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What you need to know about gabapentin for anxiety

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Photo Credit: Peshkova/iStock Photo

Gabapentin used for anxiety is the subject of many discussions. This anticonvulsant is one of the commonly prescribed drugs to combat anxiety disorder and depression. Why do doctors prescribe this medication and is it effective?

Why anxiety disorder is so hard to cure?

The rhythm of life of a modern person is extremely high and, unfortunately, not everyone can handle it. Anxiety along with depression is one of the most common mental disorders that plague many people around the world. Every year, thousands and thousands of patients turn to specialists for help. There are various approaches to treating these disorders. Also, scientists have developed a large number of drugs whose action is aimed at combating these diseases. But, the trouble with these medicines is that they are not always effective for the patient. Often, they can cause a large number of side effects and a strong dependence. That is why psychiatrists, often, turn to alternative drugs, which, although, they are not produced to treat anxiety disorders, are very effective in resisting them. One such drug is Gabapentin for anxiety.

Patients who apply Gabapentin for anxiety to treat its manifestations note that their symptoms have become less pronounced since they started therapy. People claim to gain:

  • improved sleep quality;
  • higher ability to concentrate;
  • increase in activity level (surge of strength) and self-control ability;
  • reducing of panic attacks;
  • clarification of thoughts.

How long does it take for gabapentin to work for anxiety?

Although gabapentin is an effective drug to combat anxiety disorder, it is not approved by the FDA to be used to cure this disease. That is why, in the instructions on how to administer this medication, the effectiveness against anxiety is not indicated. Therefore, the exact time and dosage of gabapentin for anxiety are not described.

Patients who take gabapentin for anxiety in most cases report starting to have improvements since the second week of therapy. But, it should be remembered that anxiety and depression are complex diseases, therefore, in their treatment, everything is very individual. Many people, on the contrary, say that they noticed a decrease in the manifestations of the disorder only after a month of daily use of the medicine. The remedy is dispensed only by prescription and gabapentin for anxiety as needed cannot be taken. The entire course of therapy should be under the strict supervision of a psychiatrist.

Gabapentin dosage for anxiety

As already has been mentioned above, gabapentin is not an officially approved drug to treat anxiety and there are no written recommendations on the dosage of the medication for the therapy of this ailment. But, according to doctors, the initial gabapentin dose for anxiety is 300 mg daily. At the beginning of therapy, the psychiatrist insists on a single application during the day. Gradually, he increases the number of intakes per day to three. The average medicine norm per day is 900 mg.

The doctor assesses the situation based on the specific condition of the patient and can prescribe a large dose or increase the number of intakes per day up to 4 times.

Gabapentin for anxiety side effects

The presence of negative effects is common to all drugs without exception. That is why doctors carefully monitor the exact implementation of the instructions on how to use a particular medicine. In most cases, side effects begin to occur when there is no compliance with the drug dosage or in case of individual hypersensitivity to the remedy.

Medications are prescribed with great care to those people who have problems with the stomach, heart or liver. Gabapentin should be taken only as prescribed by the doctor and under his strict guidance to avoid the occurrence of side effects. Nevertheless, side effects do occur and here are the most common ones:

  • involuntary eye movement;
  • nausea;
  • headaches;
  • memory loss.
  • fatigue;
  • diarrhea;
  • constipation;
  • dizziness;
  • vomiting;
  • drowsiness.

Undeniable Benefits of the drug

Gabapentin has long been used in the practice of treating depressive disorders despite the fact that it still has not received official approvement for its use for these purposes. Why do doctors prescribe this medicine to their patients? There are several fairly significant reasons for this:

  • The list of side effects of gabapentin for anxiety is quite small and patients complain of their manifestations much less often than of specialized anti-anxiety drugs ones.
  • Cases of abuse of gabapentin are few, unlike those of standard medicines for anxiety and depression.
  • A medicine interacts much less frequently with other drugs that a person takes for other health problems.

Augusta Health Augusta Free Press Kris McMackin CPA
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Augusta Free Press