Psychopharmacology Community
129 Members
1088430 tn?1259163373

Cymbalta good for anxiety?

My neurologist put me on Cymbalta 2wks ago actually for the primary reason of chronic headaches/migraines. However, since he knew that I battled anxiety as well(& he says the 2 are related), he said that's why he chose "that one" b/c he said it's very good for anxiety(one stop shop). In addition, I've been taking Neurontin x3 daily again for headaches but noticed it's helped "calm" me down. He told me to take cymbalta @ night (b/c my head hurts on the pillow). 1st wk 30mg, then stair stepped to 60mg. Taking the 30mg 1st wk I fell asleep great and got up wide awake @ normal time. Other than the typical sick stomach feel it was great. After starting the 60mg 4 days ago I've fallen asleep just fine but start waking up wide awake ALL through the rest of the night (starting around 3am) and I don't even go to bed until around 11pm! I know it's normal to not notice that my anxiety hasn't improved yet considering how soon. But, with something that gets me so wide eyed and alert @ night, can I really expect it to later? I thought anxiety help was to "calm" you down, not the opposite? Don't want to complain to the doc b/c it's honestly begg to help my headaches. Is it "pepping" me up b/c of the combo w/ the neurontin? Would it be better for anxiety if I took Cymbalta in the am? Any advice would be appreciated (:
2 Responses
Avatar universal
Cymbalta can be stimulating, because it targets norepinephrine, not just serotonin.  Could explain your reaction.  Not a doctor, but it seems an odd treatment for headaches.  I used to get migraines; my doctor prescribed me TM -- transcendental meditation.  Thought he was crazy, but after awhile I tried it.  Had three of them in the thirty five years since.  Still got agoraphobia, but no migraines.  Just food for thought.
1348302 tn?1286579303
I've been on 120mg of Cymbalta for almost 4 years.  

My PM Doc put me on it to treat horrendous nerve pain, which it does make a difference with.  I was able to reduce (greatly!) the level of opiate based pain meds I was on as a result of the Cymbalta.


I was still working when I firts started it, and I felt it made me feel "Zombie" during the day, so my Doc switched me to taking both pills @night, which helped with the daytime drowsiness.

My sleep patterns were/are completely wacky, and I have the wide awake and alert "wakeups" as well, but I am pretty sure it is anxiety attacks/pain levels that wake me up. And that was happening before I started the Cymbalta, so I am inclined to think that for me, it is not related to the cymbalta.

I have mixed feelings about Cymbalta,
My new Doc recently added Lyrica as well, and that has brought a whole new set of "side effects" in addition to the Cymbalta, but he did say that they work well together for my issues.(Muscle spasm, nerve pain, muscle twitches/tics, burning shooting pain, annoyingly strange sensory malfunctions, etc)

If I had known ahead of time the difficulties people can have getting off of the cymbalta, I am not sure if I would have started it so willingly, but.......Nuthin I can do about it now  :)

Before the Cymbalta I was on Topamax for the nerve pain.  The nurses called it "DOPE-a MAX"  and it definitely made me way more zombie feeling than the Cymbalta, with less relief from the shooting electric nerve pain, but I think it is also used for Migraines, not sure tho, and I am no Dr. so don't take my word for it.

On meditation:
it works. it works. it works. its FREE, and it works!  

I know it sounds cheesy.  I am kind of "hippie dippie" so it was easier for me to be open to the idea of healing myself with meditation, lol.  I ordered a set of CD's by John Kabat-Zinn.  HE apparently started a "mindfullness based stress reduction for pain" program for long term chronic pain patients.

Personally, one of the hardest things about being in Chronic Pain is what it does to my mindset.  Some days it is as if my brain has been "Hijacked" by the pain, and it makes me  nutty, and emotionally like a toxic H-Bomb ready to explode,  The MBSR meditation really helps with that.  It is a little different than transcendental Med, ("TM") but in my opinion either one is helpful. :)

I hope some of that helps :)  It can be really daunting to deal with anxiety and not be sure where its coming from, or what is making it worse, thats why I think the MBSR helps me :)

You must join this user group in order to participate in this discussion.
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.
These common ADD/ADHD myths could already be hurting your child
This article will tell you more about strength training at home, giving you some options that require little to no equipment.
In You Can Prevent a Stroke, Dr. Joshua Yamamoto and Dr. Kristin Thomas help us understand what we can do to prevent a stroke.
Smoking substitute may not provide such a healthy swap, after all.