Drug Options for Treating Depression and Anxiety Disorders
SmithaBhandari, MD has reviewed this document for medical accuracy. on the 19th of August, 2021
What Drugs Are Used to Treat Depression?
There are a variety of medications available for the treatment of depression. Some of the most often used are as follows:
- Multiple medications are available for the treatment of depression. The following are some of the most often used:
There are a variety of medications available for treating depression. Some of the most often encountered are as follows:
What Medications Are Used to Treat Anxiety Disorders?
Antidepressants, notably selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and certain SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors), have been proven to be useful in the treatment of anxiety disorders. A class of anti-anxiety medications known as benzodiazepines includes alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium), buspirone (Buspar), andlorazepam, among others (Ativan). These medications do entail a risk of addiction or tolerance (which means that more and higher dosages are required to produce the same effect), which makes them less acceptable for long-term usage.
Some anticonvulsant medications (such as gabapentinorpregabalin), some blood pressure medications (such as propranolol), and some atypical antipsychotic medications (such as aripiprazoleorquetiapineorSeroquel) are also occasionally used “off label” to treat anxiety symptoms or disorders, including social anxiety disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.
Drugs to Treat Anxiety Disorder
SSRIs and some SNRIs (serotonin-1-reuptake inhibitors) have been found to be useful in the treatment of anxiety disorders. SSRIs are the most often used antidepressants in the treatment of anxiety disorders. In addition to these medications, benzodiazepines such as alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium), buspirone (Buspar), andlorazepam (Ativan) are also available (Ativan). These medicines do entail a risk of addiction or tolerance (which means that larger and higher dosages are required to obtain the same effect), which makes them less attractive for long-term usage than other medications.
Anxiety symptoms and problems are occasionally treated with anticonvulsant medicines (such as gabapentinorpregabalin), blood pressure medications (such as propranolol), and atypical antipsychotics (such as aripprazole, quetiapine, and Seroquel) that are not prescribed for this purpose.
- Anxiolytics include alprazolam (Xanax), chlordiazepoxide (Librium), clonazepam (Klonopin), diazepam (Valium), lorazepam (Ativan), and others.
Anxiety is often treated with benzodiazepines, which are normally administered for brief periods of time. This is due to the fact that they might produce sleepiness as well as issues with balance and memory. They have the potential to become addictive. Benzodiazepine use disorder is becoming increasingly common, as evidenced by an increase in the number of cases. It is critical that you only utilize these medications until your doctor recommends another course of action. Your doctor, however, may prescribe benzodiazepines for up to one year if you are suffering from panic disorder.
In addition to sleepiness and cognitive impairment, using benzodiazepines can induce the following side effects:
- Confusion, eyesight issues, headaches, and feelings of despair are all possible symptoms.
If you’ve been taking a benzodiazepine on a regular basis for more than two weeks, it’s crucial not to stop taking the tablets all at once, since this may result in unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Instead, discuss with your doctor the possibility of gradually decreasing your medication dosage in order to lower your chance of seizure. It is used to treat both short-term anxiety disorders and chronic (long-term) anxiety disorders. Buspirone is a prescription medication. Although the exact mechanism of action of buspirone is not known, it is believed to function by interfering with neurotransmitters in the brain that control mood.
The generic medicament Buspar is also available, as well as the brand-name medication Buspar.
Nausea, dizziness, and headaches are some of the possible side effects. When using buspirone, some people have reported having weird nightmares or having difficulties sleeping. Antidepressant medicines act by interfering with neurotransmitters in the brain. These medications can be used to treat anxiety symptoms, but it generally takes 4 to 6 weeks before they begin to show any apparent results. Antidepressants come in a variety of forms, including:
Suppressing the serotonin reuptake inhibitors’ (SSRIs’) action by raising the amount of serotonin in the body, a neurotransmitter that impacts many aspects of one’s life including mood, sexual desire, hunger, sleep, and memory. SSRIs are normally begun at a low dose, which is progressively increased by your doctor as needed. SSRIs are used to treat anxiety in a variety of ways, including:
- Escitalopram (Lexapro)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Paroxetine (Paxil)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
- And fluoxetine (Prozac) are all antidepressants.
SSRIs can have a range of adverse effects, although the majority of people are able to cope with them. The following are possible side effects:
- Nausea, dry mouth, muscular weakness, diarrhea, dizziness, sleepiness, and sexual dysfunction are all possible side effects.
If you have any concerns about a specific side effect, you should discuss them with your doctor.
Tricyclics, with the exception of obsessive-compulsive disorder, are equally effective as SSRIs in the treatment of most anxiety disorders (OCD). Tricyclics are considered to function in a similar way to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Tricyclics, like SSRIs, are prescribed at a low dose that is progressively increased over time. Tricyclics are used to treat anxiety in a variety of ways, including: Tricyclics are older medications that are being used less frequently since newer medications have less negative effects than older medications.
