Zolpidem is labelled for short-term (usually about two to six weeks) treatment of insomnia at the lowest possible dose. It may be used for both improving sleep onset and staying asleep. When taken at recreational doses, it reportedly produces powerful and notoriously bizarre atypical hallucinogenic, dissociative, deliriant and even psychedelic effects.
Women have higher levels of zolpidem in the blood than men when given the same dose. It also takes longer for women for the medication to be cleared from the body. The recommended adult dose of zolpidem is 5 mg for women and 5 mg to 10 mg for men. People over the age of 65 are more sensitive to the effects of this medication and should be started on a lower dose, regardless of their gender. This medication should be taken just before bedtime when required to help with sleep disturbances.