taking them for the first couple months, but I'd rather just sleep 5 hours a night then spend all day feeling sedated.
R30 is right. Ambien is not for staying asleep, it's only for falling asleep.
I started taking 5 mg a night, 3 months ago, because of my boyfriend's snoring. Since we just broke up, I will now try go off this. Wish me luck!
LOL! My insurance company just approved paying for Ambien CR for the NEXT 20 YEARS! Till 2033. I never heard of anything being approved for 20 years. They also approved Nexium at the same time and it was for only 1 year like usual. Odd!
[quote]Oh, I don't know, maybe pick up one of those things called "books" and read a few pages?
Reading isn't recommended a few hours before sleep, either, for the same reason as watching TV or using the computer - the light needed to do these activities inhibits the production of melatonin.
How is sitting in regular light to read a book similar to sitting before a computer or the TV?
By your logic we all need to sit in pitch dark for a few hours before going to bed, R33?