Zimovane is a type of sleeping tablet that is often prescribed to treat insomnia (difficulty sleeping). Zimovane (Imovane) is a brand name for the sleeping medication zopiclone. Zimovane should only be used short term to help with insomnia for up to two to four weeks per prescription.
What is Zimovane?
- Zimovane (Imovane) is a medication that is commonly prescribed for people who are having difficulty sleeping
- Zimovane helps you fall asleep quickly, and stops you from waking up throughout the night
- Zimovane starts working within one hour of taking it
- Zimovane should only be used short term as otherwise there is a risk that your body will become dependent on it for sleep
- Zimovane is a brand name of the medication zopiclone
- You should not drink alcohol when taking Zimovane, as taking both together can make it more difficult to wake up the following morning
- It is important to read the patient leaflet for a full list of side effects and cautions.
How Does Zimovane Work?
Zimovane is a type of sedative. It helps you to relax and fall asleep more quickly.
Zimovane works by increasing a chemical in the brain called GABA. GABA reduces the activity in the central nervous system, giving a calming effect that makes it easier to fall asleep.
The body can become accustomed to the sedative ingredient, zopiclone, making you feel dependent on it if it is taken for longer than a few weeks. If Zimovane is taken for a long time, you may experience withdrawal symptoms when you need to stop taking it. This is why your doctor will only prescribe a short course of Zimovane to manage an acute period of insomnia.
How is Zimovane Taken?
Zimovane is available as a film coated tablet. It should be swallowed with a small glass of water, and can be taken with or without food.
Zimovane should be taken at night, just before you go to bed. It usually helps you sleep within an hour of taking it.
What is the proper dosage of Zimovane?
Zimovane 3.75mg / 7.5mg
There are two strengths of Zimovane available: 3.75mg and 7.5mg.
Some people find that 3.75mg is enough to help them sleep, whilst others will need to take the higher dose of 7.5mg.
3.75mg is often recommended for people aged over 65 years, or those with liver or kidney problems. This is because for these groups, a higher dose may lead to excessive sleepiness the following day.
Your doctor may prescribe a Zimovane tablet once every three nights, rather than every night. You may be prescribed Zimovane but advised only to take it when required. It is important to take Zimovane exactly as your doctor has prescribed it.
Are there any side effects to Zimovane?
Like all medications, Zimovane can have some side effects. The most common side effects include:
- A strange taste in your mouth – this may be metallic or bitter
- Excessive sleepiness – although feeling sleepy is the desired effect at bedtime, excessive sleepiness the following day may be an unwanted side effect. If you feel sleepy, you must not drive or operate heavy machinery. A lower dose of Zimovane may better suit you.
These side effects may settle, but if they are troublesome you should speak to your doctor for advice.
Occasionally, more serious side effects can occur. These include:
- Falling over – this is more common in the elderly
- Memory difficulties or losing your memory
- Hallucinations (seeing things that are not real)
- Delusions (believing things that are not true)
- Feeling low or depressed.
If any of these side effects occur, you should speak to a doctor straight away.
If you have a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) including breathlessness, lip or tongue swelling, call 999 immediately.
Does Zimovane come with any warnings?
Zimovane may not be suitable for everyone. You should tell your doctor if you:
- Have had an allergic reaction to a medication in the past
- Have breathing problems
- Have liver or kidney disease
- Have mental health problems
- Have myasthenia gravis
- Have sleep apnoea
- Have alcohol or drug dependence, or have ever been dependent in the past
- Are pregnant, trying to conceive, or breastfeeding.
Some medications can interact with Zimovane. You may be advised that Zimovane will not suit you if you already take:
- Another medication to aid sleep
- Medications to treat mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia or bipolar disorder
- Medication for epilepsy
- Hay fever or allergy medication
- Strong painkillers including codeine or tramadol
- Antibiotics, antifungals or antiviral medications including erythromycin, clarithromycin, itraconazole, ketoconazole and ritonavir.
You should also tell your prescriber about any herbal remedies or supplements you take. This will allow your prescriber to check that Zimovane will not interact with them.
Other sleeping aids offered here at EU Meds include drugs such as Zopiclone, Zolpidem and Diazepam. Diazepam is often used to treat sleeping apnea caused by anxiety. If you have anxiety related sleep problems, ask your doctor whether diazepam may be right for you.