Focus On What You Can Change
Many times anxiety stems from fearing things that havent even happened and may never occur. For example, even though everything is okay, you may still worry about potential issues, such as losing your job, becoming ill, or the safety of your loved ones.
Life can be unpredictable and no matter how hard you try, you cant always control what happens. However, you can decide how you are going to deal with the unknown. You can turn your anxiety into a source of strength by letting go of fear and focusing on gratitude.
Replace your fears by changing your attitude about them. For example, stop fearing to lose your job and instead focus on how grateful you are to have a job. Come to work determined to do your best. Instead of fearing your loved one’s safety, spend time with them, or express your appreciation of them. With a little practice, you can learn to dump your anxiety and pick up a more positive outlook.
At times, your anxiety may actually be caused by a real circumstance in your life. Perhaps youre in a situation where it is realistic to be worried about losing your job due to high company layoffs or talks of downsizing.
When anxiety is identified as being caused by a current problem, then taking action may be the answer to reducing your anxiety. For example, you may need to start job searching or scheduling interviews after work.
Who Is At Risk For Anxiety Disorders
A mix of genetic and environmental factors can raise a persons risk for developing anxiety disorders. You may be at higher risk if you have or had:
- Certain personality traits, such as shyness or behavioral inhibition feeling uncomfortable with, and avoiding, unfamiliar people, situations or environments.
- Stressful or traumatic events in early childhood or adulthood.
- Family history of anxiety or other mental health conditions.
- Certain physical conditions, including thyroid problems and heart arrhythmias .
Anxiety disorders occur more often in women. Researchers are still studying why that happens. It may come from womens hormones, especially those that fluctuate throughout the month. The hormone testosterone may play a role, too men have more, and it may ease anxiety. Its also possible that women are less likely to seek treatment, so the anxiety worsens.
Get Involved In Your Community
Find a way to volunteer or be active in your community.
Science shows that helping others may influence levels of oxytocin in the brains of volunteers, according to a study in Hormones and Behavior by Michael J. Poulin and E. Alison Holman. Oxytocin helps the body manage stress.
Helping others also allows people to focus on something other than their anxiety.
Don’t Miss: What Can Social Anxiety Lead To
I Need Relief And I Need It Now
So where does that leave you if youre suffering? Even when anxiety relief comes with side effects and dangers, that can still sound like a fair trade when panic and fear are ruling your life.
The bottom line is that theres a time and place for anxiety medication. If you have severe anxiety thats interfering with your ability to function, medication may be helpfulespecially as a short-term treatment. However, many people use anti-anxiety medication when therapy, exercise, or other self-help strategies would work just as well or better, minus the drawbacks.
Anxiety medications can ease symptoms, but theyre not right for everyone and theyre not the only answer. Its up to you to evaluate your options and decide whats best for you.
Need to talk to someone?
Get affordable online counseling from BetterHelp or visit HelpGuides directory for free helplines and crisis resources. HelpGuide is reader supported. We may receive a commission if you sign up for BetterHelp through the provided link. Learn more.
What Kind Of Anxiety Disorder Do You Have
As with every health issue, an accurate diagnosis is essential. A few common anxiety disorders include:
- Generalized anxiety disorder: A pattern of excessive worry about a variety of issues on most days for at least six months, often accompanied by physical symptoms, such as muscle tension, a hammering heart, or dizziness.
- Social anxiety disorder: Feeling significant anxiety in social situations or when called on to perform in front of others, such as in public speaking.
- Phobias: A particular animal, insect, object, or situation causes substantial anxiety.
- Panic disorder: Panic attacks are sudden, intense episodes of heart-banging fear, breathlessness, and dread. Its the feeling youd have if you just missed being hit by a Mack truck but for people with panic disorder there is no Mack truck, says Dr. Beresin.
How To Deal With Anxiety
Treatments for anxiety include prescription drugs, counseling, meditation and exercise. Experts recommend a combination of these modalities. Experiencing some anxiety when facing difficult decisions or life changes is normal, but when that anxiety interferes with daily life it becomes a disorder.
Board-certified physicians medically review Drugwatch content to ensure its accuracy and quality.
