Sleep is the foundation for life, and those who do not experience the healing properties of it suffer in their daily lives. Sleeplessness is an epidemic, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and 50 million to 70 million people in the United States can attest to that statement about compromised sleep. Sleep represents one-third of our lives and has a significant effect on how we live our lives. People with compromised immune systems or chronic diseases can attest to the impact sleep has on them. So what happens when you have insomnia?
The figures for sleeplessness and sleep problems have risen dramatically over the past 30 years, and this has pushed scientists and medical professionals to formulate solutions to address this. Those who are chronically fatigued from a lack of sleep have slow reaction times, learning abilities, alertness, and challenges with the accuracy of short-term memory. This has, in turn, contributed to on-the-job accidents and motor vehicle crashes. Twenty percent of all serious motor vehicle accidents involve tired drivers.
Early on in the 1900s, drugs called barbiturates were introduced to the American public. While the result was what they had intended, the reality was much grimmer. The thought of addiction was not taken into account, and the outcome did not end well. These drugs were not suitable for long-term use and sleep problems due to their highly addictive properties.
This created a drive for newer medications with less addictive properties and the same relief barbiturates provided. With this, benzodiazepines were created as an alternative to the once-popular barbiturate drugs. Over the years, unfortunately, there’s been a rise in addiction to benzodiazepines that highlights problems we thought we had overcome.
This led to a new class of medication called sedative-hypnotics. The focus was to create a medication that allowed users to fall asleep easier and more effortlessly that don’t produce side effects. This made users believe Sonata was safe and ran no risk of being abused, but this was not true. Even when used as prescribed, Sonata can generate feelings of dependence and run the risk of serious side effects such as addiction. Sonata use also can cause permanent damage to important brain functions like memory.
While Sonata works similarly to benzodiazepines when it comes to how it works in the brain, the drug is actually different. Both medications are related in how they activate gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors. GABA is comprised of chemicals in the central nervous system (CNS) that inhibit nerve impulses. GABA works by blocking these feelings that create stress anxiety. This is done to achieve calmness by stopping the flow of stress inducing signals.
Sonata works the same as GABA by blocking these stresses. When it is used to slow these chemicals down, it creates feelings of sedation that can whisk the person to sleep. The main differe
Drug addiction, in general, is difficult to spot in the early stages. That rings true for Sonata as well. One of the more common reasons why it is hard to spot is because a doctor prescribes it. There is a misconception that if you are diagnosed with a disorder by a medical professional that the prescribed medication cannot be dangerous. This is not true. Sonata, like other prescription drugs, is dangerous regardless, but with careful monitoring, it can be a solution to for people with sleep disorders.
What makes addiction to drugs like Sonata even more difficult to pinpoint is how important sleep is to life. When you think you’ve found a solution to your problem, it becomes increasingly hard to know when the line has been crossed between relief and addiction. This distinction poses a real threat to someone who began using with good intentions but is now chemically dependent or addicted to Sonata. Unfortunately, this occurs more often than it has to.
There are signs of Sonata abuse that can identify an increasing addiction. If you believe that you or a loved one is becoming dependent on the drug, you must become more familiar with the symptoms of addiction. There are long-term effects that can show through over time such as:
These symptoms could spell disaster long-term for the individual’s health, and some abnormal behaviors can indicate a user’s dependence on the drug. The person’s actions will be centered on obtaining the drug, which is a strong indicator of addiction. Some clear warning signs to look for are:
Z-drug addiction is ranked lower on the addiction scale than drugs like opioids, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t cause for concern. All drugs come with some risk for addiction, and Sonata is no exception to that. The way Sonata effects GABA in the brain means it possesses the same type of withdrawal symptoms which are uncomfortable and sometimes fatal. If you decide to take the next step toward a better life, you must start your treatment with medical detoxification.
The purpose of medical detox is to allow a safe transition into a sober state. During this time of cleansing your body from the drugs, you will have access to a fully trained medical staff that is devoted to ensuring your comfort. There is intense 24-hour supervision anywhere from three-to-seven days. During this time you will balance your mental and physical state as the drugs leave your body. Safety is the primary concern during this period, and the staff has your best intentions at heart.
Once you have completed detox, the medical staff will have determined the next treatment step. Depending on the severity of the addiction, you will be placed in either residential or outpatient treatment or an outpatient setting if you are in the beginning stages of Sonata addiction. Again, this depends on the severity of the addiction; the staff may determine another route.
In outpatient treatment, you will still experience the therapies that take place in residential treatment. The difference is you can go home after the sessions end. Outpatient requires the client to submit to drug tests regularly and attend therapy sessions for about nine hours a week. You will attend individual, group, and cognitive behavioral therapies. Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most common and successful therapies implemented in treatment. This allows you to understand the root of the addiction while learning healthy coping mechanisms. Your medical team also will develop a relapse prevention plan to ensure long-term success.
While Sonata, in essence, is less dangerous than benzodiazepines, it still carries risks. A common and potentially deadly side effect of Sonata is sleepwalking. There is the risk of carrying on normal tasks while unconscious with no recollection of the event(s). Other dangerous side effects of hypnotic drugs include:
Sonata has a short half-life, so its effects last merely an hour. Drugs with short a half-life possess the ability to have their user overdose easily when the drug is consumed in high doses. If you suspect someone has overdosed, call 911 immediately. An overdose left untreated can lead to organ damage, coma, and death. Sonata overdose symptoms to watch for include:
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, & Center for Behavioral Health Statistics. (n.d.). from https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUH-FFR2-2015/NSDUH-FFR2-2015.htm
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. (n.d.). Postmarket Drug Safety Information for Patients and Providers – Sleep Disorder (Sedative-Hypnotic) Drug Information. from https://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/PostmarketDrugSafetyInformationforPatientsandProviders/ucm101557.htm
The State of SleepHealth in America. (n.d.). from https://www.sleephealth.org/sleep-health/the-state-of-sleephealth-in-america/