Widely prescribed in mainland France and overseas, benzodiazepines are not harmless drugs. Very effective, these molecules would cause a habituation in some patients. According to Dr Jerôme Lerond, psychiatrist at the Center psychothérapique de Nancy (CPN de Laxou), these patients use increasingly high doses to be able to reach a anxiolytic effect.
Respect the prescription period to avoid addictions
“In a state of dependence, these patients are then subject to withdrawal syndrome in case of sudden stop of their treatment », Explains Dr Lerond. This is why it is essential to respect the medical prescription, namely twelve weeks maximum of treatment, including a withdrawal period. ”
This weaning must be explained, organized and above all followed. In this process, the support of the medical and family circle is essential.
Sometimes inappropriate medications for insomnia
Not all anti-anxiety medications are good sleeping tablets. However, these drugs are overused in this indication, to the detriment of good molecules. An anxiolytic, let us remember, treats anxiety, not insomnia. A benzodiazepine wrongly used to treat insomnia will interfere with good quality sleep: it will be less recovering, and the effects of the drug will be felt late in the morning.
“Respect the indications for your treatments and do not share them. The insomnia medications (zolpidem and zopiclone) are more suitable: their time of action is shorter, and the induced sleep will be more recuperative ”, points out Dr Lerond.
Reduce anxiety state without medication
“It can be difficult to relieve the suffering associated with the anxiety state. However, patient management should not be based on the automatic renewal of a prescription for benzodiazepines, ”emphasizes Dr Jérôme Lerond. If the follow-up requires a psychiatrist or specialist in another method of relaxation, do not hesitate to refer the patient to this type of consultation ”.
Relaxation, sophrology, mindfulness meditation… Jérôme Lerond affirms it: “These methods are validated by the scientific community and effective in the management of the anxiety disorder, in particular in relay of the benzodiazepines”. On one condition: stick to a regular and daily practice if possible, for a minimum total duration of eight weeks.
Associate a healthy lifestyle
Fight against anxietyis also adopting a better way of life. “
To help you, remember to associate the herbal medicine (passion flower, hawthorn, valerian…) and above all, to keep your bed as a place of sleep, and not a place of life, ”recalls Jérôme Lerond.
On the sleep side, also be careful not to panic: it is normal for your nights to split up with age, or at certain times in your life. But if symptoms persist or worsen, see a specialist.
To read also: Anxiety: how to overcome it?