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Ask Lively Your Own Question
Lively, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 260
Experience:  Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, 10 years experience working with individuals, couples, & families
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I have a combination of depression, and severe anxiety and I

Customer Question

I have a combination of depression, and severe anxiety and I am taking Symbyax lowest dose and alprazolam .5 and I also am taking AIDS medications Viramune and Epzicom. I feel dizzy, figity and I feel like the medications are counteracting and I was in the emergency room yesterday and they diagnosed with a panic attack. In the past, I have tried zoloft, paxil, cymbalta, with no improvement.   Before I can see a pyschaitrist, could you give me some info about what to ask him?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Lively replied 8 years ago.

It sounds like there are a few things going on that you're wanting help with- one would be managing anxiety, one is managing depression, and the third is what medications you can take safely that would not interact with your AIDS meds. Is that right?

Talking to a psychiatrist about your medication options, and giving the complete history and list of problems you had with previous meds, will help you figure out what anxiety medications you could try that might be useful. The important thing is to let him/her know about all the meds you've tried and SPECIFICALLY what happened that led you to not like them or feel they're not working. That information combined with a description of your current symptoms (panic attacks, etc.) will help the two of you come up with other med options. For example, maybe a shorter acting anxiety medication would work better for you (i.e. a benzodiazepine versus an SSRI). I can't say for sure what will work, but these are the kinds of things you could talk with your doctor about.

I would also suggest that you try some things in addition to medication to manage your anxiety and depression. For example, there is lots of research on the benefits of regular exercise, meditation, breathing exercises, natural sunlight, and nutritional changes for both anxiety and depression. Have you tried incorporating these things into your lifestyle to help?

Best of luck to you.

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