- Dizziness, sleepiness, disorientation, urine retention, nausea and vomiting, constipation, impaired vision, and weight gain are all possible side effects.
Side effects are frequently manageable by altering the dose or switching to a different tricyclic medication.
Treatment for panic disorder and social phobia involves the use of monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). They function by boosting the quantity of neurotransmitters in the brain that are involved in mood regulation. MAOIs that have been authorized by the FDA for the treatment of depression but are also used off-label for the treatment of anxiety include:
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
- Phenelzine (Nardil)
- Selegiline (Emsam)
- Tranylcypromine (Parnate)
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
MAOIs, like tricyclics, are older medications that are associated with higher negative effects than newer medications. Some of the adverse effects are as follows:
- Dry mouth, nausea, diarrhea, constipation, sleepiness, insomnia, and dizziness are all possible side effects.
Certain drugs, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), some birth control pills, pain relievers such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, cold and allergy treatments, and herbal supplements, can interact with MAOIs, according to the American Academy of Neurology. When you combine an MAOI with other drugs, your blood pressure might rise severely and you may have other possibly life-threatening adverse effects. Beta-blockers are the most commonly prescribed medications for the treatment of cardiac problems.
A beta-blocker such as propranolol (Inderal) may be prescribed by your doctor to help you cope with anxiety symptoms while you are in a high-stress scenario, such as attending a party or making a speech.
Beta-blockers are generally safe and do not produce negative effects in the majority of people who use them. Some of the possible negative effects are as follows: Other possible adverse effects include: Many different types of at-home therapies are available to assist you deal with your anxiety symptoms. There are a variety of treatments that may be used in addition to medicine administration. Some examples of these interventions are as follows:
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, exercise can help you feel better by reducing stress and improving your general feeling of well-being (ADAA). It contributes to the production of neurotransmitters known as endorphins. These neurotransmitters are your body’s natural pain relievers, and they can also assist you in improving the quality of your sleep. According to the American Diabetes Association, even brief exercise sessions (approximately 10 minutes at a time) are useful in improving your mood.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, exercise can help you reduce stress and improve your overall feeling of well-being (ADAA). It contributes to the production of endorphins, which are neurotransmitters. They act as your body’s natural pain relievers and can also assist you in improving the quality of your sleep. According to the American Diabetes Association, even brief exercise sessions (approximately 10 minutes at a time) are useful in improving one’s disposition.
Drinking chamomile tea or taking a chamomile supplement may help to alleviate the symptoms of anxiousness. A double-blind research published in the Phytomedicine journal in 2016 examined the effects of a plant extract on people suffering from generalized anxiety disorder. Study participants who took 500-milligram chamomile capsules three times per day on a regular basis reported a reduction in moderate to severe generalized anxiety, the researchers discovered. It has also been demonstrated that drinking chamomile tea can assist to alleviate anxiety.
Smell aromatherapy oils
Anxiety symptoms may be alleviated by sipping chamomile tea or ingesting a chamomile supplement. A double-blind research published in the Phytomedicine journal in 2016 examined the effects of a plant extract on people who suffer from generalized anxiety disorder. Study participants who took 500-milligram chamomile capsules three times per day on a regular basis reported a reduction in moderate to severe generalized anxiety, according to the findings of the study.
In addition, it has been demonstrated that drinking chamomile tea can assist to alleviate anxiety.
When consumed in large quantities, caffeine can make you feel restless and more agitated. Some people find that avoiding it might help them alleviate their anxiety. Your doctor can assist you in determining the most effective course of therapy for your anxiety. Psychotherapy and medicines will almost certainly be required for effective treatment. When using anxiety drugs, make sure to follow the directions on the label and notify your doctor if you have any negative effects. Also, feel free to ask any questions you have concerning your disease or treatment, such as the following:
- You may experience jitteriness and increased anxiety when using coffee. A person’s anxiety can be reduced by avoiding it in some cases. The optimal course of therapy for your anxiety will be determined by your doctor. It is probable that psychotherapy and medication will be necessary for effective treatment. When using anxiety drugs, be careful to follow your doctor’s recommendations and notify him or her if you have any negative effects. You should also feel free to ask any questions you may have concerning your health or treatment, such as the following:
If you believe a drug is not providing you with the anticipated outcomes or is causing you to experience undesired side effects, see your doctor before discontinuing use.
Anti-Anxiety Medications (Benzodiazepines)
Drugs to treat anxiety symptoms such as panic attacks, intense dread and concern, and other symptoms can be reduced using anti-anxiety medications. The term “benzodiazepines” refers to the most often prescribed anti-anxiety drugs. In medicine, benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that can be used to help people sleep better and feel less anxious. As a muscle relaxant, they are also employed in the induction of sedation for surgical and other medical operations, as well as in the treatment of seizures and alcohol withdrawal.
- They are the most extensively prescribed psychoactive medications in the world, according to the World Health Organization.
- It is possible to reduce stress in your life by engaging in activities such as meditation, reading a book or taking a warm bath.
