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Ambien Led to Sleep Driving and Cleaning

Taking Ambien resulted in unplanned nighttime activities, including cleaning the house and sleep driving.

Q. I need help getting off Ambien. I have discovered that I am driving, cleaning the house, cooking and eating while I am “sleeping” after taking this pill.

How can I get a decent night’s sleep without a drug like Ambien? Without sleep, I feel like death warmed over, so I am desperate.

A. You are not the only one to discover that zolpidem (Ambien) can lead to unplanned night time activities, including sleepwalking, sleep driving and sleep sex. Several readers have been arrested for DUI after driving in their zolpidem-induced sleep.

Although the FDA has reduced the recommended dose of zolpidem for women, some people will still benefit from non-drug approaches to overcoming insomnia. Our Guide to Getting a Good Night’s Sleep provides information on herbs and supplements such as chamomile, lemon balm, magnesium, passionflower or valerian.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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