How Can I Ask for Medication Without Sounding Like a Drug Addict?

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by alyssaswoon, Jan 2, 2013.

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  1. alyssaswoon

    alyssaswoon Well-Known Member

    I've tried to seek medication for my panic/anxiety attacks from my family doctor but all I get is, "You're better off trying to cope without medication." and I'm getting tired of it. I have crippling anxiety attacks, sometimes I pass out, vomit, black out, etc. and nothing stops them except certain medications (which I've had to try illegally). I'm sick of knowing the answer to my anxiety attacks and not being able to get the help I need because my family doctor knows my family too personally to put his friends daughter "on drugs".
    I'm too afraid to get a job because I had such frequent anxiety attacks (stress in a customer service job) that I started getting penalized at work for not being able to "perform my duties". I feel like a failure because I can't even seem to cope with the simplest of jobs when I know if I had help I'd be able to.

    How have you gone about seeking medication for your anxiety?
    I appreciate every response.
  2. flowers

    flowers Senior Member

    Sounds like your doctor is not the right person to understand these sorts of symptoms. But I agree with you. I think you are correct in knowing that you need medication. In the search I did for Newfoundland labrador, I found these phones numbers for Mental Health Crisis Line 24 hour (709) 777-3200 or toll free: 1-888-737-4668 The person who answers should be able to give you names and phone numbers to get the right kind of help. From what you wrote, the sooner the better for help. yes? I hope this helps. :hug:

    ps I know someone who had symptoms very similar to yours. He resisted medications for a very long time. But as soon as he relented and started taking them, his symptoms subsided and life became managable for him. Nothing else worked. He tried lots of natural methods and therapy. So agan I agree with what you are saying.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2013
  3. Butterfly

    Butterfly Resident SF Sims Enthusiast Staff Alumni SF Author SF Supporter

    Anti-anxiety medications should only be used in the short term and should not be used in the long term. By all means they are useful for emergencies but unfortunately these medications cause nasty addictions, which causes problems in themselves. I am guessing by medications you mean benzos? If so, you should not be taking them for any longer than 6 weeks or should be kept for emergencies only. For the long term treatment of anxiety there are a number or therapies you can try, there are also alternative medications you can try such as SSRI and SNRI anti depressants, also a drug called propanolol can help.
  4. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    I have been on xanax on/off for a few years. Currently on it consistently since september 2011. I am actually unsure as to whether it is making a difference to my anxiety now or is just keeping away withdrawal because I'm also on Lyrica and Seroquel for anxiety. But my anxiety is under control. Benzodiazepines are hard to get because of their addictive nature. However, drugs such as largactil, seroquel, lyrica and a few others aren't as hard to get because they are supposedly non addictive. Please do not buy medications on the street, because 1. its illegal and 2. you do not know if you are getting the real deal. Who's to say who is making them, or what exactly is in them? There is no way of knowing. Therefore it is dangerous. I do believe lyrica works wonders for anxiety, and friends that are on it say the maybe try that? :)

    Also adding what Butterfly said is absolutely correct, they are only meant short term or PRN(as needed), my consultant psychiatrist said he is keeping me on them because he fears I will be unable to leave the house if he takes me off them which is how bad I was without them.
  5. Finance

    Finance Well-Known Member

    The doctor is your employee. Move on. The phone book is full of psych's that need paid.

    Family friend? I would run the other way.

    I know many people on Xanax/ Alprazolam. It's not that tough to get. 4mg/day is where I've been for 8 years. God that sounds like a long time.

    Over 25 years of X.

    I'd try a different psych.

