Stilnox is one of the trade names of zolpidem, a prescription medication indicated for the treatment of insomnia. Its effects are similar to those of benzodiazepines, but its structure and molecular components are different. Like benzodiazepines, Stilnox is habit-forming, and an addiction to the drug may require Stilnox addiction treatment. “…an addiction to the drug may require Stilnox addiction treatment.” According to the National Sleep Foundation, 48 percent of Americans experience insomnia occasionally, while 22 percent experience sleep problems almost every night. Most of these people are women, the elderly, and people who are divorced, separated or widowed. These people are more likely to succumb to depression compared to people who do not have sleeping problems.
Tolerance, Addiction, and Withdrawal
Stilnox is used as a sleep aid and, like other sleeping medications, it should not be taken for a long time. This drug should be used intermittently and in the proper dosage. One of the disadvantages of Stilnox is its very short half-life. Its effects wear off approximately two hours after intake. Stilnox should be taken in low doses, 10 mg at most, for treating insomnia, for three to five days a week for a period of up to three months. If the drug is taken every day, you may experience disrupted sleep, which may produce sleepless nights after four weeks.
Long-term use of Stilnox may cause the user to develop a tolerance to the drug, which may require addiction treatment. A person has developed tolerance to a drug if he or she requires an increased dosage to feel the desired effects of the drug. Repetitive or compulsive use of Stilnox can lead to drug dependence or addiction, characterized by a strong desire to use the drug despite knowing its adverse side effects. A long-term Stilnox user may experience withdrawal symptoms, including:
- Muscle and stomach cramps
- Shaking or tremors
- Panic attacks
- Seizures or convulsions
Stilnox withdrawal symptoms are not as severe as those caused by withdrawing from benzodiazepines, which are known to cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. Nevertheless, withdrawing from Stilnox must still be managed by an addiction treatment center to ensure the safety of the patient.
The Detoxification and Rehab Process
Stilnox detox is very similar to benzodiazepine detoxification. The process often entails tapering off the drug’s dosage over a period of weeks or months, depending on the severity of addiction and the length of drug abuse. Another method is the administration of similar drugs, like chlordiazepoxide or diazepam, as a substitute for Stilnox. These drugs are both long-acting benzodiazepines, which are also used in treating benzodiazepine addiction.
Alcohol is also a central nervous system depressant. Many abusers also consume alcohol to increase the high they get from using Stilnox alone. According to Australia’s National Prescribing Service Limited, people who are taking zolpidem or Stilnox should avoid alcohol and other CNS depressants to prevent the risk of sleep-related problems like sleepwalking, sleep eating, and sleep driving.
Alcohol and Stilnox addiction can be treated using gradual drug reduction and benzodiazepine substitution; diazepam and chlordiazepoxide are both indicated for the treatment of alcoholism and benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms. Diazepam is the drug of choice for Stilnox addiction treatment because of its long half-life and its availability in low-potency doses, making gradual dosage reductions easier.
Stilnox-addicted people who delay treatment due to fear of withdrawal symptoms may choose an inpatient rapid detoxification program. Rapid detoxification involves the removal of the drug from the addicted person’s system using an antagonist of the addictive substance while the person is heavily sedated. Flumazenil, a benzodiazepine antagonist, is often used in this program and typically utilized in benzodiazepine and nonbenzodiazepine overdoses. It can also reverse some of the side effects of benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms. “Many abusers also consume alcohol to increase the high they get from using Stilnox alone.” A rehabilitation program is recommended for Stilnox addicts who have been using the drug long-term. Many addiction treatment centers also offer a rehab program for people who have existing physical and medical conditions. This ensures that the patient receives proper medical attention for both his or her addiction and any illness that require the same immediate treatment.
Treatment Options Available
While a person who is seeking Stilnox addiction treatment can choose to enter an inpatient or outpatient rehab center, an inpatient Stilnox rehab is recommended to ensure that the patient is provided with proper medical care. Many inpatient Stilnox addiction treatment centers also provide counseling and therapy to help the patients deal with personal, social, and financial problems brought about by their addiction.
- Stilnox belongs to the class of drug called imidazopyridine, a GABA receptor antagonist that works by slowing down the activity of the brain. Drugs in the imidazopyridine class are often called non-benzodiazepines. This is a class of drugs that share the same benefits, side effects and risks as benzodiazepines, but they have completely different chemical structures.
- A person who is abusing or addicted to Stilnox may experience rebound insomnia if the medication is stopped abruptly after a long period of use. People who have rebound insomnia find that they have even more difficulty falling or staying asleep than before they took Stilnox.