- Additionally, talking with a trustworthy friend, family member, or therapist and working through the issues that are affecting you can prove to be beneficial.
- Benzodiazepines, on the other hand, can be used to offer relief when non-drug alternatives are not viable or do not work.
- Despite this, they do have the potential for misuse and are potentially addicting.
Do I need this treatment?
When something significant occurs in your life, you may experience some worry or sleeplessness. This is quite natural. You may be concerned or anxious, and these feelings may cause you to have trouble sleeping at night. The majority of the time, these sentiments pass and do not pose an issue. These sentiments, on the other hand, can become a problem if they persist for an extended period of time, cause extreme discomfort, make you feel physically unwell, or have an impact on your behavior. It is possible that a stressful life event will set off this type of anxiety.
Many different sorts of health conditions might have an impact on one’s ability to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night.
When sleep is interrupted, it can have a negative impact on one’s health. While every circumstance is distinct and other treatment options may be required, benzodiazepines can be used to aid offer relief in some cases.
What does Anti-anxiety Medications (Benzodiazepines) do?
Benzodiazepines work by increasing the activity of the neurotransmitter GABA, which is a substance in the brain that promotes relaxation. Drowsiness is also produced as a result of their action, making it simpler to fall asleep and sleep through the night.
Side effects of Anti-anxiety Medications (Benzodiazepines)
In most cases, the adverse effects of benzodiazepines are minimal and may go unnoticed when the medications are used in small amounts. The following are examples of common side effects: While the adverse effects of benzodiazepines are normally modest, when these medicines are used in small dosages, they may go undetected. These are some of the most common negative effects:
- When benzodiazepines are taken at low dosages, the adverse effects are often moderate and may go unnoticed. The following are some of the most common negative effects:
Agitation, hallucinations, and nightmares are all possible side effects of this medication, albeit they are exceedingly rare. Lowering the dosage may be beneficial in reducing negative effects. Benzodiazepines have been shown to make it more difficult to acquire and recall new information, as well as to perform specific physical and mental activities. Once the effects of the medicine have worn off, these skills will return to normal. When taken to help you fall asleep, benzodiazepines can cause “hangover” symptoms such as sleepiness in the morning and throughout the day the following day.
Types of Anti-anxiety Medications (Benzodiazepines)
In Canada, there are several different types of benzodiazepines to choose from. All benzodiazepines have the same mechanism of action; however, the severity and duration of their effects differ from one another. Clonazepam (Rivotril)*, alprazolam (Xanax), and lorazepam (Ativan) are the benzodiazepines that are most widely used to treat anxiety disorders (Ativan). Bromazepam (Lectopam), oxazepam (Serax), chlordiazepoxide (formerly marketed as Librium), clorazepate (Tranxene), and diazepam (Valium) are other medications that are commonly utilized (Valium).
- Zopiclone is another medication that is used to treat insomnia (Imovane).
- Despite the fact that Zopiclone has a lower abuse risk than certain benzodiazepines, people might nonetheless get addicted to this medication over time.
- Other forms of the medication include tablets that dissolve under the tongue and solutions that may be injected into the body.
- Brand names that are available in Canada are shown in brackets below.
Frequently Asked Questions
For the majority of people, benzodiazepines are only useful as a temporary remedy, and they should only be taken in the following situations:
- When it comes to the majority of individuals, benzodiazepines are only useful as a temporary solution, and they should only be taken in the following circumstances:
For the vast majority of people, benzodiazepines are only useful as a temporary remedy, and they should only be taken in the following situations:
Are benzodiazepines addictive?
When used on an as-needed basis or on a daily basis for a few weeks, benzodiazepines have a minimal risk of becoming addictive. If you use benzodiazepines frequently for more than a few weeks, this risk increases, and it is even greater if you take them at higher dosages than is recommended. A history of drug addiction should be avoided or minimized when using benzodiazepines since they are at a higher risk of getting addicted to these medications. Evidence of addiction includes intense desires for the effects of a substance and the use of a greater amount of that substance than planned.
- Addiction can develop with or without physical dependency on a substance or activity.
- Physical reliance is the term used to describe this.
- One of the first signs of physical dependency is tolerance, which is followed by withdrawal.
- It is well known that benzodiazepines have the following effects:
- With frequent usage, tolerance to the sleep-inducing effects may develop within a few weeks
- However, tolerance does not normally develop with occasional use. Increased susceptibility to the anxiety-relieving effects of cannabis is less likely to develop
- It is common for people who have become tolerant to the effects of one kind of benzodiazepine to develop tolerance to other types of benzodiazepines as well as to other medications that have comparable effects, such as alcohol.
With frequent usage, tolerance to the sleep-inducing effects may develop within a few weeks; however, tolerance does not often develop with occasional use. It is less probable that tolerance to the anxiety-relieving benefits will develop. In response to the effects of one kind of benzodiazepine, the individual develops tolerance to the effects of other types of benzodiazepines, as well as to other medications that have comparable effects, such as alcohol.
