Serious question. Meds or no meds? - Anxiety Support

Anxiety Support

47,323 members47,248 posts

Serious question. Meds or no meds?

Dnel82
Dnel82

I've toughed it out for the past three years managing myself with my disorder. I've tried talk therapy with a psychologist but unfortunately it didn't work and he wasn't that great, and it just got to expensive and is something i can't afford. I'm not saying talk therapy is ineffective but you need to find the best fit and afford it obviously.

Now on to my question. I've heard the horror stories about taking medication for anxiety. I've read countless posts on here from those seeking help and assurance about side effects or withdrawal issues. I understand medication works different for each person. But the negative aspect seems to out weight the positive.

Can meds work or are they really that bad?

9 Replies

They do work for me till recently I was on a low dose everything was fine till last for night

I think the problem with Meds is that by design they ‘hope’ to do something. They have a vague efficiency rate and to close that gap you are offered one after another until something fits. At that point it may just be a placebo effect. Most of these are SSRIs are designed to regulate serotonin, but as far as I know serotonin cannot be scientifically measured. What is known is that serotonin is mostly made in the stomach. This is why there is some proof that digestive health can effect your mind. I personally think they are deeply connected. I am on some supplements that have made my severe OCD/anxiety more tolerable. More than I used to be able to do I can do now. Check out this thing called an OATS test. It really tells you a lot about how your body is absorbing nutrients and such. I am not saying this is a cure all but I think the best treatments for anxiety is through a regiment of nutrition, meditation, and CBT or life coaching, if they had that magical pill to cure a maladaptive mind it would be the hottest drug on the market. I have taken Valium to sleep and it works! Yet I know I can’t take that every day because it’s an addictive drug that has some long term effects. So I take it only if I travel on a plane which is like never. But that pill that makes us feel normal has yet to be perfected yet. If you decide to take meds try to keep a journal of how you feel. I experienced some great moments of feeling free but I also gained weight, had no libido and in the case of one med was content to lie in bed for weeks at a time while my brain short circuited here and there (brain zaps, so freaky!).

They work for me. Been on them for years. Most side effects are minor stuff like dry mouth,stomach upset,drowsiness and will disappear after a week or two. People don't talk as much about success stories as they do the horror stories.

In my case when I first went on them I felt so horrible that dealing with side effects wasn't even an issue. After a few weeks on them I felt so much better like my normal self.

I have gone off then a few times but life events trigger anxiety and depression and have to go back on them again. I've come to realize that I probably be on them the rest of my life and I'm ok with that.

Hope this helps and maybe a good talk with your dr. About your concerns would help you decide.

Dnel82
Dnel82 in reply to Jamie2018

Mind if I ask what you take and what triggers your anxiety?

I take zoloft. My recent trigger was a scare about breast cancer. In the past it was when my youngest daughter moved out on her own, before that it was my husband's stressful job(maximum security prison) the passing of my father in law. But the first time was from smoking weed.

Pretty minor stuff but I guess I'm super sensitive. Also I think I have a chemical imbalance that why I think the med works so well for me

I take medication for my general anxiety and ocd and it definitely saved me along side CBT, did have minor side effects but nothing to bad but medication works different for everyone, I was on one before this one I’m on and that didn’t work for me but now I’m on sertraline and has worked wonders so it’s finding the right one for you

Hi Dnel82!

SSRI's and SNRI's are very safe, have low side-effect profiles, and really seem to help a good number of people. The first SSRI (Prozac) came to market in 1988. We have 30 years of research on this drug! And many SSRI's came soon after prozac. That's a lot of time for us to find serious unwanted effects or dangers. Drop in libido is the most common issue reported. That's not a small deal, but it still isn't super common, is often mild, and if the trade off is feeling so much better....

The other med classes out there are now usually second line. Some are also very good but with more drug-drug interactions to be careful of, and there are side effects of some of these classes.

I get the concerns. I know what it feels like to be in your shoes right now. This decision is of course yours (with your doc's guidance), and no one else's. Just don't forget to tell your anxiety to shush while you use that wise part of your mind to make the decision (and that wise part is in there- Anxiety is just shouting so loud it's hard to hear :)) Anxiety can make us so indecisive that way, I know!

I have to recommend, wholeheartedly, therapy for anyone struggling. With or without a med. It IS a type of medicine if you get the right therapist. Even if it's just for a short while, it can really help people on their way. The therapist should know a variety of therapeutic approaches, including traditional psychotherapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, and most definitely CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). CBT is the most effective known treatment for anxiety. CBT is a huge component of Dr. Claire Weekes' approach. Yes you can read her book and listen to her, but having a therapist work with you, coach you, challenge you- really help you through the behavior piece- that is tremendously helpful IMO. I'm wishing you all the best Dnel!

I think ultimately, that choice is one that only you can make. I’ve been there when it seems that I’ve tried other routes and now I have to decide whether or not to take meds. Well I decided to take them and for me it has helped tremendously. Yes, they have side effects but once you find one that works for you it can really help you get through. I searched all the meds and side effects when I was thinking about taking meds and scared myself, but I just got to a. Point that I New I needed to take something to help me along with my counseling etc. g

Good luck to you, if you feel that you need more help and decide to take meds don’t feel bad, if you have talked with your doc and you come up with a plan then do what you feel is best for you.

For me, the medicine has helped me, it has desensitized the sensation of my panic.... meaning I still have the intrusive thoughts but the panic doesn’t cripple me... I also have very minimal desires to control stuff (ocd) Which before , this was where my intrusive thoughts sink in is obsessing over thoughts and freaking out because I can’t control it. Thinking never goes away ... it’s your relationship with your thoughts.

You may also like...