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Neuroscience For Kids

Sleep Medication: Into the Mist
February 17, 2009 mist

Several weeks ago, NovaDel Pharma received approval by the US Food and Drug Administration for Zolpimist (zolpidem tartrate) oral spray as a short-term treatment of insomnia. Zolpidem tartrate is the same active ingredient in the widely used prescription sleep aid named "Ambien."

Zolpimist takes advantage of NovaMist oral spray technology. Unlike a pill that needs to be swallowed, Zolpimist is sprayed into a patient's mouth where the linings of the mouth, cheek and gums absorb the drug and take it to the body's blood supply. Because this method of drug delivery avoids the digestive system, the correct amount of drug can be reached quickly.

cautionSome people who have taken this type of drug (a sedative hypnotic) have reported unusual sleepwalking, including driving or eating while not fully awake. There is also some risk of becoming dependent on this type of medication and side effects can include headache, drowsiness and dizziness.

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