Peer-influenced content. Sources you trust. No registration required. This is HCN.

Medical News Today (MNT)Everything You Need to Know About Anxiety Medications

A thorough examination of the medications, from benzos to SSRIs

When discussing anxiety treatment options with patients, it’s crucial to provide clear and concise information about the available medications. Understanding the different classes of anti-anxiety medications, their mechanisms, potential side effects, and the appropriate contexts for their use can empower physicians to guide their patients effectively through their treatment options. This summary aims to distill essential information from a detailed patient-focused article into key points that physicians can use in conversations with their patients about anxiety medication.

Key Points:

  • Main Anti-Anxiety Medications:
    • SSRIs (eg, citalopram, escitalopram) are the first-line treatment for generalized anxiety and OCD.
    • SNRIs (eg, duloxetine, venlafaxine) are preferred for anxiety but less so for OCD.
    • TCAs (eg, amitriptyline, imipramine) are older and less favored due to side effects.
    • Benzodiazepines (eg, alprazolam, diazepam) are used for acute anxiety episodes but have dependency risks.

Additional Points:

  • Beta-blockers and buspirone are alternatives when first-line medications are ineffective.
  • MAOIs are rarely prescribed due to their severe interaction profile.
  • Medications typically start to show effects within 2-6 weeks.
  • Patients under 25 may have an increased risk of suicidal thoughts when taking antidepressants.

HCN Healer Handbook
“As we explore treatment options for your anxiety, it’s important to understand the different medications available and how they may affect you. SSRIs, like sertraline or escitalopram, are commonly prescribed because they’re generally well-tolerated and effective. However, if you’re experiencing more acute symptoms, we might consider a short-term prescription of a benzodiazepine. It’s crucial to be aware of the potential side effects, such as drowsiness or dizziness, and the importance of not discontinuing medication abruptly. Together, we’ll monitor your progress and adjust the treatment as needed to find the best approach for your individual needs.”

More on Mental Health

The Healthcare Communications Network is owned and operated by IQVIA Inc.

Click below to leave this site and continue to IQVIA’s Privacy Choices form