My husband found me sobbing in a corner with a medication strip in my hand.

It was a normal day until…

There was some minor setback at the workplace, and my anxiety started controlling me. 

I created thousands of negative consequences and cried inconsolably.

My doctor had advised taking SOS medicine during such scenarios.

(SOS means taking the medication as and when needed)

But I hate taking them as they make me drowsy.

So, there I was, sobbing in a corner, with an SOS medication strip in my hand, wondering if I should take it.

My husband realized I needed help and convinced me to take medicine.

And the result?

I was back to normal within 30 minutes!

What’s the point of telling you this?

Well, it’s to convey the importance of medicine in managing anxiety.

Does Everyone Need medications to Control Anxiety?

A big NO!

Not everyone needs drugs to control their jitters.

But only your doctor can decide this for you.

Also…

Don’t make the same mistake as I did! 

I waited too long to seek help for managing anxiety. 

It took me a panic attack to realize I needed support.

And at this stage, medicines were my only hope.

Are These Medicines safe?

I consulted a psychiatrist who put me on a few drugs to help manage my condition.

But this decision wasn’t received well by my loved ones.

“You don’t need medicines.”

“You just need fresh air or a break.”

“Be strong, Kinjal; all this is in your head.”

“Being a doctor, how can you take medicines for this long.”

“Aren’t you aware of the side effects of these medicines?”

I used to get all these from many relatives and loved ones.

While I can’t blame them, only I knew what I was going through.

Frankly, given an option, I, too, wouldn’t want to take medicines to manage anxiety.

However, medicines are not as nocuous as one may think.

I am not saying they don’t have side effects. Or it’s easy to accept the fact that you may have to take them for a long period.

Practically, it’s selecting between “anxiety” or “short-term side effects of these medicines.”

And medicine is LESSER of the two evils. 

How do These Medicines Help?

Multiple drugs can help you manage anxiety. 

Some of them ease symptoms such as a racing heartbeat or nausea. While others act on the brain chemicals.

For instance, the neurotransmitter serotonin supplies cells related to mood. Low levels of serotonin are associated with anxiety and depression.

Anxiety medicines can improve its level in the brain, enhancing your mood. Some medications can also calm you down.

But they have their own side effects.

Coping with Their Side Effects

Anxiety medicines can cause unpleasant effects.

I used to get weird sensations in my body. 

Goosebumps, nausea, sexual disorders, and crying spells were some of the common ones.

Initially, I couldn’t understand if these sensations were part of my condition or the medicines.

Talking to my physician confirmed they were medicine-related.

So, how can one cope with it?

Accept it. Knowing that you will face adverse effects will keep you prepared.

For physical problems such as constipation or dryness of the mouth, you can consult your doctor. (I won’t bore you with all this here)

Fortunately, most side effects are short-lived. 

NEVER, I repeat, never stop medicines on your own.

For females, changes in the hormone around menses also affect the mood.

It’s like you are faced with so many emotions all at once.

But experiment with things that help you.

Music, cooking, coloring, or even comfort foods can help you. (My comfort food is ice-cream 😉)

Seek Support

Let me tell you my thoughts on it.

I am an independent female and prefer doing things by myself.

So, the first thing that came to my mind…

“I don’t need help.”

“It’s just a phase. Things will be fine.”

“I am a strong female; I can do this on my own.”

I couldn’t have been more wrong. 

And I learned this the HARD way!

But I was fortunate.

I have a lovely, supportive family, a sister, and a husband.

They have seen me through the lowest times and showered all their love and patience.

Impact of lifestyle

While I had a pretty decent lifestyle, it still had flaws. Here is how I took charge of it:

  • Started becoming active: Being physically active and exercise aids in the release of endorphins, the happy hormone. I started with regular morning walks and some cardio workouts. (Here is the link to the schedule). Besides, I started taking walks whenever I felt restless, and it worked wonders.
  • Changes in diet: I started strictly adhering to a healthy diet with fewer carbs and fats (more on this in my next blog).
  • Mindfulness: It is one of the approaches that brought a significant change in my condition.

Seek support if you are unwell. It doesn’t mean you are weak. It means you are responsible. So, take care of your mental health. And once again, if I could soar, so can you. See you on the healthy side!

 

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