Best anxiety med? Please help!

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Applyn59, Jul 7, 2003.

  1. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    Hi,

    Please, I need very much to find out what drugs
    you have found the most helpful in dealing
    with extreme anxiety.

    This is for my mother who is 72. She is a bundle
    of nervous and very anxious and agitated. The worst
    I have ever seen. They tried her on Paxil and she
    couldn't stand it. She is currently taking Xanax.
    She has an appt with her GP tomorrow and I
    am trying to get as much info as I can before then.

    My top two choices are Buspar and Lexapro.
    Many have mentioned Ativan. She does have that
    but didn't like the way it made her feel. She
    was taking it with her chemo meds at the time
    though so I think that was a big factor.

    Please, please, if you have any suggestions please let
    me know. Also, she barely sleeps four hours a night.
    Ambien does nothing much for either one of us.
    We have both added Benadryl to our regimen.
    She needs something stronger.

    Thanks,
    Lynn
  2. JP

    JP New Member

    I can only tell you what I use. I am on Buspar twice daily and Ativan when needed to ward off panic attacks. I also use Elavil for sleep and nerve pain at bedtime. All of these medicines work well for me.

    I hope your Mom gets the help she needs. Take care, Jan
  3. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    I have taken the rivotril [Klonopin] a few times in the last few days for anxiety and it helps. A full pill actually made me sleepy.

    I asked a doc for them as a muscle relaxant since flexeril barely does anything for me.

    My friend recommends GABA,, short for gamma? something butyric acid for nervous agitation. The bottle said to take on an empty stomach, so next time I am really stressed and anxious AND haven't eaten, I shall try those pills.

    I hope the Klonopin helps your mom. or the GABA.

    Jen
  4. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    Just to clarify, my mother does not get Panic attacks.
    She is extremely anxious every second of the day.

    I have taken Klonopin in the past as well as
    Effexor. I hated the Effexor but everyone is diff.
    I gave her 1/2 or 1/2 of one of my .5mg Klonopin
    one night out of desperation. She felt it was too
    strong. I wanted her to try mine so she could ask
    her dr. about it.

    Thanks again and please keep bringing the
    suggestions on.

    Lynn

    PS I have been planning to buy the Gaba for
    a while now.
    I am wondering if Gabitril would be a good choice
    for her.
  5. ssMarilyn

    ssMarilyn New Member

    It sounds like her adrenals are in overdrive and constantly pumping out adrenelin. She needs to be checked by an endocrinologist. Thyroid problems are common in women over 40. Xanax is the best anti-anxiety drug from what I've heard/read. (I use it about once every 2 years!) Be sure she's aware that she should not injest any caffiene in any shape or form. (chocolate, coffee, pop, etc...)

    Marilyn :)
  6. suz41

    suz41 New Member

    Lynn:

    Klonopin(Clonzepam) is a long acting anti anxiety medication, it was originally used for people with seizure disorders, but is very useful for anxiety as well. Unlike some of the other benzos it doesn't give the person a super calm feeling that is only short term. Therefore, your mom might be able to take it at bedtime or when feeling anxious and it will decrease agitation. It does have a long half life 54 hours so she should probably have her liver enzymes checked to make sure she can metabolize it properly. In my opinion out of many of the benzos , because it is long acting it has the least dependency issues. It also helps with sleep by allowing the muscles to relax, it is also used for people with restless legs at night and myoclonus (muscle twitching/jerking) during sleep. Have her check with her doctors or go to her next appointment with her. Let us know how she makes out. LOL

    Suzanne
  7. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    be okay for her.

    Also, valerian has relaxing properties.

    I sometimes use Valerianaheel by Heel to help me sleep at night. I also used it once when really stressed out at doctor's office [while waiting]. It seemed to work. Perhaps the shock to my body by taking it straight also stopped my extreme stress in its tracks! It is very high alcohol content if taken straight on tongue, i find it too much. Best to put in a bit of water. I took it straight at doc's cause had no glass of water.

    I get the valerianaheel at a local health food store and at my Naturopath.

    Jen
  8. Kenna

    Kenna New Member

    But use it rarely, It can be addictive, but boy does it work well. have a doctor monitor the use of all meds. and it is also made in genaric form
  9. kredca4

    kredca4 New Member

    I have used, or rather tried them all, and I find Xanax the best, but then nothing really helps me that much, in fact, but this so far, has the best result's.

    I also don't have Panic Attacks, but I do have Anxiety, have all my life. I don't think there was a Dr. who didn't offer me Valium's. But I hate thoes, ugh!
    Helps my Brother tho, so it will depend on her system, and to what degree she has Anxiety.

