Anxiolytics are anti-anxiety medications. They operate on the GABA receptors in the brain and increase GABA activity.

Uses

Benzodiazepines are used to treat anxiety disorders, seizures, and muscle spasms.

Examples

Benzodiazepines: Alprazolam (Xanax), Chlordiazepoxide (Librium), Diazepam (Valium)

Ativan and Xanax are short-acting and have lower addiction potential. Valium and Klonopin are long-acting and have higher addiction potential. Better to wean off benzodiazepines due to risks.

Side Effects

Dizziness, sleepiness, confusion, anterograde amnesia

Sometimes paradoxical effects (increased anxiety) may occur