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Ambien vs. Sonata

Reviewed on 1/19/2021

Are Ambien and Sonata the Same Thing?

Ambien (zolpidem) and Sonata (zaleplon) are sedative/hypnotics used to treat insomnia.

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:

SLIDESHOW

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

What Are Possible Side Effects of Sonata?

Common side effects of Sonata include:

  • dizziness,
  • drowsiness,
  • short-term memory loss,
  • problems with memory or concentration,
  • lack of coordination (especially during the first 2 hours after you take the medication),
  • "hangover" feeling,
  • numbness or tingling,
  • anxiety,
  • depression,
  • nervous feeling,
  • problems with vision,
  • headache,
  • nausea,
  • stomach pain,
  • loss of appetite,
  • constipation,
  • dry mouth,
  • increased menstrual pain (cramps),
  • back pain,
  • joint or muscle pain, or
  • mild skin rash.

Taking Sonata properly just before falling asleep will reduce your risk of these effects. Some people using Sonata have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, or making phone calls and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking Sonata and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder. Tell your doctor if you have unlikely but serious side effects of Sonata including:

  • mental/mood changes (e.g., agitation, confusion, seeing or hearing things that are not there, rare thoughts of suicide), or
  • unusual behavior.

What Is Ambien?

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

What Is Sonata?

Sonata (zaleplon) is a non-benzodiazepine sedative hypnotic drug used to treat insomnia.

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 Sonata?

The dose of Sonata should be individualized. The recommended dose for most adults is 10 mg. For some patients, 5 mg may be a sufficient dose.

Sonata should be used only when prescribed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding. Sonata may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. You may have withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking Sonata. Do not stop taking Sonata suddenly without first talking to your doctor.

QUESTION

What is insomnia? See Answer

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 Sonata Be Taken?

The dose of Sonata should be individualized. The recommended dose for most adults is 10 mg. For some patients, 5 mg may be a sufficient dose.

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

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