Posted: Jan 10, 2013 6:57 PM by Annie Snead
Updated: Jan 10, 2013 7:07 PM
The food and drug administration has issued a new warning about popular sleep drugs.
Doses of Ambien will be lowered in half for women because they process the drug more slowly.
We spoke to a local doctor about the drug and a woman who stopped using it because of the side effects.
"I remember watching the news, Mike Daniels was on, and I was seeing double of him. I'm like really?" said Katie Scalesc.
That's what Scalesc said happened once while she was awake on Ambien. But it was more what she did in her sleep that worried her.
"I guess my roommate had told me that, we had a baby gate in the hallway, and she said I'd go into the kitchen to get something to eat and I'd totally trip over the baby gate. She said I was walking worse than a drunk person," she said.
Scalesc took the drug off and on.
It worked to help her fall asleep but she said she would call, text, and even yell without knowing it.
The FDA is now requiring the makers of Ambien to lower the dosage in half for women, from 10 milligrams to five.
"It does help with sleep but all drugs have the potential of causing next day impairment," said Dr. Bradley Smith.
Smith owns "Dream Sleep Center" in Pueblo.
He said the drug has been out for 20 years and it's well tested.
He said with Ambien it's always good to take the lowest prescribed dosage.
But it's a case by case basis when it comes to side effects.
"There's two-thirds of women that this works fine for and their blood levels are fine to operate machinery safely the next day," said Smith.
He said some folks metabolize the drug quicker than others. Dr. Smith recommends if you do take it, to start when you know you won't have to drive anywhere the next day.