Women tend to suffer higher rates of insomnia than men, and the majority of people who take drugs like Ambien are older, white, educated females. From 2005 to 2010, Ambien-related overdose rates rose 220%. People who are addicted to Ambien will often mix the drugs with other prescriptions, such as opioids, or take the medications with alcohol. Alcohol use is incredibly dangerous with Ambien. Both drugs will suppress breathing, leading to seizures, coma, and death.
Ambien can give the user a hypnotic ‘high,’ which some people will abuse by taking Ambien and forcing themselves to stay awake, or intensifying the high with other substances like alcohol.
People who take Ambien to treat insomnia may find themselves developing a tolerance to the drug because Ambien has a short half-life. It is designed to help someone fall asleep, not stay asleep. People will take Ambien at the correct time before going to bed, and promptly fall asleep. However, Ambien can wear-off in the middle of the night, and the person will wake up and take another dose even though it is against the dosage recommendations. If this happens, people can quickly develop dependence and addiction. Once an addiction is formed, people who stop taking Ambien will experience painful withdrawal symptoms, including rebound insomnia.
Rebound insomnia is incredibly difficult to treat, and can severely limit the quality of someone’s life. Exhaustion can cause accidents, and suppress someone’s immune system, or lead to cardiac distress in at-risk individuals. For those suffering from Ambien addiction, getting help from a medical detox center is crucial.