“Anxiety is a normal, predictable part of life,” said Tom Corboy, MFT. Substance or medication-induced anxiety refers to a disorder which is caused by either alcohol, drugs, or medication. Yes, it is normal to experience some small levels of stress in certain phases of life, which are usually caused by our stressor, but this anxiety gets worse with the intake of either of the three things mentioned above.
Medications are known for their healing effects – lowering illness options, boosting confidence, helping patients relax, and avoiding any kinds of physical sickness. But do you know that the same medications can also cause panic attacks and anxiety disorder? In some cases, people see this as a cure; hence, they continue to take these medicines. However, what they don’t know is that these types of medications are the ones which induce anxiety on them. According to Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S., “Whether you have occasional anxiety or a diagnosable disorder, the good news is that you can take small, effective and straightforward steps every day to manage and minimize your anxiety.”
A wide variety of medications can cause these anxiety disorders. Let us explore them one by one.
Benzodiazepines, also popularly known as tranquilizers, are the most famous prescription medicine for those with anxiety. The reason for this is that they work quickly. Unlike other medications which will require a few hours to take into effect, benzodiazepines bring relief within 30 minutes. They work by slowing down the nervous system which will lead to a more relaxed physical and mental state.
However, people often forget to consider that there are times the result is in the opposite effect. These paradoxical reactions are mostly experienced by children, people with developmental abilities, and the elderly. Once they take this medicine, they experience increased anxiety, mania, impulsive behavior, agitation, rage, irritability, and hallucinations.
Many have tried to study these side effects, but the reasons why they are happening are still not well understood up to today.
Bronchodilators are medicines which open up airways in your lungs. These are usually the ones used to counter the effect of asthma. What’s terrible about asthma drugs is that it contributes to mood disorders which will then later translate to anxiety. Some samples of asthma medication include:
- Albuterol – Albuterol is known for having common side effects such as trembling or shaking. At extreme times, they can also cause racing heartbeats. All of the things mentioned above are signs of a panic attack.
- Salmeterol – According to studies, Some side effects include having an abnormal heart rate, nervousness, sweating, and some levels of anxiety.
Medications With Caffeine
Medicines which has caffeine as their main component are usually used to solve headache and migraine. It is a drug which uses your nervous system to rev up your blood pressure and heart. These actions typically make you nervous and jittery. Listed below are some examples of prescription drugs with caffeine:
Thyroid pills, such as Armour Thyroid, NP Thyroid, and Nature-Throid, are used to treat a specific thyroid complication called hypothyroidism. Whenever your body does not produce a certain level of thyroid hormone, there is a large possibility that you will gain weight, lack energy, and have trouble focusing and concentrating.
The thyroid pills mentioned above are useful in treating hypothyroidism. However, they are also known to cause anxiety symptoms such as hyperactivity, being jittery, and shakiness.
Corticosteroids refer to medications which are hormone-inducing. It means that they produce hormones which are lacking in the body to avoid any complication. These corticosteroids treat conditions such as bronchitis, allergies, asthma, and arthritis. Up to date, however, doctors are still unsure why these kinds of medications make their patients irritable and anxious upon taking.
You may experience anxiety symptoms if you are taking corticosteroid medicines such as Dexamethasone, Cortisone, and Prednisone.
One of the primary uses of ADHD Drugs is to become a stimulant. It means that they rev up your brain. They are also tasked to change the way on how your nerve cells send messages to other parts of your body. Because of this, the tendency is that it will make you anxious and restless. Feeling of anxiety and being restless are more evident if you are taking high doses.
Some examples of these ADHD drugs include:
Medications can cause various effects to a person, and these side effects vary from person to person. Because of this, it is vital you to ask the assistance of your doctors to be able to know which medications to take for a specific disorder which won’t negatively affect your mental health. According to Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S., “Whether you have occasional anxiety or a diagnosable disorder, the good news is that you can take small, effective and straightforward steps every day to manage and minimize your anxiety.”