Medicinal plants possessing anxiolytic activity: A brief review

Anxiety, fear and worry are all completely natural human feelings. If these feelings occur for a longer period, it affects both physical and mental health. It is considered to be a major cause of disability worldwide. It comprises of generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, panic attacks, phobias and depression. Neurotransmitters in the brain involves in anxiety include gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), serotonin, nor-epinephrine and dopamine. Anti-anxiety medicines use to treat anxiety. They act by reducing brain activity to alleviate the symptoms of anxiety, nervousness, mood stabilizing and improving sleep. Long term use of anti-anxiety agents may develop psychological and physiological dependence. Moreover, many of the medicines used to treat anxiety can cause troubling side effects such as cholinergic symptoms, paradoxical effects, weight gain, sleep disturbances, sexual dysfunction, medication dependence, blurred vision or gastrointestinal problems. There are very few anti-anxiety remedies available for the management of anxiety. Thus urgent need for new anti-anxiety drugs is a global concern. Therefore, the demand of herbal medicines is increasing due to their wide application and therapeutic efficacy with least side effects. The present review collected the information of anti-anxiety potential plants with emphasis their botanical source, common name and other biological activities, which are helpful to develop new anti-anxiety herbal formulations.

Author(s): Preeti, Milind Parle, Monu and Kailash Sharma

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