Compare Ambien vs. Sonata

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

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Ambien (zolpidem)

Prescription only

Sonata (Zaleplon)

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.

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.

2.9/ 5 average rating with 175 reviewsforSonata
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.
  • 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.)
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.
  • 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.
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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
175 reviews so far
42%
saidit'sworth it
23%
saiditworked well
27%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Sonata (Zaleplon)?

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
18possible side effects
  • Headache
    42%
  • Dizziness
    9%
  • Nausea
    8%
  • Asthenia
    7%
  • Abdominal Pain
    6%
  • Somnolence
    6%
  • Amnesia
    4%
  • Dysmenorrhea
    4%
  • Paresthesia
    3%
  • Eye pain
    3%
  • Malaise
    2%
  • Anorexia
    2%
  • Depersonalization
    2%
  • Hypesthesia
    2%
  • Tremor
    2%
  • Abnormal Vision
    2%
  • Hyperacusis
    2%
  • Parosmia
    2%
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
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Risk to fetus
    • Women of childbearing age
    • Breast-feeding
See more detailed risks and warnings