You would think that drug abuse would be pretty straightforward: using the drug other than directed. While technically that is true, it does not tell the whole truth. There are a few ways to abuse any medication and, with regard to overuse, it can be hard to tell if you are taking it too much or too often. Below you will find information on how to tell if you are overusing. You will also find the possible effects of using your insomnia medication as a recreational drug. Of special importance is the section on the risk of overdose.
Recreational Drug Use
Some insomnia drugs have a euphoric and hallucinogenic effect. For this reason, they are often used as recreational drugs. They say that if you take two and manage to stay awake, you feel really good and even hallucinate, but most people simply fall asleep.
This is EXTREMELY dangerous. You can form a habit, take way too much, and potentially kill yourself. Also, it just isn’t safe to use prescription drugs this way. There are all kinds of drug interactions you need to know about and only a doctor really does. Yes, you can avoid alcohol, but that does not mean you are safe. It may interact with even over-the-counter medicines and have horrible consequences. Used correctly, most insomnia medications are extremely safe and effective.
It’s important to take medication only as directed by your physician. Using it in any other way is technically abusing it and can be dangerous. First, you should know that insomnia medications are intended for short-term use, not as a long-term cure. You need to treat the underlying problem, not just the symptoms. Second, because people tend to develop a tolerance for their pills, they start to take more in order to feel the effect. If you talk to a doctor, they may okay this, but many drugs are prescribed in specific dosages for a reason. If you take too much or use it too often, you can develop conditions such as respiratory problems and organ damage. For this reason, use only as directed.
There’s no tricks here; just do what you are supposed to and you should be okay.
If it’s not effective anymore, consider switching to something else.
There is also a good chance that, as you increase dose and frequency, you will have more and more severe side effects. This includes daytime drowsiness, memory loss, and depression.
This is the nightmare scenario. You take so much that your body cannot handle it and your organs shut down. You die. Obviously, if you it as directed, there are no worries here. Many people believe that Ambien overdose is a painless way to commit suicide because they will die in their sleep. Rather, it is a terrorizing experience. Medicine and the fear of death combine to create extreme anxiety and panic. Furthermore, just because you are sleeping does not mean you will feel no pain. People experience anguish even while asleep-even while in medicated comas! Moreover, overdose using Ambien usually fails.
If you feel that you have overdosed, call an ambulance immediately. Ambien usually saves lives; don’t let it take yours.