“I learned about Ambien® through a gentleman I’d been dating,” shares Dana of Heroes In Recovery. “Ever since then I loved it and always kept a vial in my cabinet and reached for it. It became important to me to have it. I got my Ambien in a variety of ways. I asked my general practitioner, and she prescribed it to me. When my aunt died, she had a prescription, so I took hers and added it to my own. When I couldn’t get enough of it, I asked my dad to get a prescription. I made up stories, like ‘my dad spilled the pills’ or ‘I’m going on a long trip.’ This drug is insidious, and it changes a person. My core values are completely different than who Ambien made me.”
Unfortunately, Dana didn’t heed any warnings about the dangers associated with Ambien (generically called zolpidem), a sedative-hypnotic type drug often prescribed for anxiety and sleeping disorders.
If you are concerned that you or a loved one is headed down the path that Dana followed – toward Ambien addiction – here are five warning signs to consider:
1. Loved Ones See a Change in You
It is difficult to objectively see Ambien addiction at work if it is happening to you. Denial is likely your first response. Chances are, however, that those closest to you can easily tell if you have changed or are having a major issue, like addiction. People typically want to handle their own problems, and they may resent other people pointing the finger of accusation at them. If a loved one is telling you that you are addicted to Ambien, listen. They know you. They can tell when you are not yourself…in a negative way.1
2. Issues Develop at Work or School
Are you having difficulty functioning well at work or school? Are your grades or performance evaluations suffering? Are you having a hard time dragging yourself into work? If Ambien is being abused, this will most certainly be one of the causes for those negative issues sprouting up in your life.1
3. Financial Woes Continue to Grow
Ambien isn’t cheap. It costs a lot of money to keep up with prescriptions for it. This is especially true if your addiction has progressed to the point where you are taking very high doses. Perhaps you are doctor shopping to get more Ambien than should be taken. Maybe you’re taking Ambien prescribed for other people, like Dana shared in her sad story. You might even resort to mixing Ambien with other sedatives or painkillers to intensify the effects.
Is feeding your Ambien habit is costing you way too much for your budget? Perhaps Ambien abuse has even cost you your job and steady income. If that’s the case, then you need to seriously address your Ambien addiction before things spiral further downward.2
4. Health Problems Are Sprouting Up
Ambien addiction can deeply affect your emotional, psychological and physical health. Depression is common with Ambien abuse, as is low energy. Difficulty breathing and liver issues can occur after long-term use. And then there’s the possibility of an accidental overdose, possibly bringing on a coma or death.3
5. You Can’t Stop Using Ambien
Are some of these red flags waving in your face? In a more rational moment, you might really think about getting off Ambien. However, you keep finding a reason to take it just one more time. This is yet another sign that an addiction to Ambien exists. Addiction rehab is desperately needed.
So, what should you do? Well, it is not recommended that you attempt to stop using Ambien on your own. This is especially true if you experience withdrawal symptoms between doses. Few addicts are able to deal with the insomnia that occurs without use. They likely end up relapsing back into use. Unfortunately, Ambien overdose is one way this story could play out.1 Don’t let that be your story!
Ambien Addiction Treatment At Michael’s House
If you are ready to break free from the addictive power of Ambien, contact us at Michael’s House today. We offer a comprehensive treatment that provides for both the psychological and physical dependence upon the drug and follows up with aftercare services. Why wait? Call us at 760-548-4032.
1 “What to Do if Your Adult Friend or Loved One Has a Problem with Drugs.” National Institute on Drug Abuse, January 2016. Web. Accessed 21 July 2017.
2 “Drug Use Hurts Families.” Easy-to-Read Drug Facts, National Institute on Drug Abuse. Web. Accessed 21 July 2017.
3 “Zolpidem.” MedlinePlus, U.S. National Library of Medicine, May 15, 2017. Web. Accessed 21 July 2017.