How Does Clonidine Help for People Experiencing Anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal emotion that we all feel at times. It is our body’s way of preparing us to deal with a stressful situation. However, for some people, anxiety can become so intense and overwhelming that it interferes with their daily lives, and when it becomes a problem.
Clonidine works by decreasing the activity of the sympathetic nervous system, responsible for the “fight or flight” response often triggered by anxiety. By decreasing the activity of this system, clonidine can help to reduce the symptoms of anxiety.
If you are considering taking clonidine for anxiety, you must talk to your doctor first because clonidine can cause side effects, such as drowsiness, dry mouth, and constipation. But how exactly does it help? Here are some ideas.
- How Quick Does Clonidine Take Effect?
Clonidine works within 2 to 4 hours of taking the pill, and the effects can last up to 12 hours. However, the results may vary depending on how long you have taken clonidine and how your body responds to the medicine. Meanwhile, half the administered dose exits through the urine, out of the body.
- The Needed Dosage for Clonidine
The recommended dosage of clonidine for anxiety is 0.1 to 0.2 mg daily. However, the dosage may vary depending on the treatment condition, how well the medicine works, and the side effects experienced.
- The Uses of Clonidine
If you have high blood pressure, clonidine can be a helpful medication to help lower your blood pressure. However, this medication can also treat anxiety disorders and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Clonidine for anxiety is also used to help manage specific withdrawal symptoms, such as anxiety, irritability, and sweating. People can also use it to help manage hot flashes, common in menopause.
- How to Take Clonidine
Clonidine is taken orally, in the form of a pill, and with or without food. People needing it must take medicine simultaneously every day, preferably at bedtime. It is best to take clonidine at bedtime because it can cause drowsiness.
- Other Conditions Treated by Clonidine
But besides hypertension, ADHD, and anxiety, clonidine is also a solution for other health conditions like diabetic neuropathy, diarrhea, menopausal flushing, menstrual cramps, alcohol withdrawal, Benzodiazepine withdrawal, Opioid withdrawal, restless leg syndrome, and spasticity.
Clonidine Decreases Anxiety Attacks and Other Psychic Symptoms
Clonidine is a medication that can treat anxiety disorders, including panic attacks. It is a drug that acts on the central nervous system. However, it is only a chunk of what the drug does to the human body as it is mainly used in treating hypertension and ADHD.
Clonidine may be used as a standalone treatment for anxiety, or people may use it in combination with other medications. But remember that you must speak to a doctor about your best treatment plan.
The Side Effects of Clonidine
Clonidine side effects are not typical and are usually mild and temporary. The most common side effects of clonidine are dry mouth, drowsiness, tiredness, and constipation. However, there are more severe side effects to Clonidine that are rare, but they do happen. These include low blood pressure, fainting, and slow heart rate. If you experience any side effects, you should stop taking the medication and call your doctor immediately.
- Dry Mouth
Clonidine reduces saliva production, which can lead to a dry mouth. It also slows the metabolism of water, which can lead to dehydration. If you experience dry mouth, drink plenty of water and avoid sugary drinks. You can also try sucking on sugar-free candy or chewing sugar-free gum to help stimulate saliva production.
Drowsiness is the most common side effect of Clonidine. If you are taking Clonidine and experience drowsiness, stop taking the medication and call your doctor immediately. It can be dangerous because it can cause you to fall asleep while driving or operating machinery.
Tiredness is another common side effect of Clonidine. As a result, people taking it may feel fatigued and constantly need to rest in the middle of doing physical activities. They may also experience headaches, muscle weakness, and slowed reflexes and responses.
Constipation is another common side effect of Clonidine because clonidine slows down the digestive system. If you are taking clonidine, it is essential to drink plenty of fluids and eat high-fiber foods to help prevent constipation.
Long-Term Side Effects of Taking Clonidine
Clonidine has potential long-term side effects too. For example, people can experience severe effects on the cardiovascular system. It can also include heart palpitations, congestive heart failure, and atrioventricular blockage—all irreversible.
- Heart Palpitations
Heart palpitations are when a person experiences a fast heart rate, irregular heartbeat, or a heart-fluttering sensation. If you have heart palpitations, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately. While they can sometimes be harmless, they can also signify a more serious underlying condition.
- Congestive Heart Failure
Congestive heart failure is a potentially life-threatening condition. It can occur if your heart doesn’t pump blood as well as it should. Congestive heart failure can make it difficult to breathe, and it can cause your legs and ankles to swell. If you have congestive heart failure, you must seek medical attention immediately.
- Atrioventricular Blockage
An atrioventricular blockage is a type of heart blockage that can cause your heart to beat irregularly. It can also cause your heart to beat too slowly. If you have an atrioventricular blockage, you must seek medical attention immediately.
Is Clonidine a Beta-Blocker?
Beta-blockers, also known as beta-adrenergic blocking agents, are drugs used to treat various conditions, including high blood pressure, heart failure, anxiety, and migraines. They work by blocking the effects of the hormone epinephrine, also known as adrenaline. However, Clonidine is not a beta-blocker. Instead, it belongs to a class of drugs called alpha-adrenergic agonists.
Things to Remember Before Taking Clonidine
Before taking Clonidine, tell your doctor about other medical conditions and medications, including over-the-counter drugs and supplements. Also, inform your doctor if you are pregnant, to breastfeed, or plan to become pregnant, as Clonidine may not be safe for use. It may interact with other medications, so you must provide your doctor with a complete list of everything you are taking.
Clonidine is a medication used to treat hypertension. However, it is also ideal for treating anxiety as it decreases the amount of norepinephrine in the brain. Norepinephrine is a neurotransmitter that is involved in the fight-or-flight response. The fight-or-flight response is a natural response that occurs when a person is faced with a dangerous situation.
However, remember that Clonidine is not a first-line treatment for anxiety. It is not the first medication a doctor will prescribe for anxiety. Clonidine is usually only prescribed when other drugs, such as beta-blockers, have not effectively treated anxiety. Clonidine may be used alone or in combination with other medications.
Clonidine is a drug that belongs to a class of medications called alpha-adrenergic agonists. Clonidine treats high blood pressure, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), alcohol withdrawal, and certain types of pain. Clonidine may cause side effects such as drowsiness, dry mouth, and constipation.
Clonidine is available in a tablet and an oral solution, usually taken two or three times per day. The oral solution is usually taken four times per day. But for best results, consult an expert or talk to a family doctor for more information about the drug.
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