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About Ambien

Discussion forum about the side effects of Ambien. Share your experience and opinion about Ambien. What would you tell your best friend about this product? Please remember that we do not give medical advice. That is for your local health care provider, who is familiar with your medical history.


Ventricular premature contractions (VPC)
Date: 9/27/2007
Due to a lot of travel over the last 3 months, I've taken Ambien more that usual--not every night. Recently I've developed VPC's (ventricular premature contractions), some going on for 6 hours. Treadmill test shows only benign VPC's. Anyone have similar side effects? Is there any history of this with Ambien?
Craig


Long-term Ambien?
Date: 9/29/2007
Is ambien safe to take for a longterm basis meaning for months on a nightly basis, and is it safer to take then xanax on a daily basis?
Sheila

AskDocWeb: According to the Physician's Desk Reference the use of hypnotic drugs such as Ambien should be limited to 7 to 10 days. If used for more than 2 or 3 weeks (the drug company considers that long-term) a reevaluation of the patient is recommended. Xanax is prescribed for anxiety related disorders not for insomnia.


Dependent on Ambien
Date: 9/30/2007
I have been taking ambien on and off for over 11 months. I know I am dependent on this drug. I have had sleeping issues for over two years. Sometimes ambien works right away and some nights it takes a while. The scary part is that I cannot remember sexual encounters with my husband after taking ambien, but my husband says I was fully awake. Some nights he has had to carry me to the bed because I waited to go to bed and I cannot remember him even carrying me to the bed. I have tried sonata, OTC sleep aids, and melatonin and cannot find anything as good as ambien. I have tried to come off ambien and cannot sleep at all. I also find that lately I get anxious fearful feelings some days and other days I am fine. I have memory loss, can't remember if I turned the stove off before I left the house, can't remember where I put my keys. I have used the phone after taking ambien and had long conversations with people on the phone and not remember the next day. I have started taking the phone out of the room after I go to bed to keep from embarrassing myself in case I use it without remembering. I get my husband on nights I take it to make sure I am completely out so I don't get up after taking the ambien. I really need to stop taking this stuff but as some others have expressed its difficult too stop.
B


Long term use?
Date: 9/30/2007
I am a 39 year old male with a history of cerebral hemorrhage nearly 20 years ago. I suffer from short term memory deficits among other problems. About 10 months ago, I began having trouble falling asleep and would wake up in the middle of the night. I began taking half of a 10 mg ambien Sun-Thurs night. I have noticed much improved recollection for events the night before when I take the med (I assume it's enhanced REM sleep. I have not discussed with my Dr yet, but I've cut the med to a quarter of a pill (approx. 2.5 mg) when I take it. I have read of seizure potential with withdrawal, but it seems this is at higher doses. I do not want to be on the drug long term and I'm sure my Dr. won't allow me to anyway. How long is long term, and is 4-5 nights a week at this small amount a cause for concern? Eric

AskDocWeb: Any dose can cause side effects, and if you're concerned discontinue use all together. Ten months is a long time. In the Drug Handbook it states: "Short-term management of insomnia". In the Physician's Desk Reference it says: "should generally be limited to 7 to 10 days of use, and reevaluation of the patient is recommended if they are to be taken for more than 2 to 3 weeks." Long term use is considered to be 28 to 35 nights.


Feeling nauseous
Date: 10/2/2007
I've been feeling really nauseous, and I threw up 2 days in a row now BUT I'VE BEEN feeling really hot, flushed in the face all day long. I was wondering if it was the ambien. I am on birth control so I better not (hope I'm not pregnant but will know if I miss my period in 2 weeks. I've just been feeling really weird lately, hot and nauseous all day long.
Sharon


Ambien is a good prescription
Date: 10/3/2007
Ambien is a good prescription if you haven't been able to sleep. I would recommend it to people who have trouble sleeping.
Jessica


Mental problems
Date: 10/4/2007
I know some one who been on ambien for years, she has mental problems. I think it should be stated that ambien is dangerous. It deprives a person of deep realm sleep, which causes insanity.
Rex


I don't feel alone now
Date: 10/5/2007
Wow, I don't feel alone now. I first started taking Ambien 10mg about 11 years ago when I was seeing a psychiatrist for post partum depression. She was great at making sure I wasn't taking too many or over prescribing, then she retired. The new doctor just handed out the scripts and I got hooked on my "escape world". To this day I still take them and have long lasting effects. Memory loss even when I go for a month or so without taking it. My vision is blurred more now. I will HIDE my own medication when I have the prescription and can't find them. Dreams and reality are blurred and I can't recall what was real or not, conversations I had, same things a lot of people have said here. I know I am addicted and hate that I like the feeling they give. ANYONE with a dependent kind of personality should NOT even start these. People are addicted to painkillers all the time and these make you feel so drunk on life with no hangover OR memories. It will be interesting to see how over time more comes out about this medication. And like someone else said here, when you are counting how many you have left and counting the days to the next refill, THERE'S A PROBLEM! The withdrawals are horrible and it makes me a very mean and moody person that I don't even like.
Withheld


I'm not having any problems
Date: 10/6/2007
I've been taking Ambien [and now Ambien CR] for about 10 years. Originally I would be able to get to sleep on my own. Couldn't get back to sleep after waking after a couple of hours, so I'd take a third of a 10mg to get back to sleep. Worked fine. Then I went thru an illness and had to take ambien to even get to sleep. So after all of these years it still works, I don't sleepwalk, no weird dreams, no memory loss that is excess considering my age, 68. My doc says its fine to take it this long. However every person I meet, if pharmaceuticals are brought into the conversation has incredibly negative reports on ambien and tells me I have to stop taking it immediately. I mean, what's this all about? I've read most of the postings on this forum. I can understand the specific side effects. But if I'm not having any problems, should I consider bailing on it anyway? As far as facing the possibility of having to take it for the duration: hey, I'm also taking hypertension medication.
Jay

AskDocWeb: If your doctor says it is okay and you aren't having any problems then you should be fine. The main thing to watch for in elderly patients is a change in the ability to control movements, such as eye-hand coordination.


This drug is scary!
Date: 10/8/2007
Last night I took half of a 10mg pill and ended up having Crazy hallucinations. for the first hour I was stuck in bed and couldn't move, even though I wasn't sleeping. Every time I closed my eyes there were tons of "people" inside my head freaking me out. Finally I got up, but couldn't find the door to leave my room. This drug is scary!
Yael


Ambien not worth the risks
Date: 10/9/2007
I take 5mg of Ambien only 1-2 nights per week. I too noticed that I seemed to want more and more of it. Got scared and stopped taking it. I also had several episodes of getting out of bed, etc and I did not remember a thing the next day. Works like a miracle to put you to sleep but not worth the risks. My Dr recommended vitamin B tablets, which I at first thought was crazy. I have read a lot about them online and they do have a soothing, anti-anxiety affect so I will give them a try. Good luck.
KT


Hallucinations
Date: 10/10/2007
Is it possible that ambien can cause hallucinations in an elderly person...someone who has been taking ambien for at least 12 years with no side-effects...he is 90, I think in the dying process...please advise. Thanks,
Kathy

AskDocWeb: Hallucinations, abnormal behavior and severe confusion are listed by the manufacturer as reasons to discontinue and contact a doctor. Since he is 90, age could also be a factor. For the elderly who typically take several medications, hallucinations may also be due to the combination of medications taken.

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