Compare Ambien vs. Lunesta vs. Sonata

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

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Ambien (zolpidem)

Prescription only

Lunesta (Eszopiclone)

Prescription only
Helps you sleep.

Ambien (zolpidem) aids in falling asleep and staying asleep, but it can be habit-forming and might be more likely than other sleep medicines to cause side effects.

3.7/ 5 average rating with 1375 reviewsforAmbien
Helps you sleep.

Lunesta (Eszopiclone) is good for falling asleep and staying asleep. Not as habit-forming as some sleep medicines, but more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms if you stop suddenly.

3.3/ 5 average rating with 592 reviewsforLunesta
Upsides
  • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster and sleep longer.
  • Extended release form is particularly good for staying asleep, and you can use it for longer than the immediate release form.
  • Generic is available.
  • Effective at helping people fall asleep faster and sleep longer.
  • Not as habit-forming, so you can use it for longer than most other sleep medicines.
Downsides
  • Not typically used for long-term treatment because it can be habit-forming.
  • Some people find that Ambien (zolpidem) becomes less effective over time.
  • More likely to cause sleep-walking, sleep-driving, and sleep-eating.
  • Might not be safe if you have problems with your liver, kidneys, lungs, or if you have a history of depression.
  • More likely to cause withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking it suddenly.
  • Might not be safe if you have a history of drug or alcohol abuse, depression, lung disease, or a condition that affects metabolism.
  • It's easy to become reliant on sleep medicines. In the long run, it's better to learn good sleeping habits and behavior so that you can sleep better naturally.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Oral spray
  • Sublingual pill
  • Pill
Price
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Reviews
1375 reviews so far
67%
saidit'sworth it
50%
saiditworked well
16%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Ambien (zolpidem)?

Leave a review
592 reviews so far
55%
saidit'sworth it
36%
saiditworked well
17%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Lunesta (Eszopiclone)?

Leave a review
Side effects
18possible side effects
  • Drowsiness
    8%
  • Headache
    7%
  • Dizziness
    5%
  • Allergic reactions
    4%
  • Sinus infection
    4%
  • Dry mouth
    3%
  • Back pain
    3%
  • Lack of energy
    3%
  • Drugged feeling
    3%
  • Diarrhea
    3%
  • Sore throat
    3%
  • Flu-like symptoms
    2%
  • Racing heart
    2%
  • Lightheadedness
    2%
  • Depression
    2%
  • Abdominal pain
    2%
  • Constipation
    2%
  • Rash
    2%
See more detailed side effects
10possible side effects
  • Headache
    15%
  • Unpleasant Taste
    8%
  • Dyspepsia
    6%
  • Pain
    4%
  • Diarrhea
    4%
  • Pruritus
    4%
  • Dry Mouth
    3%
  • Abnormal Dreams
    3%
  • Neuralgia
    3%
  • Urinary Tract Infection
    3%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Dependence and withdrawal
    • Continuous use of Ambien (zolpidem) for 2 weeks or more
  • Driving impairment
    • Alcohol
    • Taking other medications that make you less alert
    • Less than 8 hours of sleep.
  • Abnormal thoughts
    • Undiagnosed psychiatric conditions
  • Performing activities while asleep
    • Taking Ambien (zolpidem) with alcohol or drugs that cause drowsiness
  • Risk of falls and injury
    • Higher dose
    • Liver problems
    • Taking Ambien (zolpidem) with other nervous system depressants
    • Long-term use
    • Elderly (70 years or older)
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Dependence and withdrawal
    • Continuous use for 2 weeks or more
  • Driving impairment
    • Alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
    • Less than 7 hours of sleep.
  • Abnormal thoughts
    • Undiagnosed psychiatric conditions
  • Sleep driving
    • Taking with alcohol or drugs that acts in the brain
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Risk of falls and injury
    • Elderly
    • Higher dose
    • Liver problems
    • Taking Lunesta (Eszopiclone) with other nervous system depressants
    • Long-term use
  • Risk to fetus
    • Women of childbearing age
    • Breast-feeding
See more detailed risks and warnings