How do I safely use benzodiazepines?
Tolerance to the sleep-inducing effects of the drug may develop after a few weeks of regular usage; however, tolerance does not normally develop with infrequent use. It is less probable that tolerance to the anxiety-relieving benefits will develop; It is common for people who have become tolerant to the effects of one kind of benzodiazepine to develop tolerance to the effects of other benzodiazepines, as well as to other medications with comparable effects, including alcohol.
How do I cut down or stop taking benzodiazepines?
Prescribed most frequently to assist patients cope with stressful situations or to offer respite while they wait for other treatments to take effect, benzodiazepines are generally considered to be safe. When taken in this manner, on an as-needed or daily basis for a few weeks, the majority of people are able to discontinue consumption without experiencing any withdrawal symptoms. Stopping usage, on the other hand, might be difficult for some people, even if the use is just temporary. When the following situations occur, problems are more likely to arise:
- These medicines are still being taken because the issues that led you to use them have not been addressed. There has been no further medicine or talk therapy initiated
These substances are still being used because the issues that led you to use them have not been addressed. In the absence of any further medicine or talk therapy,
Will benzodiazepines interact with other medications?
These substances are still being taken because the reasons that led you to use them have not been addressed; There has been no other medicine or talk therapy initiated;
What if I drink alcohol or coffee while taking benzodiazepines?
When taken with alcohol, benzodiazepines can be extremely harmful. In addition to increasing the effects of drinking, benzodiazepines also cause you to become more tired and dizzy or lightheaded. One hazard of this is the greater likelihood of stumbling, falling, and sustaining injuries as a result. Another concern is the increased likelihood of overdosing. Both alcohol and benzodiazepines have the same effect on the central nervous system, which is in charge of controlling respiration. If you take too much, your breathing may stop.
What if I use street drugs while taking benzodiazepines?
The likelihood is that you are using benzodiazepines to assist alleviate the misery caused by a mental health condition, and that you would like to feel less worried and have a decent night’s sleep as a result. Potent psychoactive substances such as marijuana and cocaine can exacerbate anxiety symptoms and interfere with sleep, making you feel worse rather than better as a result of their use. In addition to being harmful, using benzodiazepines to enhance the impact of other sedative medicines such as opioids is also risky, increasing the risk of overdose and damage.
Will benzodiazepines affect my ability to drive safely?
In some cases, using benzodiazepines while driving might impair your ability to drive and increase the likelihood of a car accident, especially when combined with alcohol or other sedative medicines. When you initially start using benzodiazepines, before you become acclimated to their effects, the danger is the greatest. If you are feeling sleepy or slowed down, refrain from driving or using other machinery.
Will benzodiazepines affect my sex drive and function?
Benzodiazepines do not appear to have any influence on sexual urge or function, and there is no clear evidence to support this.
Is it safe to take benzodiazepines while pregnant or breastfeeding?
The risk of birth abnormalities associated with the use of benzodiazepines during pregnancy is unknown, however it is believed to be extremely low. The infant may be born sleepy or with withdrawal symptoms such as restlessness and feeding difficulties if benzodiazepines are taken routinely in the weeks before the birth. It is possible for very small amounts of benzodiazepines to be transmitted from the mother to the newborn through breast milk. This may result in the infant becoming drowsy. Benzodiazepines should not be used during pregnancy or nursing, or if you are planning to become pregnant, you should see your doctor about the risks and advantages of continuing or discontinuing use of these medications.
If your doctor suggests that you stop taking benzodiazepines, he or she will work with you to gradually lower your dose over time to minimize withdrawal symptoms.
Can children and teens use benzodiazepines?
In general, benzodiazepines are not advised for usage by adolescents and teenagers, with the exception of sedation prior to surgery or for brief medical procedures.
When evaluating whether to provide benzodiazepines to children, extra caution should be exercised because these medications have the potential to make youngsters irritated rather than tranquil.
Can older adults use benzodiazepines?
In general, benzodiazepines are not advised for usage by children and adolescents, with the exception of sedation prior to surgery or for brief medical procedures. When evaluating whether or not to provide benzodiazepines to children, extra caution should be exercised because these medications have the potential to make youngsters irritated rather than tranquil.
- Treatment at CAMH includes: Access CAMH
- Family Support from CAMH
- And other services.
- ConnexOntario is a program that provides information and referrals to mental health services.
What Are the Best Medications for Anxiety?
Treatment at CAMH includes: Access CAMH; CAMH Family Support; ConnexOntario; and other services.
- Antidepressants, benzodiazepines, buspirone, hydroxyzine, and beta-blockers are some of the medications available.
The subgroups of medications under each of these categories act in a distinct way and have their own set of advantages, dangers, and probable adverse effects. As reported by the American Academy of Family Physicians, antidepressants are typically used as the initial therapy for depression. SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, are the type of antidepressant that is most commonly given, and they are particularly effective. They increase the availability of serotonin in the brain, which is a neurotransmitter that helps to sustain mood.
