May 22, 2012 6:58 PM Subscribe
My doctor prescribed Lopressor in place of an anti anxiety medication. Should I get a second opinion?
posted by xbeautychicx to Health & Fitness (16 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
A little background: I'm a pretty anxious person. While it rarely manifests as physical symptoms I have what seems to be a million thoughts coming and going at once. It's very easy for me to "space out" while performing tasks to entertain these whimsical thoughts. Sometimes it's enjoyable having these reflections but it's also very distracting. I'm constantly reading other people/situations, their reactions, and over analyzing what it all means. It's very draining, it often wrecks my mood, and it's time consuming. It's noticeable how it's effecting the quality of my day to day life now.
For example if I were to go shopping for a book, I'd become so overwhelmed by the options that I'll often return empty handed. If I'd managed to decide between two books I could literally be perfectly still staring at the books side-by-side for 30 minutes with a giant anxious debate going on inside my head. Getting both books would not even be a comfortable option because I feel like a single choice just has to be made. That anxiety level is pretty much an everyday hurdle and it's not usually anything physical like a rapid heartbeat or jitters; it's really all just racing thoughts and feelings.
After trying some natural remedies like meditation, yoga, and cutting back caffeine with little or no effect I chose a medicinal option. So here's the problem:
I currently do not have a psychiatrist or therapist to prescribe anxiety medication so I visited my physician. He asked what my physical symptoms were and I described it as more as an emotional and mental response than physical. I'd mentioned that I'd been prescribed low levels of Xanax and Zoloft years ago (on different occasions) for short amounts of times that were effective and non invasive for me. I wasn't necessarily requesting Xanax I just wanted to know what my options were and what would be most effective for my level of anxiety. The doctor was quick dismiss the idea of similar drugs like Xanax and prescribed Lopressor instead. I'm concerned because I don't believe that this medication is going to benefit me at all. My doctor even said it's not going to do anything for my mood or anxiety but that it'll only help lower my heart rate and slow the physical symptoms of anxiety. I'm in my early twenties and uncomfortable taking a medication to lower my blood pressure when I don't have high blood pressure from the start and it's not going to benefit the reason why I'd needed it either. I'm a little confused why the doctor chose this route. I believe it's because medication like Xanax have such a bad reputation for addiction or misuse, that those who would benefit may be overlooked. He mentioned that I'm so young I shouldn't need benzo medications, however I'd rather have something effective that I can use responsibly for results than popping a pill that's useless for me. With my last Xanax prescription I took one pill (in halves) once every week or so and felt great. I'm a little upset because I feel that my needs and concerns were ignored.
I really like my doctor and understand medical concerns, but I have no history of substance abuse and I've use a benzo drug before with great results. Would it be appropriate for me to revisit my doctor right a way to express these concerns? I'm curious what would be the best thing to say to get that conversation moving towards something that will benefit my needs. Would it also be appropriate for me to flat out request any particular medication that would work for me? Is Lopressor often prescribed to treat the type of anxiety I've described? Also, is there anything equally effective for treating anxiety that could help?
(Therapy is not something I'm entirely interested in right now as I've been to plenty in the past. I also don't want to see a therapist just a for a simple prescription. I'm pretty comfortable with my life but I get triggered and random bouts of anxiety and I'd like to have more control over my thought process.)