Thursday, August 14, 2008

Mental health professionals use a variety of methods to help people overcome anxiety disorders. These include psychoactive drugs and psychotherapy, particularly behavior therapy. Other techniques, such as exercise, hypnosis, meditation, and biofeedback, may also prove helpful.

A. Medications

Common Psychotherapeutic Drugs

Psychiatrists often prescribe benzodiazepines, a group of tranquilizing drugs, to reduce anxiety in people with high levels of anxiety. Benzodiazepines help to reduce anxiety by stimulating the GABA neurotransmitter system. Common benzodiazepines include alprazolam (Xanax), clonazepam (Klonopin), and diazepam (Valium). Two classes of antidepressant drugs—tricyclics and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)—also have proven effective in treating certain anxiety disorders.

Benzodiazepines can work quickly with few unpleasant side effects, but they can also be addictive. In addition, benzodiazepines can slow down or impair motor behavior or thinking and must be used with caution, particularly in elderly persons. SSRIs take longer to work than the benzodiazepines but are not addictive. Some people experience anxiety symptoms again when they stop taking the medications.

B. Psychotherapy

Therapists who attribute the cause of anxiety to unconscious, internal conflicts may use psychoanalysis to help people understand and resolve their conflicts. Other types of psychotherapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, have proven effective in treating anxiety disorders. In cognitive-behavioral therapy, the therapist often educates the person about the nature of his or her particular anxiety disorder. Then, the therapist may help the person challenge irrational thoughts that lead to anxiety. For example, to treat a person with a snake phobia, a therapist might gradually expose the person to snakes, beginning with pictures of snakes and progressing to rubber snakes and real snakes. The patient can use relaxation techniques acquired in therapy to overcome the fear of snakes.

Research has shown psychotherapy to be as effective or more effective than medications in treating many anxiety disorders. Psychotherapy may also provide more lasting benefits than medications when patients discontinue treatment.

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Anonymous said...

My name is Karen Tobin and i would like to show you my personal experience with Klonopin.

I am 37 years old. Have been on Klonopin for at least 4 months now. I have been taking Klonopin twice per day (once in the AM and once in the PM). My prescription is for .5 mg and I take one pill or 1 1/2 pills depending on whether or not I need it. Perhaps I just have an extremely non-addictive personality, but this drug has been in no way addictive. I feel better than ever, as my crippling anxiety has disappeared and I sleep very well. I do not get a "high" from the pill nor do I ever experience problems. I drive daily and experienced no dizziness or ill effects. This was the only drug that worked for me after several others failed. Please give it a try before discounting it altogether.

I have experienced some of these side effects-
None, a little sleepiness, but nothing ground breaking

I hope this information will be useful to others,
Karen Tobin

Klonopin Prescription Medication

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