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Remeron vs. Ambien

Reviewed on 6/19/2019

Are Remeron and Ambien the Same Thing?

Remeron (mirtazapine) and Ambien (zolpidem) are used to treat insomnia.

Remeron is primarily used to treat depression and may also be used to treat nausea, anxiety, posttraumatic stress syndrome, and as an appetite stimulant.

Remeron and Ambien belong to different drug classes. Remeron is a tetracyclic antidepressant and Ambien is a sedative/hypnotic.

Side effects of Remeron and Ambien that are similar include drowsiness, dizziness, and nausea.

Side effects of Remeron that are different from Ambien include increased appetite and weight gain.

Side effects of Ambien that are different from Remeron include weakness, lightheadedness, "drugged" feeling, tiredness, loss of coordination, stuffy nose, nasal irritation, dry mouth, sore throat, constipation, diarrhea, stomach upset, headache, muscle pain, confusion, insomnia, euphoria, balance problems, and visual changes.

Both Remeron and Ambien may interact with alcohol, other drugs that make you sleepy (cold or allergy medicine, sedatives, narcotic pain medicine, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures or anxiety), and antidepressants.

Remeron may also interact with cimetidine, conivaptan, imatinib, isoniazid, lithium, St. John's wort, tramadol, blood thinners, antibiotics, antifungal medications, heart or blood pressure medications, HIV/AIDS medicines, migraine headache medicines, and seizure medications.

Ambien may also interact with chlorpromazine, itraconazole, ketoconazole, and rifampin.

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

What Are Possible Side Effects of Remeron?

Common side effects of Remeron include:

  • drowsiness
  • increased appetite
  • weight gain
  • dizziness, and
  • nausea

Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Remeron including agitation, hallucinations, fever, fast or uneven heart rate, loss of coordination or feeling unsteady, stiff muscles, confusion, tremors, flu symptoms, memory problems, weakness, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, sweating, feeling like you might pass out, chills, body aches, white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips, headache, or trouble concentrating.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Ambien?

Common side effects of Ambien include:

  • Daytime drowsiness,
  • Dizziness,
  • Weakness,
  • Lightheadedness,
  • "Drugged" feeling,
  • Tiredness,
  • Loss of coordination,
  • Stuffy nose,
  • Nasal irritation,
  • Dry mouth,
  • Sore throat,
  • Nausea,
  • Constipation,
  • Diarrhea,
  • Stomach upset,
  • Headache,
  • Muscle pain,
  • Confusion,
  • Insomnia,
  • Euphoria,
  • Ataxia (balance problems), and
  • Visual changes.

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

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

What is Remeron?

Remeron is a prescription medicine used to treat depression. It is important to talk with your healthcare provider about the risks of treating depression and also the risks of not treating it. You should discuss all treatment choices with your healthcare provider.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you do not think that your condition is getting better with Remeron treatment.

What is Ambien?

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

QUESTION

What is insomnia? See Answer

What Drugs Interact With Remeron?

Remeron may interact with other drugs that make you sleepy (cold or allergy medicine, sedatives, narcotic pain medicine, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures or anxiety), cimetidine, lithium, blood thinners, other antidepressants, or migraine headache medicines.

Remeron may also interact with conivaptan, imatinib, isoniazid, St. John's wort, tramadol, antibiotics, antifungal medications, heart or blood pressure medications, HIV/AIDS medicines, or seizure medications.

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.

How Should Remeron Be Taken?

  • Take REMERON exactly as prescribed. Your healthcare provider may need to change the dose of REMERON until it is the right dose for you.
  • Take REMERON at the same time each day, preferably in the evening at bedtime.
  • Swallow REMERON as directed.
  • It is common for antidepressant medicines such as REMERON to take up to a few weeks before you start to feel better. Do not stop taking REMERON if you do not feel results right away.
  • Do not stop taking or change the dose of REMERON without first talking to your doctor, even if you feel better.
  • REMERON may be taken with or without food.
  • If you miss a dose of REMERON, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time. Do not take two doses of REMERON at the same time.
  • If you take too much REMERON, call your healthcare provider or poison control center right away, or get emergency treatment. The signs of an overdose of REMERON (without other medicines or alcohol) include:
    • confusion,
    • memory problems
    • drowsiness
    • increased heart rate.

The symptoms of a possible overdose may include changes to your heart rhythm (fast, irregular heartbeat) or fainting, which could be symptoms of a life-threatening condition known as Torsades de Pointes.

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.

SLIDESHOW

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


FDA. Remeron Prescribing Information.

https://www.fda.gov/media/72891/download

FDA. Ambien Drug Information.

www.ambien.com

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