When suffering from different mental health issues, such as anxiety, you are prescribed medications to regulate your mood and keep you mentally healthy. While some do understand the importance of talking out their concerns about the prescribed medications, some just hold themselves back from asking.
The conversation about private health issues and medication, such as antidepressants, is not always an easy one. Most people hold back from asking things at all because they don’t know how to bring up the topic.
If you are amongst those, it is for you to know that the decision to take medication for anxiety and mental health issues is nothing but another opportunity for you to connect with your doctor.
Regardless of the type of medication for mental health, you must have a discussion with your doctor. Here’s a guide to how you can do it successfully.
Asking the Doctor about Anxiety Medication
- If you are requesting anxiety medication, be direct and precise. Tell the doctor what concerns you and why. Go about it saying something like ‘I suspect I am experiencing depression from the last ________ days/weeks/months. This is because of ___________ symptoms.’
- If your doctor asks you a few questions regarding mental health and then prescribes medication, you can ask them to be more precise. They may be suggesting an antidepressant or anti-anxiety medication, and you can always ask whatever concerns you. For example, ask them why you are being prescribed xyz medicines.
- Your physician will have specific reasons for prescribing a medicine. It will probably be their standard go-to medicine for most patients like you. Should you have questions regarding that, ask there and then. If need be, take a second opinion.
- Ask about alternate options, such as therapy. Be fully aware of what could and could not be done to treat your symptoms/condition. See why you are being prescribed medication instead of therapy. This will make you feel confident about the physician too.
- Understand how the medication will benefit you and how soon. The doctor should tell you about how long it will take for the medicines to work and how long the impact of each dose will last.
- Ask what you should be looking at or noticing to affirm there has been an improvement. Ask about the symptoms of relief or prevention of the condition you have. This will help you identify the effectiveness of the medicines you are prescribed.
- Inquire how long you will stay on the prescribed medications. Ask if the doctor can prescribe anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medicines along with other prescribed medications if you feel there is a need to.
- Know about the potential side effects of the prescribed medicine for anxiety. Some medications will have lasting and strong side effects while some will have minimal. Ask if you will be experiencing weight gain, a change in libido, or any other side effect.
- Don’t be shy. Keep your doctor updated and don’t hold back from asking about things that concern you or any symptoms you might see after going on medications. Even if there are no adverse effects or changes and you just evoke a new concern after a while, connect with the doctor and clear the air out. Always keep it that way!
Anxiety and other mental health medication is not something you can just take. Ask questions and talk out your concerns. Do the necessary research and be confident before you embark on the journey!