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Dr John B
Dr John B, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 557
Experience:  PhD in Clinical Psychology, registered clinical psychologist.
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Took Cymbalta yesterday for the first time. I have been diagnosed

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Took Cymbalta yesterday for the first time. I have been diagnosed with Anxiety. I woke up last night with major anxiety and racing thoughts. Is this normal. I cant seem to find anyone stating that.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr John B replied 6 years ago.
Hi. I'm glad you posted this. It is impossible to diagnose someone via JustAnswer but I can tell you that what you have described could be completely normal. Cymbalta is an anti-depressant and like all anti-depressants takes several weeks to take effect. Anti-depressants don't actually 'fix' anxiety per se, but it has been observed that when mood is lifted anxiety symptoms sometimes subside. This is likely why you have been prescribed Cymbalta. Panic attacks are most likely to occur when we are trying to sleep and as you have only been taking Cymbalta for one day it may be that you experienced a Panic attack last night. Regardless, with any medication you should consult with your prescribing doctor if you have any concerns abut potential side effects. Have you considered Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)? I ask because CBT is widely regarded as the gold standard treatment for Panic and intense anxiety. CBT is a psychotherapeutic approach that aims to solve problems concerning dysfunctional emotions, behaviors and cognitions through a goal-oriented, systematic procedure. There is loads of evidence that CBT is effective for the treatment of a variety of problems including anxiety disorders. Treatment is technique-driven, brief, direct, and time-limited treatment (normally 10-12 sessions). CBT is used in individual therapy as well as group settings, and the techniques are often adapted for self-help applications.
Many CBT treatment programs for specific disorders have been evaluated for efficacy and effectiveness; the health-care trend of evidence-based treatment, where specific treatments for symptom-based diagnoses are recommended, has favored CBT over other approaches such as psychodynamic treatments. In the United Kingdom, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends CBT as the treatment of choice for a number of mental health difficulties including clinical anxiety and Panic. I would strongly encourage you to consult with a CBT trained therapist as I would expect you to benefit greatly from this approach. CBT is usually offered by Clinical Psychologists (although not exclusively) and you can contact the American Psychology Association for assistance with finding one near you. Take a look at the American Psychology Association's locator service - You can use this to find Psychologists in your area and there is a phone number you can contact if you want a referral arranged for you. Also, take a look at an article published by the APA - It's an interview with a senior Psychologist and covers some of the things you should consider when you looking for a Psychologist. In the mean time you could start by accessing some CBT based self-help material to learn some CBT techniques. I can recommend this book ( and also this shorter document ( as something you can read right now. I hope this has been of some help, best of luck!
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