What is Ambien?
Ambien is a sedative, also called a hypnotic. Zolpidem affects chemicals in the brain that may be unbalanced in people with sleep problems insomnia). This drug is used to treat insomnia. The immediate-release tablet is used to help you fall asleep when you first go to bed. The extended-release form, Ambien CR, which has a first layer that dissolves quickly to help you fall asleep, and a second layer that dissolves slowly to help you stay asleep.
Your doctor will determine which form of this drug is best for you.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
WARNING: COMPLEX SLEEP BEHAVIORS Complex sleep behaviors including sleep-walking, sleep-driving, and engaging in other activities while not fully awake may occur following use of AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR. Some of these events may result in serious injuries, including death. Discontinue AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR immediately if you experience a complex sleep behavior.
Do not take more AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR than prescribed.
Do not take AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR unless you are able to stay in bed a full night (7 to 8 hours) before you must be active again.
Take AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR only once per night, right before going to bed.
These drugs may cause serious side effects including complex sleep behaviors that have caused serious injury and death. After taking AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR you may get up out of bed while not being fully awake and do an activity that you do not know you are doing (complex sleep behaviors). The next morning, you may not remember that you did anything during the night. These activities may occur with AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR whether or not you drink alcohol or take other medicines that make you sleepy.
- Reported activities include:
- driving a car (“sleep-driving”)
- making and eating food
- talking on the phone
- having sex
- Stop taking AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR and call your doctor right away if you find out that you have done any of these activities after taking AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR.
You should not drive a car or do things that require clear thinking the day after you take AMBIEN CR.
Do not take AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR if you:
- have ever experienced a complex sleep behavior (such as driving a car, making and eating food, talking on the phone, or having sex while not being fully awake) after taking AMBIEN/AMBIEN CR.
- drank alcohol that evening or before bed.
- take other medicines that can make you sleepy.