Deciding whether or not to take anxiety medication is a very personal decision, and it is one that most people do not take lightly- even when they are suffering very badly from anxiety and panic attacks.
Today we will look at a reader who made the decision to start anxiety medication, and how she can best help herself – both while waiting for the medication to start working, and then once it has.
Received via email:
I broke down and started the medication my doctor wanted me to take, feeling pretty bummed though about it, I know it’s only week one, but I don’t feel any different, actually a little worse! I was really hoping I would start to feel something by now. Any advice? Tonya
First of all I think you are smart to take your doctor’s advice. You obviously have been struggling for awhile now – not only with your horrendous anxiety but also with your reticence to take medication.
I’m all about doing it naturally and it’s true some people can. But I have been in your shoes, where the anxiety and panic symptoms are just so bad it affects your everyday life. You feel bad all the time and even when you’re not anxious, it’s practically all you can think about.
So my advice here would be to be on your own side. You made the decision to follow your doctor’s advice and care- the course of action right now is medication. So be it. Stick with it, and let any feelings of guilt, anger, or whatever go.
Negative thinking will not serve you. I’m sure you already know that, but it bears repeating.
Taking medication is not an admission of failure or being weak on your part. It is allowing something to help you right now because you truly need it.
Love yourself and be so happy you made this decision. Know you will start to feel better soon. That is something to get so excited about!
Waiting for medications to do what they’re supposed to do takes some patience. From what I’ve experienced and have learned as a nurse, it can take up to 3 weeks for certain medications to start kicking in and for the person to see the benefits (Everybody- and every body- is different in this respect).
So you’re one week in. You might have 2 weeks to go. That’s ok.
Think of how long you suffered before this with no end in sight! You are going to get some relief, so hang in there.
Can you do things to help in the mean time?
Yes! You should consider taking Holy Basil either in capsule or tea form. It is all natural and has been used for 1000s of years for tension and anxiety. It is wonderful. You can read more about that here.
Take a magnesium supplement. 8 out of 10 women are lacking in this mineral and it really does help with anxiety symptoms too. You can read more about that here.
Once your medication is working, I want you to commit to getting out and about and doing all the things you have been either avoiding or just too scared to try. Pick a program like Panic Away and work it like no one’s business. Or get therapy to help you get out there. Either way, you can use this time to really work on your anxiety recovery!
Remember not to just rely on the medication alone. Use it to help you, but know that your body will heal, and you can help it to do so by using all the anxiety self help methods we talk about here.
Also, always take your anxiety medication exactly as prescribed. Always keep your doctor informed about how you are doing. You are under his care so your job is to keep your doctor informed.
I’m very happy for you Tonya.
I wish you peace,