Drugwatch partners with Physicians Review Network Inc. to enlist specialists. PRN is a nationally recognized leader in providing independent medical reviews.
Reviewer specialties include internal medicine, gastroenterology, oncology, orthopedic surgery and psychiatry.
About 40 million American adults have an anxiety disorder, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. This makes anxiety disorders the most common mental illness in America.
Anxiety disorders are characterized by feelings of anxiety that go beyond worrying about everyday things like problems at work or school or dealing with life changes. People with anxiety disorders may have constant, uncontrollable fear that interferes with their lives.
Breathing and meditation techniques can manage anxiety and panic attacks when practiced regularly.
Deep breathing increases the supply of oxygen to your brain and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which promotes a state of calmness, according to The American Institute of Stress.
How Does Alprazolam Work Whats Its Half
Alprazolam is a benzodiazepine drug. Its unclear what the mechanism of action for benzodiazepines is. But this type of drug is thought to slow down the central nervous system . Your CNS consists of your brain and spinal cord. It controls activity throughout your whole body.
The half-life of alprazolam IR oral tablets is about 11 hours. The drug has a longer half-life, about 16 hours, in older adults. Alprazolam IR oral tablets stay in your system for about 4 or 5 times the half-life, which is around 2 days.
Recommended Reading: How To Fix Sexual Performance Anxiety
Benadryl In Children And Teens
Benadryl is not approved for anxiety treatment in people of any age.
As an antihistamine, it can be used in children over the age of 6.
A pediatrician can help you decide whether your child has a unique need for off-label Benadryl use. Administering the medication without approval from a healthcare professional could result in severe reactions.
How Do Anxiety Disorders Affect Children
Its normal for children to feel some amount of anxiety, worry or fear at certain points. For example, a child may feel scared of a thunderstorm or barking dog. A teenager might get anxious about an upcoming test or school dance.
But sometimes, children approach these situations with overwhelming dread or they cant stop thinking about all the fears tied to one of these events. It may seem that none of your comforts help. These children often get stuck on their worries. They have a hard time doing their daily activities, like going to school, playing and falling asleep. Theyre extremely reluctant to try something new.
When thinking about your childs anxiety levels, getting stuck is key. It separates the regular worries of childhood from an anxiety disorder that needs professional help. If the anxiety or worry interferes with your childs ability to function, it may be time to seek help
Also Check: Does Anxiety Get Worse With Age
What Is Alprazolam Ir Oral Tablet Used For
If you have an anxiety disorder, your doctor may prescribe alprazolam IR oral tablets for your condition.
Its normal to have feelings of anxiety caused by the stress of everyday life. But for people with anxiety disorders, anxiety symptoms can be more severe and dont go away on their own. These symptoms include trouble concentrating, being irritable or angry, and more.
Alprazolam is used to treat:
- Generalized anxiety disorder . People with GAD have uncontrollable worries about common situations. They may have symptoms such as feeling that something bad will happen or being unable to calm themselves.
- Symptoms of anxiety. Symptoms of anxiety vary, but generally include trouble concentrating, restlessness, and sleep problems, among others. Alprazolam may be used short term to treat symptoms of anxiety.
- Panic disorder. A person with panic disorder has recurring and unexpected panic attacks. A panic attack involves feeling sudden, intense fear. And it can cause physical symptoms such as breathing difficulties, fast or racing heartbeat, and sweating.
For each of these uses, alprazolam is prescribed only to adults. The drug hasnt been studied in children .
Warnings For Other Groups
For pregnant women: Safe use of amitriptyline/chlordiazepoxide during pregnancy has not been established. The chlordiazepoxide component of this drug has been shown to increase the risk of negative effects to the fetus. This risk is higher during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Talk to your doctor if youre pregnant or planning to become pregnant. This drug should only be used if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk.
For women who are breastfeeding: Amitriptyline/chlordiazepoxide may pass into breast milk and may cause side effects in a child who is breastfed. Talk to your doctor if you breastfeed your child. You may need to decide whether to stop breastfeeding or stop taking this medication.
For seniors: The kidneys of older adults may not work as well as they used to. This can cause your body to process drugs more slowly. As a result, a higher amount of a drug stays in your body for a longer time. This raises your risk of side effects.
