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Buspirone for anxiety disorders
Buspirone for anxiety disorders
This leaflet is about the use of buspirone for anxiety disorders.
This leaflet has been written specifically about the use of this medicine in children. The information may differ from that provided by the manufacturer. Please read this leaflet carefully. Keep it somewhere safe so that you can read it again.
Name of drug
Buspirone (also called buspirone hydrochloride)
Brand name: Buspar®
Why is it important for my child to take this medicine?
Taking this medicine regularly should help your child to feel less anxious.
What is buspirone available as?
- Tablets: 5 mg, 10 mg; these contain a small amount
When should I give buspirone?
Buspirone is usually given two to three times a day. Your doctor will tell you how often to give it.
- Twice each day: this should be once in the morning and once in the evening. Ideally, these times are 10–12 hours apart, for example some time between 7 and 8 am, and between 7 and 8 pm.
- Three times each day: this should be once in the morning, once in the early afternoon and once in the evening. Ideally, these times are at least 6 hours apart, for example 8 am, 2 pm and 8 pm.
Give the medicine at about the same times each day so that this becomes part of your child’s daily routine, which will help you to remember.
How much should I give?
Your doctor will work out the amount of buspirone (the dose) that is right for your child. The dose will be shown on the medicine label.
It is important that you follow your doctor’s instructions about how much to give.
How should I give it?
Tablets should be swallowed with a glass of water, milk or juice. Your child should not chew the tablet.You can crush the tablet and mix it with a small amount of soft food such as yogurt, honey or jam. Make sure your child swallows it straight away, without chewing.
When should the medicine start working?
It may take up to 2 weeks for buspirone to work properly so your child may still feel anxious during this time. It is important that you continue to give the medicine as your doctor has told you to. If you are concerned, contact your doctor.
What if my child is sick (vomits)?
- If your child is sick less than 30 minutes after having a dose of buspirone, give them the same dose again.
- If your child is sick more than 30 minutes after having a dose of buspirone, you do not need to give them another dose. Wait until the next normal dose.
What if I forget to give it?
If you usually give it twice a day
If you remember up to 4 hours after you should have given a dose, give your child the missed dose. For example, if you usually give a dose at about 7 am, you can give the missed dose at any time up to 11 am. If you remember after that time, do not give the missed dose. Just give the next dose as usual.
If you usually give it three times a day
Do not give the missed dose. Just give the next dose as usual.
What if I give too much?
You are unlikely to cause harm if you give an extra dose of buspirone by mistake.
If you are worried that you may have given your child too much, contact your doctor or local NHS services (call 111 in England and Scotland; 111 or 0845 4647 in parts of Wales). Have the medicine or packaging with you if you telephone for advice.
Are there any possible side-effects?
We use medicines to make our children better, but sometimes they have other effects that we don’t want (side-effects).
Side-effects you must do something about
If your child is short of breath or is wheezing, or their face, lips or tongue start to swell, or they develop a rash, they may be allergic to buspirone. Take your child to hospital or call an ambulance straight away.
Other side-effects you need to know about
- Your child may feel sick or be sick (vomit) when they first start taking buspirone. It may help to give each dose with or after food. This effect should wear off. If it is still a problem after a week, contact your doctor.
- Your child may feel light-headed and dizzy when they stand up, and may faint. This is because buspirone reduces blood pressure. Encourage your child to stand up slowly, and to sit or lie down if they feel dizzy. If this becomes a problem, contact your doctor.
- Your child may feel sleepy for a few hours after each dose of buspirone. If possible, give the last dose just before going to bed.
- Your child may have a dry mouth. Eating citrus fruits (e.g. oranges) and taking sips of water may help.
Can other medicines be given at the same time as buspirone?
- You can give your child medicines that contain paracetamol or ibuprofen, unless your doctor has told you not to.
- Buspirone should not be taken with some common drugs that you get on prescription. It is important to tell your doctor and pharmacist that your child is taking buspirone.
- Check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving any other medicines to your child. This includes herbal or complementary medicines.
Is there anything else I need to know about this medicine?
- It may take up to 2 weeks for buspirone to work and you may not notice any immediate effects. Contact your doctor for advice if you are concerned.
- Behavioural therapy is an important part of helping your child to be less anxious, so you should continue to practise techniques they have learnt.
General advice about medicines
- Try to give medicines at about the same times each day, to help you remember.
- If you are not sure a medicine is working, contact your doctor but continue to give the medicine as usual in the meantime. Do not give extra doses, as you may do harm.
- Only give this medicine to your child. Never give it to anyone else, even if their condition appears to be the same, as this could do harm.
If you think someone else may have taken the medicine by accident, contact your doctor straight away.
- Make sure that you always have enough medicine. Order a new prescription at least 2 weeks before you will run out.
- Make sure that the medicine you have at home has not reached the ‘best before’ or ‘use by’ date on the packaging. Give old medicines to your pharmacist to dispose of.
Where I should keep this medicine?
- Keep the medicine in a cupboard, away from heat and direct sunlight. It does not need to be kept in the fridge.
- Make sure that children cannot see or reach the medicine.
- Keep the medicine in the container it came in.
Who to contact for more information
Your child’s doctor, pharmacist or nurse will be able to give you more information about buspirone and about other treatments for anxiety disorders.
You can also get useful information from:
You can also get useful information from:
- England: NHS 111
- Scotland: NHS 24
- Wales: NHS Direct
Tel 0845 46 47 (2p per minute) or 111 (free)
- Northern Ireland: NI Direct
- YoungMinds (for children and young people with mental health issues and their parents/carers)
Parents helpline 0808 802 5544
- Samaritans (confidential emotional support service)
Helpline 08457 90 90 90
- Childline (counselling service for children and young people)
Helpline 0800 1111
Version 2, January 2014. © NPPG, RCPCH and WellChild 2011, all rights reserved. Review by: January 2017.
The primary source for the information in this leaflet is the British National Formulary for Children. For details on any other sources used for this leaflet, please contact us through our website, www.medicinesforchildren.org.uk
We take great care to make sure that the information in this leaflet is correct and up-to-date. However, medicines can be used in different ways for different patients. It is important that you ask the advice of your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure about something. This leaflet is about the use of these medicines in the UK, and may not apply to other countries. The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), the Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacists Group (NPPG), WellChild and the contributors and editors cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of information, omissions of information, or any actions that may be taken as a consequence of reading this leaflet.