Feedback on Ambien Side Effects and Usage, page 46

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.

NEVER drink with Ambien
Date: 1/29/2008
Great stuff, just don’t take more than 5 or 10 mg and NEVER drink with it. The one time I did, I cleaned out my garage in the middle if the night. I woke up in my bed the next morning and went into my garage and actually was shocked for a minute and realized that the “dream” I had that I did clean the garage really happened. My wife was amused and happy to have the garage clean. I just fear what else could have happened since I thought I was just dreaming, thanks nothing did.


He shot himself
Date: 1/29/2008
My 18yo brother was prescribed Ambien for sleep. On day 9 he went to bed only to wake in excruciating pain. He had shot himself in the knee with my dads hunting rifle. When my parents got to him he was crying on the floor “I didn’t do this mom! I swear I didn’t do this!” I’m so heartbroken. He will remain in the hospital for many weeks to come. With nothing left in the area of his knee, he will be going under multiple surgeries to try and rebuild a knee. This medication is VERY scary. While the side effects are listed, and people know what could happen, I think a medication with such severe side effects should be taken off the market.


Ruined my life
Date: 1/30/2008
This drug completely ruined my life. My doctor prescribed it to me to help with insomnia. I thought it was wonderful at first, but shortly after I began using it, I became increasingly moody. Being in a stressful job, I found myself at times breaking down uncontrollably at work. Sobbing, argumentative and scattered, I lost my job within a year. During that same year not surprisingly I was having marital problems. My husband and I separated at one point and he came over a few months later to help with our children at a time when I was sick. I took Ambien before I went to bed and woke up to find that I had sex with him. I have no recollection and it wasn’t the first time. I felt so violated that I came really close to pressing rape charges.
There had been other instances in the night when I had argued with my husband, done strange things around the house, and one night in the middle of winter our furnace went out and I went with my husband and children to my inlaws house (20 miles away) with no recollection of anything. Waking up the next morning in a different home is frightening enough, but the scene I caused being so disoriented was not a pleasant one. When I told my doctor of the way I was feeling, how I was acting and the memory loss, he simply brushed it off saying that “Ambien was the most prescribed sleep aid on the market and that he had never heard of any side effects.” I stopped taking the drug on my own and it took many months before I felt like myself again. This drug is dangerous and should be taken off the shelf immediately.


Feel nauseous
Date: 1/31/2008
I just started taking ambien again after being off of it for about 2 years now. I live in a college dorm and two years ago apparently I would go visit my friends sluring my speech and I would talk on IM for a long time to people but I wasn’t typing anything comprehendible, just a mixture of letters and symbols. Anyways, I have started taking it again and I haven’t done anything out of the ordinary. But it makes me feel like crap until I fall asleep. I feel so nauseous and my head hurts. Once I go to sleep though I sleep well which is nice because I haven’t been able to sleep at school since being back from my winter vacation. However, I feel nauseous the day after too. My mom is convinced I am getting the flu but it started when I started taking the ambien a few days ago. Is it normal to feel sick to your stomach the next day?


AskDocWeb: Several people have reported feeling nauseous after taking Ambien, sometimes into the next day. The 2008 PDR lists the percentage of people who experience nausea at 7%.

Side affects are real
Date: 2/1/2008
As the father of an 18 year old son, I am sitting at a computer in the surgery waiting area of a hospital in Wisconsin. All I can say is PLEASE KEEP IN MIND THAT SIDE AFFECTS ARE REAL!!!! THEY DON’T JUST HAPPEN IN CLINICAL STUDIES. Thanks for all of your prayers and kind words. Sincerely,


Ambien shooting
Date: 2/2/2008
My 18 yr old nephew just shot himself while on ambien. He took his ambien and went to bed, after being in bed for about 15-20 my brother and his wife heard the gun go off and my nephew screaming. He no longer has a left knee. He remembers nothing except going to bed and waking up in excruciating pain. He has just had his 3rd surgery in a week and will have many more to come.


Experience was a nightmare
Date: 2/4/2008
I took ambien for a period in college with strict instructions to use it for two weeks to re-establish sleep patterns, which seems very prudent advice. Times where I didn’t go right to bed resulted in trance-like (sometimes forgotten) conversations with roommates). Went back on ambien a few months later to re-regulate but didn’t stop. Body dev’d tolerance to 10mg and consequently only got 5 hr /nite. Poor memory due throughout time period most likely due to sum total of stress/anxiety but certainly abetted by ambien. finally stopped and had intense withdrawal symptoms – as well as 2 wk period of gradually decreasing panic/paranoia to a nearly catatonic level at first. Looking back on the experience, the careful use was quite therapeutic but the subsequent experience was a nightmare to which ambien was a secondary but contributing player.


