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Would Medication Help?

Question:

Hi, I have been in therapy for nearly a year week in week out and have seen real progress. My depression has lifted but my anxiety and Avoidant Personality Disorder has not improved. I seem too avoidant to progress. As we have got nearer to my real fears and anxieties my mind takes over and blanks. I am concerned I won’t progress any further like this. Is there a medication, (I am on Prozac currently and that has not helped the anxiety) that could help me relax enough to confront these issues during my therapy sessions? My therapist can’t prescribe and my General Practitioner has not got time to put to this. Prozac is the first and only offering. Thanks.

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Answer:

The problems you are experiencing demonstrate the limitations of medication. Prozac does help relieve depression and can even lower anxiety to some degree. However, there are no medications that can help with Personality Disorders. If indeed you have an Avoidant Personality Disorder the best treatment for you would be Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Talking therapy will not do it because you need a type of treatment that will modify or change your patterns of behavior in ways that are very direct.

There are strong anti anxiety medications but they will not help you learn new behaviors and, worst of all, they are very addicting. Personality Disorders are behavioral disorders and that is why I am recommending CBT. For this you need to see a Clinical Psychologist who specializes in this treatment.

As for your General Practitioner, I find myself reacting to his lack of time for you with disapproval. He should be referring you to a Psychiatrist whether he has time to treat you or not. You need to find a new GP. That attitude I find unacceptable and I would not continue with any MD with that kind of attitude.

In any case, your best bet, in my opinion, is to consult a Clinical Psychologist.

Good Luck

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