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O/T: Ambien, I know this has been talked about before...

Started 1351419285.113 in The Q We Love | Last reply 1354311229.053 by lovesChristmas

I have been on it for 3 years and, it works.... eventually but it can take time and my doctor asked me how I was taking it. Well, I told him that I took it and waited until I felt sleepy and then went to bed.

He told me I was taking it wrong.

He told me that right after I take it, to go to bed right away, even if I don't feel tired yet. Has anyone else gotten the same advice or different advice about how to use this?

I am finding that the new Zzzz Quill is working better for me.

Thanks for your answers.

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MathisFan1351432952.961170 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004

I take my Ambien when I'm actually ready to go to sleep. Not before. I keep them in the bedroom.

They work well to make me fall asleep and I sleep around 3 to 4 hours after taking one. That's great for me, though. Before I started taking them it took me hours to fall asleep. Then I would wake up every 30 minutes or so. They've been a godsend for me.

chickenbutt1351438143.2725062 PostsRegistered 1/16/2006chickentown

I agree with the doctor. Go right to bed. I've taken it on and off for several years (whenever I can get it), but I never took it every night. It WILL lose efficacy and then you're skrewed. When I have it, I take it no more than twice a week.

If I take it and get in the bed, I'm asleep in half an hour. Amazing how quickly it works and I have a pretty high tolerance to meds. Because I take it so seldom, I will crash out for 5-6 hours which is an absolute eternity for me. I have had severe sleep problems my entire life (originating from childhood horrors).

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depglass1351451590.53324408 PostsRegistered 11/14/2006

I take Lunesta. I asked doc for a trial Ambien scrip, since DH will retire one of these days and I don't know what our drug coverage will be. Ambien is now generic and much more affordable. Anyway, the first night I took it I ordered a Tignanello handbag and totally forgot I had done it. I evidently used the automated phone system and lo and behold, there was an order confirmation in my email the next morning. I attempted to use it again months later and I would wake up completely at 1 or 2 AM. All I can do is hope Lunesta goes generic. I'm pretty much dependent upon this stuff.

olewoman1351453643.2432121 PostsRegistered 10/19/2008only my friends
I have been taking for years,me and hubby take at bedtime,takes few hours to work for us.

pepes mom1351460495.9035319 PostsRegistered 7/21/2005SW PA

OP: ZZZQuil has the same active ingredient, diphenhydramine, as Benadryl. Most stores have their own brand of diphenhydramine, which is probably much cheaper than the ZZZQuil brand.

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Pipdip1351684885.03314 PostsRegistered 7/30/2012
I realize Ambien is wonderful for some people..however for some people it can be very addictive. You start by taking one tablet, over time one become two and two becomes three. Please be very careful with the medication. I have seen a loved one become dependent on this very popular drug. Thank goodness she is off of this now, but not without a lot of heartache from us! Just a word to the wise.

robomo1351685724.0279458 PostsRegistered 3/15/2005

I take it and go to bed. It's wonderful and 99% of the time, I don't last five minutes, especially if I'm trying to watch something! LOL

smhr1351694665.8673822 PostsRegistered 1/16/2012laid back and mellow town USA

I have no sleep issues ( knock on wood ), but would take Melatonin as an option. I think it still has to be brought to a doctors attention.

pink dogwo­od1351695284.343254 PostsRegistered 7/11/2007

ZZZZQuil doesn't work for me either - I've tried it. Now the regular Nyquil does. Odd as this may be, when I can't sleep or when I really want to get a good night's sleep, I take Nyquil - works every time! I'm rested in the morning and feel great!

Ladyjenn1351695606.422233 PostsRegistered 10/27/2010Northern CA

I take half of a pill right before getting into bed, and the doctor's are right, within 15 mins, I'm out!

Momma to 2 Dachshunds and 1 Bernese Mountain Dog!
45 yrs old, Northern CA
Ladyjenn

Phantom411351696382.37811 PostsRegistered 6/11/2008KU Country
On 10/28/2012 depglass said:

I take Lunesta. I asked doc for a trial Ambien scrip, since DH will retire one of these days and I don't know what our drug coverage will be. Ambien is now generic and much more affordable. Anyway, the first night I took it I ordered a Tignanello handbag and totally forgot I had done it. I evidently used the automated phone system and lo and behold, there was an order confirmation in my email the next morning. I attempted to use it again months later and I would wake up completely at 1 or 2 AM. All I can do is hope Lunesta goes generic. I'm pretty much dependent upon this stuff.


