FDA reduces dosages for sleep meds
Sleep aids have long come with potential side effects, ranging from allergic reactions to next-day drowsiness to headaches and depression. Now the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stepped in to reduce those possible negative impacts of using pills to get a good night’s sleep.
The agency has ordered drug manufacturers to lower the dosages of zolpidem in medications. Affected drugs include Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar and Zolpimist and the generic versions of these drugs.
While sleep aids are recommended for people who are unable to function the day after sleepless nights, users often can wake up drowsy, with zolpidem levels in the blood still significant the next morning. In fact, driving-simulation studies suggest that in some people, zolpidem levels may remain elevated enough to raise the risk of having a car accident.
For women, the FDA has recommended cutting the amount of the ingredient in half – from 10mg to 5mg for immediate-release pills; extended-release formulas will be reduced from 12.5mg to 6mg.