    Addiction??? What a joke. I'm trying to make it through this pitiful life. Addiction ranks at the bottom of the pyramid.
  6. catecholamine

    catecholamine Well-Known Member

    Listen to her, she knows what she's talking about!
    Many docs don't prescribe benzos (xanax, valium, etc) anymore or very rarely so. A persons body almost always builds up a tolerance over time when benzodiazipines are used frequently - could take weeks, could take a year. The dose has to keep being upped to be as effective, and soon you hit the max dose and can't go any higher. Many begin taking extras to get that same effect, and before they know it, they're on a huge dose. You might think it could never happen to you, but it is surprisingly common. I have met MANY, MANY people who were in the past or were currently addicted to benzos. Quitting them is no joke either, people DIE from quitting. I remember one time I was in a psychiatric hospital, and a woman was detoxing from benzos - they had to put her in a medically induced coma for days with phenobarbital because they were worried about her having massive seizures and suffering permanent damage from detoxing from them. It's serious.

    I have Panic Disorder, so I know what it's like. And I too have had xanax. But it really is not for long term treatment, and carries risk even for short term. There are other medications that doctors can try. As Butterfly mentioned, SSRI's and SNRI's are frequently used for anxiety problems. Beta-blockers such as propranolol are shown to help anxiety, and so is an anxiety medication called buspar. These medications work to prevent the anxiety in the first place rather than treat it after it develops. But whatever you do, DO NOT dismiss therapy. You'd be surprised how much it helps MANY people with anxiety disorders. It's not as simple as taking a pill and it takes work, but it can have a more lasting effect than anything else. It's about learning coping skills, which a lot of people dismiss outright, to their own detriment. After therapy, after working hard and trying new techniques to cope with panic attacks, I can honestly say that the therapy did more for me than pills ever could.

    I can now remember that, even when I'm in the throws of a panic attack and my mind is racing and it feels like I'm going to die, I'm not going to die. I can recite to myself that these horrible feelings, they're temporary, it is unpleasant, but that is all it is. I learned to shut the racing thoughts out, one by one, and focus on taking slow, deep breaths, fighting the urge to hyperventilate (which is what causes you to vomit and pass out). It sounds simple, but it isn't. It takes time, practice, effort. For a while, the anxiety and panic was so bad that I didn't want to leave my apartment, I would avoid going grocery shopping till I had no choice, and I'd go at 2am when the store was empty.

    You may think that you're different, that it wont work for you. Many do, they dismiss therapy because it's not quick, it's not easy, it's not some instant fix. But ignoring that resource is a huge mistake, let me tell you. At first I did. I begrudgingly went to therapy sessions, but I just said what I knew he wanted to hear and I didn't do anything he said. I told myself that if I could have dealt with the anxiety and panic attacks without meds, I could have done it on my own and I'd have done it already. Things got worse. Finally I reached the breaking point. I was ready to give up, then I thought "what the hell, I might as well try this". So I started trying things, bit by bit. I started forcing myself to face my fears, started going to the store during the day. It was hard. All of it was. But then I was able to do more. I would have a hard time, be freaking out, but when I got home I realized - I'm alive, nothing bad happened because I was anxious, I shopped and interacted with people and it really wasn't so bad. Even if it was bad, I'd do it again. And again. It's exposure therapy. Then I began practicing techniques when I had panic attacks - I even put a checklist on my phone, linked to my homescreen, with steps to go through when I felt a panic attack starting. It has done wonders for me.

    My panic attacks are much less frequent now, and when they do happen, they are nothing more than an annoyance. Are they unpleasant? Well, yes, but so is taking out the trash or mopping the floors. It won't kill me and it's something I can live with because I know that I can deal with them when they happen. One of the best things that you can gain from the therapy is a feeling of knowing that you can deal with the panic and anxiety when it comes, knowing that you have the power.
  7. jnick

    jnick Well-Known Member

    I agree completely. I have been on benzos for 15 yrs. Withdrawal is worse than heroin for some and in some cases it can take years to recover from. Not to mention the coping mechanisms you dont learn as you age because you are tranquilized into not caring. I think in extreme cases it can be warranted, but remember that it doesnt just take away the anxiety, the ability to experience joy as well. good luck all.
  8. thefatalfetus

    thefatalfetus Member

    next time im at the doctor im going to straight up ask them for atavan. that is, if im having a "good day" where im not afraid to look people in the eyes.
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