Compare Sonata vs. Ativan

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Sonata
(zaleplon)

Ativan
(lorazepam)

Helps you sleep. Sonata (Zaleplon) helps you fall asleep, but it's not as good for staying asleep. It also interacts with a lot of diseases and other drugs.Helps you relax. Ativan (lorazepam) is an effective medicine for occasional or short-term anxiety. It's less likely to have drug interactions, but more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms compared to similar drugs.
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Coupons for Sonata
Best available price for 30 (10mg) capsules of sonata
Coupons for Ativan
Best available price for 60 (0.5mg) tablets of ativan
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
3.79Sonata
Reviews for Sonata
42%
of people (All ages) say Sonata is worth it
23%
say it works well
27%
say it's a big hassle
175 reviews
Have you used Sonata (zaleplon)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Ativan
71%
-29% worse vs. Sonata
51%
-28% worse vs. Sonata
15%
-12% worse vs. Sonata
642 reviews
Have you used Ativan (lorazepam)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
SonataAtivan
  • Abdominal pain 3%
  • Drowsiness 1%
  • Eye pain 2%
  • Tingling sensation 2%
  • Menstrual cramps 1%
  • Amnesia 1%
More Sonata side effects »
  • Sleepiness 16%
  • Dizziness 7%
  • Weakness 4%
  • Unsteadiness 3%
More Ativan side effects »
How it works
SonataAtivan
Sonata (Zaleplon) is in a class of drugs called sedative-hypnotics. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it interacts with your brain to make you relaxed and sleepy.Ativan (lorazepam) is a fast-acting benzodiazepine. It affects areas of the brain that help calm you down. This reduces anxiety and can cause sleepiness.
Type of medication
SonataAtivan
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
SonataAtivan
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Injection
Used for
SonataAtivan
Risk factors for serious side effects
SonataAtivan
  • Continuous use for 2 weeks or more
  • Alcohol
  • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • Less than 7 hours of sleep
  • Undiagnosed psychiatric conditions
Detailed Sonata (zaleplon) risks & warnings »
  • Taking with opioids
  • Taking more than the prescribed dose
  • Taking Ativan (lorazepam) for longer than 4 weeks
  • History of drug abuse
  • Long-term use
Detailed Ativan (lorazepam) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Interactions
SonataAtivan
  • Interacts badly with many other medications.
  • Less likely to have drug interactions compared to other drugs like it, so it might be a better option if you're taking multiple medications.
Alcohol
SonataAtivan
  • It works best if taken without food and avoid taking it with alcohol or drugs.
  • Not safe to use with alcohol.
  • Can be habit-forming, so it's not typically used for long-term treatment or for people who've had problems with drug or alcohol abuse.
Kidneys and liver
SonataAtivan
  • Might not be safe if you have problems with your liver, kidneys, lungs, or if you have a history of depression.
No kidneys and liver related info.
Sleep
SonataAtivan
  • Only take it if you have time to sleep for at least 7 hours.
  • Can cause headache, drowsiness, or dizziness.
  • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster.
  • People have sleep-walked, sleep-driven, and sleep-eaten while on Sonata (Zaleplon).
  • Can cause temporary dizziness and drowsiness.
  • Can cause memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
Upsides and benefits
SonataAtivan
  • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster.
  • Doesn't last as long in the body as some other sleep medicines, so it's okay to take it in the middle of the night as long as you enough time to sleep. (But be sure to discuss it with your doctor first.)
  • Effective at relieving short-term anxiety.
  • Can be used together with antidepressants to manage anxiety disorders. Especially helpful for anxiety symptoms while you wait for an antidepressant to kick in.
  • Less likely to have drug interactions compared to other drugs like it, so it might be a better option if you're taking multiple medications.
Downsides and risks
SonataAtivan
  • Not typically used for long-term treatment since it can be habit-forming.
  • Doesn't last as long in the body as other sleep medicines, so it's not as good at helping you stay asleep.
  • Interacts badly with many other medications.
  • Not a good option if you're pregnant or breast-feeding.
  • People have sleep-walked, sleep-driven, and sleep-eaten while on Sonata (Zaleplon).
  • Might not be safe if you have problems with your liver, kidneys, lungs, or if you have a history of depression.
  • It's easy to become reliant on sleep medicines. In the long run, it's better to learn good sleeping habits and behaviors so you can sleep better naturally.
  • Can cause memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
  • Can be habit-forming, so it's not typically used for long-term treatment or for people who've had problems with drug or alcohol abuse.
  • Compared to other similar medicines, Ativan (lorazepam) is more likely to cause withdrawal if you take it for a long time and then suddenly stop.
  • Most people find that Ativan (lorazepam) gets less effective over time.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
SonataAtivan
  • Take 30 to 45 minutes before bedtime.
  • Only take it if you have time to sleep for at least 7 hours.
  • It's very addictive and meant for short-term treatment. Dependence can start to form after using it daily for 2 weeks.
  • Can cause headache, drowsiness, or dizziness.
  • It works best if taken without food and avoid taking it with alcohol or drugs.
  • Withdrawal symptoms usually get better in 1 to 2 days.
  • Tell your doctor about any sudden confusion or changes in thoughts or behavior.
  • Can cause temporary dizziness and drowsiness.
  • Take only as much as your doctor prescribes. Taking more than directed or taking this for a long time can cause you to become dependent on it.
  • Not safe to use with alcohol.
  • Use caution or avoid use in older adults.
Learn more
More about SonataSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Sonata (zaleplon)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about AtivanSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Ativan (lorazepam)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it