What medications are used to treat posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?
Doctors use antidepressant medications to treat PTSD -- and to control the feelings of anxiety and its associated symptoms -- including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as citalopram (Celexa), fluvoxamine (Luvox), fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline (Zoloft); and tricyclic antidepressants such as amitriptyline (Elavil) and isocarboxazid (Doxepin). Mood stabilizers such as divalproex (Depakote) and lamotrigine (Lamictal) and atypical antipsychotics such as aripiprazole (Abilify) and quetiapine (Seroquel) are sometimes used. Certain blood pressure medicines are also sometimes used to control particular symptoms. For example prazosin may be used for nightmares, clonidine (Catapres) for sleep, or propranolol (Inderal) may be used to help minimize the formation of traumatic memories. "Experts discourage the use of tranquilizers such as lorazepam (Ativan) or clonazepam (Klonopin) for PTSD because studies have not shown them to be helpful, plus they carry a risk for physical dependence or addiction.
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