Precautions and Warnings With Zolpidem Oral Spray
With zolpidem oral spray, there are numerous precautions and warnings that you should be aware of before starting the medication. You should only take this sleep medication if you have the chance for a full seven or eight hours of sleep. In general, people should not consume alcohol while using zolpidem oral spray because it can increase the risk of developing side effects.
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to using zolpidem oral spray (Zolpimist®) if you have:
- Sleep apnea or other types of respiratory disease, such as emphysema or COPD
- Liver disease or liver failure, including cirrhosis
- Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking zolpidem oral spray include the following:
- In January 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lowered the recommended dosage for zolpidem oral spray for women and suggested that a lower dosage be considered for men as well. This change was made because the lower dosage is less likely to cause morning drowsiness, which can interfere with your ability to do anything that requires alertness, such as driving (see Zolpidem Oral Spray Dosage for more information).
- You should only take zolpidem if you have the chance for a full seven or eight hours of sleep. Never drive or operate heavy machinery after you have taken a dose of zolpidem oral spray, even if you do not feel drowsy yet.
- If you drink alcohol, let your healthcare provider know prior to starting zolpidem oral spray. In general, people should not use alcohol when taking this medication because it can increase the risks of developing zolpidem oral spray side effects.
- If you notice any changes in your behavior (such as anything unusual or disturbing) while taking zolpidem oral spray or other sleep medicines, notify your healthcare provider immediately. Bizarre thoughts or behavior have been reported with zolpidem oral spray.
- Be aware that while using this sleep medication, you may get out of bed while not fully awake and do things that you may not remember, such as sleep-walking or sleep-eating. If this happens, your healthcare provider will probably recommend that you stop using zolpidem oral spray.
- Zolpidem oral spray can cause severe allergic reactions. If you have an allergic reaction to this medication, you should never take it again.
- Zolpidem oral spray should be used with caution in people with sleep apnea or other breathing problems, as it could make such problems worse.
- Zolpidem oral spray has been reported to cause or worsen depression. Let your healthcare provider know if you think you may be depressed (or if your depression is worsening).
- Liver disease may affect the way your body handles zolpidem oral spray. You may need a lower dosage.
- Zolpidem oral spray can potentially interact with several other medications (see Drug Interactions With Zolpidem Oral Spray).
- Zolpidem oral spray is considered a pregnancy Category C medication. This means that it may not be safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not known (see Zolpimist and Pregnancy).
- Zolpidem oral spray passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Zolpimist and Breastfeeding).