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At your local Pearn's Pharmacy we can offer advice on most general health matters. You can also use our Health Encyclopaedia to provide you with the tools and links you need to pinpoint symptoms and get a full explanation of a suspected condition.

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Tranquillisers

Definition

Tranquillisers are anti-anxiety drugs. They’re also known as anxiolytics and are used to treat long-term feelings of anxiety or nervousness caused by stress or psychological problems. Tranquillisers help to ease symptoms such as breathlessness, shaking and palpitations (awareness of the heartbeat).

Tranquillisers are used to temporarily relieve the physical symptoms. Counselling or psychotherapy is usually needed at the same time to address the underlying psychological problem. Tranquillisers are also used in hospitals to calm and relax people having uncomfortable medical treatment.

There are two main types of tranquillisers: benzodiazepines and beta blockers. Benzodiazepines are the most common, and are usually given over a short period of time to help relaxation. Beta blockers are mainly used to relieve physical symptoms such as shaking and palpitations.

If taken in large doses, tranquillisers can make people drowsy and de-motivated. There is also a risk of becoming psychologically or physically dependent. For this reason, they’re usually prescribed for short periods of time and should be stopped gradually to prevent withdrawal symptoms. ^^ Back to top

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