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18 Mar 2003

Beta-Blockers
Hi Doc

Over the past couple of years I've struggled a lot with Panic attacks and anxiety. I've had lots of psychotherapy and I've used some medication which has really helped me quite a lot. I dont get panic attacks anymore, but I'm still on medication for anxiety at the moment. I've used a med called Remeron before and now I'm using something called Aropax. (Very expensive by the way)

In a previous message you mentioned the term "Beta-Blockers", which is something I havent heard of before..I've done a lot of reading on anxiety disorders and dont think I've ever heard of Beta-Blockers, so you have made me quite curious now.

Are Beta-Blockers the same type of medicine as the anti-depressant type of stuff that I've used before or is this something different ?
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Jin, they're different. And they're not in the least antidepressant, so if one also needs antidepressant effects, one needs AD drugs, such as those you've tried.
Beta-Blockers ( otherwise more often used by GPs and general physicians for high blood pressure ) are a specific type of drug which damps down part of the nervous system which is responsible for the physical parts of anxiety and panic--- they calm the raised pulse-rate, sweatiness, trembling, etc. They do NOT affect your psychological state, so one can have the odd sensation of one's body being beautifully calm, while psychologically one might still feel frightened. The other thing which can help anxiety, of course, is counselling, which can help one better identify that triggers for one's fears, and find better ways to deal with them.
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