Ambien Abuse Symptoms, Signs and Addiction Treatment

Ambien is a brand name of zolpidem and is prescribed to treat insomnia (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep). A short-acting sedative-hypnotic, Ambien is effective in initiating and maintaining sleep. Even when used in prescribed dosages, Ambien can be habit forming if used for a prolonged period of time. Ambien Abuse Quiz question 1

Signs and Symptoms

In order to determine if a person displays symptoms of Ambien abuse, an understanding of the definition of abuse and addiction must be present. According to the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-IV-TR, symptoms of Ambien abuse include one or more of the following occurring during a given 12-month period:

  • Substance use resulting in a recurrent failure to fulfill work, school or home obligations
  • Substance use in physically hazardous situations such as driving or operating machinery
  • Substance use resulting in legal problems such as drug-related arrests
  • Continued use despite negative social or interpersonal consequences caused by Ambien use

Dependence, which is different from abuse, is defined as a maladaptive pattern of substance use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress manifested by such signs as tolerance, withdrawal, a persistent desire to use Ambien, unsuccessful efforts to stop using the drug and large amounts of time spent acquiring the drug.

Ambien Abuse Quiz question 2

Effects of Ambien Abuse

The effects of ambiem use include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Delusions or hallucinations
  • Euphoria
  • Amnesia or short-term memory loss
  • Coordination problems
  • Fatigue

Abrupt cessation of Ambien can cause withdrawal symptoms, especially after using the drug for a prolonged period of time and at high dosages. Withdrawal symptoms may last for weeks depending on the degree of use. Withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Agitation and irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Cravings
  • Nervousness
  • Delirium
  • Convulsions or seizures
Ambien Abuse Quiz question 3

Ambien Abuse Treatment

It is important for a person to be in a supervised medical setting during Ambien detoxification, as the process can produce uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. Because the drug works by slowing the brain’s activity, stopping it causes an increase in brain activity that can rebound to the point that seizures can occur. Patients should be warned not to stop taking Ambien abruptly but instead should taper off the drug.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, over 13,000 specialized drug treatment facilities across the United States deliver such services as counseling, behavioral therapy and medication therapy. Ambien addiction treatment may be done in either an inpatient or outpatient facility. Treatment for an addiction often requires addressing the underlying problem causing the drug use in the first place. Ambien rehab centers usually provide care by mustering a number of medical personnel in various fields, such as physicians, nurses, counselors, psychiatrists, therapists and social workers. Treatment settings vary so does the type of interventions, services and amenities provided.

If you or someone you care about displays symptoms of Ambien abuse, there is help available. Let us assist you in finding an Ambien rehab program that best fits your individual needs. Call (800) 943-0566 today to receive more information on treatment options that are right for you.

Ambien Abuse Quiz question 4

Ambien Statistics

Facts about Ambien and statistics include:

  • The National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that over half a million people are currently abusing Ambien and other sedatives.
  • According to the United States Mental Health Department, over 17,000 emergency-room visits each year are attributed to the misuse or overdose of Ambien.
  • Combining Ambien with other depressants, such as alcohol or cold medications, can precipitate a lethal decrease in heart and breathing rates.
  • The company that manufacturers Ambien coated the pill to prevent snorting and crushing, but individuals addicted to Ambien have found ways to do it anyways.
  • After taking Ambien, patients’ memory and cognition are impaired, causing them to forget having taken the pill. If they do not remember the first dose and ingest more, they are at risk for an overdose.
Ambien Abuse Quiz question 5

Teen Ambien Abuse

A study by the United States Department of Health and Human Services shows that approximately 44 percent of the six million new prescription drug abusers were less than 18 years of age. This fact demonstrates that the drug problem in adolescents is on the rise. The National Institute on Drug Abuse correlates this finding with studies showing high school students reporting they resist sleep after consuming Ambien to get high. These Ambien-abuse facts demonstrate the need for drug prevention efforts that are targeted at younger generations.

Ambien Abuse Quiz question 6

Resources, Articles and More Information

For more information, visit the websites of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, the Food and Drug Administration and other reputable sources. To speak to someone about signs of Ambien abuse, Ambien facts and options on how to help an ambien addict, call 1-800-943-0566 today. We are available to assist you at any time. Let one of our trained professionals help you.

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  • Why do doctors usually prescribe Ambien?
  • What are the symptoms of Ambien addiction?
  • What are some of the typical side effects of Ambien abuse?
  • Will Ambien addiction treatment address the underlying causes of abuse?
  • What is one major risk of the memory impairment caused by Ambien use?
  • How many emergency room visits per year are due to Ambien-related problems?
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