    Does she try any Breathing Excerise's, I was surprised at how much it helps when I'm waiting, like at the Dr'.s
    I just do my Focus breathing, it helps,. I hate to take my Med's when I go to the Dr. I don't want to mask any Symptoms, so the Brething Techniques really helped.

    There are some good site's that have some information on the Excerises, and also other tip's that will help along with the Med's. Just do the Serach Engine thing, and you'll find a ton of site's. I also am able to use Aromatherapy, in different forms, I use massage Oils, and somethimes when I know that the Breathing problem is from Anxiety, I use a Steamer for the Varpour's, instead of smelling the oil right from the bottle, like I used to.

    The best I think, are chamomile, I stay away from heavy scents like Sandalwood, or orange, any heavy smell for that matter.

    Hope your find something that will work for your Mom.
    sharon/kredca4
  10. rozchuv

    rozchuv New Member

    Hi Lynn,
    Ativan is a shorter acting version of Xanax. They are both in the Valium family. They are all highly addictive and people can build up a tolerance to them needing more and more to get the same effect. I have been helped by the Bach Flower Rescue Remedy which you can get in health food stores. You put four drops in a glass of water or a bottle of water. The amounts of water don't matter much. Four drops does the trick. You can sip it all day long. It is very relaxing and non- addictive. You also don't build up a tolerance. LOL
    Rosalyn
  11. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    It depends on what is causing her anxiety. I have found that Klonopin has stopped my anxiety/panic attackes and helped me to sleep. The Klonopin stops the misfiring of the neurons in the brain and smoooooooths things out. It also helps with sensory overload.

    Love, Mikie
  12. AnnetteP

    AnnetteP New Member

    I battled with this for a long time, and now I can honestly tell you I do NOT have anxiety AT ALL anymore.

    I managed to get rid of the panic attacks, long ago, but I just couldn't kick the anxiety. I knew I had adrenal problems and was tested, which confirmed it. Over time I had tried many things, but what changed my life is a little OTC supplement called Drenamin. This does not make me sleepy, yet relaxes me in a way nothing else could. Please type in Drenamim in the search box and you will find my post as well as posts by others who have tried the product.

    Hope this helps,
    Annette
  13. Kim

    Kim New Member

    an antidepressant with antianxiety properties might work. The best one, by far, is Remeron. Small doses of Remeron sedate and increase appetite. It doesn't have any of the side effects of the antidepressants which cause nervousness or inability to sleep. I have tried all of the benzos and although they took the edge off, they didn't take away the anxiety like Remeron does. Remeron has an interesting property in that the smaller the dose, the more sedating it is. Larger doses behave more like the SSRIs (Paxil, Zoloft). It doesn't have the cardio side effect of Elavil (a tricyclic). Best wishes.

    kim
  14. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    For all of your suggestions. I am writing everything
    down. I do not know what to do.

    My mother just told me that she started the Paxil
    again this a.m. and it helped her. She has stopped and started it three times without telling me until
    after the fact! I made her promise me last week that
    she would never do that again.

    So now, she thinks she may like the Paxil. She originally started on the 12.5 CR and after one
    week her dr. told her she could double it because it
    wasn't effecting her. I believe she stopped one
    week in between. On the 25mg. she was very
    agitated and figured it was the Paxil. So, she
    stopped it after a week or so. Then today she
    told me she took the 12.5 again and thinks it
    helps. I don't know what the dr. is going to do.
    I told my mother to tell her dr. how many times
    she has started and stopped it.

    She takes .25 xanax at night and has been taking
    it in the daytime too. She sleeps a lot during
    the day because of this. I guess it is good because
    she hardly sleeps at night!

    Since my sleep pattern has been reversed,
    I used to sleep around 5 or 8 a.m. and then sleep
    all day. Now, I am sleeping around 3 or 4 am.
    and getting up noon. Today I got up at 10. I think
    I am too nervous. I have a lot of dr appts coming
    up and my mother is in no shape to take me.
    I really wouldn't mind getting checked out after
    my fall, but I am going to have to scrounge
    up rides all the time.

    I can't wash my hair in the sink and don't know
    if I can do it in the shower, either. Our shower
    is tiny and no shower chair will fit in it. I sometimes
    put a card table chair in there and that is what I
    will have to do. I prefer to take showers at night
    because I cannot take a shower in the daytime
    and go out. It's too much for me. With my neck
    and back it's so difficult. The shower is in the
    bathroom off my mother's room so I can't
    do it at night. My mother thinks it will interfere
    with her sleep.

    I think I should book a double room somewhere for
    both of us.

    I really want to be able to help her. Please understand
    that my mother is no frail, stupid elderly person.
    She is a very young, outgoing woman who looks
    no where near her age. She is also very smart even
    though she is doing these strange things with her
    meds. I never had to worry about that with her.
    I asked her today exactly what it is that she things
    set this off. I just wondered if she knew.

