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The Trouble with Tranqs
There's a whole group of drugs out there called benzodiazepines.They are tranquillisers, or sedatives. They include such well-known names as Valium (diazepam), Ativan (lorazepam), Librium (chlordiazepoxide), Tranxene (clorazepate), Paxipam (halazepam), Centrax or Verstran (prazepam), Klonopin (clonazepam), Dalmane (flurazepam), Serax (oxazepam), Restoril (temazepam), Xanax (alprazolam), and Halcion (triazolam). Drugs like Librium and Valium have been around for a while, others such as Xanax are relative newcomers. Interestingly, whenever it appears, the newcomer is always hailed as a wonder drug as it becomes available for prescrption, until, 10 or 20 years later, the problems start to appear with those who were the first to be 'saved' from their pain by this miracle of pharmacological engineering.
But when the mind is filled with anxious thoughts; the world is a scary place; and coping is a dream so far away it's just a fantasy, these wonderful drugs are a lifeline to be grabbed with all of our might and they can indeed create a window of respite, a breather, a little calm that allows the troubled mind to struggle on and cope in a lesser version of Hell than without the drugs.
Peter Breggin, in Toxic Psychiatry, writes of 100,000,000 prescriptions a year, in the US alone, for benzodiazepines, at a conservative estimate costing $500,000,000. They are clearly popular with doctors, but considering the long-term detrimental effects, and the ease with which short-term use can turn to addiction I am puzzled as to why they seem to be the first response to people who are clearly lost in their own minds and most of whom just need re-assurance first, with direction, support, and guidance following on.
These drugs have a clinically similar effect to alcohol on the central nervous system, and long term use can have quite a severe impact on brain tissue, in much the way alcohol does. But the real problem with these drugs is their addictiveness, and the difficulty in stopping taking them after even a relatively short period of use. Some of these distressing withdrawal symptoms that may be experienced are: anger, anxiety, bowel changes, lack of concentration, emotional disturbance, depression, coordination difficulties, vertigo, sensitivity to light, head pressure, muscle and joint pain, numbness, paranoia, agitation, shaking, insomnia, and feelings of unreality or dissociation.
So what's the alternative?
The alternative is not a bigger, better, more modern, more focused drug. The alternative is the realisation by the medical world, and by sufferers from anxiety, that these drugs don't change anything. They just disconnect you from it. Whatever it is that's causing the anxiety, it's still there when the drug is eventually stopped. Postponing facing up to it for 3 months, a year, 10 years, 20 years? still leaves the problem sitting there, and it will wait for as long as is necessary because it is a part of the mind, a part of the belief system, a part of the upbringing, a part of the self. All the drugs do is numb the mind, wrap it in cotton wool so thinking is fuzzier, but they leave the problem sitting there waiting for the day the drug is removed. There is simply no escape through drugs.
The trouble is we've all become so used to the idea of the easy option, the effortless solution ? magic is what we want. What we don't want is to have to look at what we don't want to look at because every time we look we get the anxiety response that we're trying to escape from in the first place.
There is only one solution.
That solution is for the sufferer to decide that they are going to be free of the problem, and that their life is no longer going to be controlled by their anxiety.
Without a commitment at that level, nothing will work long-term.
Once that commitment is made, then it is up to the sufferer to allow themselves to be guided (by what feels right to them) towards the help and assistance they require. This may be therapy in one of its many forms, counselling, cognitive therapy, psychotherapy, Gestalt, behavioural therapy, hypnotherapy?; or the avid reading of self-help books that appeal, attending therapy/self-help groups, attending workshops, visiting a spiritual healer?
What is important is that the sufferer feels heard and honoured and supported, not so much what the flavour of the month is in therapy. They all work. They all have an impact, as long as the match between the sufferer's mind, the style of therapy, and the personality of the therapist/facilitator, are a comfortable fit.
There is no suggestion here that anyone taking tranquillisers should stop taking them without consulting their physician. Many of these drugs require a gradual reduction in dose ? a weaning, because of the effects they have on the brain. Sudden removal can produce worse or similar symptoms to those that the drug was being prescribed for in the first place.
What I am suggesting is that alternatives are seriously considered, and that it is possible to lead a life free of the need of the tranquillising crutch that prevents the sufferer from ever experiencing the fullness and wonder of self in all it's creative and successful glory.
