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What are people's experiences of anti-anxiety meds?

I've had an anxiety disorder for a very long time but recently it's really started to impact my life and physical in a negative way. I've thought about anti-anxiety meds (I've tried antidepressants in the past but to no avail), but I'm nervous about any medication that might effect my heart, such as beta-blockers, the thought in itself gives me anxiety! Please tell me some of your experiences with them, and any pros/cons you can think of. Cheers :)
3 Responses
Avatar universal
I've suffered from anxiety for most of my life. I've can't speak on prescription medication because I try to avoid them. I've had good success with natural medications. A few I can name are Griffonia Simplicifolia, Mitragyna speciosa, and CBD oil capsules. CBD oil comes from cannabis. People are quick to judge it because of that fact but CBD doesn't have psychoactive properties because it doesn't contain THC. CBD oil and Mitragyna speciosa were great in treating my anxiety, depression, overall well being, and I got great sleep. I'm fortunate enough to live in a state where CBD is available and legal. Another great thing about natural medications is that they tend to have many good side benefits. There are many other natural medications for anxiety but those are the ones I've tried and had great success with.
Take any advice here especially anecdotal with a grain of salt.
Do lots of research before just taking what you think is a safe natural pill. Some have serious side effects for certain people, so make sure it isn't something that isn't right for you. For instance licorice can sometimes increase blood pressure to the point of fatality,
Yes, licorice can do that if you take a ton of it but people don't take a ton of it.  If you know anything about licorice, you generally consume it for most purposes in the DGL form, which eliminates the part that raises blood pressure.  While plants do have many potential side effects, so do all drugs, and plants are much much safer than drugs.  Just compare the number of serious complaints reported to CDC.  But I agree, if you don't know anything about a plant remedy, don't use it until you do your homework.  I wouldn't personally use cannabis, for example, or any part of it, for anxiety, as it can cause it, but also know that when you isolate one active ingredient from any plant, including cannabis, you're not really taking a natural remedy anymore, you're taking a pharmaceutical product.  
Avatar universal
I have had pretty significant anxiety and OCD since I was very young. I'm 17 now and have been on Zoloft since I was 12. My anxiety and OCD is still really bad and I've recently been put in therapy... I honestly don't know if the medication helps much, but I have been instructed not to go off of it just yet until CBT works. I do think the Zoloft helps a little: It reduces the physical symptoms of anxiety such as the panic attacks and the "end-of-the-world" feelings, but the anxiety and the anxiety-provoking topics are still there in your head.
paxiled, are you sure you are the one who knows anything about licorice?  Guy took 50 jelly beans a day and was on death's door.'
Jelly beans?  Most likely no actual licorice in a jelly bean -- they use artificial flavoring.  Any licorice in them would be so small in amount it wouldn't amount to much.  Sometimes you have to look further.  You might be right about this, but that would be a very sensitive person indeed who was probably suffering such proclivity for high blood pressure already that he was ready for problems.  The body has limits and we don't know what they are and when we've reached them until we get there.  The fact someone ate a steak and got a heart attack doesn't mean that one steak gave him the heart attack, it means his heart was ready to go and got the final push.  But candy generally doesn't have much actual licorice in it, it's much cheaper to flavor it artificially.  It takes a lot of actual licorice, the herb, to cause high blood pressure, taken over a period of time, in a person with a predisposition to high blood pressure.  But as I say, most don't use licorice in that form anymore -- they use a form that takes out the part that causes the high blood pressure.  If you don't know this, you're not ready to be using herbs.  I agree with that point.  But licorice has been used for centuries in its original form and there is little record of a lot of high blood pressure resulting because they knew how to use it carefully.  We've lost that knowledge, having entered the pharmaceutical age in the late 1800's in circumstances you can study if you're interested -- it was a financial move, not a health move, at the time.  Just don't throw out centuries of tried and true medicine because of propaganda by the pharmaceutical industry that wants all the money to itself.  There's room for everyone to find what works best for them at a particular time, taking all necessary precautions.  I take a lot of natural medicine, but it was a drug that ruined my life.  That's anecdotal, but the numbers are clear -- aspirin alone has killed more people than all the whole herbs put together possibly through all of recorded history.  But aspirin originally was a component of a plant medicine and was pretty safe until they isolated it.  So it goes.
Okay, had to "bite."  This guy was eating a 50 jelly bean bag every day.  The condition is so rare doctors didn't initially know what the problem was.  Yeah, could happen, but not if you know how to use the herb.  Like to know the jelly bean company, though -- it's so rare to use the actual herb anymore, as the article states -- if you keep it to a more moderate level, it might have been very beneficial to the person.  As I said, you have to use it over a long period of time and use a lot of it, and this person did that.  Had be been more informed about licorice the herb as part of our education about all medicine, not just drugs, he would have known.
Avatar universal
Have you tried therapy yet?  Beta blockers are really only been researched for social anxiety, and are used mostly when there are blood pressure or heart-related symptoms reported.  Generally, by themselves, they aren't very effective.  The most effective drugs are antidepressants, because when they work they work all the time and aren't technically addictive.  Benzos work more directly on anxiety, but are addictive if taken regularly.  All can be very hard to stop taking, and may permanently affect the ability of your brain to handle your problems.  If you need them, if all else has failed, then you need to live your life.  If you haven't exhausted your other remedies, it might not be time for them.  If you do take them, do it with a psychiatrist, not a regular doc.  Make sure the psychiatrist respects the drugs and knows how to not only use them but how to help you stop taking them safely and suited to you.  But as for which ones work, these drugs are weird because the brain is weird and little understood.  Everyone will have their own experience.  What works for one won't necessarily work for another.  For me, years of therapy didn't work and I ended up on meds.  They helped, but not as much as hoped.  They have side effects, and can be difficult.  If you have a quack for a doc, you can be in for a world of hurt.  Do your homework, and if you do decide to use them, don't stop doing therapy -- if you never solve the underlying problem, you'll have to take the drugs forever.  That's not the end of the world, but it's not ideal, either.  But do not let your whole life disappear if drugs are the only thing left that works.  Someone mentioned natural remedies -- if you want to go down that route, see a naturopath or practitioner of integrated medicine who has training in them if you don't.  As mentioned, they too can have problems, but if you stick to the ones that have actually been used, in whole form, for centuries, there is a lot of human experience taking them that doesn't exist with drugs.  Medicine is medicine -- whatever works best for a particular problem and a particular person is what's best.
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