Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier
WebMD

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine
WebMD

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion
    WebMD

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community
    WebMD

    Community

    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Schizophrenia Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Antianxiety Medicines for Schizophrenia

Antianxiety medicines (such as alprazolam, clonazepam, diazepam, and lorazepam) are sometimes used along with antipsychotic medicines to treat a relapse of schizophrenia. These medicines help calm you and relieve anxiety and nervousness. In high doses, they may make you sleepy.

Antianxiety medicines are sometimes used to shorten an episode of psychosis. In rare cases, taking antianxiety medicines makes psychotic symptoms worse.

When antianxiety medicines are combined with antipsychotic medicines to treat schizophrenia, the dose of antipsychotic may need to be lowered.

Side effects of antianxiety medicines include fatigue, balance problems, and sleepiness. These can lead to falls and accidents. For this reason, antianxiety medicines are used with caution in older adults and people who already have problems with balance and coordination. Antianxiety medicines also can be habit-forming.

Alprazolam (Xanax) may be more habit-forming, and you need to take it several times a day. It may be best not to use this medicine unless you also have a panic disorder.

Antianxiety medicines should never be stopped abruptly. This can cause weakness, severe confusion, and seizures.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a warning on clonazepam (Klonopin) and the risk of suicide and suicidal thoughts. The FDA does not recommend that people stop using this medicine. Instead, people who take clonazepam should be watched closely for warning signs of suicide. People who take clonazepam and who are worried about this side effect should talk to a doctor.

For more information on antianxiety medicines, see Drug Reference. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems).

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerKathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerLisa S. Weinstock, MD - Psychiatry

Current as ofNovember 14, 2014

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 14, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Today on WebMD

69X75_Depression.jpg
Article
Mental Health Psychotic Disorders
Article
 
Schizophrenia Medications
Article
bored man resting chin on hands
Article
 
vincent van gogh
Article
paranoia
Slideshow
 
Schizophrenia What Increases Your Risk
Article
mother and daughter
Article
 
boy hiding under blanket
Article
male patient with doctor
Article
 
romantic couple
Article
businesswoman working at desk at night
Article