Lunesta Addiction: Signs, Side Effects, & Treatment Options

Medically Reviewed by Johnelle Smith, M.D. on September 22, 2022

Lunesta is a muscle relaxant typically used as a sleeping medication. When Lunesta is misused, it can lead to addiction and a range of potentially dangerous side effects.

Lunesta Abuse, Addiction, And Treatment Options

Lunesta, also known by its brand name eszopiclone, is a non-benzodiazepine medication that aids in inducing sleep and can be used as a short-term treatment for sleeping disorders.

Lunesta mimics the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitter receptors in the brain to help you get a restful night’s sleep.

Although it can help treat insomnia, Lunesta can also lead to a sleeping pill addiction if taken over long periods of time, or used without close medical supervision.

What Are The Signs Of A Lunesta Addiction?

People who take this prescription sleep aid for more than two weeks are more likely to develop a tolerance or dependence on the medicine.

With long-term use, you’ll need to take higher and more frequent doses of Lunesta to achieve the desired effect. Your body may also develop physical dependence, which can result in withdrawal symptoms.

Signs of Lunesta abuse include:

  • confusion
  • irritability
  • drowsiness
  • shifts in blood pressure
  • frequent hiccups
  • sweating profusely
  • mental problems
  • sudden weight loss
  • using Lunesta after the prescription expires
  • using Lunesta with alcohol and other drugs

Methods Of Lunesta Abuse

There are several ways that people may misuse Lunesta when they develop a substance use disorder.

Snorting Lunesta

People who abuse prescription drugs may snort them to get a faster high. This method of abuse may cause damage to the nasal passages and quickly lead to addiction.

Snorting Lunesta may also be dangerous if you have an underlying medical condition or are taking other medications that could be negatively affected by snorting Lunesta.

Learn more about snorting Lunesta.

Ingesting High Doses Of Lunesta Tablets

People who abuse Lunesta may take high doses of the pill form of the drug to achieve a more potent high. This may cause serious side effects and lead to an overdose death.

If you’re taking this sleeping pill, you should never exceed your prescribed dosage.

Side Effects Of Lunesta Addiction

Lunesta addiction is often accompanied by side effects such as excessive drowsiness, weakness, and unusual sleeping patterns.

Over time, the body becomes tolerant to Lunesta, meaning you need to take higher doses of the drug to feel the same effect.

Other side effects of Lunesta addiction may include:

  • sleepwalking
  • dizziness
  • memory loss
  • unsteadiness or falling
  • suicidal thoughts
  • criminal behavior
  • sleep-driving
  • violent outbursts

Does Lunesta Abuse Cause Withdrawal Symptoms?

When a person becomes physically dependent on Lunesta, they may experience an array of withdrawal symptoms if they abruptly stop taking the drug.

Common withdrawal symptoms of z-drugs like Lunesta may include anxiety, restlessness, sleeplessness, nausea, intense cravings, mood swings, and more.

When withdrawal is not managed, it may become dangerous. Withdrawal from sedative-hypnotic drugs such as Lunesta is best handled with a medical professional’s supervision.

During medical detox, Lunesta will be removed from the body over the course of a few days under intense supervision from medical professionals.

Learn more about Lunesta withdrawal and detox.

Signs And Symptoms Of Lunesta Overdose

Lunesta overdose can occur when a person ingests a large amount of the drug over a short period of time, or when Lunesta is mixed with other substances such as other drugs or alcohol.

Substances that may be dangerous when mixed with Lunesta include:

  • opioids
  • Ambien or Sonata
  • barbiturates
  • over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen
  • antidepressants
  • alcohol
  • benzodiazepines

Signs and symptoms of a Lunesta overdose may include headaches, extreme drowsiness, shallow breathing, loss of consciousness, and coma.

While potentially fatal if left unattended, overdose can be treated when medical attention is sought. Once stabilized in a hospital setting, a person will be continually monitored to ensure their health doesn’t deteriorate.

Addiction Treatment Services For Lunesta Addiction

Treatment programs for substance use disorders will provide several support services to help people overcome Lunesta addiction.

Treatment options may include:

  • medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
  • detoxification
  • cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • individual and group therapy
  • dual diagnosis treatment for co-occurring disorders
  • inpatient treatment
  • outpatient treatment
  • aftercare services
  • case management and wellness services

If you or a loved one are abusing prescription medications or other substances, it’s important to seek the help of a treatment center promptly to avoid serious side effects or overdose death.

FAQs For Lunesta Addiction

The useful information below may answer your additional questions about Lunesta abuse.

Yes, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has labeled Lunesta as a Schedule IV controlled substance, meaning it may lead to physical or psychological dependence.

Learn more about why Lunesta is a controlled substance.

The amount of Lunesta it takes to overdose will differ based on a number of factors including a person’s overall health, weight, age, and any other substances they’re currently using.

Addiction treatment programs will vary in length based on the severity of the addiction as well as any co-occurring mental health disorders that also need to be addressed.

An inpatient program for drug addiction typically lasts 30, 60, or 90 days depending on the needs of the client. Outpatient treatment programs can last weeks, months, or even years.

Find Substance Abuse Treatment For Lunesta Addiction

Call our helpline today for more information on treatment services for Lunesta addiction.

Our team can assist you in your journey to long-term recovery and help you find a rehab center that fits your unique needs.

This page does not provide medical advice. See more

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Medically Reviewed by
Johnelle Smith, M.D. on September 22, 2022
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