I've been battling with a bad case of social anxiety or a long time. I can barely talk to people, I thought it was going to get better with age but it's getting worse. I feel tired and distant most of the time so I tried things like energy drinks which helped non. I've tried st johns wort and it made no noticeable difference. Is there any other non-prescription medications that can help me? going to the doctor is out of the question. I was thinking of valerian root maybe? thanks so much for your time!
Hi - sorry that you are going thru this. I have been dealing with this for a long time and it is just so draining. There is a really good book called "Treating and Beating Anxiety and Depression" that has helped me alot. I just bought some GABA and am hoping that will help. Valarian Root is very good too. It wouldn't hurt to try some and see if it helps you. Be prepared when you open the bottle though...it smells awful...but it does work.
I'm sorry the St. Johns wort did not work for you. Do you know the dosage? and how often/long you took it for? Well valerian root works well i've heard, but try 5-HTP. Its an african desert root plant that helps with serotonin and relieves anxiety/depression/etc. Just take a low dosage because sometimes it can release too much serotonin and exaggerate symptoms. Also, gotu kola is wonderful for healthy brain function, and try to incorporate more omega 3 into your diet. This can be done with high quality fish such as salmon, or eve flaxseed oil. Hope this helps, good luck.
Hey I have bad social anxiety as well. The only thing that seems to help me is benzodiazapines. They seem to make me relaxed and able to feel confident with myself. I am going to the doctor in a couple of weeks and if I can't get on any benzodiazapines, then I hear effexor is used to treat social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and panic disorder. I am curious though, did something happen to you that may have been traumatic causing stress and/or an event that happened in your life that you may have found embarrassing? I just really want to understand this as best as I can.
I have severe social anxiety too. In addition to that I have obsessive-compulsive disorder (ocd), generalized anxiety and clinical depression. Due to the ocd (though and other disorders), I need to take the ssri (selective serotonin reuptake inhitbitor) antidepressant prozac (I actually take the time-released 'prozac weekly', 3 x a week instead of the once a week due to the ocd). Just fyi that a doctor once told me that st. john's wort is mainly for those with a very mild depression and that it's no guarantee that it would work even then. With valerian root, I don't know much about it but someone (an everyday person just like myself) mentioned that it's supposed to help with anxiety and/or sleep. Please be extremely careful with any types of herbs as no one really knows the concentration of the substance in the supplement and herbal treatments may interact with other medications, supplements and other health issues.
As far as helping the social anxiety without medication, what I find helpful when having to interact with groups of people or with anyone is to try to remember that everyone has their own insecurities and that no one is perfect even if they seem as though they are and appear very self-confident :) I just 'talk' to myself and reassure myself that they are just people like myself.
Please do consider at least talking with a licensed therapist about the anxiety too. I actually practice a relaxation technique called 'deep breathing' which involves placing one's hand on the abdomen (for 'abdominal breathing' as opposed to through the lungs) and (through the nose) slowly take a deep breath in and then (through pursed lips) slowly breathe out being careful not to hyperventilate. There is an anxiety disorders association (though Not in place of actual therapy) but we're unable to post websites. Please don't suffer alone any longer though.
You mentioned that you also feel tired. Do you have any other symptoms? I would have your B12 level checked. It can and does cause severe anxiety. I was battling with severe social anxiety issues but since starting B12 supplements, I feel way way better.