According to Sleep Med, sleeping disorders cost an estimated $15.9 billion in U.S. national health care. Up to 40 percent of adults are likely to experience insomnia in their lifetimes, with women being twice as likely to suffer some type of sleep disorder. In 2005, more than 45 million prescriptions for sleeping pills were written in the United States. Ambien is one of the more recognized brands commonly prescribed for sleeping disorders.
What is Ambien?
Ambien, generically called zolpidem, is a sedative most commonly used to help treat insomnia short-term. It's used to sedate and also causes muscle relaxation, acts as an anti-convulsant, and has anti-anxiety properties. Typically, Ambien is prescribed to be used for seven to 10 days until a consistent sleep schedule is achieved.
Listed as a rare side-effect, users may experience weight loss from taking Ambien. In the event you lose weight you feel is associated with use of the drug, contact your physician immediately and cease using it.
As ambien is a sedative, common side effects may include next day drowsiness, headaches, sleepiness, and dizziness. More serious side effects may include temporary amnesia, drug dependence, confusion, agitation, chest pain, hallucinations, depression, and suicidal thoughts.
Alcohol should not be consumed when taking Ambien. Users should also refrain from operating machinery or driving when using this or any sedative. Though fewer than 1,000 cases have been reported, Ambien has been linked to sleep walking and driving. The FDA has issued warnings about this rare side-effect and has suggested further trial testing of this and other sleeping pills.