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Is Clonidine Used For Anxiety

About Clonidine: Label And Off

Clonidine (Catapres) For Anxiety – Does it Work? Pros and Cons.

Clonidine is a prescription medication that was originally approved for use in the treatment of high blood pressure. Today, it is used to address anxiety and several other psychiatric disorders and entities, thanks to its calming effect. The extended-release version of clonidine is FDA-approved for treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children aged 6 years and above. It can be used alone or in combination with other medications.

While not a legitimate indication, clonidine is used to manage general anxiety disorders. It is also prescribed for patients who get panic attacks. It treats tics in people with Tourettes syndrome. Managing withdrawal symptoms is a common off-label use of clonidine. The drug induces a calming effect that helps to ease the withdrawal systems. Doctors commonly recommend clonidine for patients that are dealing with cigarette, alcohol, and opioid cessation. Other uses include managing menopausal flushes and menstrual cramps in women. Clonidine is also used to manage chronic and acute pain for some patients such as cancer patients.

Does Clonidine Help To Treat Anxiety

In one study, published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, results showed the effectiveness of Clonidine in decreasing anxiety attacks and psychological symptoms in a group of 23 patients .

One of the known effects of Clonidine in the human body is related to lowering down blood pressure and heart rate, relaxing the arteries and increasing the blood supply to the heart.

Other related know effects have been suggested, as in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder of ADHA in children, reducing tics commonly found in Tourette-syndrome and combined therapy for severing cancer-related pain.

Additionally, some of the off-label uses have been related to the management of withdrawal symptoms from opioids, benzodiazepines and alcohol, insomnia and post-traumatic stress disorder .

You might have heard some of the commercial names such as Catapres and Dixarit. However, the generic name is Clonidine Hydrochloride.

Some Side Effects Can Be Serious If You Experience Any Of The Following Symptoms Call Your Doctor Immediately Or Get Emergency Medical Treatment:

  • rash
  • swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • hoarseness

Clonidine may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone .

Read Also: Does Anxiety Ever Go Away

How Long Do I Have To Take Clonidine

The duration underwhihc you will have to be treated with the drug depends on your symptoms, the intensity, severity, length, and frequency of the symptoms that you experience.

The time you need to take the drug will depend on the evaluation of your doctors and your response to the drug. It might take you weeks to see improvements or even months.

However the side effects on your body might also affect the doctors decision as to whether you need to be taken off the drug and switched to a different one.

It is important that you do not abruptly stop taking the drug without consulting your doctor and you must be weaned off the drug if they recommend stopping treatment. The best thing you can do is consult your doctor about how long you need to take the drug.

What If I Miss A Dose

Clonidine for Anxiety: Benefits, Dosage and Reviews · Mango Clinic

If you miss a dose of clonidine IR oral tablets, take it as soon as possible. But if its almost time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and just take your next dose as usual. Do not take extra doses to make up for missing doses. Doing so could raise your risk for side effects.

If you miss more than one dose of clonidine, talk with your doctor right away. If you go without this medication for too long, it can cause your blood pressure to increase rapidly. This can cause dangerous side effects. To read more about this, see the Clonidine IR oral tablet withdrawal and dependence section below.

To help make sure that you dont miss a dose, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or timer on your phone or downloading a reminder app. A kitchen timer can work, too.

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Pharmacotherapy Of Anxiety Disorders: Current And Emerging Treatment Options

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, United States
  • 2Silver Hill Hospital, New Canaan, CT, United States
  • 3Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, United States
  • 4Department of Neuroscience, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, United States
  • 5Department of Psychiatry and Centre for Neuroscience Studies, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON, Canada
  • 6Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States
  • 7Clinical Research Division, Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, Orangeburg, NY, United States
  • 8Department of Psychiatry, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, United States

Pharmacist Tips For Catapres

Catapres is usually taken together with other medications for better blood pressure control

Many people notice drowsiness and dizziness, especially after they first start on Catapres . The patch usually causes fewer side effects.

Take the tablet at the same time every day and avoid skipping doses. If you are on the patch, pick a day of the week that helps you remember to change it every 7 days.

If you are prescribed the patch, make sure the area is clean and dry before applying. Apply it to a hairless area on the chest or upper arm, and make sure to change the location with each new patch every week.

Prices for Catapres start at just $4.00 with a GoodRx coupon. Theyâre fast, easy-to-use and free!

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Selection Criteria And Methods

One reviewer screened citations and selected studies. In the first level of screening, titles and abstracts were reviewed and potentially relevant articles were retrieved and assessed for inclusion. The final selection of full-text articles was based on the inclusion criteria presented in .

Selection Criteria.

