CaptainCliff on Ambien Amnesia

A law firm specializing in personal injury claims posted the following information online:

Ambien Side Effects: Sleepwalking, Sleep Driving & Sleep Eating

 

UPDATE: Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. is no longer investigating potential Ambien Lawsuits for injuries as a result of the medication. Read More…
As a side effect of Ambien, experts explain that it is possible for a person to be half asleep and half awake.  This state causes people to do things that they would not do if they were awake, or to attempt to do things they are not alert enough to do.

Serious and catastrophic injuries have been reported as a result of 1)Sleepwalking 2) Attempting to drive while asleep  3) Sleep eating and 4) Complete Memory Loss

Folks, CaptCliff is here to tell you it’s all true. Especially #1,#3, and #4. Let me tell you a little story that will leave you amazed, dazed and quite possibly frantically calling the 1-800-BAD-DRUG hotline. This actually happened. Last night. I kid you not. All of it has been verified by the frightened woman who attempts to sleep beside me peacefully.  Speaking of sleeping, I dont get enough of it, so I take Ambien, prescribed by my friendly neighborhood shrink. I dont like to take it but if I dont, it’s a long long long night involving a lot of bad television and the painfully slow ticking of clocks. I dont mean the minimal tick-tok and slowing of space-time as  in my (or yours) oh-so-boring fourth grade history class but the incessant sounds of silence and spinning out of control cuckoo clocks at the beginning of a scary Twilight Zone episode. I’m talking Rod Serling in my bedroom kind of night.
Let me cut to the chase. Apparently I did the following things last night in my Ambien induced sleep and have no earthly memory of it:
1) I got up, walked downstairs and opened several newly purchased boxes of breakfast cereal, Triscuits, Melba Toast, Fiber One bars and strawberry special K granola treats.  I then proceeded to take out the 8 Special K bars and arranged them in some still unexplained cryptic pattern on the kitchen table. It may or may not be the same   tonal pattern and unusual arrangement used to contact the alien mothership in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. We dont know yet.
2) I opened the refrigerator, ate half a banana, and took out a bag of deli ham (shaved Boars Head Honey Maple to be exact), ate some of it like a wild forest creature and then carefully returned the uneaten portion….to the small kitchen drawer where the pencils, pens and take-out Chinese menus are kept. Dont even think to ask me, “Why there?”
3) I walked in my sleep back upstairs and instead of lying down and sleeping like a normal person, I proceeded to sit up in bed and watch tv (it wasn’t on) while talking complete nonsense dialogue  from a lively dream I was deeply involved in…in my head.
Here comes the freaky-deaky part. My bedmate then attempted to wake me and engage me in normal 3AM conversation like, “What the fuck are you doing?!” and “why are you watching a blank TV screen?”  Apparently I then tried to change the channels with an “imaginary” remote control while babbling, “When is this show going to be over?? It’s been going on way too long!?”  In retrospect those seem like reasonable questions deserving of a semi-rational answer.  Instead, no reasonable or rational response was given and subsequent efforts to rouse me from Ambien-land were unsuccessful. However, she did manage to remove a half=eaten banana from my boxer shorts. I’m not kidding. There was a banana in my pants and I wasn’t glad to see her… or even know about it. I then reacted and said outloud, “Hey, what is THAT doing there!?”

All in all it coud have been much worse, as other Ambien users have reported getting in their cars while asleep and driving on highways the wrong way.  That would be really bad. Other people I know have engaged in “sleep shopping”, a dangerous practice involving the use of credit cards to order large quantities of tacky clothing, bad costume jewelry and cheap cutlery on QVC… all while asleep. They and their  spouses are always completely surprised to see the parcels and packages arrive on their doorstep while also wondering who the generous gift giver might be (who happens to have their same exact postal address) and why he/she has such consistently bad taste.

Anyway, I am endeavering to solve this puzzling somnambulistic side effect which IS anecdotally reported by a certain number of Ambien users, but still not acknowledged as a major problem by the pharmaceutical company who makes the popular sleeping pill. Instead they remain busy counting their piles of money and sending their drug reps on Hawaiian vacations promoting their success in creating mindless zombies with deli meat hanging from their gaping jaws, Triscuit crumbs in their beards and half-eaten bananas…in bed.

Until the problem is corrected I have ordered all family members to put masking tape on the kitchen pantry doors at night and tie me to the rattan headboard of my bed, much like Odysseus lashed to the mast of his ship. I dont think I need to plug my ears to resist the Sirens and their seductive songs, but keeping my mitts out of the Triscuits and the cold cut drawer is starting to feel like a Homeric epic with serious Rod Serling undertones. Welcome, my few loyal readers to the middleground between light and shadow, science and superstition. It is the dimension of imagination and total weirdness we call……The Ambien Zone.

About captaincliff

Psychologist by day, insomniac Pirate blogger by night, this Child of God likes to share sarcastic social commentary as well as topsy-turvy observations about life, love and the pursuit of zaniness, a functional form of insanity in an increasingly insane world
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2 Responses to CaptainCliff on Ambien Amnesia

  1. Domenic Tenen says:

    Sleeping pills should be taken before taking direction of a physician as taking it without prescription may produce side effects. Sleeping tablets should not be taken as overdose since access dose of the medication may be harmful to you. While taking any recreational treatment sleeping drug should be avoided. If you are suffering from any type of heart disease or from any general illness then avoid the intake of the medication. Avoid the intake of alcohol during the medication since it may increase effects of alcohol. Beside form this medication is effective if all instructions are followed by the user. In addition to get positive results users should not avoid any of these instructions.*

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    • captaincliff says:

      I agree with Domenic’s main points. Ambien is not a recreational medication and if you dont absolutely need it, dont take it. I wish, however that his first sentence made more sense and that he proof-read his robo-response like advise. I feel like Will Smith in I-Robot. Good grammar does convey a certain amount of credibility.

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