Taking care of your mental health is one of the most important things you can do, as it influences every aspect of your life. Fortunately, those who struggle with theirs have several treatment options available to them, including talk therapy and brain stimulation. Another one to consider is psychiatric medications. However, as you do so, it is important to consider how they can impact your mental health.
Five main types of psychiatric drugs are commonly used.
These medications are usually prescribed to individuals suffering from depression, while they can also be used to help treat other conditions such as anxiety or insomnia. Many of these take a month or two before their impact is entirely experienced, so be patient if you are taking one of these types.
Anti-anxiety medications are prescribed to people who suffer from anxiety and individuals who have trouble falling or staying asleep. Some types are intended to handle more severe, short-term anxiety, such as experienced during phobia-related situations, while others are more long-term in nature.
Mood stabilizers are psychiatric medications that help lessen mood swings’ intensity, such as those often experienced by people with bipolar disorder or who suffer from periods of mania or hypomania. Lithium is one of the most commonly prescribed mental health medications for this purpose. It can be taken for a longer period of time and is also often prescribed to individuals who are suffering from depression.
Antipsychotics, which are also prescribed to many who have bipolar disorder or suffer from severe anxiety, are focused on decreasing the number of instances of psychosis and schizophrenia. Simply put, they help those who sometimes lose contact with reality regain that connection.
In some cases, individuals need a type of mental health treatment that stimulates them. This can be true for people with narcolepsy or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). When this medication is consumed, individuals will generally experience greater levels of energy, alertness, and focus.
There are a number of factors that you should consider when engaging in psychiatric medication management. Some common considerations are the mental health conditions you experience, symptoms related to those, how severely this aspect of your life impacts you, and how effective other treatment methods have been.
Another important factor you should discuss with your medical care provider is how long you anticipate taking these medications. Of course, it is understandable if you decide to change this element of your treatment, but do also consider that some types of medications are best for the short term while others work well with long-term use.
Some examples of mental disorders that may be best treated with long-term medications are bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Conversely, short-term use might be best for those looking to get through a crisis.
Regardless of what you take, note any side effects. There is always a potential for side effects with any type of medication, but some psychiatric medications have a higher likelihood of adverse effects than others.
Also, take into account any other medications that you are taking as combinations can adversely influence how all of them affect you. Discuss this aspect of your treatment with a professional.
Do not stop taking a prescribed medication without discussing it with a medical health provider first. Of course, you can stop taking something at any time, but you may need to do so in a specific way to wean yourself off it healthily and safely.
You should also take care if you are in a special group of people, as psychiatric medication tends to affect those who are pregnant, older individuals, and children in different ways. For example, people over 65 tend to be more sensitive to medications and process them more slowly.
Lastly, be patient. It may take some trial and error to determine whether the mental health treatment method that works best for you involves psychiatric drugs or not.
Here at Mind Body Wellness, we provide a holistic approach to helping those struggling with their mental health and individuals battling addiction. This often includes psychiatric medications, but we only ensure to involve them if we believe they will help you. We know treatment is not a one-size-fits-all process and should be viewed individually.
To speak with us, reach out at 615-637-1532 or message our team through our website.