Citation: Frisky the Cat. "Hardly a Cure for Insomnia: An Experience with Zolpidem (exp68450)". Erowid.org. Jun 21, 2018. erowid.org/exp/68450
For the past year, I have suffered from insomnia that has gradually become worse, to the point that I will often stay up for 2-3 days without sleep and will frequently sleep less than 2 hours per night. I was prescribed alprazolam as a temporary fix for this and anxiety. However, my physician decided to try Ambien (10mg PRN) and an anti-depressant (Celexa, 40mg in the morning) due to the addictiveness of alprazolam. The following report contains the three experiences I had taking the Ambien as prescribed. In each report, I took the Ambien on an empty stomach around 10-11pm and had taken Celexa (40 mg) at 7am the same day.
On the first night, I took the 10mg dosage. After about half an hour, I noticed that I felt simultaneously relaxed and speedy. After an hour, I was unable to sleep and ended up going out with friends. I ended up not sleeping at all that night.
On the following night, I decided to try taking the 10mg dosage again. As with the first experience, I was unable to sleep that night and felt simultaneously relaxed and speedy.
I waited two days and then decided to give Ambien once last chance. I took the 10mg and after approximately 15 minutes, I fell asleep. The next memory I have after this is me repeatedly falling in the bathroom. However, I do not remember feeling any pain from falling and thought that I was bouncing off of the ground and standing up again. The next memory was about 15 seconds of me chasing my cat around outside of my apartment building. At around 4:30am, I 'came to'. I noticed the taste of blood in my mouth and then noticed that my nose was bleeding. I didn't think much about this, assuming that this was just a side effect of the medication (I was obviously still not thinking clearly). After about 10 minutes, I decided to go to the bathroom and look at my nose. As soon as I walked into the bathroom, I noticed that my bathtub, most of the bathroom floor, the toilet, sink, and the walls were covered in blood splatters. I looked in the mirror and noticed that my nose was slightly crooked. After feeling my nose, it felt like I had broken something in my nose. I also noticed that I was wearing two t-shirts (neither one was what i fell asleep in) and a different pair of pants than I fell asleep in. I also noticed a trash bag, which was filled with the clothes I fell asleep in and two towels, which were all covered in blood. I also noticed a carbon copy of a check for Speedway for $2.12 on the sink dated for this day. I then began to throw up for the next ten minutes straight. After this, I decided to look around my apartment in order to find a clean set of clothes. I noticed that half of my clothes were missing (I later went down to the laundromat on the bottom of my building and found the clothes in the washer). I also noticed a few other odd things, such as the dirty dishes in the dishwasher being clean, and numbers on my call list for the time that I thought that I was sleeping.
At 7am, I called in sick to work due to feeling spacy and sick to my stomach. I decided to call the people that I were on my dialed calls list for the time that I thought that I was sleeping. The first person was my mother. From her report, I had called her and seemed 'really out of it'. During this call, I told her that I had taken 4 more Ambien due to the Ambien not working. The second person I contacted was an ex-girlfriend of mine. She said that I called telling her that I 'felt like I was rolling only without the positives' and kept mumbling about random topics that didn't make any sense. The third person said that I had called, made a few strange noises, and then hung up. Even after talking to these people, I do not remember any of these calls.
From the report of others and the observations I had made the next day, it seems that I had taken 4 additional Ambien in my sleep, had fallen down repeatedly in the bathroom, then washed myself up, changed my clothes, washed a load of dirty clothes, and did the dishes. During this time, I had also called people for no apparent reason. I also went to a Speedway and bought an energy drink at some point during the night, but I am unsure if I drove or if I went with someone else.
Overall, Ambien was not an effective sleep aid at all for me. Even though I have had no problems with amnesia taking any other substances in the past (whether prescribed or not), I had a period of about 5 hours that I do not remember after taking the Ambien. I have been prescribed xanax (highest dosage: 2mg per day as needed) and had absolutely no problems with amnesia after taking this, and I have taken other benzos in rather high amounts in the past recreationally without any amnesia. My physician said that the amnesia and other problems may have been caused by taking additional ambien in my sleep.
From my experience and reports that I have heard from others, it might not be a bad idea to hide my prescription in a place where I will not be able to access it after taking it, since I could have caused a lot more harm to myself than others due to the state of mind that I was in after taking this.
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