We have all experienced that momentary awkward feeling when passing by someone vaguely familiar in the hall or on the road. Do I wave? Smile? Start a Conversation? Pretend I don’t see them? As we get older, some of this social anxiety is alleviated. We better understand social protocol. We have learned, likely through trial and error, that no one likes to feel ignored and no one minds a friendly hello. But what if those anxious feelings never went away? What if they got worst?
There are six major types of anxiety disorders. Together they affect 40 million adults in the United States. That is 18 percent of the population. Some people fear crowds. Others develop a disorder related to the stress of a traumatic event. Others still are just generally anxious. Independent of the specific type of disorder, clinical anxiety can destroy quality of life for those afflicted.
What’s worse than being anxious? Being anxious and depressed. Unfortunately, anxiety disorders are often compounded by secondary disorder, such as depression. Nearly half of those diagnosed with depression are also suffering from an anxiety disorder.
Despite the debilitating impact of clinical anxiety, only about a third of Americans with the disorder seek treatment.
Researchers at NovaMed Consulting in Silver Spring, Maryland weren’t trying to treat anxiety or depression when they conducted their review of Piracetam. Their findings, however, show that Piracetam may be more effective at treating the disorder than it is given credit.
In a literature review spanning ten years of research, Dr. Sadaie and Dr. Malykh tuned to those articles that tested Piracetam as a treatment for Central Nervous System (CNS) disorders. Though they did see evidence of improved memory, as one might expect, they were more impressed with the drug’s overall ability to treat depression and anxiety.
A quick google search reveals that many people experiment with nootropics for relief from mild mood disorders. They are easier to obtain than prescription medication, and harmless in low doses. Of course, for serious mood disorders a dedicated doctor is always the best route.