Michael J. Hadfield MBSCH is a registered clinical hypnotherapist. You can experience his unique style on a popular range of hypnosis CD's and tapes at http://www.hypnosisiseasy.com. Here you can also obtain treatment for a variety of problems and explore his approach to health, healing, and hypnosis.
Hypnotherapy as a Treatment for IBS
Hypnotherapy is one of the best known and most widely used treatments for IBS, and can offer sufferers a drug-free solution to their symptoms of diarrhea, constipation, stomach pain and bloating.
Emollients and Lubricant Drugstore Laxatives
Stool Softener Laxatives - Emollients
Onychomycosis - One Of The Many Nail Fungus Out There
Many natural changes in fingers and toenails come with age. Fine ridges, for example, may start developing from the cuticle of the nail tip. This and other similar changes are common, but they are not signs of poor health.
I Hurt All Over... How to Ease Away the Pain of Fibromyalgia!
At one moment, a life of activity consumed with enjoyable activities like biking, golfing, going to the movies, out to dinner. Then one day, it's gone. Replaced with constant pain and fatigue. Here's the lowdown on fibromyalgia.
UltraCET: The Dynamic Duo Of Prescription Pain Control Medications
Remember the last time you stubbed your toe? OUCH! It's painful. But a stubbed toe usually doesn't send us running to the medicine cabinet, since we know that the pain will pass within a few minutes.
Are You Sometimes Confused by Written Medical Instructions?
Now, imagine what it would be like if you were sick, scared and had only third grade reading skills. Your doctor tells you, "You've got to follow these instructions exactly, or you could die."
Potassium and The Dialysis Patient
Any dialysis patient who has had a brush with high potassium will know only too well how dangerous this can be. We are forever being told to watch our potassium intake, so I thought I would explore the reasons for this, and what practical steps we can take to limit the risks.
Diagnosis and Treatments of Cerebral Palsy
Before a child can be appropriately diagnosed with cerebral palsy, their doctor must first have to look closely at both the child and the mother's medical background to see if there are any known causes of cerebral palsy present in the case. The doctor will very carefully check the baby's motor skills and the reflexes, and then will be tested by a physician, also they will try to determine the Childs hand preference often a child with cerebral palsy will use the hand that is not always the most practical to them due to the fact that depending on the brain damage one side of the body will be much stronger than the other side that is affected.
Which Drug Addiction Treatment is the Best?
The answer is simple: there is no such thing as the best drug addiction treatment. Depending on the kind of the addiction, your age and social situation different treatments may be chosen for your benefit.
Zyprexa - History of the Drug
Since the beginning of mankind, mental illness has played a role in our society. Victims of such illnesses have been outcast, stereotyped and often ridiculed. However, over time, medical and psychiatric science advanced and the medical community became more knowledgeable of these conditions.
The Neurological Exam: Evaluating the Master Organ
How does a mind contemplate itself? That's a philosophical question I'll leave to minds smarter than mine, but what I can tell you is how to examine the brain and other parts of the nervous system.
