Ambien

Know the facts about Ambien and connect with help and support to keep your child safe.

What is Ambien?
Ambien (zolpidem) is a non-benzodiazepine hypnotic, or ‘Z drug,’ which is a prescription “sleeping pill.”

What are some slang terms for Ambien?
No-G pills, Zombie pills, Tic-Tacs, Sleepeasy, A-minus

signs of ambien use:
  • Slurred speech
  • Shallow breathing
  • Sluggishness
  • Fatigue
  • Disorientation
  • Lack of coordination
  • Dilated pupils
  • Impaired memory, judgement and coordination
  • Irritability
  • Paranoia
  • Thoughts of suicide
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How is Ambien used?
Ambien is prescribed to treat insomnia. When misused, the tablets are swallowed, or can be crushed and snorted.

What do young people hear about Ambien?
Prescription sedatives can cause euphoria.

What are the risks of Ambien Use?
These drugs slow normal brain function, which may result in slurred speech, shallow breathing, sluggishness, fatigue, disorientation and lack of coordination or dilated pupils. Higher doses cause impaired memory, judgment and coordination; irritability; paranoia; and thoughts of suicide. Some people can become agitated or aggressive. Using prescription sedatives with other substances — particularly alcohol — can slow breathing, or slow both the heart and respiration, and possibly lead to death.

Continued use can lead to physical dependence and — when use is reduced or stopped abruptly — withdrawal symptoms may occur. Because Ambien works by slowing the brain’s activity, when a person stops taking them, there can be a rebound effect, possibly leading to seizures and other harmful consequences. Tolerance to the drug’s effects can also occur, meaning that larger doses are needed to achieve similar effects as those experienced initially. This may lead users to take higher doses and risk the occurrence of an overdose. Prescription sedatives can become addictive, meaning a person continues to take these drugs despite their harmful consequences.

Sleep medications are also sometimes used as date rape drugs.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Reviewed & Updated: August 15, 2018

Next Steps

Look for Warning Signs

Do you think your child may be using drugs? If so, have you noticed any of these changes or warning signs?