The fact is we all get depressed from time to time. Those whose depression is more severe might need counseling and treatment. Some people who have panic attacks on a consistent basis might be diagnosed as having panic disorder.


The treatments for both of these range from relaxation techniques and therapy to medication. Medications can be effective in helping people get over their panic disorders. However, they are also dangerous, mind altering drugs, which can be detrimental to a person’s long term health in some fashion, and may bring about other symptoms that neither the patient nor the doctor is expecting.

First, let’s look at the seven types of medications that are out there, then explore them a little bit further:

Benzodiazepines, sedatives;
Anticonvulsants, used to treat seizures;
Beta Blockers, help in slowing down the heart;
Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors, anti-depressants;
Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, anti-depressants;
Tricyclic Antidepressants

Benzodiazepines and the most common early medications given out because they’re supposed to help people calm down and relax. Valium is probably the best known name out of all the brands associated with this class of medication. It’s not meant for psychotic patients, so a misdiagnosis of a patient’s condition would be a bad thing. These drugs will calm and relax people, as it’s also used for insomnia, but it can be addictive as many people get used to its effects within a few weeks, so it’s not meant to be a long term drug. It also has many side effects, including drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, depression, impaired motor functions, impaired coordination, impaired balance, and immediate, short term amnesia.

Anticonvulsants are used to treat seizures. Because it’s a powerful medication, some of its side effects can be severe, such as inflammation of the pancreas, elevated ammonia levels in the body, which cause symptoms such as vomiting, drowsiness, lethargy, and a slow down of thought processing. Also, one doesn’t just stop taking these types of drugs; they have to be weaned off them slowly, otherwise they can cause other problems.

Beta blockers are mainly used to treat heart problems or high blood pressure. Obviously, one side effect is that it can lower blood pressure too much. Many people will use them for short periods of time because it can help them concentrate on accomplishing things that can make them nervous, but they’ve been banned in many sports. They have been known to cause hallucinations in some people, along with heart failure, but it’s most common side effects are dizziness, nausea, diarrhea and fatigue.

Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors are anti-depressants, obviously used to counter depression, but their usage is somewhat dangerous because each person’s serotonin reuptake receptor’s works differently, so some people are going to go over the top while using this type of medication. This type of anti-depressant isn’t the first choice for doctors, but is usually administered when people aren’t responding to other medications. The most serious problem that can be caused using this medication is stroke. Some side effects of these types of pharmaceuticals include muscle twitches, drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, and nausea.

Another type of anti-depressant is Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor, whose most famous name is Demerol. This type of pharmaceutical can cause high blood pressure, but it’s also known to help alter a person’s demeanor, sometimes good, sometimes bad. Some other side effects include confusion, hallucinations, extreme agitation, an increased heart rate, and even seizures.

Finally, there are Tricyclic Antidepressants, which are also used to help people with obsessive-compulsive disorders. The side effects caused by this drug are minor when compared to other anti-depressants, but it can also make certain other maladies a patient may have much worse, such as glaucoma, prostate issues, seizures, kidney disease, or alcohol addiction. The main side effects include dry mouth, loss of taste, restlessness, sweating, and in some rare cases, can make a person experience even more intense anxieties.

It’s important to try to know a little bit about what could occur while taking any of these powerful drugs as it relates to panic attacks; you might want to try something else first.

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