One of the most significant mental issues nowadays is anxiety. You have probably had a point when you felt overwhelmed due to heart-pounding panic, exhausted from a sleepless night, and paralyzed by fear. Most people when they enter this particular point think that medications may help.
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The question is whether drugs are the best answer that will help you. Since the number of people that suffer from anxiety increased in the last few decades, you can find numerous types of medications used in the treatment of anxiety disorders.
The most common and traditional anti-anxiety drugs are benzodiazepines and latest options such as SSRI antidepressants. Barbiturates and benzodiazepines can provide you only temporary relief, but they come with severe safety concerns and side effects.
It is essential to understand that they are not a cure, and people still think whether these medications feature long-term effectiveness. For example, the American Academy of Family Physicians feels that benzodiazepines do not have therapeutic effect after six months of regular use.
At the same time, JAMA Psychiatry (click here to enter their official website) created an analysis that SSRI is not useful for treating anxiety and in some cases it works as a placebo. The main problem with anti-anxiety medications is that they are addictive and feature severe withdrawals including other anxiety issues that could be worse than before you started to use them.
You Need Something To Help You Immediately
If you’re suffering from anxiety, you can take a pill that will help you get immediate results. However, anxiety relief comes with some dangers and side effects, and it can still cause severe anxiety and panic after they stop working.
The bottom line is that you have to consult with your psychiatrist if you want to cure anxiety. For severe anxiety that interferes with your ability to function in real time, using medication could be helpful, especially if you take it short term.
However, many people tend to use it when other strategies don’t work such as exercise, therapy, and self-help, which is a more straightforward way to relax. Of course, the usage of benzodiazepines will help you ease symptoms, but they are not perfect for everyone, and it is not the answer you look for the long term.
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You Should Use Them In Short Term
Benzos are gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor antagonist that feature anticonvulsant, hypnotic and muscle relaxant effects. You should have in mind that they are intended for short-term use and for treatment of acute conditions such as severe anxiety that causes extreme distress.
The doctor can also prescribe you during alcohol withdrawal, insomnia, muscle spasm or before surgery. Even though the number of prescriptions has fallen in the last few decades, still millions of orders are issued on an annual basis. In England alone during 2011, more than 11 million prescriptions were dispensed.
Not All Of Them Are Same
There are different types of benzos on the market. For example, long-lasting benzos such as nitrazepam will provide you effects the following day, which means that repeated doses could easily lead to intoxication.
Short-acting benzos such as temazepam will produce a slight hangover effect, and it features comprehensive withdrawal symptoms. At the same time, some benzos are much stronger than others, which means that you can easily overdo it and cause severe health issues.
They Feature Severe Side Effects
The depressive action of benzos on the central nervous system can include these side effects
- Increased reaction time
- Aggression or hostility
- Slurred speech
long-term side effects include poor concentration, visual impairment, emotional blunting and impaired motor skills.
If you stop using benzos cold turkey, it can cause toxic psychosis, confusion, and even convulsions. Therefore, it is essential to tamper with dosage and to reduce it gradually so that you can experience only minor withdrawal symptoms.
You can reduce daily dose by 10% to 12.5% every two weeks, or even more gradually in some specific cases. During withdrawal, you should switch short-acting benzos with an equivalent dose of long-acting benzos.