What is the Best Medication for Anxiety?
Medication can often be used as a short-term solution to various anxiety disorders, such as panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and social phobia. They may work in combination with or without psychotherapy depending on individual needs.
Benzodiazepines, or tranquilizers like Xanax (alprazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), and Valium (diazepam), are widely prescribed. While they can help relax you, reduce muscle tension, and ease anxiety symptoms in 30 minutes to an hour, these drugs have physical addictive properties so should not be used long-term.
Antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs and SNRIs) are often prescribed for anxiety disorders. They work by increasing serotonin levels in your brain, which improves moods and allows you to cope better with anxiety.
Antidepressants come in many different forms, each with its own set of side effects. Your healthcare provider can advise you on which one is most suitable for you and your individual circumstances.
Antidepressants for anxiety are typically prescribed SSRIs, such as Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft and Lexapro. These drugs can be taken alone or combined with other medications and have proven to be highly effective for most individuals.
Buspirone (BuSpar) is an antidepressant that has been proven to be highly effective for some individuals. It works by increasing serotonin and decreasing dopamine, leading to decreased anxiety symptoms.
Some medications can cause what are commonly referred to as “brain zaps,” or other unusual sensations. While these usually are harmless and temporary, it’s essential that you discuss any worries with your healthcare provider.