Chronic anxiety, antidepressants, combo remedies, self-treatment, and more…


Hello Amy, I have a question for you. Please would you take time to answer me.

Last year in March I had been suffering from mild anxiety regarding my health issues. Someone advised me to take: Lehning L72 for anxiety (homeopathic). I took it three times a day (20 drops). The first day I felt a very good improvement in my mood. Then on the second or third day I had an severe aggravation in my anxiety which scared me so much that I stopped taking that medicine. I was given antidotes such as Nux Vomica which only helped a little bit. I was then given other homeopathic medicines.

But the anxiety got worse and finally I started taking treatment by a proper Homeopathic doctor. But I also started taking allopathic antidepressant medicine (Venlafaxine 75 mg). After 4 months (last year August) things got quite better and in the 5th month (last year September) I got married and my anxiety vanished almost completely because of distraction. So after the sixth month I stopped taking the homeopathic medicine but continued the antidepressant.

This year in March/April my anxiety is starting to come back because of minor stress, and I always am scared that the anxiety of last year may come back. I started tapering off the antidepressant (reducing 7.5 mg = 10% every three weeks). I started at 75 mg antidepressant in April and now I am at 45 mg. But the anxiety got worse again especially 3 – 4 days ago.

Now, two days ago I started taking again Lehning L72 (because I thought that if that medicine triggered the aggravation, then it should be able to heal me too!). I took L72 two days ago around 4 PM (but only 10 drops this time). Suddenly I felt much better the whole day and night. Also the next day (i.e. yesterday) was quite good. Around 4 – 5 PM I started having (light!) negative thoughts again and I again took a dose and after an hour the improvement came back again. Overall I do feel better.

Now my question is: Should I keep the dose (i.e. once a day 10 drops) or should I increase it to twice a day? I’m afraid that increasing the frequency could trigger a very bad aggravation again. And I am also afraid what will happen when Ido my next reducing step on my antidepressant fom 45 mg to 37 mg.

Thanks a lot!  -Ahmed



I decided to respond to you through an article instead of a personal response because your question brings up so many points that will be useful for so many people to learn from. I often get questions like yours, so I hope you don’t mind my using your question as a “teaching moment.”

First of all, as I always tell people who write to me, I am not a practitioner, merely an educator to the general public about homeopathy.  Nevertheless, there is a lot to learn from your experience.

First of all, I had never heard of “Lehning 72”, so I looked it up.  It is a combination remedy, marketed for sleep, with many different remedies in low potency, including: Sumbulus moschatus, Oleum Gaultheriae, Cicuta virosa, Asafoetida, Corydalis formosa, Ignatia, Valeriana, Staphysagria, Avena sativa, and Hyoscyamus. While such combinations can often provide symptomatic relief for a while, the real question is: Is one of these remedies the true correct remedy for a patient? Is another? Combo remedies like these are not that much different than over-the-counter allopathic drugs. They may provide relief for a time, but are not deeply curative.

Another important question is: What is the effect of taking all these different remedies (most of which are not the correct remedy for you) repeatedly?  Yes, they are in very low doses (in this formula, mostly 2x and 3x), but nevertheless, it does not surprise me at all that repeated dosing with this formula caused an aggravation that was difficult for you to antidote.

After your experience with Lehning 72, you finally saw a proper homeopath. Given that your problem was chronic anxiety, this should have been your proper course of action from the start. Simultaneously, however, you started taking antidepressants.  Now the question becomes:  Did you feel better because of the antidepressants or because of the remedy? It is impossible to tell. And as you’ve discovered, it is very hard to go off of antidepressants once you have been on them. (Interestingly, though, homeopathy can provide a lot of help in helping you get off antidepressants.  Here is a recent lecture on the topic, sponsored by the National Center for Homeopathy.)

So now you are in a situation where you need help in getting off the antidepressants and with your anxiety.  My first suggestion is to go back to your homeopath, who can help guide you through this process and find a correct remedy for you.  However, if you wish to proceed on your own by using Lehning 72, please remember this cardinal rule in taking remedies (despite what the label on the remedy bottle says):

Take a remedy only as needed. If your symptoms subside, do not repeat the remedy until they return again.

Moreover, you need not take a lot of a remedy.  The difference between 2 drops, 10 drops, and 20 drops (or 1 pill, 3 pills, or 6 pills) is negligible for most people. What matters more is frequency of dosing, not the amount of dose.

Another cardinal rule: If your symptoms worsen or new symptoms develop, stop taking the remedy (and call your homeopath). You have either taken too much, causing an aggravation, or it is the wrong remedy. In either case, stopping the remedy usually causes the situation to subside, though it might take days or a few weeks.

For all of these reasons, it is always wise to see a homeopath for any chronic condition.

Finally, reading my book, Impossible Cure, especially chapters 4, 6, and 8, will explain many of these things to you.  In fact, the book is even used as a first year textbook by many homeopathic schools.

Ahmed, I really do believe that proper homeopathic treatment could be your answer, both for your anxiety and in helping you get off antidepressants.  Moreover, if you do not feel comfortable with your current homeopath, please find another.

I hope this is helpful!  And all the best to you.



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1 Comment

  1. Sylvia

    We must remember the best Homeopathic treatment happens only when you stop trying to treat the “disease”. No matter what the label says, treatment should happen on the person and not his “disease”. Otherwise, you’re treating in a “glorified conventional” way. And the more allopathic antidepressants one takes, the more you suppress the cause. Then it becomes harder to get to the source of the problem.


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