Friends say Seau had insomnia, used Ambien

According to a USA Today report, at least 4 friends of Junior Seau say he suffered from insomnia and regularly took the drug Ambien.

One of those friends, Nancy Emsley, who worked out at the same gym as Seau, said that she often stressed to him the importance of getting eight hours of sleep after taking Ambien.

"He told me he usually woke up around 1 or 2 (a.m.) and couldn't go back to sleep," Emsley said.

Ambien is usually prescribed for sleep disorders and one of their warnings state that suicidal thoughts or actions have been reported by depressed patients using that class of drug (Zolpidem).

In addition to that, taking Ambien with alcohol, which friends say Seau did at times, can increase the effect, and lists one of the side effects as severe depression.

It appears Seau had been taking Ambien or other sleep aids as far back as 2005. Seau's former Chargers teammate Mark Walczaktold USA Today he saw Seau taking a sleeping pill in 2005.

Walczak: "I know he's had a very difficult time sleeping over the years,"...  "I think it's gotten worse and worse. Lack of sleep creates huge anxiety."

The 43-year-old Seau committed suicide at his home on May 2nd.