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People who suffer from insomnia are often prescribed Ambien, a great sleep medication that can do wonders. If it’s used on a short-term basis, the drug can help individuals with their sleep problems so that they can get some rest.
Still, some people end up using the medication for a longer time – either because they want some extra help with their sleep issues or because they became addicted. A lot of individuals who use Ambien are at risk of developing an addiction, which can be extremely dangerous.
Someone who became addicted to this substance will do anything to get it and will not care if the doctor tells them to not use the drug for extended periods. If they try to quit, they will go through Ambien withdrawal, something that is very challenging for addicts.
Learn More About Ambien
Ambien represents the brand name of zolpidem. It is a medication that can either induce sleep or allow someone to stay asleep for a longer period. Therefore, the drug is often prescribed as a short-term treatment for people who are suffering from insomnia.
Ambien is part of the sedative-hypnotics drugs group and it affects the activity of the brain and the central nervous system by slowing them down. This is how it can offer the calming effects that make it possible for someone to fall asleep.
The medication is considered a z-drug and initially, it was made to be a much safer alternative to benzodiazepine drugs. Many looked at it as a less addictive substance. In reality, though, it should be used with the same caution as the other medications.
Ambien should only be used for a short period because it can lead to addiction.
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Reaching An Ambien Withdrawal
Prolonged Ambien use can lead to addiction to the drug. Once the habit is formed, quitting will not be easy. This is because the person trying to quit will go through withdrawal, and the uncomfortable symptoms will make them consume the substance again.
Consuming Ambien for too long will make the body build a tolerance to it. When it adapts to the same drug for extended periods, it will have a diminished response to it, so the person will have to take the medicine in higher amounts to get the results they want.
If the body cannot function normally anymore without getting the drug, it means it became addicted.
People who take Ambien just the way it was prescribed will also be at risk of building tolerance to it. Withdrawal will happen when they try to give up on it, which brings very painful and uncomfortable symptoms to the table.
Ambien Withdrawal Causes
When Ambien is used, it will increase the activity of GABA in your brain.
GABA is an important neurotransmitter, as it can help the brain functions and central nervous system slow down. As the chemicals of the brain dampen, you will be able to fall asleep more easily.
A GABA crash is usually why Ambien withdrawal symptoms occur. This is what happens when the activity of the brain becomes way too stimulated. As a result, it will come with very uncomfortable withdrawal side effects.
Withdrawal will also be affected by the amount of Ambien taken by the individual, but also by how long the drug has been used. When the use of the substance is extended, the withdrawal effects tend to be worse.
In order to treat withdrawal, one should go to a rehabilitation center. Here, the professionals will ease the symptoms and take care of the mental health of the patient
Symptoms of A Withdrawal
Due to the changes that occur in the brain, it is very difficult to withdraw from Ambien. Once the body is no longer getting the substance, it will try to recover and reestablish its usual activity.
Since Ambien withdrawal has an opposite effect from the drug’s usual symptoms, quitting the substance all of a sudden will have bad consequences.
Within 48 hours since the last Ambien dose, the following withdrawal symptoms can appear:
- Mood swings
- Nausea or vomiting
- Ambien cravings
- Crying uncontrollably
- Dealing with abdominal discomfort or cramps
- Panic attacks
- Rebound insomnia
- Increased breathing and heart rate
Ambien withdrawal will start within 48 hours since the addict took the last dose. In the first stage, the individual may be in a cloud-like state. They will have a hard time remembering things and focusing, and headaches may also occur.
Symptoms will start to get worse 48 hours after taking Ambien for the last time. The person may experience anxiety, delirium, mood swings, abdominal problems, sweating excessively, and even relapse in insomnia.
3 to 7 days after taking the last dose, the withdrawal symptoms will be at their peak. There will be very intense physical effects, including Ambien cravings. The risk of relapsing is also very high, so it is ideal to go through medical detox.
In weeks 2 through 4, the symptoms will slowly start to go away. Then, one month after the last dose, the symptoms usually disappear. Some people may still deal with insomnia, anxiety, or depression, though.
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Treating The Withdrawals
In order to treat Ambien withdrawal, a person will usually need medical supervision, as well as rehab. Other medications may be used to help deal with the symptoms. On top of that, the individual may have to go to group or individual counseling.
How Real Deal Can Help
We offer regular drug tests, but also daily meetings and the possibility to live in a peaceful home until you are recovered. We do our best to fix the damage that the addiction did to your life and make sure to help you become the better version of yourself.
Reach out to us if you are going through withdrawal from Ambien. We will help you every step of the way.