What Is Ambien and Is It Safety information?
What is Ambien?
Ambien is the brand name of Zolpidem Tartrate tablets. Ambien is prescribed by doctors to treat patients who have insomnia (categorized by difficulty falling asleep).
Ambien is available in the markets in 5 and 10 milligram power pills for oral administration.
Chemical composition of Zolpidem (Ambien)
The IUPAC name of Zolpidem is : N,N,6-trimethyl-2-p-tolyl imidazo[1,2-a]
pyridine-3-acetamide L-(+)-tartrate (2:1).
The color of Zolpidem is : Off-white to white
Form : Crystalline powder
Solubility in water : Sparingly soluble in water
Active ingredient in the pills : Zolpidem Tartrate
Inactive ingredients in the pill : Lactose, microcrystalline cellulose, hydroxypropyl
Methylcellulose, magnesium stearate, sodium starch glycolate, titanium dioxide, polyethylene glycol, polysorbate 80, and iron oxide colorant
How does Ambien work?
Ambien was approved by FDA in the year 1992 for administration by masses. It is a hypnotic class of medicine, which works by activating the neurotransmitters Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and binding to the GABA receptors in a way that is similar to medications like Xanax and Valium (which belong to benzodiazepines class of medicines). The enhanced GABA activity triggered by Ambien hinders the nerve cells activity that is associated with insomnia. In a nutshell, it slows down the activities in the brain. This drug is extremely useful in initiating sleep in a person, usually making a person doze off within 20 minutes or so. However, if you want to have a continued sound sleep, you can take the extended-release form of Ambien, instead of its controlled-release pills.
Ambien side effects :
As we have already discussed above that Ambien is a sedative medication that is used in the treatment of sleeplessness in people. Some of the side effects of this drug may be:
- Sore throat,
- Dry mouth,
- Nasal irritation,
- Stuffy nose,
- Loss of Coordination,
- A feeling of being ‘Drugged,’
- Daytime drowsiness,
- Visual Changes,
- Balance problems,
- Muscle pain,
- Upset Stomach,
- Nausea, and
Apart from these, Some severe side effects of Ambien are:
- Mood/behavioral changes
- Memory loss,
- Thoughts of suicide,
- Anxiety, and
- Aggressive behavior.
Dosage of Ambien:
You must take the lowest effective dose of Ambien as it is a sedative. The initial recommended dose of Ambien is 5 milligrams for women and 5 to 10 milligrams for men. Ambien is a sedative drug. Therefore, it should never be administered to children. Only one pill of Ambien shall be taken before going to bed. Also, consume it only when you have 7 to 8 hours of sleep before your planned waking up time.
If in case the initial dose of 5 milligrams is unable to produce satisfactory results, it can be increased to 10 milligrams. The total dose of Ambien should not exceed 10mg at a time or within 24 hours. It should be made clear that Ambien should only be taken in a single go and not be readministered during the same night.
If a patient needs a continuous sleep, it is advised to take the Extended Release form of the medicine instead of its frequent doses.
The initial doses of Ambien differ in men and women owing to the difference of zolpidem clearance levels in them ( which is lower in women)
Ambien is used as a short term treatment medicine and shall not be used for a period longer than five weeks without your doctor’s consent. Consult your medical adviser if you have an urge to take this medicine. This medicine should not be consumed immediately after or with a meal.
Refrain from using this medicine if you consumed alcohol that evening.
Safety information :
Interactions with other medications
Ambien is known to interact with many other medicines, each of which can cause different side effects. While some drugs may increase its side effects, on the other hand, others can decrease the effectiveness of the drug.
It is better to intimate your doctor beforehand about all the prescribed, over the counter, or any other medicine that you may be taking. This includes any multivitamins, herbs, or health supplements. Sharing this information may help you to escape any unwanted side effects of the medicine.
We have discussed below some of the medicines that are known to interact with Ambien:
Increased side effects of both Ambien and other drugs.
Taking Ambien with other medications raises the risk of side effects of that drug and Ambien as well. This happens because the side effects produced by Ambien and other medication that is taken along with it, are the same, and hence they together intensify the side effects. Examples of these drugs are:
- Drugs like chlorpromazine and imipramine that decrease your alertness. If these medications are taken along with Ambien, they may cause sedation and drowsiness.
- Antibiotics like erythromycin and clarithromycin.
- Medications like itraconazole, voriconazole and ketoconazole
- Atazanavir and Ritonavir
Interactions that can make Ambien less effective.
There are some medications that may decrease the effects of Ambien on you when consumed together. This happens owing to the fact that the level of zolpidem is reduced in the body by their intake. Examples of these types of drugs are as follows:
- Antibiotics like rifabutin, rifapentine, and rifampin,
- St. John’s wort, and
- Anticonvulsant medications like phenobarbital, phenytoin, and carbamazepine.
Ambien while pregnancy :
It is not good to use Ambien during the pregnancy period. Taking this type of opioids during the pregnancy period may cause some adverse effects and [physical dependence. Some cases of neonatal respiratory depression have reported while using central nervous system depressants like Ambien. There is no medical evidence of infertility caused by Ambien, but some side effects have proved like incomplete fetal skeletal ossification and increased embryo-fetal death.
Who manufacturing Ambien?
Ambien is the brand (trade) name of Zolpidem which is a prescription medication. Ambien is widely available in the U.S. for public use.
- NDC Code(s): 0024-5401-31, 0024-5421-31, 0024-0024-5421-50
- Packager: Sanofi-Aventis U.S. LLC
- Category: HUMAN PRESCRIPTION DRUG LABEL
- DEA Schedule: CIV
- Marketing Status: New Drug Application
Research on Ambien :
It is reported improving aphasia in people with stroke, but there is no evidence of any clear benefit of Ambien. This medication has also been studied in persistent vegetative states with an unclear effect. Although this medication has been seen as beneficial in insomnia and disorder of consciousness, still more research is needed.
Few animal studies by the FDA have shown dose-dependent increases in certain types of tumors. But this study was too small to reach statistical significance.
Ambien for Jet Lag :
Jet lag is temporary insomnia (a problem in sleep) which may occur when your body’s biological clock is not synced from your local time zone. Ambien is useful in case of jet lag as it is a relaxer and calm providing treatment. Ambien provides a sleepy effect during the travels, and you relax by sleeping.
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