A disease or disorder does not only affect the individual struggling with it. Parents, children, siblings and other close relatives or friends often share the burden of a loved one’s illness. Most people feel unprepared and confused when someone they love falls ill and they may not know how to react to their new responsibilities and anxieties.
Stress of this kind can cause people to start behaving out of character and may cause them to resort to unhealthy methods of coping, such as abusing a drug that is readily available to them. Ambien, also known as zolpidem, is a commonly prescribed sedative that is used for the short-term treatment of insomnia. Its purpose is to induce sleep, but many people use it recreationally to experience a euphoric high. Using it long-term, taking it in larger doses than prescribed or snorting it rather than swallowing it are all habits that are likely to result in dependence or addiction.
Why Do People Use Ambien to Cope?
Those who abuse Ambien may take the drug for a number of reasons, including the following:
- To ease sleeping troubles – Stress and difficult times often lead to insomnia. There is nothing wrong with obtaining a prescription for Ambien to help you get the rest that you are lacking due to concern over your loved one. However, having access to the medication often opens the door for abuse.
- To numb the pain – When painful emotions are difficult to deal with, some people choose to avoid them rather than face them. Ambien brings on drowsiness and disconnects users from reality, allowing some people to avoid feeling anything at all while using it. Depression can perpetuate Ambien dependence and depression is also a known side effect of long-term Ambien use. Relying on Ambien to numb the pain will likely result in the opposite effect eventually.
- To escape responsibility – The tasks associated with caring for a loved one leave some caregivers eager for a way to have fun and focus on other things. Ambien can lower inhibitions and give a general sense of wellbeing, enabling users to enjoy themselves in a way they may no longer feel able to without drugs.
The Dangers of Relying on Ambien
Using Ambien to deal with the pain of watching someone you love suffer can be dangerous. Long-term use can result in slowed brain activity, seizures, depression and suicidal thoughts. You may also risk not being there for your loved one in the way that he or she needs you to be. Addressing the pain rather than covering it up with drug abuse is the healthiest way to cope with a loved one’s illness. If you are unable to handle the struggle without help, consider seeking professional treatment rather than turning to drugs.
Finding Help for Ambien Abuse
If you would like help overcoming Ambien abuse or addiction, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to give you more information on treatment options. We can help you find healthier ways to deal with pain than turning to drug abuse. Call us today.