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Drugs:Fact and Fiction/Depressants/Zolpidem (Ambien)

< Drugs:Fact and Fiction‎ | Depressants
Zolpidem Molecule

One of the most popular prescription sedative-hypnotics, zolpidem, commonly known as Ambien is used as a sleep aid. At prescribed doses, the patient will notice drowsiness within 20-60 minutes within consumption of dose. When intended for recreational use, one person may take even a prescribed dose and simply stay awake. It's not hard to keep yourself awake while under the influence of zolpidem, but one may notice a loss of motor skills if it's their first time. Once the drug begins to have full effect (around an hour after dose) the user most commonly experiences anterograde amnesia, which in the most simplest words means that you will forget what happens while you are under the influence of that drug.

Prescription doses of zolpidem include:


  • 5 mg
  • 10 mg

Ambien CR (Time-Release version)

  • 6.25 mg
  • 12.5 mg

How Zolpidem Works

Zolpidem works by binding preferentially to the omega-1 (BZ-1) receptor subtype of the GABAA receptor complex. This subtype is thought to be the one most closely associated with sleep.

In contrast, benzodiazepines do not have a receptor preference, so they bind to—and activate—all omega (BZ) receptor subtypes. Other omega (BZ) receptor subtypes are associated with anxiolytic, myorelaxant, and anticonvulsant activity.

As Described on