Bee Propolis: Synergisitc Health Care for the 21st Centruy
For well over a century modern science has progressed at a startling rate. With this increase in knowledge has come medicinal and healthcare benefits that have seen ages peak and diseases eradicated. These medical advances were based around the paradigm of the "magic bullet", isolating the active ingredient and using it to alter the chemistry of a single molecule/protein to elicit a change of state in the patient. Success however has turned to obsession as cracks appear in the armoury of disease fighting drugs at our disposal. MRSA is rifling through our hospitals as antibiotics become ineffective and severe side effects of modern drugs are becoming common place now years after their introduction. A direct consequence of a one dimensional strategy, it is maybe the time to acknowledge the synergistic health benefits of natural medicine. Propolis is a unique natural medicine because of its breadth of action. It has antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and immunomodulatory effects, it could help treat asthma, allergies, arthritis and joint disorders, eczema and dermatitis, ME, viral infections including HIV and even cancer. This medicine could help treat an illness or keep you fit and healthy. Propolis: Defender of the City Propolis is a mainly resinous substance that bees collect from trees and plants. Being made up of waxes, resins, fatty acids and even amino acids. Aristotle reputedly coined the name Propolis meaning "defender of the city". This is exactly what Propolis is for the hive, it acts as a bee population's external immune system keeping the hive sterile and free of microbial invaders Evidence Based Medicine In the following paragraphs I will describe to you the pharmacological properties of Propolis. Before I do so I must explain where this evidence comes from. All the properties and actions of Propolis have been witnessed and detailed in scientific studies which have subsequently been published in journals. The bulk of these scientific studies have been performed in vitro (i.e. in a test tube) or in vivo (i.e. in a host animal for example rats), a much smaller proportion of these studies are clinical trials tested on humans. The abstracts of these papers can be found on the Medline and pubmed databases on the Internet. Propolis: A natural antibiotic Propolis is probably best known for its antibiotic properties. Even as early as 1960 French1 research demonstrated the bacteriostatic action on Bacillus subtilis, Proteus vulgaris and Bacillus alvei. The results have been replicated many times and Propolis has even been shown to be effective to MRSA2, the same antibiotic resistant bacteria that has infected up to 70% of our hospitals. A 1997 study by Calder et al. at the University of Oxford concurred with these results and found that the cinnaminic acids and flavanoids present in Propolis in particular show bacteriocidal action. This action believed to be as a consequence of Propolis uncoupling the bacterial energy respiratory chain. Interestingly this action may be involved in a synergistic action with antibiotics when used together, boosting the effectiveness of the drugs. Anti-Viral and immuno-stimulatory Viruses present a unique dilemma in the quest for good health, they are not affected by antibiotics and mutate so frequently that vaccines are hard to produce. They also cause illness by hijacking cells and using the cells machinery to replicate. Modern drugs aim to slow or stop the virus from the replicating and subsequently because they are attacking host cell machinery they have certain side effects. Viruses perhaps pose the greatest threat to humans' health, we are currently in the middle of a HIV pandemic with "39.4 million" people infected world wide. With a Flu pandemic overdue and certainly on its way and predictions of world wide casualties and chaos, a solution is needed. The bioflavanoids in propolis have a unique approach to combating Viruses, instead of trying to combat them once they have infected a cell, they lock the virus in its protein coat. This means that the dangerous machinery and DNA/RNA of the virus is nullified and the infection stopped. Propolis has been shown to be more effective than the pharmaceutical anti-viral acyclovir in treating genital Herpes in a clinical trial conducted in the Ukraine4 and there is growing evidence that Propolis could help treat people with HIV5. Propolis also works hard as an immunomodulator which is of interest for all of us. It does this by altering the way cytokine production and release is managed. Cytokines are the chemical messengers that allow immune system cells to communicate. By altering the cytokine system, it primes the immune system to be ready to react to antigens quickly and effectively. As well as this, bioflavanoids within Propolis stimulate the production of interferon which can help people recover from ME, stimulating their immune system. This alteration of the cytokine and interferon systems means that your body is ready to fight off infection and keep you healthy, making a case for using propolis as a supplement for good health, like vitamins. Prevention is better than the cure. Anti-inflammatory and anti-allergen A survey of Propolis consumers showed that arthritis was the health problem that Propolis was used to treat the most. This is because of the potent anti-inflammatory properties of the propolis constituents in particular CAPE (Caffeic acid Phenyl ester), CAPE has been shown to suppress T cell activation. A paper by Marquez et al in 20046 evaluated this to mean that since T-cells play a key role in the onset of several inflammatory diseases, CAPE is important because the this phenolic compound is a potent inhibitor of early and late events in T-cell receptor-mediated T-cell activation. Results like this have led other researchers to propose that CAPE is a worthwhile agent for reducing the severity of conditions associated with inflammation. Many of the