Beth Salcedo, MD, the medical director of the Ross Center for AnxietyRelated Disorders and a previous board president of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, says, “They’re quite successful in the treatment and prevention of anxiety disorders.” According to Dr.
When taking any prescription medication, it is critical to adhere to the directions provided by your doctor.
Anxiety medication: List, types, and side effects
Feelings of concern, dread, and uneasiness are all encompassed under the word anxiety. In spite of the fact that it is natural to experience some amount of worry from time to time, excessive or persistent anxiety may be a sign of an anxiety disorder. According to numerous big polls, up to 33.7 percent of the population will suffer from some sort of anxiety condition at some point in their lives. Medications are available to help those suffering from anxiety disorders. Medicine can be prescribed alone or in conjunction with other therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or another type of treatment.
Anxiety symptoms can be alleviated by a variety of different medications.
1. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
However, despite the fact that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a form of antidepressant, doctors frequently prescribe them to persons who suffer from anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). According to one source, doctors regard selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to be the first-line pharmacological therapy for anxiety.
SSRIs function by inhibiting the re-absorption of serotonin by nerve cells in the brain, which is a neurotransmitter that is critical in the regulation of mood. SSRIs for anxiety include, for example, the following:
- Celexa (citalopram)
- Escitalopram (Lexapro)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
- Paroxetine (Paxil, Pexeva)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
- And fluoxetine (Prozac).
However, these drugs do not work for everyone and often take 2 to 6 weeks to start working after being administered. For the treatment of anxiety, people often take SSRIs for up to 12 months at a time and then progressively lower the dosage. These medications do not have a habit-forming effect, which means that they do not generally result in dependency. It is recommended that people check with their doctor or physician before beginning to reduce or discontinue their medicine.
2. Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors
SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors) are another type of antidepressant that can be used to treat depression and anxiety symptoms. Doctors may also prescribe them to patients suffering from some types of chronic pain. Serotonin and norepinephrine are substances that are reabsorbed by the brain, and these drugs operate by inhibiting this resorption. The following are examples of SNRIs used to treat anxiety: In addition to tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) are used to treat depression and anxiety.
Serotonin and norepinephrine are substances that are reabsorbed by the brain, and these drugs operate by inhibiting that resorption.
3. Tricyclic antidepressants
Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) are a kind of antidepressant medication that has been around for a long time. In spite of the fact that they may be useful for the treatment of depression and anxiety, physicians prefer to prescribe SSRIs instead since they have less negative effects. TCAs, on the other hand, may be beneficial for certain patients, particularly if other drugs have failed to offer relief. TCAs for anxiety include, for example, the following:
- Amitriptyline (Elavil)
- Imipramine (Tofranil)
- Nortriptyline (Pamelor)
- And other anti-anxiety medications
In addition to alleviating the physical signs of anxiety, such as tight muscles, benzodiazepines also have an anti-anxiety effect. These medications also promote relaxation, and their benefits can be felt within a few minutes after taking them. Benzodiazepines include the following:
- Alprazolam (Xanax)
- Chlordiazepoxide (Librium)
- Diazepam (Valium)
- And lorazepam (Ativan) are examples of benzodiazepines.
Alprazolam (Xanax); chlordiazepoxide (Librium); diazepam (Valium); lorazepam (Ativan); and other benzodiazepines are used to treat anxiety.
Other medications for anxiety
Alprazolam (Xanax); chlordiazepoxide (Librium); diazepam (Valium); lorazepam (Ativan); and other benzodiazepines are available.
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
- Phenelzine (Nardil)
- Selegiline (Emsam)
- Tranylcypromine (Parnate)
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
The use of antidepressants and other anxiety medications has the potential to induce negative effects in certain individuals. These are usually relieved after a few weeks, but it is critical to visit a doctor if they become intolerable or do not reduce after that time. It is possible that some physicians will advocate taking anxiety drugs with meals in order to reduce side effects, or taking them before night, as long as the prescription does not interfere with sleep.
The side effects that a person feels might differ based on the drug that they are taking. SSRIs can have a variety of adverse effects, the most common of which are as follows:
- Buffering of vision, dizziness, tiredness or exhaustion, dry mouth, feeling irritated or restless, gaining weight, headaches, nausea, and sexual difficulties are all possible. Erectile dysfunction, sleep issues, and an upset stomach are all possibilities.
Dizziness, sleepiness, or exhaustion; dry mouth; feeling agitated or restless; weight gain; headaches, nausea, and sexual issues are all possible side effects of this medication. Erectile dysfunction, insomnia, and an upset stomach are all possible symptoms.
- Buffering of vision, dizziness, tiredness or weariness, dry mouth, feeling irritated or restless, gaining weight, headaches, nausea, and sexual issues are all possible. Erectile dysfunction, insomnia, and an upset stomach are all possibilities.