What Other Information Should I Know

Clonidine – Mechanism, precautions, side effects & uses

Keep all appointments with your doctor. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly to determine your response to clonidine.

Your doctor may ask you to check your pulse daily and will tell you how rapid it should be. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to teach you how to take your pulse. If your pulse is slower or faster than it should be, call your doctor before taking this medication that day.

To relieve dry mouth caused by clonidine, chew gum or suck sugarless hard candy.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

Also Check: How To Deal With Anxiety And Depression

Can I Use Clonidine For Anxiety

The Food and Drug Administration has not approved Clonidine for the treatment of anxiety. However, some studies suggest that it can help reduce the symptoms of some anxiety disorders. It is worth noting that these effects were most prevalent when the patients took the drug alongside other anxiety medications.

A study done on Clonidine found that patients who take the drug have fewer anxiety attacks and psychic symptoms. The somatic symptoms patients experienced also decreased, but only minimally. However, 17% of the patients reported that their symptoms worsened while taking Clonidine for anxiety.

Taking any drug for its off-label uses can be dangerous if done without supervision. It may result in various side effects that can cause more harm than good. The FDA has likewise contraindicated Clonidine for some people. Make sure to first consult a medical expert before taking Clonidine for anxiety.

Drugs That Increase Drowsiness

Dont combine these drugs with clonidine. Taking these drugs with clonidine might increase drowsiness:

  • barbiturates such as:
  • hydrochlorothiazide
  • furosemide
  • Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.

    This drug comes with several warnings.

    Also Check: How To Help A Child With Social Anxiety

    Clonidine Rehab Treatment At Northpoint Seattle

    Even though clonidine is an effective medication for controlling high blood pressure, ADHD, and anxiety, many people abuse it and end up addicted to it. Breaking the cycle of addiction is intimidating and even frustrating.

    Finding a professional rehab to help you start your recovery journey can be the step you need to succeed in sobriety. Our clonidine treatment program includes:

    • Family therapy
    • Individual therapy
    • Dual diagnosis treatment

    If you or a loved one is struggling with clonidine addiction, there is no better time to find help than now. We can provide a referral to a valuable detox center to manage withdrawal symptoms before beginning our flexible outpatient program.

    Call us at today to get started.

    How To Use Clonidine Hcl Oral

    What You Must Know about Clonidine for ADHD? · Mango Clinic
  • You have to take this medication orally with or without food, usually twice daily, as directed by your doctor . If the doses are not equal, take the higher dose before bed to reduce the risk of side effects.
  • The dosage is determined by your medical condition as well as your response to treatment.
  • To get the advantage out of this medication, take it on a routine basis. Take it at the same time. Even if you feel fine, continue to take this medication. The majority of people with high blood pressure do not get the side effects of this medicine.
  • When used for an extended period of time, this medication may not work and may necessitate a different dosing regimen or the administration of additional medication. Consult your doctor if this medication stops working properly .
  • Read Also: What Can Help Depression And Anxiety

    In Case Of Emergency/overdose

    In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at . If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can’t be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.

    Symptoms of overdose may include the following:

    • fainting
    • smaller pupils

    Does Clonidine Work For Anxiety

    Posted by Jaxon Chaffey | Mar 2, 2018 | Anti Anxiety, Clonidine | 0 |

    Clonidine is primarily used to treat hypertension and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder among children. Besides these two, it also has potential in treating other illnesses such as migraines, withdrawal symptoms, and diarrhea. Some medical practitioners also prescribe Clonidine for anxiety.

    Clonidine is a centrally acting 2 adrenergic agonist and imidazoline receptor agonist. It was initially used to treat hypertension in the mid-1960s under the brand name Catapres. Another version of the drug named Kapvay debuted recently in 2010 as a treatment for ADHD for children between 7-16 years old. Other brand names of Clonidine include Nexiclon, Clophelin, and Jenloga.

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    Precautions When Taking Clonidine

    If you have a history of low blood pressure, you may be more likely to feel dizzy, lightheaded, and nauseous while taking clonidine.

    Many people forget to take their medication. If you miss a dose of clonidine, don’t take a double dose as it could lower your blood pressure too much.

    It’s important that you don’t stop taking clonidine abruptly, as this may cause rebound high blood pressure. Instead, your dose should be decreased gradually. Your doctor can give you advice on the best tapering schedule.

    Clonidine may be unsafe for an unborn baby, and it can be found in breast milk. Animal studies have also shown that clonidine may impair fertility in females and males. If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant, talk to your doctor. They can help you weigh the pros and cons of continuing with your medication.

