Ambien vs. Halcion

Are Ambien and Halcion the Same Thing?

Ambien (zolpidem) and Halcion (triazolam) are used to treat insomnia.

Ambien and Halcion belong to different drug classes. Ambien is a sedative/hypnotic and Halcion is a benzodiazepine.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Ambien?

Common side effects of Ambien include:

Tell your doctor if you have unlikely but serious side effects of Ambien including:

What Are Possible Side Effects of Halcion?

Common side effects of Halcion include:

  • dizziness,
  • tiredness,
  • daytime drowsiness (or during hours when you are not normally sleeping),
  • loss of coordination,
  • headache,
  • depression,
  • memory problems,
  • numbness or tingly feeling,
  • nervousness,
  • excitability,
  • irritability,
  • changes in menstrual periods,
  • itching,
  • increased or decreased interest in sex, or
  • blurred vision.

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Halcion including:

  • memory loss, or
  • mental/mood/behavior changes (such as new or worsening depression, abnormal thoughts, thoughts of suicide, hallucinations, confusion, agitation, aggressive behavior, or anxiety).

Rarely, after taking Halcion, people have gotten out of bed and driven vehicles while not fully awake ("sleep-driving"). People have also sleepwalked, prepared/eaten food, made phone calls, or had sex while not fully awake. Often, these people do not remember these events. This problem can be dangerous to you or to others. If you find out that you have done any of these activities after taking Halcion, tell your doctor right away.

QUESTION

What is insomnia? See Answer

What is Ambien?

Ambien (zolpidem) is a sedative/hypnotic used for treating insomnia.

What is Halcion?

Halcion (triazolam) is a benzodiazepine used to treat insomnia symptoms, such as trouble falling or staying asleep.

What Drugs Interact With Ambien?

Ambien may interact with other medicines that make you sleepy or slow your breathing (such as cold medicines, pain medications, muscle relaxants, and medicines for depression, anxiety, or seizures) or antidepressants.

Ambien may also interact with alcohol, chlorpromazine, itraconazole, ketoconazole, or rifampin.

Insomnia symptoms may also return after you stop taking Ambien. These symptoms may seem to be worse than before you started taking Ambien.

What Drugs Interact With Halcion?

Halcion may interact with other medicines that make you sleepy or slow your breathing (such as cold medicines, pain medications, muscle relaxants, and medicines for depression, anxiety, or seizures) or antidepressants.

Halcion may also interact with awith birth control pills, cyclosporine, grapefruit juice, ranitidine, antibiotics, ergotamine, or heart medications.

Do not stop using Halcion suddenly, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.

SLIDESHOW

Sleep Disorders: Foods That Help Sleep or Keep You Awake See Slideshow

How Should Ambien Be Taken?

The recommended adult dose of Ambien is 10 mg as conventional tablets or spray or 12.5 mg as extended-release tablets.

How Should Halcion Be Taken?

The recommended dose of Halcion for most adults is 0.25 mg before retiring.

Disclaimer

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References
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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