experiments performed on CAPE were done so in vitro, however the anti-inflammatory properties of Propolis have been documented in rats when treating rat adjuvant arthritis. A paper by Park et al in 19997 concluding that the ethanolic extract of propolis had profound anti-inflammatory effects on both chronic and acute arthritic inflammations. These anti-inflammation properties extend to other illness and disorders such as asthma and allergies reducing both smooth muscle airway contraction8 and allergic responses. Any disorder or illness related to inflammation could be helped by Propolis. Anti-tumour/cancer Propolis and CAPE have been shown to reduce the size of tumours and to selectively destroy and to curb the proliferation of malignant cells of many different types of cancer. As recently as June 10th 2005 Cancer researchers have been given a grant of a million dollars to investigate the therapeutic value of Propolis for cancer. Costas Koumenis the lead investigator for the study was quoted as saying, "a very interesting property of these compounds is that they have been shown to cause cell death in tumor cells but not in normal cells." This study along with other current studies promises to propel Propolis into the limelight in the field of cancer treatment. Current Propolis Research in the UK BVR (BeeVital Research) recently won a major government Research and Development Award, part of a £250,000 research programme looking at the chemical, biological and clinical properties of propolis. These studies will focus on the: 1. Documenting the regional variances in chemical and biological properties, by HPLS, GC-MS and NMR. (Taking place at Univeristy of Strathclyde) 2. Futher investigating the role of Propolis in the Hive (University of Gloucester) 3. Dental trials ? looking at effectiveness of Propolis for Mouth Ulcers, Pericorinitis, Gingivitis and Sensitive Teeth. (Manchester University Dental school) 4. HIV/AIDS trials ? looking at the effectiveness of Propolis with anti-virals in Zambia and Tanzania 5. The effects of standardised propolis on mood, stress, fatigue and cognition at the Human Cognitive Neuroscience Unit at University of Newcastle. 6. To evaluate the use of local and non ? local propolis for wound healing and the treatment of skin and other dermatological problems. ( The Regional Teaching Hospital for University of Dar es Salaam)
Overview of FDA Recalled Drug - BEXTRA
Bextra, also known as valdecoxib, is a prescription medicine known as a COX-2 Inhibitor. Like Vioxx and Celebrex, it supposedly lessen the pain of inflammation and fever without causing stomach irritation common to aspirin and other NSAIDs (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs). Pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer released Bextra in 2001, and prescription sales soon rose to 3.2 billion dollars.
Oral Chelation ? Is It Better Than Intravenous Chelation?
Intravenous Chelation was the most common practice until a few years back; however, with the introduction of oral chelation it became the preferred choice of most patients and doctors. There were a number of contributing factors to this shift of choice, the prime aspect being the cost factor. Though intravenous chelation would not cost you a fortune, still the cost will be way above the price of Oral Chelation. This initiated the use of oral chelation among the customers who were using intravenous chelation. Once they started using it on a regular basis the other benefits of oral chelation became more evident.
Talking Money with Your Doctor: Drugs and Tests for Less
Would you buy groceries without knowing their prices? I suspect not. You probably compare the costs of different boxes of cereal in order to get the best deal. But when it comes to medical care, do you even ask for the prices involved?
Technology Over Drugs for Stress Related Tension Disorders
As much as 95% of the population suffers from some form of reoccurring stress and tension related headaches.
Medical Billing Specialist
As Pres. Bush was touring the Midwest, shortly before he was re-elected as President, and even after, he spoke of medical reform centering on liability costs. He called it "defensive medicine." Searching for a good medical billing specialist who is familiar with reliable electronic medical record systems is quite possibly one of the best defensive medicines that consumers and practices can employ. I say that because small practices spend an average of $150,000 per year in liability costs. That may include insurance or even law suits. Consumers may also have to fit the liability bill if things get ugly.
Blood Pressure Treatment: High and Low Blood Pressure Tips and Medication!
High blood pressure is on the rise worldwide. But, doctors believe that small lifestyle changes can go a long way in preventing this silent killer.
A Look at the Different Acid Reflux Symptoms
Acid reflux symptoms vary in degrees of discomfort, from person to person, and within different age groups. The most common and persistent symptom is a burning sensation centered in the middle of the chest and/or throat, brought on by stomach acid that churns up onto the lining of the esophagus. This is due to the relaxing of the esophageal sphincter (valve), which remains open when it should be closed. Acid reflux also leads to one of the most unpleasant symptoms known as regurgitation of acid into the mouth, often due to overeating, or bending down after a meal.
Does Heel Pain Mean that I Need to Stop Running?
Heel pain, medically termed plantar fasciitis, is a common and frustrating injury for many runners. It accounts for up to 10% of all running injuries and results from overstressing the band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes. If you suffer from plantar fasciitis, you probably experience sharp pain in your heel not only after running, but also with the first steps in the morning or after long periods of sitting or being on your feet.
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