Q. Does side effect of the anxiety drug diminishes the memory?

Answered by Dr. Suresh Kumar G D and medically reviewed by Dr. Nithila A


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Hello doctor,

I am a 42-year-old male. When I was 15 years old, I started to suffer from depression and had to undergo psychiatric treatment. I was prescribed Trazonil for a sleep disorder and Flunil for depression and anxiety. I was under this medication for nearly seven years. In the meanwhile, I got hooked to alcohol and smoking before 20 years.

I took an overdose and consumed almost 90 tablets of Trazonil in an attempt to end my life. However I survived, but I have felt that it really damaged my brain especially my memory and till today I remember most of the things which took place prior to this incident as well as things I learned, but in my daily life after that I became very forgetful and had trouble remembering things, events or new things which I try to learn.

So my question is that is there any way which I can reverse this ill effect or lessen to a high degree so that I can remember things better or have a better memory. I have been drinking for the past 20 years, and since last three years after moving to another place my frequency and dosage of alcohol has increased, and I know it also plays a significant role in diminishing memory. I quit taking medicines almost 14 years back.

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Dr. Suresh Kumar G D
Child Health, Paediatrics, Psychiatry


Welcome to icliniq.com.

It is good to know that you are insightful about the problems caused by excessive alcohol intake. Have you contemplated cutting down on alcohol? Alcohol may be playing a significant part affecting your memory and also have a negative impact on your emotional health. Your memory difficulties may be more related to a history of depression and concurrent alcohol abuse. It is less likely to be a long term effect of Trazonil (Trazodone) overdose.

You may know that alcohol has a depressant effect on the brain (despite the initial euphoric effect). With your history of depression, it is essential and can be tackled at the earliest. You appear to have experienced significant depression, including a risky overdose. You seem to be resilient in your way but are you still depressed? Are you using alcohol as a coping mechanism to manage everyday stressors? I will recommend consulting a doctor to review your mental state and proceed accordingly.

You can consider counseling or talking therapy to address issues related to excessive alcohol use. Try reading books. Also make sure you take care of the basics like eat healthily, sleep enough, and exercise regularly. Try yoga or meditation if available locally.

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