TCAsSide effects varies from one TCA to the next since they function in different ways. The following are examples of possible negative effects:
- Slight dizziness
- Trouble urinating
- Dry mouth
- Increased hunger
- Low blood pressure after standing up
- Sexual issues or erectile dysfunction
- Excessive perspiration
- Weight loss or gain
Blurry vision; constipation; trouble urinating; dry mouth; drowsiness; increase in hunger; lightheadedness; low blood pressure after getting up; sexual issues or erectile dysfunction; excessive perspiration; tremors; weight loss or gain
- Headaches, loss of memory or focus, difficulty with balance, coordination, and speech are all symptoms of migraines. Blurry vision is a symptom of migraines. a stomach ache or discomfort
Headaches, loss of memory or concentration, problems with balance, coordination, and speech are all possible side effects. Blurry vision is one of the most common. a stomach ache or pain;
- Anxiety and restlessness, sadness, sleep difficulties, sweating, seizures
- These are all symptoms of bipolar disorder.
The following are some of the most serious dangers associated with benzodiazepines:
- Addiction, cognitive decline, hip fractures, and motor vehicle accidents, all of which can impair a person’s ability to drive, are all possibilities. overdose, particularly when used in conjunction with opioid drugs or alcohol
Beta-blockers The following are examples of beta-blocker adverse effects:
- Cold hands and feet, sadness, intense fatigue, low blood pressure, shortness of breath, sleep issues, and weight increase are all symptoms of diabetes.
Beta-blockers should be avoided by people who have asthma. People with diabetes should exercise caution when taking these medications and should consult with their doctor about the potential dangers. Buspirone The following are possible adverse effects of buspirone:
- Blurry vision
- s diarrhea
- sdry mouth
- smuscle pains
- spoor concentration
- srestlessness or nervousness
- ssleep problems
MAOIs The following are possible adverse effects of MAOIs:
- MAOIs Side effects associated with MAOIs include, for example, the following:
These medicines can also have interactions with a variety of other medications, as well as with certain meals and beverages. Anyone on MAOIs should consult their doctor for a comprehensive list of the medications, foods, and beverages that they should avoid while on the medication. Pin it to your Pinterest board. Anyone who is suffering suicidal thoughts should seek medical attention or seek therapy. A black-box warning on the risk of suicide in children and young adults is required by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for all antidepressant medications.
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline may be reached at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), and it is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Doctors would often do a physical examination to rule out any underlying diseases, as well as interview the patient about their symptoms, in order to diagnose an anxiety disorder.
- Anxiety is a widespread ailment that affects a large number of people throughout their lives.
- People who suffer from anxiety disorders should collaborate with their doctors to develop the most effective treatment plan for their specific requirements.
In order to reduce side effects, a doctor may propose a gradual increase in dose or the use of another medicine or method of therapy. Without medical supervision, it is absolutely necessary to never stop taking medicine because doing so may result in withdrawal symptoms.
In the midst of a panic attack, immobilized by terror, or fatigued after yet another sleepless night spent fretting, you’ll do almost everything to get relief from your symptoms. And there’s little doubt that when anxiety becomes incapacitating, drugs may be beneficial. But are medications usually the most effective solution? The treatment of anxiety disorders involves the use of a variety of pharmaceuticals, including classic anti-anxiety drugs such as benzodiazepines (which are normally prescribed for short-term usage) and newer choices such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) antidepressants (often recommended as a long-term anxiety solution).
They are also not a remedy in any way.
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, after 4 to 6 months of consistent usage, benzodiazepines lose their therapeutic anti-anxiety effect and become ineffective.
Furthermore, it may be extremely difficult to wean yourself off anxiety drugs without experiencing unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, which may include rebound anxiety that is far worse than your original condition.
I need relief, and I need it now!
So where does it leave you if you’re going through a difficult time? Even though anxiety treatment is associated with negative side effects and risks, it may seem like a reasonable trade-off when panic and terror are taking control of your life. The final line is that anxiety medication should only be used when absolutely necessary. The use of medicine, especially as a short-term therapy for acute anxiety that is interfering with your ability to operate, may be beneficial in your situation. Many people, however, use anti-anxiety medications when counseling, exercise, or other self-help measures might work just as well or better, without the negative side effects of medicine.
It is up to you to weigh your alternatives and choose which is the best solution for you.
Benzodiazepines for anxiety
Benzodiazepines (also known as tranquilizers) are the most often prescribed form of anxiety medicine in the United States today. Treatment with Xanax (alprazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), Valium (diazepam), and Ativan (lorazepam) is usually completed within 30 minutes to an hour after taking the medication. As a result, they are extremely helpful when taken during a panic attack or similar episode of intense anxiety. The downside is that they are physically addicting, thus they are not suggested for long-term use.
However, it may also result in unintended adverse effects.