Ambien was worse than any alcoholic blackout
Date: 2/4/2008
I am also writing to document the hallucinogenic side-effects of this medication. I have been sober from alcohol for nearly 2 years, and my experience with Ambien was worse than any alcoholic blackout I could’ve had. My doctor prescribed this medication for a long spell of insomnia, but I’m never taking it again. It is embarrassing to be told about things you’ve said during a hallucination, and some instances of uncontrolled unconscious behavior can be life threatening. My examples include the spontaneous decision to plan a vacation (fortunately my hubby stopped me!), screaming in fear because same hubby had three heads, and vividly traumatic nightmares. I can’t believe this medication passed FDA review! I’d rather go sleepless at night than be a raving lunatic!


If I had known then…
Date: 2/5/2008
I think doctors need to inform their patients about the consequences of taking ambien for long than 7 to 10 days. I have taken ambien for 2 and a half years and am now tapering off and beginning the hellish withdrawal. If I had known then what I know now I would have never even started this drug!


It is definitely a sex drug
Date: 2/5/2008
I love ambiem, my husband likes some of the totally crazy things I think of doing. It is definitely a sex drug…as I was told the next morning on the other hand its kind of crezy that this little pill can alter your state to almost looney on occassion, as long as I take it when I get in the bed and stay there and handle whatever business that you may or may not remembered to do but it helps me sleep really good.

Geogia Girl

Side effects are a little scary
Date: 2/6/2008
My wife of 51 years and being 72 years of age has been taking AMBIEN for about one year, has helped her with all her sleeping problems. Seems to be a very useful sleeping med. But the side effects are a little scary in that she is very clumsy and very unsure on her feet if she is still stirring after she takes her pill. If she is setting down 15 to 30 minutes after taking pill she will fall asleep. Have not noticed any other side effects. Again, Ambien has been a huge help to her. Keep up the excellent work with this type web site it certainly helps us elder ones. We are very thankful to you.


AskDocWeb: You are most welcome Tom, hang in there.

Effective for insomnia?
Date: 2/7/2008
Is ambien non-addictive? I have used benzodiazapines and got off them (not easily!). Don’t want to go on another roller coaster of addiction, but do need a sleep aid definitely. Is this the most popular and effective for insomnia? Thank you!


AskDocWeb: Some of those who have tried it have reported that Ambien is a highly addictive drug. It is a good choice for short-term management of insomnia if you are under the supervision of a good MD. SHORT-term use as defined by the manufacturer means 7 to 10 days. If you have problems beyond that time we suggest you consult with a sleep clinic. They are sleep specialists who can help you deal with the underlying problem that prevents a good night’s sleep.

Woke up tied down in a straight jacket
Date: 2/7/2008
I was given ambien with pain medication while in the hospital. I awoke on day 1 tied down in a straight jacket. To this day I have no memory as to why. I have never had mental problems before this. I insisted the hospital not give me this drug again and never had another problem. I will never take this drug or advise anyone else to.


Ambien problems
Date: 2/9/2008
I have taken Ambien 12.5 mg. and Ambien 10 mg and Ambien in lower doses very cautiously and judiciously over the past seven months. Like any other sleeping pill, I had common knowledge that sleeping pills could become addictive with frequent use. So, I made sure not to use Ambien on a daily basis. I even split the pill in half to rotate the dose on the days that I did use it. With that said, one would think that using Ambien with such caution would not cause any of the memory loss or side effects. However, short term memory loss is exactly what I’ve been experiencing over the past several months, in addition to some of the other side effects of mild hallucinations and making a couple of phone calls in the middle of the night that I had NO IDEA were made by me until I saw the call timers and phone numbers on my cell phone the next day. Very erie and unsettling to think that this would happen without my knowing that I was actually doing it.

To date, I have taken steps to carefully wean myself off of Ambien, but I am still suffering from very real and what feels like, permanent short term memory loss. What I mean is that I am having trouble recalling and articulating basic words and ideas, and concepts or comparisons when I’m having a discussion with another person. My ability to be articulate has diminished to the point that I’m becoming aware enough of it that it is impairing my ability to communicate effectively, precisely, and with confidence. Many times I draw a blank in the middle of my thought processes and sentences (like a brain fog)…nothing is there but static limbo, (scary and embarrassing) and this is very frustrating when I cannot finish what I want to say or recall the appropriate word that I know I want to use. This has impaired my ability to retrieve the word(s) to finish my thoughts.

Also, I am having frequent trouble with dyslexia in typing and often in my verbal speech and in my handwriting. Conversationally, I have to concentrate greatly on what I am saying to the point that I must focus and close my eyes to re-gain concentration. I’m concerned about these ongoing symptoms and it’s affecting my self-esteem and confidence and my core competency around my use of language. I have diminished vocabulary recall. I have a lot of forgetfulness. I am having trouble putting together cogent reasoning from A to B, and B to C, and C to D. I have difficulty explaining things to others without struggle to focus. I’m scared and embarrassed that I have beginning signs of dementia. Please research this drug very carefully. I have a feeling that the FDA will find this pattern increasing, along with everyone else’s complaints of memory loss, amnesia, hallucinations and food binges or actions that could not be remembered.


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