Anxiety Medication

Anxiety Medication

Anxiety is a mental health condition that is characterized by a feeling of anxiety and fear. Some common types of anxiety include:

  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder

This condition is usually treated with the use of antidepressants such as:

  • Serotonin-noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor (SNRI)
  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)

In addition, beta-blockers may also help elevate the symptoms of anxiety.

What Are Beta-Blockers?

Beta-blockers are a group of drugs that are used for the treatment of:

  • Essential tremor
  • Migraine prevention
  • Hypertension 
  • Heart failure
  • Arrhythmias
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Angina

Beta-blockers can be divided into non-selective beta-blockers and selective blockers.

  • Non-selective beta-blockers medication include Propranolol
  • Selective blockers medication include Atenolol and Bisoprolol  

Why Is Beta-Blocker Used For Anxiety?

Non-selective beta-blockers are recommended for use in the management of anxiety. This type of drug can be used in people for specific anxiety symptoms:

  • Fast heart rate
  • Palpitations 
  • Shaking
  • Tremor

Beta-blockers have no help in psychological symptoms including feeling fearful, tense, or worried. The drug blocks the actions of epinephrine and norepinephrine. Both hormones are responsible for a certain response described by an increased heart rate and tremor which is associated with anxiety symptoms.

In addition, beta-blockers can be used to control symptoms of performance anxiety, such as public speaking. Individuals who experience stage fear may comfort the same to panic disorder symptoms such as increased heartbeats, tremors, and sweating that affect their performance. By blocking physiological signs of anxiety, beta-blockers make a positive response loop. As a result, the patient becomes less conscious of being anxious.  

Propranolol for Anxiety

Propranolol is a non-selective beta-blocker. This drug is a prescription-only medication that can only be obtained on a prescription written by a doctor or qualified prescriber. Concerning anxiety, this medication is permitted to use for:

  • Anxiety with symptoms such as tremor, palpitation, and sweating
  • Anxiety tachycardia (fast heartbeat because of anxiety)

Propranolol Dosage

The recommended dosage of Propranolol is 40 mg once a day. If needed, this dose can be increased up to 40 mg to be taken three times a day.

Propranolol is available as 10 mg, 40 mg, and 80 mg tablets, as well as 80 mg and 160 mg sustained-release capsules. The sustained-release capsule is taken daily. When sustained-release capsules are used for the management of a certain type of anxiety, a daily dose of 80 mg of Propranolol must be tolerable to provide short-term relief of acute situational anxiety. Long-term treatment of generalized anxiety may be managed with the same dosage. If needed, the dose might be increased to 160 mg of a sustained-release capsule.

The dosage may differ for a different patient. The recommended dosage is based on your medical condition and other medications you are taking. Follow the directions of the prescriber carefully.

Propranolol Possible Side Effects

The use of beta-blockers is associated with several possible side effects. Some common side effects that may occur include:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea 
  • Fatigue or feeling tired
  • Cold extremities
  • Slow heart rate
  • Sleep disturbances

Some side effects may go away after a few days once your body adjusts to the treatment.

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