The number of prescriptions for sleeping pills is now out of control and the risk for ambien and ambien cr addiction is gradually increasing. The fact that you can find TV ads for sleep meds just about every night points to the fact that this area of medicine has become the new battleground (and moneymaker) for the drug companies. However, it's not as safe for patients as they'd have you believe.
The cases of ambien addiction are climbing with the rash of people getting prescriptions these days. It seems that as more and more people are having trouble sleeping, the knee jerk reaction is to just bug the doctor for pills and call it good. However, studies have shown that this answer is rarely effective in dealing with any serious insomnia. Sleeping pills don't address the underlying cause behind the lack of sleep. This means when a person attempts to go off them the insomnia returns as the root causes haven't been fixed. As a result, they go back on them or just decide to continue them for years on end.
The longer you are on drugs like Ambien, the more your body adjusts and higher dosages are then required. As this happens, addiction to ambien can result. It can also result as a person becomes dependent on the calming effects of the drug. People who try to go off Ambien can sometimes have an increased state of mental activity...kind of like being on overdrive that leaves them restless and anxious. So they develop an Ambien addiction and go back on the drug to feel calm again rather than working through the withdrawal and the time it takes to become normal.
Regardless of whether it is an Ambien or Ambien cr addiction a person is dealing with the symptoms are the same. A person struggling with dependency on Ambien will often be overly concerned with running out of the drug and they will begin to have mood/personality changes...often in a negative way (angry, loud, over confident, etc.). A user will tend to develop more intense hallucinations (you can get them while on Ambien even if you aren't addicted) and will become sensitized to light and sound. They may also start taking it when stressed or anxious even if it is not bedtime yet. They may also look for ways to get more than the legally allowed prescription amount.
If you suspect that you or someone you love is struggling with an Ambien addiction then you should try to get them (or you) to admit the problem. This may be difficult and might require the help of a professional. Also, bring the concern up with the patient's doctor. Ask them to review the symptoms and see if they can concur and assist in getting help. Whatever you do don't attempt to take the drugs away from a person with an Ambien or Ambien cr addiction unless absolutely necessary. Not only will this drive the person away, but the withdrawal process from this drug usually requires a patient to slowly decrease the amount taken as abrupt stops can cause serious heath issues. Talk with a local narcotics anonymous or other similar group for more advice. Help the person to look for natural ways of dealing with stress and sleeplessness like having proper diet, performing exercises and consuming natural supplements.