    Are There Any Downsides Or Side

    Using Clonidine To Treat Aggression, Tics, ADHD, & MORE! | Dr. Aly

    As with any medication, clonidine can cause side effects, especially when taken in combination with other substances or medications. Reported common side effects of clonidine include the following :

    • Drowsiness
    • Dry mouth
    • Dry eyes
    • Dizziness, lightheadedness or low blood pressure , seek medical help immediately)
    • Headache . If your headache comes on suddenly and is extremely intense, seek emergency help immediately)
    • Constipation
    • Stomach upset, nausea, vomiting

    More serious but less common side effects of clonidine include the following. Please contact your doctor IMMEDIATELY if you have any of these potentially serious side effects:

    • Skin rash with swelling and itching or trouble breathing
    • Worsened depression or other unusual changes in mood
    • Fast or slow heart rate, irregular heart beat
    • Increased agitation, restlessness or irritability
    • Sudden onset of high blood pressure, fast heart beat, agitation, headache, stomach upset, sweating, nausea or vomiting

    Clonidine requires a prescription

    Do note that, assuming your doctor approves of you taking clonidine for your anxiety, and writes a prescription, youll have to refill that prescription every time you run out.

    This will not be an issue if you only plan on using clonidine a few times . But if you start using clonidine more often, then it could become a significant inconvenience.

    Recommended Reading: How To Let Go Of Stress And Anxiety

    What Others Are Saying

    Up to 65% of the users who reviewed clonidine for anxiety gave a positive review. Users reported that they felt mellowed out and calm within minutes of taking the medication. These users recommend talking to the doctor about reducing the dosage. Most of these users went ahead to cut the pill in half, quarter, and even an eighth, after feeling too drowsy when taking the full dosage. Many of the Reddit reviews also recommend splitting the pill. It, however, cannot be overstated, that only a qualified healthcare provider can determine which is the best dosage for you.

    The not-so-positive reviews, have everything to do with the side effects and not the medications effectiveness in treating anxiety. Some users reported feeling too drowsy and fatigued after taking clonidine. For some, these side effects went away as they got used to the medication, while the same effects persisted for some, forcing them to the point of discontinuing using the medication.

    Catapres For High Blood Pressure

    The development of Catapres was centered around its effect in lowering blood pressure. It was approved for the treatment of high blood pressure in 1974. Catapres drug class belongs to centrally acting alpha-agonist hypotensive agents. lonidine HCl can reduce tone in the sympathetic section of the central nervous system. It leads to an effective decrease in pressure on the vascular walls, changing the total vascular resistance of the vessels. As a result, the number of heart muscle contractions and the volume of the output from the heart are effectively reduced.

    Besides the heart, this medication can also influence the peripheral blood vessels. That is why when the patient starts to use this medicine, it can cause a rise in pressure for a short period of time. At the same time, Catapres helps to reduce intraocular pressure, performing sedative and analgesic effects.

    Read Also: Am I Having An Anxiety Attack

    Why Is This Blog About Clonidine And Anxiety Important

    This blog about Clonidine for Anxiety is important because you might be taking Clonidine or planning to start taking it.

    It gives a more comprehensive approach and understanding of how could Clonidine help to treat anxiety-related symptoms, what is anxiety, how Clonidine is normally prescribed, available forms, what is it supposed to do, possible side effects and drug interaction.

    These basic questions you need to take into consideration when starting to use any drug. If there are additional specific questions related to your condition, we advise seeking help from your doctor.

    Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

    Reviews For Clonidine For Anxiety From Drugscom:

    Clonidine 0.1 Mg Pills Photograph by Scimat


    Taken for 1 to 6 months

    I took Clonidine for a month to help with tapering off xanax. The first week was ok. It helped me motivate and feel somewhat better. After that, all downhill. My hair started thinning excessively, especially when I washed it. Then, I just felt overmedicated and aggravated. This is my own personal experience. I dont recommend it to people highly stressed. I think in my opinion, it should be used under a dr supervision only. The night sweats were AWFUL. And my peaceful nights sleep turned into vivid nightmares and dreams so odd.

    Taken for less than 1 month

    I have been dealing with anxiety for about 10 years now with the occasional panic attack. In the last 9 months my anxiety has been so severe that Im anxious every second of the day and panic when I have to leave the house. Its made it hard to function and hold down a job. I recently got a new job and I was having extreme anxiety to the point of feeling suicidal because I felt like I could not continue living with the severity of my anxiety. I was on 6 different medications and not getting any relief. Finally my doctor prescribed be Clonidine 0.1 three weeks times a day. For the first time in 9 months I finally felt better. My doctor upped. My dose to 4 times a day and now Im feeling better than ever! Im able to function and work again. This is a miracle drug to me. Im finally living my life again. I would highly recommend trying this drug if you have severe anxiety like me.

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