If youre over the age of 65 years, you may be at a higher risk of confusion and sedating side effects from this drug.
For children: This medication hasnt been studied in children.
When to call the doctor
All possible dosages and drug forms may not be included here. Your dosage, drug form, and how often you take the drug will depend on:
- your age
- the severity of your condition
- other medical conditions you have
- how you react to the first dose
Also Check: Can Anxiety Cause Muscle Weakness
Can Pregnant Women Safely Take Anxiety Medication
- Copy article linkCopy link
In the last decade, it has come to light that many women suffer from new onset anxiety disorders or worsening of pre-existing anxiety in pregnancy. But until recently, it was believed that anti-anxiety medications would negatively impact the fetus.
Its kind of a tricky balance, Dr. Kimberly Yonkers, a psychiatrist, and professor at Yale University said to NPR. People have this illness that they didnt ask for and dont want. Theyre really suffering.
Yonkers recently published a study in JAMA that concluded the risks associated with taking benzodiazepine such as Xanax and serotonin reuptake inhibitors like Prozac, are mild to modest, thus hopefully taking the onus off pregnant women to suffer through their illness.
She looked at the maternal and neonatal outcomes of panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder in nearly 3,000 women from July 2005 to July 2009, and found the disorders themselves did not have negative effects on the babies, while the medications had mild adverse outcomes.
This is especially poignant considering that if a severe psychiatric disorder went untreated, a woman could be more prone to improper nutrition from a lack of self care, or hazardous choices, including drug, alcohol and cigarette use, and even suicide.
Drug Dependence And Withdrawal
When taken regularly, benzodiazepines lead to physical dependence and tolerance, with increasingly larger doses needed to get the same anxiety relief as before. This happens quicklyusually within a couple of months, but sometimes in as little as a few weeks.
If you abruptly stop taking your medication, you may experience severe withdrawal symptoms such as:
- Increased anxiety, restlessness, shaking.
- Depression, confusion, panic attacks.
- Pounding heart, sweating, and in severe cases, seizure.
Many people mistake withdrawal symptoms for a return of their original anxiety condition, making them think they need to restart the medication. Gradually tapering off the drug will help minimize the withdrawal reaction.
Don’t Miss: How To Let Go Of Stress And Anxiety
Medication Management And Risks
If your teen is taking, or considering taking, medication for anxiety, it is important to speak with them consistently about their experience with the medication, especially about any side effects they may be experiencing. Report side effects to their doctor and talk to their doctor before you and your teen decide to discontinue any medication. It may take more than one try to find the right anxiety medication for your teen and some doctors may recommend genetic testing that can help them determine which class of medications may work best.
Also be sure to talk to your teen about the risks of using alcohol and other drugs while taking anxiety medication. Drinking alcohol can worsen side effects of any anxiety medication and drinking while taking benzodiazepines is extremely dangerous. Remind your teen that they should not give or sell their medication to anyone else, nor should they should take medication prescribed to anyone else. If your child is taking benzodiazepines, talk to them about the risks of habit-forming potential and monitor their use of the medication.
Antidepressants like SSRIs and SNRIs carry warnings that they may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and self-harming behavior, particularly among young people. Although the risk is low, communicate with your teen about side effects so that you will know if they are experiencing any suicidal thoughts.
What Happens If I Dont Get Treatment For My Child With An Anxiety Disorder
Getting your child help for an anxiety disorder can improve their development and self-esteem. But untreated anxiety disorders can harm:
- Family relationships.
- School performance.
- Social functioning.
Your child may also end up with more serious mental and physical health problems. Fortunately, there are several treatments for anxiety disorders. The right treatment can help your child manage their symptoms and feel their best.
Recommended Reading: Why Do I Get Anxiety After Drinking
How Are Anxiety And Panic Attacks Diagnosed
Anxiety disorders are usually diagnosed with a psychological evaluation. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , published by the American Psychiatric Association, provides diagnostic criteria for an anxiety disorder.
Lab studies to help diagnose or exclude medical conditions that may cause anxiety disorders or panic attacks include:
- Complete blood cell count
- Chemistry profile
- Urine drug screen
Tests to rule out central nervous system disorders that can cause anxiety or panic attacks to include: