Ambien, the powerful sleep medication, has the potential for users to easily get addicted to it. This can occur even if the drug is taken in the right way. However, abusing or misusing the sleep medication in any manner can rapidly increase the risk of addiction. Overcoming the severe problem would take a lot of time and effort. Failure to seek adequate help could result in severe psychological and physical adverse effects. Get to know all about addiction to the sleep drug and how the problem can be overcome below.
Why does Ambien addiction occur?
It is structurally similar to a benzodiazepine but is not one. The drug is also indicated only for short-term use due to how it affects the mind and system. The main effect that comes with using the sleeping pills is that of tolerance. With prolonged use, higher doses would be soon required in order to feel the effects of the medication. Also, this is a drug that should be used on an as needed basis. With dependence, it can be difficult to fall asleep without taking the drug.
Addiction can also occur in those who use the Ambien pills recreationally. Popping one pill and willfully staying awake can result in a euphoric high, which abuser crave. Continuing to use the drug in this manner will result in severe addiction.
Signs of Ambien addiction
The major sign that can help to understand if a person is addicted to Ambien or not is the occurrence of withdrawal symptoms, which happens when the drug is discontinued abruptly. These withdrawal side effects that are common are rebound insomnia, anxiety, stomach pain, feeling flushed, and sweating.
The more significant signs are include
- Behavioral changes,
- Thoughts of suicide,
- Sleepwalking, and
- Excessive sleepiness.
- Addiction behavior includes taking the drug even when it is not required,
- Consuming higher doses and for longer periods,
- Using it without a prescription, and
- Consuming other substances to enhance the effects.
This kind of risky behavior can lead to fatal overdose if left untreated.
Treatment for the Ambien addiction
The treatment for persons addicted to Ambien depends on how severe the problem is, which varies from one individual to another. Detoxing from the sleep drug is a very gradual process that should be done with the help of the physician. To prevent the occurrence of withdrawal symptoms, the insomnia treatment is planned so as to use other non-medical methods to improve the sleep pattern and the Ambien dose is also tapered in order to lower the dependence.
The addiction treatment primarily involves behavioral therapy and also training in sleep hygiene. This is important in preventing rebound insomnia from occurring after stopping the medication. Support from family and other groups also play an important role in helping to get rid of the problem. Always use Ambien only with the doctor’s help and go for consultation any time there are any signs of tolerance or dependence in order to avoid getting addicted.