Sonata is a prescription sleep aid that acts on the GABA receptors in the brain and effects certain neurotransmitters. Like other sedative-hypnotics, Sonata calms brain activity. The result is a relaxed feeling that helps people feel drowsy and fall asleep. Sonata is one of the fastest-acting sleeping pills on the market. Because of this, Sonata also has a significant potential for abuse. Sonata is classified as a Schedule IV substance. This classification means that Sonata has therapeutic benefits but can also be habit-forming.
Prescription sleep aids have become an increasingly difficult problem in the United States. Tens of millions of prescriptions are written for sleep aids each year. Most sleeping aid drugs are classified as sedative-hypnotics. Despite the therapeutic benefits of these drugs, they have serious side effects as well. Prescription sleep aid abuse can cause addiction and dependence. These drugs can impair thinking and memory in both the short and long term. Prescription sleeping pills can also increase the risk of an overdose when they are combined with other central nervous system depressants.
A brand-name prescription drug, Sonata is used to help manage and treat insomnia. The generic name is zaleplon. While it is technically not a benzodiazepine drug, Sonata has many similar effects on the brain. Sonata has a very short half-life, so it’s most often used to treat symptoms of insomnia in people who have difficulty falling asleep, rather than people who struggle to stay asleep. Most of the side effects of Sonata are similar to those of benzodiazepines, including the potential for addiction and dependence. It’s often difficult to determine if someone is abusing Sonata or if they are simply using it as prescribed. Signs of Sonata abuse can include:
- Using larger doses than prescribed
- Taking Sonata more often than instructed by a doctor
- Using Sonata recreationally, without a prescription
- Taking the sleep aid for longer than prescribed
- Combining Sonata with other substances
- Mental confusion
- Blackouts or memory loss
Sonata is a central nervous system depressant. When someone abuses Sonata, they may seem as if they are impaired or intoxicated. Some of the symptoms of Sonata abuse include confusion, dizziness and hallucinations. When Sonata is used in high doses, aggression and memory problems may occur. People who abuse Sonata may have coordination impairment and fatigue, and they may be involved in accidents or have falls.
Any time a prescription drug like Sonata is abused, there are two primary side effects. The first is addiction and the second is dependence. The more someone abuses Sonata, the more likely they are to become addicted. Sonata dependence means that when a person suddenly stops using the drug, they will go through withdrawal. Someone who abuses Sonata is more likely to abuse other substances as well. Prescription sleep aids are often part of polysubstance addictions. For example, a person may combine Sonata and another prescription drug like opioids to enhance the effects of both substances. This not only creates a more complex addiction problem, but also increases the chances of a fatal overdose.
Sonata addiction is possible. When someone uses Sonata, it interacts with their brain pathways. Sonata can also create a feeling of being high or what’s described as a “buzz.” When this happens, a reward and reinforcement response can occur in the brain. Reward and reinforcement can then lead to the development of an addiction. Some of the signs of Sonata addiction can include continuing to take the drug even when there are negative consequences or health effects, and trying to stop using Sonata unsuccessfully. Other signs of Sonata addiction may include drug-seeking behaviors, a preoccupation with the drug, and failing to live up to other commitments and responsibilities because of Sonata use.
Addiction can be one of the most troubling Sonata long-term effects. There is also the potential that Sonata addiction can develop into polysubstance addiction. Dependence is another long-term effect of Sonata. Long-term Sonata effects can also include ongoing fatigue and the emergence of psychological symptoms. For example, someone who has used Sonata for a long time may experience depression, a decline in cognitive function, memory and cognitive impairment.
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