Depglass, I got a laugh from this - I thought I was the only who had "Ambien shopped." I ordered a vacuum once and had no idea I had done it until it showed up on my porch. My sister "Ambien eats" in the middle of the night and has no recollection of doing it. I too, am pretty much dependent on this but it's either take a pill and sleep or stay up all night and try to work the next day.

Ladyjenn1351696578.282233 PostsRegistered 10/27/2010Northern CA

I know, for us lucky people who have to work, Ambien has helped me get up at 5:15 a.m. with no issues! Hate dragging at work!

Momma to 2 Dachshunds and 1 Bernese Mountain Dog!
45 yrs old, Northern CA
Ladyjenn

BooRadley1351816220.63769 PostsRegistered 10/30/2012
If you want to quickly "feel" the effects of the Ambien, take it on a completely empty stomach (at least 4 hours after eating). Within 20-30 minutes you will be whacky. Taking Ambien with food, or on a full stomach, not only dilutes the efficacy of the medication but delays its onset for hours.

BooRadley1351816444.2269 PostsRegistered 10/30/2012
I've taken Ambien nearly every night for the last 6 years and have never had to increase the dosage. After a lifetime of struggling through school and work due to Delayed Sleep Onset Syndrome, Ambien has literally changed my life and allows me to be "normal".

MathisFan1351817629.2031170 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004
On 11/1/2012 BooRadley said: I've taken Ambien nearly every night for the last 6 years and have never had to increase the dosage.


I've been taking it about 4 years and I've never had to increase my dosage either.

57babe1351818298.158638 PostsRegistered 8/21/2010

ZzzQuil is the drug diphenhydramine which is the second leading drug to cause irreversible memory damage, the first memory killer being Valium (diazepam).

You should look for safe and natural ways to help yourself sleep instead of taking this drug. The side effect of memory loss is too high of a price to pay for a good nights sleep, IMHO.


BooRadley1351818737.669 PostsRegistered 10/30/2012
On 11/1/2012 57babe said:

ZzzQuil is the drug diphenhydramine which is the second leading drug to cause irreversible memory damage, the first memory killer being Valium (diazepam).

You should look for safe and natural ways to help yourself sleep instead of taking this drug. The side effect of memory loss is too high of a price to pay for a good nights sleep, IMHO.

While I agree with you that diphenhydramine is not a good drug to depend on for sleep, only someone who has never suffered from sleep problems would say that a side effect is too high a price to pay for a good night's sleep. Nothing short of death is too a high price for sleep, IMHO!

fanb1351819189.41766 PostsRegistered 3/27/2007

I take 1/2 of a 5 mg sub-lingual when I get into bed. Works great. No sleep shopping or eating . No increase in dosage. Lunesta gave me nightmares. Everybody has their own biology. I also take 3 gr of melatonin hours before I sleep. Tryptophan has good reviews too.

circles1351820121.55717901 PostsRegistered 5/11/2005N.J.

My Dr. gave me a script for Ambien...I filled it...but was always afraid to take it....Those commercials mentioned that one might sleep drive....I was worried that I would get in my car and never know it....and have horrible consequences....

I do enough Q. shopping without Sleep Shopping, too.....:0)

monet1351822552.5335182 PostsRegistered 6/8/2007

I took ambien for 3 days. I slept very well, work up in the am and felt wide awake. I stopped taking it because I lost 2 of the 3 days.

I went to the dentist and don't remember being there. Also, I fell asleep in the chair. Next day, I went to get my usual manicure and again fell asleep. Don't remember how I got home but I arrived without my coat and a dent in the car. The only reason, I know this is that I called the dentist office to see if I was there and called the gal who does my manicure. She said I was not acting like myself and she was worried about me getting home.

It can be a very dangerous drug. Please be careful. If I hadn't experienced it, I probably wouldn't believe it.

mimi2skye1351824567.05378 PostsRegistered 8/28/2012

I had to laugh at a subject that is not something to laugh about. I take Ambien (not often) and I give myself a hair cut never remembering I did so till morning and the hair is in the sink. I have no memory of it at all. The not so funny thing is they don't take it off the market. Lunesta is fantastic, waay to costly even with insurance. My dr. won't even give me a sample because he keeps them for himself! I do take zzzquil every so often and it does work. Bottom line, those who have no trouble with sleep issues have no idea what we deal with when we can't sleep. You really do have to try to turn the noise off in your head and sleep soundly. Easier said than done! Hopefully Lunesta will soon be in generic form. Meditation does help...Try it...

