Sleep and Medication

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Amanda Tuller
Physiological Psychology
25 October 2012
Professor Gibson

Insomnia and Effect of Ambien
Insomnia can affect people in different way and can affect them for different periods of time. Insomnia is a disorder that individuals have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep and may experience daytime drowsiness, which can be caused by various aspects of life. Insomnia can only be diagnosed by medical personnel through various evaluations. Insomnia can be treated in various ways including the use the medication Ambien, which is also called Zolpidem. Ambien has many side effects that can be very dangerous, which a person may not have any memory of. Ambien may not be considered addictive, however it creates a habit. Ambien also can create a dependency that can be physical or psychological. Ambien is a sedative-hypnotic that acts on the brain to cause a calming effect. Long term use of Ambien can create a tolerance of the medication. The treatment for the use of Ambien can be a combination of decreasing the medication and the help of a psychologist.

Insomnia has several variations of what a person with sleep issues can be diagnosed with. Insomnia can be considered chronic insomnia or acute insomnia. Chronic insomnia is when a person has occurrences of insomnia three or more nights a week for over a period of a month. Acute insomnia is when it lasts between one night and a few weeks. Primary insomnia is when a person suffers from sleep problems that are not associated with any other condition. Secondary insomnia is when a person is suffering sleep problems due to another condition such as health problems; such as depression. The symptoms for insomnia are difficulty falling asleep, waking up often throughout the night, waking up too early in the morning, feeling tired upon waking up, irritability, general tiredness, sleepiness during the day, and problems with concentration or memory. A person does not have to have all these symptoms to be diagnosed with insomnia. You may only have a few symptoms. (WebMD, 2012)

Insomnia can have several causes that can be treated with various methods. The causes for acute insomnia are a significant life stress; such as divorce, death, job loss, or a move, illness, emotional or physical discomfort, environmental factors, some medications, and interferences of sleep schedule. Acute insomnia may not require any treatment, however you might need to practice some recommended sleep habits. The causes of chronic insomnia are depression, anxiety, chronic stress, and pain or discomfort at night. The treatment for chronic insomnia will first begin with treating any underlying conditions and if insomnia still persists then other treatments will be used. A person may be recommended to go through behavioral therapy, relaxation exercises, sleep restriction therapy, or reconditioning.

Insomnia can only be diagnosed by a health care provider. Your provider will conduct an evaluation that may include a physical exam, medical history, and sleep history. You may have to keep a log of all your sleep patterns for a couple weeks including how you feel when you go to sleep, when you wake up, and how you feel throughout the day. If a person has a partner that sleeps with them at night, their partner might be asked questions about your sleeping patterns. A person may even be recommended to a sleep center in order to perform special tests while you are sleeping or trying to fall asleep. (WebMD, 2012)

Insomnia can be treated with the use of medication, but it is meant for short term use. A common medication used to treat insomnia is Ambien. Ambien is considered a sedative-hypnotics drug that calms the brain down. Ambien is used to cause you to fall asleep faster and remain asleep in order to have a better nights rest. Ambien is only used as a short term treatment period of no more than two weeks. Ambien is required to be taken right before you are going...
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