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What Is Ambien Detox?
Detox (short for detoxification) is the process by which a person cleanses their body of a substance by refraining from using it. Detox is the first step in the recovery journey and many rehab centers across the country specialize in helping their patients detox from Ambien and other drugs. Ambien detox can be uncomfortable, painful, and even hazardous because quitting or reducing the dose of the drug may cause withdrawal.
Ambien is a medication that is used to treat insomnia and improve sleep. Ambien is the brand name for Zolpidem, a sedative-hypnotic drug. The drug induces sleep by calming the brain, an effect which may cause dependence in some users. People who develop an Ambien dependence can undergo detox to free themselves from the drug.
Since Ambien is designed to relieve insomnia, patients are supposed to take Ambien immediately before going to sleep every night. An Ambien prescription period is meant to be short-term, usually no more than two weeks. The correct dosage of Ambien varies from person to person, but elderly patients are more sensitive to the drug. Dizziness and tiredness during the day are two common side effects of Ambien. More rare and serious side effects include memory loss, hallucinations, depression, and anxiety.
Anyone can develop tolerance to Ambien. Tolerance is especially likely for people who misuse Ambien by taking it too often, in excessively high doses, or for fun. Teenagers and young adults are more likely than older adults to misuse Ambien. However, even someone who uses Ambien correctly can become tolerant to the sedative effects of the drug. When the brain adapts to the effects of Ambien after repeated exposure, the nervous system begins to change and a person may feel that he or she needs to take Ambien to “feel normal.” This is the condition of dependence, the forerunner to addiction. Someone who is dependent on Ambien will experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop using the medication.
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Symptoms of Ambien Withdrawal
The first symptoms of Ambien withdrawal are rebound symptoms, or the return of symptoms that the drug was prescribed to treat. When a person stops taking Ambien to treat insomnia, the symptoms of insomnia will return, often worse than they were initially. The risk of rebound insomnia increases when the individual suddenly stops taking Ambien, or goes “cold turkey.”
In addition to rebound symptoms, other symptoms of Ambien withdrawal include:
- High blood pressure
- Shaking and Tremors
- Nausea and vomiting
- Stomach pain
- Panic attacks
In more serious cases, Ambien withdrawal might shock the nervous system and cause seizures which can be life-threatening. A person should undergo Ambien detox with medical supervision because the symptoms of withdrawal may require attention from a medical provider.
How Long Does Ambien Detox Take?
The duration of Ambien detox depends on the physical characteristics of the patient and the severity of his or her dependency. In most cases, patients begin to experience their first withdrawal symptoms within 48 hours of detox. Within 1 to 2 days of detox, most withdrawal symptoms fully arise. Patients will begin to struggle with sleeping and will most likely experience memory loss and emotional imbalance. Within 3 to 5 days of Ambien detox, the withdrawal symptoms become most severe. Some patients begin to suffer from panic attacks. Once about a week has elapsed, the symptoms subside, and most patients are able to sleep without Ambien after two weeks without the medication.
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Recovery From Ambien Addiction Begins Today
Detox is difficult and painful, but it is a vital and important step for anyone who cannot sleep without taking Ambien. Addiction to Ambien is a debilitating disease which requires treatment. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction to Ambien, contact a dedicated treatment provider today for more information. No matter what stage of addiction you’re fighting, treatment can help you achieve a healthier future.
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