These issues can cause difficulties at employment, in school, and even in everyday tasks such as driving. The effects of medicine might continue for many hours or even all day the next day. The following are some of the most common adverse effects of benzodiazepines:
- For anxiety, benzodiazepines (also known as tranquilizers) are the most commonly given class of medications. Treatment with Xanax (alprazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), Valium (diazepam), and Ativan (lorazepam) is usually completed within 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the patient’s response time. So when taken during a panic attack or any period of intense anxiety, they are quite effective. The downside is that they are physically addicting, making them unsuitable for long-term use. In order to help you relax both physically and emotionally, benzodiazepines act by slowing down the neurological system. There are several undesirable side effects that might occur as a result of this procedure. When taking a high dose, these side effects are often more severe
- Nevertheless, some people report feeling tired, disoriented, and uncoordinated even when taking a modest amount. As a result, it might be difficult to do daily tasks such as driving or going to work. The effects of medicine might continue for many hours or even all day the next morning. A number of benzodiazepines have been linked to the following adverse effects.
- Memory issues, confusion, stomach distress, headache, and blurred vision are all possible symptoms.
Benzodiazepines can make depression worse
According to the Food and Drug Administration, benzodiazepines can exacerbate cases of pre-existing depression, and more recent research suggests that they may be associated with the development of treatment-resistant depression. Furthermore, benzodiazepines have been shown to promote emotional blunting or numbness, as well as an increase in suicidal thoughts and sentiments in certain individuals.
Benzodiazepine safety concerns
Benzodiazepines are typically not suggested for long-term usage due to the increased safety issues and risk of misuse that arise as a result of developing a tolerance to the medicine over time.
Drug dependence and withdrawal
When used on a regular basis, benzodiazepines can cause physical dependency and tolerance, with increasing dosages required to get the same level of anxiety alleviation as previously experienced. This occurs quickly—typically within a few of months, although it can occur in as little as a few weeks in certain cases. If you stop taking your medicine suddenly, you may have significant withdrawal symptoms such as the ones listed below:
- Anxiety, restlessness, and tremor are all on the rise. Insomnia, disorientation, and stomach ache are all symptoms of this condition. Depression, bewilderment, and panic attacks are all possible symptoms. a racing heart and excessive perspiration, and, in severe instances, a seizure
Numerous individuals believe that withdrawal symptoms signal the return of their initial anxiety problem, leading them to believe that they must restart their medicine. The medicine should be tapered off gradually to reduce the severity of the withdrawal syndrome.
Drug interactions and overdose
The use of benzodiazepines is generally considered to be safe when done very rarely and in modest doses, but when mixed with other central nervous system depressants, they can be extremely harmful and even fatal. Before mixing drugs, always consult with your doctor or pharmacist first. Don’t consume alcohol when taking benzodiazepines. When benzodiazepines are used with alcohol, they can result in a lethal overdose. Do not combine with narcotic pain relievers or sleeping drugs. Taking benzodiazepines in conjunction with prescription pain relievers or sleeping tablets might potentially result in a lethal overdose of the drugs.
Even on their own, antihistamines, which are contained in a variety of over-the-counter sleep, cold, and allergy medications, are sedating.
When using antidepressants together, exercise caution and common sense.
It is possible that you will need to alter your dose.
Paradoxical effects of benzodiazepines
The use of benzodiazepines is generally considered to be safe when done very rarely and in modest doses, but when mixed with other central nervous system depressants, they may be extremely harmful and even lethal. Before mixing drugs, always consult with your doctor or pharmacy. Benzodiazepines should not be consumed in large quantities. Overdosing on benzodiazepines while under the influence of alcohol can result in death. Pain relievers and sleeping medicines should not be used together. It is also possible to die from an overdose of benzodiazepines when taken alongside prescription pain relievers or sleep aids.
Even on their own, antihistamines, which are contained in a variety of over-the-counter sleep, cold, and allergy medications, are sedative.
When taking antidepressants, proceed with caution! SSRIs such as Prozac and Zoloft, as well as other antidepressants, might increase benzodiazepine toxicity in some individuals. It’s possible that you’ll need to alter your dose.
- Anxiety, impatience, agitation, hostility, and wrath are all on the rise
- Mania, impulsive conduct, and hallucinations are all symptoms of bipolar disorder.
Special benzodiazepine risk factors
It is possible to encounter unpleasant or even severe side effects after using benzodiazepines. However, there are certain people who are more at danger than others: People above the age of 65. Benzodiazepines have a sedating impact on older persons who are more vulnerable to their effects. Even low amounts of marijuana can produce disorientation, forgetfulness, loss of balance, and cognitive impairment that seems to be dementia-like in nature. The use of benzodiazepines by the elderly is connected with an increased risk of falling, breaking hips and legs, and being involved in vehicle crashes.
- Individuals who have a history of substance misuse.
- Women who are pregnant or nursing.
- Benzodiazepines are also excreted in breast milk in significant amounts.
- If medicine is required, the objective is to administer the least effective dose possible.
