Thursday, December 4, 2008

Anxiety Drugs: How Much Do You Know About Them?

Anxiety drugs refer to any drug that is specifically prescribed to alleviate symptoms of anxiety disorders. They can be prescribed as medication to excessive anxiety, tension, nervousness, and short-term control of social phobias. These medications serve as a preventative or controlling measure for calming and relaxing people. Although these medicines are often called as anti-anxiety drugs or agents, they can come under a number of generic names like alprazolam and hydrochloride buspirone. If you are thinking of getting a prescription for anti-anxiety drugs, you would do well to consult a doctor and learn a thing or two about anxiety drugs.

How Anxiety Drugs Can Help

Anti-anxiety agents or anxiety drugs are used to treat temporary bouts of specific phobias, as well as episodes of social phobia. They can be used to provide temporary relief or prevent attacks of significant anxiety symptoms. These symptoms may include any or all of the following depending on the extent of the phobia or anxiety disorder:

Unjustified and persistent fear of a situation. Often, people who suffer from anxiety disorders exhibit an unjustified and persistent fear of a situation that they themselves recognize as unnatural. This fear is often accompanied by resulting symptoms like palpitations, shortness of breath, and trembling.

Feeling of losing control. Most people suffering from anxiety disorders feel that they are losing control of the situation. Although their fear is often irrational, they have trouble getting a hold of themselves to stop the fear from controlling them.

Anxiety drugs are used to control or repress these two primary symptoms of anxiety disorders. They either target the nervous system to sedate the person or correct a chemical imbalance in the brain that causes the anxiety.

Possible Side Effects of Anxiety Drugs

Although anxiety drugs are effective in treating anxiety disorders, they can come with several minor side effects. Some of the most common side effects include temporary disorientation, sedateness, headaches, apathy, and slurred speech. As such, care should be taken when taking any kind of anxiety drug.

Prolonged use of anxiety drugs can also lead to substance abuse especially if the prescribed dosage is disregarded. This said, it is important to consult with a doctor before getting anxiety drugs so that he can prescribe the right dosage and explain the possible side effects. Most people avoid taking these anti-anxiety agents for fear of side effects or being branded as lunatics but they are just misinformed.

Taking anxiety drugs to treat and control anxiety attacks is a far more sensible route to take than letting these irrational fears override natural human instincts like socializing. It is better to be informed and take the necessary precaution than live life in fear of getting another anxiety attack which greatly reduces one’s quality of life.

If you are interested in using anxiety drugs, better inform your doctor first to ask if it is recommended for your particular condition. Using anxiety drugs without your doctor's approval can have some nasty results as discussed in a previous section.

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