    She was treated for cancer last year and went through
    hell. After radiation treatment, she had pneumonitis
    brought on my the radiation. Her onc. was treating
    her and then she saw her GP. The GP got all
    shook up because she was taking lung tests in her
    office and the onc. was not. So, she gave my
    mother the advair disc for asthma and told her to take
    it. She really scared my mother tremendously.
    She then ordered a CT scan to follow up on it
    later on and she said it was stable. The GP tends
    to get excited about the lung whereas the onc.
    told my mother a few weeks ago that she has nothing
    to worry about. Of course, he also told her that
    xanax was enough and she didn't need Paxil. That
    is why she went off of it the first time.

    I don't blame my mother for being anxious. My father
    was on oxygen 24/7 that last six years of his life
    and I have been disabled since 1988. My father
    died in 1992 and my mother has been upset
    ever since. She has gotten better but then she
    relapses. I get a new serious diagnosis every year
    it seems and I now she is worried about me.
    We live in a house that is too big and she worries
    about that. My brother's job takes him all over
    the world and he is on planes and in diff countries
    and cities constantly. She worries about everything.

    I have been so shaken up since I fell into the hot tub
    and trying to figure out how I was going to manage
    to get ready and to a dr. without my mother knowing
    that anything happened. I haven't left the house
    in 9 months so she would wonder where I was
    going. Everything is just so damn hard. I need
    to have blood work done this week, get to a dr/s
    appt the following week and see the Lyme specialist
    July 22. The ride for that last one is all set. If I
    go see my chiropractor I will probably need rides
    for that more than once. My neighbors would be more
    than happy to take me but I don't know if I can
    'impose on them for several rides within one week.

    Sometimes I just wish I hit my head in that hot tub
    and I wouldn't have to deal with anything.

    thanks so much for your suggestions.
    I don't know whether to have her ask about them
    or not. She does not want me going with her (don't
    even know if I am capable physically) and she doesn't
    want to talk about it with me. I told her I might leave
    her a list of the drugs she should ask about. I told
    her she can ask her dr. to call me and she was
    very upset by that.

    I called my brother last night and had a meltdown
    with him. Much needed that's for sure.

    Lynn

    PS She has tried Valarien and other natural
    products in the past when she wasn't
    this bad and none of them worked.
    [This Message was Edited on 07/07/2003]
  15. GeneticDefect

    GeneticDefect New Member

    I would say Buspar
  16. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    increased discomfort?

    I thought supposed to wean off if taking more than a few days.

    tell your mom to be careful about ssri's and not coming off them suddenly, I think.

    Also, a good idea to go them slowly. Too little serotonin can be a problem so ssri's can help. But, then too much serotonin can be way too stimulating and be a problems. hence the lower dose.

    Paxils are easy to cut in half. I took 1/4 and up to 1/2 for a while then I eased off it after several months.

    Jen
  17. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    My mother has the CR Paxil which cannot be
    cut in half. Each time she went off she was
    on about one or one 1/2 weeks. Do you
    believe that several years ago her dr. made
    her stick it out for 7 weeks on zoloft? My mother
    couldn't take it any longer and she stopped it
    abruptly with no tapering at all. She had no
    side effects and felt immediately better when
    she stopped taking it.

    I am hoping she gets some relief soon.
    Lynn
  18. horsegal

    horsegal New Member

    The generic xanex works best for me. I take .5 mils or 1 mil on a bad night. They prescribed pills that are oblong an easily broken in half. If I HAVE to take any during the day, I take 1/2 to 1/4 pill. I find given several days...it works wonders.

    Horsegal

    p.s. I've taken it for years and never have had to increase the dose. BUT once I was without it and did have some withdrawal symtoms. Got back on it and it has been smooth sailing.
  19. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    She is already taking Xanax. She has the .25 Xanax
    and takes one at bedtime and one or two during
    the day. She has been sleeping more during the
    day because of the Xanax.

    Of course, she only gets four hours of sleep
    a night at most so I guess it's good. However,
    she can't really function that way.

    I guess I will just have to see what her dr. says.
    Thanks for all the suggestions.
    Lynn
  20. Applyn59

    Applyn59 New Member

    I forgot to address the Adrenal and thyroid issue.
    My mother had a thyroid nodule and cysts that
    are being monitored at all times. They have done
    the thyroid tests but I am not sure if they tested the
    thyroid antibodies.

    Do you really think it could be that her adrenals
    are in overdrive??? I see my endocrinologist
    next week. Maybe I should ask him about her.

    So many problems, so many doctors!
    Sigh!

    Thanks.
    Lynn

    PS If you have adrenals that are in overdrive does that
    mean that you don't have adrenal exhaustion or
    or you do?

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