The connection between benzodiazepines and accidents
Due to the effects of benzodiazepines, which produce sleepiness and impaired coordination, you are more likely to be involved in an accident at home, at work, or while driving. When using benzodiazepines, exercise extreme caution when driving, operating machinery, or doing any other activity that necessitates physical coordination.
SSRI antidepressants for anxiety
Many drugs that were initially licensed for the treatment of depression are now being used to treat anxiety as well. In compared to benzodiazepines, there is a lower risk of reliance and misuse with benzodiazepines. Antidepressants, on the other hand, take up to 4 to 6 weeks to begin alleviating anxiety symptoms, thus they cannot be used on a “as needed” basis. Their use is restricted to persistent anxiety disorders that necessitate continuing therapy. Antidepressants that are most commonly recommended for anxiety include SSRIs such as Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro, and Celexa, among other medications.
The following are some of the most common adverse effects of SSRIs:
- Fatigue, nausea, irritability, drowsiness, weight gain, and diarrhea are all common side effects.
- Insomnia, sexual dysfunction, nervousness, headaches, dry mouth, and increased perspiration are among symptoms of PMS.
Although physical dependency does not develop as quickly with antidepressants as it does with other medications, withdrawal can still be a problem.
Symptoms of antidepressant withdrawal might include acute sadness and exhaustion, anger and anxiety, as well as flu-like symptoms and sleeplessness, if the medication is stopped too soon after starting.
Antidepressant medication and suicide risk
Antidepressants have been shown to make depression worse rather than better in certain people, increasing their risk of suicide, aggression, and even homicidal conduct in some individuals. While this is especially true for children and young people, everyone who takes antidepressants should be constantly monitored as well. If this is the person’s first time taking depression medication or if the dose has just been modified, close monitoring is recommended. Anxiety, panic attacks, sleeplessness, aggression, restlessness, and acute agitation are all signs that your drug is making things worse.
If you notice any of the danger symptoms in yourself or a loved one, get medical attention or seek therapy right once.
During the first two months of antidepressant medication, the risk of suicide is at its highest.
Other types of medication for anxiety
Anti-anxiety medications such as Buspirone and beta blockers may potentially be used to treat the condition.
In addition to being recognized by the brand name BuSpar, buspirone is a newer anti-anxiety medication that also has a slight tranquilizing effect. Buspirone lowers anxiety by boosting serotonin levels in the brain, similar to how SSRIs work, while simultaneously reducing dopamine levels. Buspirone has a gradual onset of action when compared to benzodiazepines, requiring around two weeks to begin functioning. However, it is not as sedating as marijuana, and it does not impair memory or coordination, and the withdrawal symptoms are modest.
Its efficacy, on the other hand, is restricted.
The following are some of the most common negative effects of buspirone:
- Constipation, nervousness, diarrhea, and a dry mouth are all symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Constipation, nervousness, diarrhea, and a dry mouth are all symptoms of a gastrointestinal upset.
Medication isn’t your only option for anxiety relief
Constipation, nervousness, diarrhea, and dry mouth are all symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Deciding if anxiety medication is right for you
If you’re attempting to determine whether or not to use medication to manage your anxiety, it’s crucial to balance the advantages and disadvantages with your doctor. It’s also crucial to educate yourself on the most prevalent adverse effects of the anxiety medication you’re contemplating taking. There are a variety of side effects associated with anxiety medications, ranging from minor inconveniences like dry mouth to more serious issues like acute nausea or significant weight gain. When taking any anxiety medication, you must weigh the risks and advantages of the medicine against one another.
Questions to ask yourself and a mental health professional
- If I have an anxiety problem, is medication the best course of action? Is it worth it to me to put up with unpleasant side effects in exchange for anxiety reduction? What non-pharmacological therapies for anxiety could be effective
- Is it possible for me to devote the necessary time and resources to non-drug treatments such as cognitive-behavioral therapy? What self-help techniques would be effective in helping me bring my anxiety under control
- In the event that I decide to take anxiety medication, should I also investigate alternative forms of treatment? Is it truly my anxiousness that’s the problem? In other words, is there something else going on, such as an underlying medical issue or discomfort, for example
Questions to ask your doctor
- When it comes to my anxiety, is medication the best option? In exchange for anxiety alleviation, are I ready to put up with potentially harmful side effects? It is possible that non-pharmacological therapies for anxiety can be beneficial. What about non-drug therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, do I have the time and am I willing to seek them? In what ways can I be able to regulate my anxiety using self-help practices
- Should I investigate other forms of therapy if I decide to take anxiety medications? What exactly is my issue with anxiety? In other words, is there something else going on, such as an underlying medical problem or discomfort, for example?
Melinda Smith, M.A., Lawrence Robinson, and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D. are the authors of this article. Anna Glezer, M.D., has reviewed this article.
Anna Glezer, M.D. is a Harvard-trained doctor who holds combined appointments in the reproductive psychiatry and obstetrics and gynecology departments at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. She is the creator of the Mind Body Pregnancy organization.