I was put on ambien cr. The first night I took it I layed down.. and remember waking up the next morning feeling fine. The bad part about the whole incident was apparently after I fell asleep I got up, called my cousin on the phone, talked to her for about fifteen minutes.. then walked into the living room and started talking to my now ex husband...Just be careful when getting into some of this stuff :). I haven't tried anything since. I use the exhaustion method O.O.
Yes, there is a lot to be said for the "exhaustion method," though it doesn't always work for me.
Ambien CR - my doctor offered to prescribe it, but after some investigation I decided that plain old Ambien (or rather generic zolpidem) was better. Why? Because the "CR" variety is a timed-release version. That might sound better (and in some ways it is), but it means you cannot cut the pills in half - you must take the full dose. If you do cut them, that will cause too much of the drug to be released at one time.
Ambien or zolpidem is available in 5 or 10 mg pills. I either cut a 5 mg pill in half, or a 10 mg pill into quarters. So I never exceed 2.5 mg in a dose. That's really all I need, and if I find that it's not effective, I'll have to stop taking it for awhile.
By the way, the first time I took Ambien I did take a full 10 mg because I didn't know better. I'm not really sure what happened, because no one was around to tell me. I can say that I have no recollection whatsoever of the 10 hours that I was under the influence, and that's scary. I might have been sleeping the whole time, or maybe walking/driving around outside, I don't know. And that's scary. So my two conclusions are that: 1) keep the dose small, and 2) yes you are correct that these drugs should be handled with care.