I have severe anxiety anytime I am somewhere I cant leave, examples are In a classroom, Church, or a roadtrip anywhere (even within 30 minutes of home) I start getting very anxious. This been really bad the last 5 years. I Noticed that I actually start getting depressed sometimes when Im really anxious or shortly after a panic attack. (The panic attacks come after I am very worries and nervous and tend to work myself up into a panic mode. I dont go anywhere except to work and back. I seen the only acupuncturist within 2 hours of here. He gave me Xiao Yao Wan to take. Ive been taking it for 3 months or so, and I found on a website about Wen Dan Pian. It said for Generalized Anxiety Disorder. So I ordered some and started taking it last week... I sent a picture of my tongue to a website at a Chinese Hospital and they sent me back an email saying to start taking Gui Pi Tang. Now heres my question, is that to much to be taking or should I stop taking the Xiao Yao Wan or Wen Dan Pian? Also, The Wen Dan Pian I have only started so I dont know if its going to make a difference. I still have a little Depressed Fillings and still alot of Anxiety. I have noticed this past week that the symptoms of Anxiety are less, but I dont know if that is in my head or not. Please send me some answers or Ideas. Also, How long can I take the Xiao Yao Wan and the Wen Dan Pian? Years or do I need to stop after a few months?
First, you should read "What Does Acupuncture Treat?" to better understand treating "diagnostic patterns" and -not- "western medical conditions". This distinction is absolutely crucial to make for proper treatment. You are taking 3 formulas which are for essentially different patterns. Although all of which -could- be useful for GAD, they are matched to the underlying diagnosis and that will lead to the best results. If you sent in some information and your tongue, etc. to a practitioner and they told you Gui Pi Wan - then you should just take Gui Pi Wan. If you are not feeling better (at least marginally) within 2-3 weeks, then that is probably the wrong formula for you and you should see someone locally to get properly diagnosed and treated. You should not, however, mix these formulas unless someone tells you to do so.
If you are curious you can look through our practitioner herbal formula database and you will find the following:
Xiao Yao Wan will harmonize the liver and spleen systems from a TCM perspective and is used for GAD and other symptoms that may arise from liver qi stagnation, liver blood deficiency and/or spleen qi deficiency.
All this to say you really should not treat yourself and you should more rely on people who can physically inspect you and ask you questions than sending off your tongue to another practitioner. The herbs are also a moving target so to speak so while you might need a particular formula now (or mix of formulas) to get things under control afterwards you might need something different. These are not things that are easy to figure out without lots of proper training in the underlying theories and applications of Chinese Medicine.
To steer you away from harm, however, yes all three formulas would likely be inappropriate. Xiao Yao Wan is often the best starting point as it is generally helpful for broad range of patterns and is not so strong that much of anything can go wrong. It is often mixed with other formulas in the initial stages of treatment for issues like yours - so Xiao Yao Wan with Gui Pi Wan is a common combination (again when it is appropriate to the underlying diagnosis) and Xiao Yao Wan is sometimes combined with Wen Dan Wan again when it is correct. All three would not be appropriate except in the rarest of circumstances. Others that might be appropriate, again with the proper diagnosis, would be Chai Hu Long Gu Mu Li Wan, Tian Wan Bu Xin Wan, Suan Zao Ren and others and possibly in combination with any of the above.