My Guide to Social Anxiety Medication Dos and don’ts

Social anxiety medications exist, they serve all kinds of purposes, but without the correct indications from your doctor/therapist they can become a bad thing.

Social anxiety medications can help you out with panic attacks, intense emotional reactions, or chemical imbalances that might occur, however they should always be a mean and not an end. Your purpose is permanent change, and whether you can actually control the chemicals in your brain at this moment or not, permanent change comes from attacking the roots and not the consequences.

My personal take of Social Anxiety Medications:

I never actually took any social anxiety medications; I have ALWAYS felt anxious around others. So I think this ‘predisposition’ to social anxiety has always existed in me.

At first, when I found out I had social anxiety, I wanted to take medications just to get it all over with. But that would mean I had to tell my parents I was feeling this way, and the thought of telling them actually made me feel anxious itself.

You can basically say that social anxiety held me from taking social anxiety medications.

What I learned through this path was that even though I felt socially anxious in MOST situations, there were certain specific situations that terrified me.

Things such as:

  • Attending a party.
  • Being seen as a loser.
  • Being seen as a loner.
  • Having to speak up in large groups.
  • Etc.

Since I was too scared to admit it to my parents that I had social anxiety, and there was no way I could go to a therapist by myself, I just had NO WAY to get the medication, much less know which medication I had to take.

I did it all without medication:

Perfection doesn’t exist, I still feel anxious in certain situations. The good part is that once you start getting the social experience, you get to trust yourself in these situations.

And also, you realize that EVERYONE out there is also feeling anxious to some extent, most people in the world walk around anxiously, you are not alone and it is NORMAL.

You’ll find that big efforts in a short amount of time get you great results, as well as persisting in your social awesomeness journey will get you to the point where you can enjoy the social life you want.

Medication as Advised by your therapist:

Your therapist might prescribe you with social anxiety medications, and it is ONLY a qualified expert in the topic who can advise you to take any medications.

Don’t walk into therapy expecting the ‘quick fix’; most times they won’t prescribe anything because the real fix will come in the form of full social anxiety treatments.

Some SA Medications:

Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs): These are a class of antidepressants used on the treatment of depression and other affective disorders. It's sometimes used to treat anxiety disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and others.

  • Venlafaxine-XR
  • Duloxetine

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs): These are the most commonly prescribed anti-depressants. They can tame symptoms from mild to severe depression, are somewhat safe, they generally cause fewer side effects than any other types of antidepressants.

  • Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
  • Paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Citalopram (Celexa)
  • Escitalopram (Lexapro, Cipralex)
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac)

Benzodiazepines:

Benzodiazepines are drugs that possess sedative actions, which are useful in a variety of indications such as alcohol dependence, seizures, anxiety, panic, agitation and insomnia. Most are administered orally.

  • Diazepam (Valium)
  • Alprazolam (Xanax)
  • Lorazepam (Ativan)
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin, Rivotril)

Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs): They work by blocking this cleanup activity. When the excess neurotransmitters don't get destroyed, they start piling up in the brain. And since depression is associated with low levels of these monoamines, they work against depressive symptoms. MAOIs are uncommon as a treatment for Social Anxiety.

Beta-Blockers:

Beta blockers are drugs that block norepinephrine and epinephrine (adrenaline) from binding to beta receptors on nerves. There are three types of beta receptors and they control several functions based on their location in the body. They usually work on getting rid of the physical symptoms of Social Anxiety.

My personal advice:

  1. The ONLY person that can advise you to take any social anxiety medications is a qualified and authorized expert.
  2. If your social anxiety is really severe, you might get prescribed some medication. Medication attacks the effects, not the causes. There’s no ‘quick fix’ here, you must work in the root causes of SA.
  3. Thrive, don’t cope. Go for the best, for what you want, and for the social life of your dreams. This all involves hard work and no dependency on medication.

Hard work pays off, when I was in my worst days, I really wanted someone to tell me that everything would be ok and that I could do it, this is why I build this website, to tell you that you can do it too. Go out and get social!

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Dealing with the Social Anxiety Emotions: Don't worry, be happy. And find out how.

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