57babe1351895720.878638 PostsRegistered 8/21/2010
On 11/1/2012 BooRadley said:
On 11/1/2012 57babe said:

ZzzQuil is the drug diphenhydramine which is the second leading drug to cause irreversible memory damage, the first memory killer being Valium (diazepam).

You should look for safe and natural ways to help yourself sleep instead of taking this drug. The side effect of memory loss is too high of a price to pay for a good nights sleep, IMHO.

While I agree with you that diphenhydramine is not a good drug to depend on for sleep, only someone who has never suffered from sleep problems would say that a side effect is too high a price to pay for a good night's sleep. Nothing short of death is too a high price for sleep, IMHO!

I'm not someone who hasn't suffered from a sleep problem but when side effects include irreversible memory loss -- that's a side effect I can't live with -- literally.

From my experience, memory loss, dementia and/or Alzheimer's is a type of "death" and IMHO, that is too high a price to pay for a good nights sleep.

I hope you find a harm-free, natural way to help you sleep well. Take care. :)


Jazzcat1352002538.0679 PostsRegistered 7/8/2010
To the OP: I have taken Ambien for many years, and you doctor's advice is absolutely right. The main reason is that, with this med, you can't feel exactly when the sleepiness and memory loss kicks in. Going to bed immediately puts you in a safe place where you can let the med do its job. I started with regular Ambien and had the problem of waking up completely after 3 or 4 hrs. When Ambien CR (Controlled Release) came out, I started on it and it works great for me. It's still a tablet, but you get part of the dosage right away to help you fall asleep and then the rest releases later to help you stay asleep. It can be a dangerous drug for some, but it has been a Godsend for me. I make sure my husband knows when I take it and I talk to my doc about it at least every 3 months, so it's closely monitored. My allergy to antihistamines keeps me from being able to take Benadryl or anything else OTC like that. Lunesta doesn't help me sleep and leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. Follow your doctor's instructions and the Ambien should work well for you...just take it very seriously. Long-winded post, I know, but I hope it helps. Good luck to you.

Jazzcat1352002976.559 PostsRegistered 7/8/2010
P.S. Also, if the generic Benadryl works you should do what feels right. Don't mean to suggest that what works for me is the only answer. :-)

mistriTsqu­irrel1352007985.28310647 PostsRegistered 7/17/2010Purgatory, USA
On 11/3/2012 Jazzcat said: To the OP: I have taken Ambien for many years, and you doctor's advice is absolutely right. The main reason is that, with this med, you can't feel exactly when the sleepiness and memory loss kicks in. Going to bed immediately puts you in a safe place where you can let the med do its job. I started with regular Ambien and had the problem of waking up completely after 3 or 4 hrs. When Ambien CR (Controlled Release) came out, I started on it and it works great for me. It's still a tablet, but you get part of the dosage right away to help you fall asleep and then the rest releases later to help you stay asleep. It can be a dangerous drug for some, but it has been a Godsend for me. I make sure my husband knows when I take it and I talk to my doc about it at least every 3 months, so it's closely monitored. My allergy to antihistamines keeps me from being able to take Benadryl or anything else OTC like that. Lunesta doesn't help me sleep and leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. Follow your doctor's instructions and the Ambien should work well for you...just take it very seriously. Long-winded post, I know, but I hope it helps. Good luck to you.

Yep. If you stay up...you will stay up...because it's fun. And you will do stuff that you shouldn't do while heavily medicated...and not remember. If you go to bed right away and let yourself drift off to sleep, you are less likely to have this problem.

The last time I took it, I didn't go right to bed...I stayed up instead. I woke up on the bathroom floor with my coat and shoes on. From what I can remember, I went for a walk.

Be very careful with this medication. I have a friend who has had an addiction problem with this. She has been arrested for driving while on it, has hit a fence and hit a tree. The time that resulted in an arrest was for hitting a parked car. (To my knowledge, she doesn't take it anymore.)

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