Ambien (Zolpidem) is classified as a sedative-hypnotics drug. It comes in two forms the original Ambien and Ambien CR (the CR brand is a slow release form that helps you fall asleep and stay asleep. The current problem with the original form of Ambien is while it helps a person fall asleep it doesn't help them sleep through the night so once they awake they have trouble falling back to sleep. The average dose of Ambien is 2.5 mg just before bed. Individuals who have been taking it for years take as much as 10mg as the body builds up a natural resistance to the drug. It is only recommended for short periods of time as it is highly addictive.
I have used Ambien twice in the past few years the first time it had an adverse effect and made me bounce of the walls. The second time I did experience a hallucinations of sorts, at the time I thought it was a nightmare in the morning my husband had a black eye. I apparently thought he was an attacker and punch him repeatedly.
As a Health Care Consultant I strongly recommend trying a natural approach first such as a warm decaffeinated drink before bed or melatonin supplement.
The link between Ambien (Zolpidem) and hallucinations is a bit of a mystery to doctors. As with any medication side effects can vary greatly. While hallucinations and sleepwalking seem to be the biggest concern for Ambien users.
* TYPES OF HALLUCINATIONS *
Visual hallucinations are the most common type experienced by Ambien users. A Visual hallucination can come in a few forms; seeing a mixture of colors with your eyes opened or closed. Seeing people or objects that are not actually there, seeing moving people or objects such as people dancing on the ceiling above you bed or being rained on by colorful popcorn.
Hallucinations can be experienced as real meaning that the person can't tell the difference between reality and the hallucinations or the person knows the hallucination is not real but still sees it.
Auditory hallucinations are also experienced by Ambien users in this case the person will hear voices sometimes telling them to do things they would not normally do therefore not having touch with reality. The other type of auditory hallucination is hearing voices, sounds and everyday noises such as a train coming when there are no trains around for miles making it possible for a person to actually hear a real train. In this case the person knows what they are hearing is not part of their reality.
Stimulus hallucinations are when a person performs a routine act such as cooking, cleaning, eating, showering and even driving the stimulus part of the brain is aware and participating in these actions however the person is not conscious or aware of their actions.
* WHO'S AFFECTED BY AMBIEN INDUCED HALLUCINATIONS *
While the hallucinations do not affect all Ambien users those who indulge in alcoholic beverages seem to represent the highest percentage of individuals who do experience hallucinations.
Individuals who take other prescription medications in the same classification as Ambien (sedative) such as; xanix, Valium or Ativan can also experience hallucinations mixing two sedatives together increases the "power" of the drug it's like taking a double dose.
Even individuals who do not drink alcohol or take any other medications prescribed or over the counter can experience hallucinations but they are less common and only last for a few minutes. Keeping in mind there is always an exception to every rule and anyone can experience hallucinations with or without other contributing factors.
While visiting the website www.medicalhullicnations.net many people have shared their stories of Ambien use and hallucinations. One person awoke in the middle of the night and drover herself and child to the ice cream shop nearly killing both of them. Another person woke up in the morning with a bed full of sandwich makings and a sharp knife. While another person who lives alone woke up with a black eye and found there shower curtain and rod on the floor apparently tried to shower during the night.
These three experiences are more sleepwalking related however they happen a few hours after falling to sleep and waking up while a sleeping person can not drive a car or make a sandwich or shower a stimulus hallucination must have made them believe that what they were doing was in a waking state. Meaning they were conscious and aware of their actions.
In 2006 a Class A lawsuit was filed against the manufactures of Ambien it's still an active case and no verdict has been handed down yet. After reading a few of the complaints stories some have received serious injury including death as a result of the actions they performed while under the influence of Ambien.
While this article address the negative side of Ambien side effects you should always follow your doctors advice while not everyone will experience hallucinations and many people do not experience any side effects at all from using Ambien. For those of you who chose to believe side effects only happen to people abusing Ambien or mixing it with illegal drugs to visit the website www.medicalhullicnations.net and read the hundreds of drug free, non-drinkers who took the medication as prescribed and experienced hullicnations!