Ambien is the brand-name version of zolpidem, which is a sedative-hypnotic drug that slows brain function and induces sleep. When used correctly, Ambien is unlikely to cause addiction, but many people develop physical and psychological dependencies.
Although Ambien is classified as a sedative-hypnotic, it affects gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitters in your brain in a similar way to benzodiazepines (benzos) like Xanax. Ambien is used to treat insomnia, but it is meant for short-term use.
Over time, your body can become accustomed to Ambien, which causes the drug to work less well. This is called tolerance, and it can lead to people taking larger doses of Ambien and becoming addicted. Once people start taking 10 or 20 pills per day, they may discover a relaxing “high” and use Ambien for more than just insomnia. When taken too often or in high doses, Ambien can become habit-forming.
As with any addictive medication, those with a family history of addiction or an addiction to other drugs are most susceptible.
If you are struggling with Ambien addiction, you are not alone. Decision Point Center is here for you.
Even if someone takes Ambien correctly and according to their prescription, the drug can still negatively impact their life. The Ambien label warns against “abnormal thinking” and “strange behavior,” and many people find themselves sleepwalking or acting out their unconscious desires.
While this can be harmless in some situations, it can be extremely dangerous in others. For example, some people drive motor vehicles or engage in sexual activity while they are asleep. In some cases, people eat non-food items or commit crimes. In one famous criminal lawsuit, a man murdered 8 people while he was under the influence of Ambien and legally asleep.
Other side effects of Ambien include:
- Daytime drowsiness
- Memory loss
- Mood swings
- Behavioral changes
- Suicidal thoughts
- Aggressive behavior
These side effects can become more severe over time and often coincide with addiction. If you are concerned, consider quitting or seeking help.
Sleep disorders can indicate an underlying mental or physical condition. If someone is suffering from anxiety or depression and takes Ambien to treat the symptom of insomnia, for example, they may seek other solutions from the drug and increase their risk of addiction.
Addiction is rarely about the drug in question and frequently about the feelings the person taking drugs may be trying to mask.
That’s why we offer holistic recovery programs at Decision Point Center.
Decision Point Center is a fully licensed drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility. We combine traditional therapies with modern, medically accepted techniques to get to the heart of substance abuse disorders and help people get and stay sober.
Our team has been changing lives since 2004 and we accept most major insurance policies. At Decision Point Center, we see drug addiction for what it is – a chronic disease – not something to be ashamed of.
We teach you life skills and healthy coping mechanisms, so you can manage your disease for the rest of your days and deal with other negative situations in the future.
Some people abuse Ambien by combining it with other drugs or alcohol. Others take the drug and then stay up on purpose to experience a “trip,” or eliminate feelings of insecurity or anxiety. Using Ambien recreationally or without a prescription is a sign of Ambien addiction and can lead to drug overdose and other serious complications.
Continuum of Care
At Decision Point Center we are committed to ALWAYS walking alongside you. Even once you have completed our program, we make ourselves and our resources available to you any time you need.
Array of Possibilities
Just like no two individuals are alike, neither are two addictions. We offer many different services in order to ensure your program is customized to your unique needs and goals.
Unlike other centers, we treat the individual, not the addiction. We work with you both during treatment and then work to help prepare you for once you leave. The journey begins with us but continues with you.
Decades of Experience
Experience one of the most comprehensive assessments in the treatment world today and we understand that in order to treat the addiction, we must also treat the underlying cause.
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In-Network: Health Choice
Out of Network: Oxford Health