Daily I hear of new anxiety medications as my client’s relay to me the promises their GP has made about these wonderful tablets.
Don’t get me wrong there are times where medication can be helpful as a short term solution to calm things down. If you really feel that you can’t cope for another minute, or you haven’t had any sleep in days then there is a case to be heard. But sleeping pills (which are just reformulations of tranquillisers) induce lower quality sleep and we quickly habituate to them.
As for other drugs or antidepressants, they may appear to calm us down for a while but, more often than not, the dosage has to keep going up, because they soon stop working. It is very common for my clients to have taken medication for three months and they have managed to get by, only to find within months of coming off the medication their anxiety habit returns.
There is a lot of studies that have compared the effectiveness of medication and therapeutic treatments for different anxiety disorders and these have overwhelmingly shown that drugs do not provide a long-term solution.
A large number of studies found that there was no benefit to adding drugs to effective behaviour therapy. Interestingly it was discovered that effective behaviour therapy added to drug treatment could increase effectiveness by half.
Unfortunately, the go-to method nowadays is to describe a course of medication and hope that something changes. Taking tablets for anxiety is not as effective as finding out what is causing the anxiety in the first place. By looking at what is happening and missing from our lives, and then learning how to get back on track by doing something about it, we can make real, permanent changes and much quicker than any form of medication.
Once we learn how to fulfil our emotional needs and alter our behaviour patterns we can very quickly take back control of our anxiety.
If you are battling daily with excessive anxiety make sure that you do speak to somebody about it. Our Doctors do wonderful work under an ever-increasing workload, they do their best but in most cases, drugs are not the answer.
After my personal battle with anxiety, I know all too well the ups and downs of medication. Please feel free to drop me a message if you are struggling with anxiety I am always happy to point you in the right direction.