|Summary sheet: Zaleplon|
|Common names||Sonata, Starnoc, Andante|
|Psychoactive class||Depressant / Hallucinogen|
|Routes of Administration|
Zaleplon (trade name Sonata) is a non-benzodiazepine hypnotic drug. It is of the hypnotic and depressant psychoactive classes and is chemically a pyrazolopyrimidine. When taken for recreational purposes, at doses far higher then the prescribed dose, it is capable of producing powerful and bizarre atypical hallucinogenic, hypnotic, deliriant and even psychedelic effects. Some individuals use a different delivery method than prescribed, such as insufflation, to induce effects faster
Zaleplon is a member of a family known as "Z-drugs." Other Z-drugs include zolpidem (Ambien) and zopiclone. These drugs were initially thought to be less addictive and/or habit-forming than benzodiazepines. However, this evaluation has shifted in the last few years as cases of addiction and habituation have accumulated.
Zaleplon is recommended to be taken on a short-term basis only. Daily or continuous use of the drug is not usually advised.
History and culture
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Zaleplon is a pyrazolopyrimidine having a nitrile group at position 3 and a 3-(N-ethylacetamido)phenyl substituent at the 7-position.
Zaleplon has a pharmacological profile similar to benzodiazepines. Zaleplon is a full agonist for the benzodiazepine a1 receptor located on the GABAA receptor ionophore complex in the brain, with lower affinity for the a2 and a3 subtypes. It selectively enhances the action of GABA similar to but more selectively than benzodiazepines.
In regards to how the consumption of this compound results in its bizarre hallucinations, the pharmacological mechanics behind this are not understood and do not seem to have been directly studied. It is worth noting, however, that zaleplon may share similar mechanisms as a GABAA receptor agonist to that of muscimol, which is the active compound within the hallucinogenic amanita muscaria mushroom.
|This subjective effects section is a stub.|
As such, it is still in progress and may contain incomplete or wrong information.
You can help by expanding or correcting it.
Disclaimer: The effects listed below cite the Subjective Effect Index (SEI), an open research literature based on anecdotal user reports and the personal analyses of PsychonautWiki contributors. As a result, they should be viewed with a healthy degree of skepticism.
It is also worth noting that these effects will not necessarily occur in a predictable or reliable manner, although higher doses are more liable to induce the full spectrum of effects. Likewise, adverse effects become increasingly likely with higher doses and may include addiction, severe injury, or death ☠.
The physical effects of zaleplon are almost identical to that of benzodiazepines such as alprazolam, although with less intensive muscle relaxation. They can be broken down into several components.
These are described below and generally include:
- Sedation - The sedation present within this compound is significantly stronger than that of other GABAergic depressants when proportionally compared to their other effects. This is why zaleplon is commonly prescribed as a sleep aid to those who struggle with insomnia.
- Physical euphoria - This manifests itself as a warm, soft glow which emanates from the center of the user's body.
- Appetite enhancement - Many users of zaleplon report binge eating bizarre mixtures of various foods while they are "asleep" with little or no memory of the activity upon waking up. This likely occurs as a result of zaleplon's cognitive effects such as disinhibition and amnesia.
- Gustatory hallucinations
- Nausea - At moderate to heavy dosages, a slight discomfort may be felt in the stomach. This will go away once the user has vomited.
- Muscle relaxation - Although muscle relaxation is definitely present, it usually only manifests itself at heavier dosages and is significantly weaker than that of benzodiazepines.
- Motor control loss
- Respiratory depression
- Increased heart rate
- Increased blood pressure
- Seizure suppression
- Stomach cramp
- Visual disconnection - This effect is only present at moderate to heavy recreational dosages and is comparable to that of a dissociatives such as DXM and ketamine. It commonly results in feeling as if one's sense of vision is distant or vague and being viewed through a screen or window. However, it is not capable of higher end visual disconnection such as holes, spaces and voids or hallucinatory structures in the same way that traditional dissociatives are. This is likely due to the way in which zaleplon's sedative effects render the user unconscious at dosages far lower than one could consume to reach such a state.
- Consciousness disconnection - This effect is only present at moderate to heavy recreational dosages and is comparable to that of dissociatives such as DXM and ketamine. However, it is not capable of higher end cognitive disconnection in the same way that dissociatives are. This is likely due to the way in which zaleplon's sedative effects render the user unconscious at dosages far lower than one could consume to reach such a state.
The visual effects of zaleplon are comparable to that of certain aspects deliriants, dissociatives and psychedelics. At lower dosages, these effects manifest as simple visual suppressions but at higher doses, they may escalate into full-blown complex hallucinatory states of a bizarre and unique nature.
- Double vision
- Object activation
- Acuity suppression
- Drifting - At heavier dosages, this compound may induce the experience of scenery, walls, objects and people appearing to melt and distort in a manner which is comparable to traditional psychedelics such as psilocin or LSD.
- Internal hallucinations (autonomous entities; settings, sceneries, and landscapes; alterations in perspective and scenarios and plots) - The internal hallucinations present on this compound can be described as vivid dream-like states similar in style to that of deliriants. This effect typically occurs briefly and spontaneously at moderate dosages but becomes progressively extended in its occurrence and duration proportional to dosage consumed before eventually becoming all-encompassing. It can be comprehensively described through its variations as delirious in believability, interactive in style, equal in new experiences and memory replays in content, autonomous in controllability and solid in style.
- External hallucinations (autonomous entities; settings, sceneries, and landscapes; alterations in perspective and scenarios and plots) - In comparison to other classes of hallucinogen, this effect exclusively occurs at heavy dosages and is comparable to deliriants such as DPH and datura. This effect can be comprehensively described through its variations as delirious in believability, autonomous in controllability and solid in style. The most common themes for these hallucinations include those of both everyday occurrences such as talking to people who are not there and impossible occurrences such as inanimate objects coming to life or shadow people.
The cognitive effects of zaleplon are comparable to that of benzodiazepines although with less intensive anxiety suppression. At heavier more recreational dosages, additional effects which are usually associated with deliriants may become present. These include thought disorganization and delusions. The specific effects can be broken down into several components.
These are described below and generally include:
- Amnesia - Many users that take zaleplon often claim that upon waking up, they have little to no memory of falling asleep and cannot recall the events preceding it.
- Anxiety suppression - Although anxiety suppression is definitely present, it usually only manifests itself at heavier dosages and is significantly weaker than that of benzodiazepines.
- Compulsive redosing
- Cognitive euphoria
- Delusions - At heavier dosages, this effect may become present in a manner which is comparable to traditional deliriants. It is often accompanied by external hallucinations which tend to reinforce one's belief of the delusion.
- Delusions of sobriety - This is the false belief that one is perfectly sober despite obvious evidence to the contrary such as severe cognitive impairment and an inability to fully communicate with others. It most commonly occurs at heavy dosages. Experience reports indicate that zaleplon may provoke these delusions in equal or greater strength than benzodiazepines.
- Dream potentiation
- Déjà vu
- Increased music appreciation
- Suggestibility enhancement
- Analysis suppression
- Language suppression - At heavier dosages of zaleplon, one may find that they have a distinct difficulty vocalizing their thoughts in a coherent manner.
- Short-term memory suppression - At heavier dosages, many users find that they cannot recall things from 10 or 30 seconds ago due to suppression of their short-term memory. This can potentially lead to confusion, repetitive behaviour and thought loops.
- Thought deceleration
- Thought disorganization - This effect is present at heavier dosages and tends to synergise with disinihibition and delusions in a manner which results in bizarre decision-making processes or thought processes which are often out of character and make little to no sense once the user has sobered up from the experience.
- Focus suppression'
There are currently no anecdotal reports which describe the effects of this compound within our experience index. Additional experience reports can be found here:
Toxicity and harm potential
This toxicity and harm potential section is a stub.
As a result, it may contain incomplete or even dangerously wrong information! You can help by expanding upon or correcting it.
As with other Z-drugs, zaleplon use may result in bizarre and dangerous behavior.
It is strongly recommended that one use harm reduction practices when using this substance.
Tolerance and addiction potential
Zaleplon is moderate physically and psychologically addictive.
Tolerance will develop to the sedative-hypnotic effects within a couple of weeks of daily use. After cessation, the tolerance returns to baseline in 7 - 14 days. Withdrawal symptoms or rebound symptoms may occur after ceasing usage abruptly following a few weeks or longer of steady dosing, and may necessitate a gradual dose reduction.
This dangerous interactions section is a stub.
As such, it may contain incomplete or invalid information. You can help by expanding upon or correcting it.
Warning: Many psychoactive substances that are reasonably safe to use on their own can suddenly become dangerous and even life-threatening when combined with certain other substances. The following list provides some known dangerous interactions (although it is not guaranteed to include all of them).
Always conduct independent research (e.g. Google, DuckDuckGo, PubMed) to ensure that a combination of two or more substances is safe to consume. Some of the listed interactions have been sourced from TripSit.
- Depressants (1,4-Butanediol, 2M2B, alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, GHB/GBL, methaqualone, opioids) - This combination potentiates the muscle relaxation, amnesia, sedation, and respiratory depression caused by one another. At higher doses, it can lead to a sudden, unexpected loss of consciousness along with a dangerous amount of depressed respiration. There is also an increased risk of suffocating on one's vomit while unconscious. If nausea or vomiting occurs before a loss of consciousness, users should attempt to fall asleep in the recovery position or have a friend move them into it.
- Dissociatives - This combination can unpredictably potentiate the amnesia, sedation, motor control loss and delusions that can be caused by each other. It may also result in a sudden loss of consciousness accompanied by a dangerous degree of respiratory depression. If nausea or vomiting occurs before consciousness is lost, users should attempt to fall asleep in the recovery position or have a friend move them into it.
- Stimulants - Stimulants mask the sedative effect of depressants, which is the main factor most people use to gauge their level of intoxication. Once the stimulant effects wear off, the effects of the depressant will significantly increase, leading to intensified disinhibition, motor control loss, and dangerous black-out states. This combination can also potentially result in severe dehydration if one's fluid intake is not closely monitored. If choosing to combine these substances, one should strictly limit themselves to a pre-set schedule of dosing only a certain amount per hour until a maximum threshold has been reached.
This legality section is a stub.
As such, it may contain incomplete or wrong information. You can help by expanding it.
- EU - Zaleplon was withdrawn within the EU.
- Switzerland - Zaleplon was withdrawn in Switzerland in 2011.
- United States - Zaleplon is Schedule IV under the Controlled Substance Act (CSA), meaning it is judged to have "some potential for abuse."" Possession without a prescription is illegal.
- Canada - Zaleplon is not scheduled in Canada. However, it may be illegal to possess without a valid prescription. 
- Russia: Zaleplon is available through a prescription.
- Risks of Combining Depressants - TripSit
- Profiles of Drug Substances, Zaleplon pharmacokinetics and absolute bioavailability | https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/(SICI)1099-081X(199904)20:3%3C171::AID-BDD169%3E3.0.CO;2-K
- Profiles of Drug Substances, Excipients and Related Methodology | https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1871512510350084
- Ambien Linked to 'Sleep Eating' | http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/news/20060315/ambien-linked-to-sleep-eating
- Ambien, delusions, and violence: Is there a link? | https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-measure-madness/201005/ambien-delusions-and-violence-is-there-link
- Ambien Side Effects Center (rxlist) | http://www.rxlist.com/ambien-side-effects-drug-center.htm