Ambien Addiction: The Facts

Drug addiction can happen to anyone, and today, more people than ever are finding themselves addicted to prescription medications — often taken to relieve them of pain or other symptoms, such as insomnia. Ambien addiction is becoming more and more common as people are relying on this medication to help them sleep. Today’s stressful; fast-paced society often results in problems with anxiety and sleeplessness. The medications that are frequently used to combat these problems can be effective and safe in the short term, but unfortunately, they are not a long-term solution. Stopping after long term use may result in the return of sleeping disorders


Ambien is the brand name for the sedative medication Zolpidem. This type of drug is classified as a sedative-hypnotic. It is meant to be taken as needed for insomnia and comes in the form of tablets, extended-release tablets, sublingual, and a liquid mist.

Insomnia refers to a sleeping disorder. Those affected have difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, and being able to return to sleep once awakened. Insomnia is a disorder that affects almost one-third of the adult population and lends to the growing trend of Ambien addiction.

Due to hormones, women may be more prone to insomnia than their male counterparts. Hormonal changes during menstrual cycles, menopause, and pregnancy can affect sleep patterns. This causes women to be more susceptible to the effects of Ambien. Some believe this gender difference is because men may metabolize Zolpidem faster due to testosterone. Therefore the effects of Ambien are likely to last longer, and doses should be lower for women. Depression and anxiety can cause secondary insomnia. Due to these physiological disorders, women may be at a higher risk of dependency or addiction.

In addition to taking it to help promote sleep, many people also take Ambien recreationally for the euphoric effects that can occur. Zolpidem, along with other benzodiazepine-like Z-drugs, are listed as Schedule IV substances under the Controlled Substance Act in the United States due to its potential for recreational use and dependency. 

Combining Ambien and Alcohol

One of the most widely combined substances used to enhance the sedative effects of Ambien is alcohol. In addition, some use benzodiazepines such as valium and Xanax. These are hazardous combinations because of the similarity of the drugs that act as depressants to the central nervous system. The danger of respiratory system failure or overdose is greatly increased. Some people even crush, snort, or inject them. The street names include no-gos, tic-tacs, sleep easy, and zombies; due to the sleepy, euphoric effect. 

Ambien is habit-forming and often leads to addiction. If you find that you are relying on Ambien to get through your life, then the Stuart, Florida Ambien detox center is right for you. It doesn’t matter if you began taking Ambien to help you sleep, or if you started taking it to help you relax or have fun. While not everyone who takes Ambien will become addicted, it is always a risk with any drug. Stopping after long term use may result in the return of sleeping disorders, causing a person to return to Ambien.

Some people are unaware they are addicted to the drug. Physical dependence can occur in as little as two weeks. This can happen even if the drug is being taken as prescribed. Many only realize they have an addiction when they stop taking it and may find that their insomnia worse than before  

Ambien: What Are The Possible Side Effects of Addiction?

Ambien use in any other way than prescribed by a physician is considered abuse. Ambien was initially marketed as a safer alternative to benzodiazepine, or xanax . It was labeled a schedule IV substance by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), meaning it is not likely to be used recreationally. Ambien is meant to be a short-term solution for sleep problems. These problems may be a result of temporary issues such as jet lag or stress. Medications can mask underlying issues that need to be addressed. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take long to become addicted to Ambien. In addition to the psychological addiction that Ambien can produce, a person taking it regularly can develop tolerance and dependence on the drug.

Most often, Ambien addiction begins with the need to resolve short-term insomnia. Because a physician prescribes it, the addictive potential is underestimated. It is only when the drug becomes less and less effective, and the ability to sleep without it becomes apparent that the user realizes he is addicted.  

Possible Ambien Addiction Symptoms and Side Effects:

  • Fatigue
  • Sleepwalking
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Hallucinations.
  • Dizziness
  • Lack of coordination
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting

Unlike Xanax, Ambien is not a benzodiazepine. However, it has a similar result when it comes to dependence. If you have been taking Ambien for a while and notice that it seems not to be working as well, and you feel as though you must take more of the drug in order for it to work, then you have developed a tolerance to the drug. Not only that, but you have likely also developed a dependence or addiction to it. This means that if you stop taking it, you will experience withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms are not only unpleasant, but they can also be dangerous. In some cases, these withdrawal effects can result in seizures, and in extreme cases, death.

This is why it is so important to enlist the help of a Stuart, Florida Ambien addiction detox center. A detox center can help you detox from Ambien safely, and comfortably.

How Do You Know You Need an Ambien Addiction Detox?

You are abusing or addicted to Ambien: This means you are getting Ambien without a prescription, you are taking more than is prescribed, you are not using it as directed, you are taking it recreationally.

If you are experiencing any of the signs of Ambien dependence or addiction, you should seek help from an Ambien detox center. The following are some signs that indicate you need help:

  • When you go too long without taking an Ambien, you start to experience withdrawal symptoms.
  • When you run out or run low on Ambien, you become nervous, anxious, or agitated.
  • You have tried to stop taking Ambien, but you can’t
  • You avoid hobbies, activities, and people you usually enjoy since you began taking Ambien.
  • When people question your Ambien use, you justify it, you defend it, and you avoid people who express concern or objections to your use of Ambien.
  • You find that you are spending money to get Ambien or purchasing it illegally. This means buying it from individuals, buying it without a prescription, or trading with other medications or items for Ambien.
  • You find that your thoughts are preoccupied with obtaining more Ambien, or you find that you are looking forward to your next dose of Ambien. 
  • Isolating yourself from friends and family

ambien detox

How an Ambien Addiction Detox Program In Florida Can Help

If you are ready to be free from Ambien addiction, there is help from an Ambien detox center in Stuart, Florida. Coastal Detox Center offers services to those suffering from Ambien addiction, as well as addiction to other substances.

