Action: These are medications – that all, in some way – affect brain turnover of two chemicals serotonin and/or noradrenaline.
Selective Serotonin Re-Uptake Inhibitors:
Trade Name: Cipramil, Lexapro, Lustral, Flaverin, Seroxat, Effexor, Molipaxin, Anafranil
Chemical Name: Fluoxetine, Citalapram, Escitalopram, Sertraline, Fluvoxamine, Paroxetine, Venlafaxine, Trazodone, Clomipramine
- They can reduce social anxiety and in addition treat depressive symptoms that have occurred secondary to the anxiety symptoms.
- They are not dependence producing in the same way as Benzodiazepines
- They can be used for long-term treatment.
Important to note about this class of medications
- They can take up to nine weeks – or more – to exert their anxiety reducing effect. so patience and persistence is often required
- There is a distinct risk of the return of symptoms of social anxiety when they are discontinued.
- Treatment with medications alone does not specifically target the causes of the social anxiety symptoms.
- Individuals who have been prescribed a Selective Serotonin Re-Uptake Inhibitors can experience a temporary increase in anxiety in the first week of treatment.
- Some antidepressants – Paroxetine in particular – can produce a withdrawal syndrome if not discontinued gradually under medical supervision.
So to address the question of what are the effects of medications for social phobia? The evidence-based answer is that In adults, medications may improve the symptoms of social phobia in the short term,. Unfortunately, their usefulness tends to be overstated because of publication bias. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have the strongest evidence of efficacy and the most favorable side-effect profile.