Detoxing from Ambien is problematic for two reasons: First off, it can be dangerous to quit Ambien abruptly. For a regular user of Ambien, withdrawal can cause severe symptoms, including seizures and in some cases, death. It should never be attempted without the help of a physician or medical professional. Even when withdrawals are milder, they are still highly unpleasant, physically, mentally, and emotionally. You need support, and you need a safe, comfortable environment to detox from this highly addictive drug.

Other Common Side Effects From Detoxing From Ambien

  • New or worsening anxiety
  • Mood swings/Irritability
  • Panic attacks
  • Cravings
  • Irritability
  • Cramps
  • Rapid breathing
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sweats
  • Tremors
  • Rebound insomnia
  • Increased heart rate
  • Fatigue
  • Seizures

Medical detox enables you to withdraw from Ambien safely, and without the most severe side effects so you can be more comfortable. But effective Ambien detox also helps you through the process in other ways. Specialized treatments such as vitamin and mineral therapy and massage therapy soothe your body and mind while helping to speed the detox process. Seizures occur in a very small percentage of cases. However, it is strongly recommended to consult with a medical professional or Ambien addiction detox center when deciding to stop taking Ambien. This is the best way to prevent severe withdrawal symptoms.

The most severe withdrawal symptoms are within the first five days after suspending the use of Ambien. However, it could take longer depending on the degree of dependency. 

All of these side effects can be lessened when under proper medical supervision. This also isn’t something you want to experience on your own anyway. No matter how strong you are as a person, detoxing from your addiction is an incredibly trying experience, and the right people being there for you through, it can make all the difference.

Some of the different types of medications and treatments that are offered during Ambien addiction detox or rehab under the supervision of medical professionals are:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy 
  • Motivational interviewing 
  • Dialectical behavioral therapy 
  • Possible intravenous fluids for dehydration
  • Sedative .for nerves and rest

Compassionate, experienced counselors are on hand to help you through the detox process, and you will feel welcomed and cared for by staff who are there to see that you get the best in care.

Although every person is different, you can typically expect your withdrawal symptoms to begin improving within 1 – 2 weeks, with the most severe of the symptoms of Ambien addiction occurring within the first 3-5 days. However, this mostly applies to physical symptoms only. Even after your body has adjusted to being without Ambien, your mind may still be trying to recover.

Psychological withdrawal symptoms may persist for weeks or even months after you’ve detoxed from Ambien. In extreme cases, some people may have panic attacks and other acute anxiety symptoms for a more extended period of time.

Factors That Influence Withdrawal Symptoms From Ambien Addiction

There are a few factors that may determine the amount, time, and extent of symptoms in a person detoxing from Ambien addiction. 

Some factors are:

  • Length of abuse
  • Age and weight
  • Multi-substance abuse
  • Dosage amount.

Length of Abuse

One of the biggest factors is how long the individual has been abusing or addicted to Ambien. When someone uses Ambien much longer than they’re supposed to, they will become tolerant and even dependent upon it. Symptoms will be worse for a person whose body relies upon the daily use of Ambien.


Another factor that’s important is how high the dosage of Ambien was that the person was using. Again, the dosage will probably be higher for a person who was using it for a longer period of time. Withdrawing from a higher dose of Ambien will produce more severe symptoms as compared to withdrawing from a lower dose.

Mixing Ambien with Other Substances

A person might have worse withdrawal symptoms if they took Ambien in conjunction with other substances such as alcohol, opiates, or some other drug. When Ambien is used in conjunction with one of these substances, the high that the person experiences is enhanced and often results in addiction. This is very dangerous, however, because it can increase the risk of overdose and respiratory failure as well as making symptoms worse when going through withdrawals.

Type of Ambien

One last factor that determines the severity of withdrawal symptoms is whether the person was taking Ambien or was taking an extended-release (Ambien CR) version or not. Extended-release versions of Ambien allow people to take much larger doses of the drug since it’s not released all at once. This allows a person to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. However, the combination of a larger dose and longer-lasting effects result in a person forming a tolerance or addiction much more easily. This can also make the withdrawal symptoms much worse.

When going through the detox process, medication may be administered to the patient in order to control the withdrawal symptoms and the tapering off process. This may be necessary to assist with rebound insomnia, relieve anxiety and depression, and minimize the possibility of seizures.

After completing Ambien addiction detox, you don’t want to stop with your treatment there. Although we stress that detox is one of the most important steps you can take, there are others that usually follow afterward, as well. The treatment plan may include:                                                                                                                  

Sail Through Ambien Addiction Detox At Coastal Detox 

Coastal Detox is an Ambien addiction detox center in Stuart, Florida. Located on the beautiful Treasure Coast, our 12,000 square foot facility includes serene, well-maintained grounds, a pool, flat-screen televisions in all rooms, chef-prepared meals, and a host of treatments to help you heal, recover and put your Ambien addiction behind you for good.

If you are ready to get the help and treatment you deserve, contact Coastal Detox Center today.