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The years following World War II have been labeled the Age of Anxiety. This is because of the fear of the atomic bomb, the Cold War, the decline of the nuclear family, and the general climate of social change that swept the nation late in the 1950s and throughout the following decade. It seemed clear that sedatives that had heretofore been adequate to calm neurotics and anxious individuals were not up to the task. Opioids, which were undeniably effective for both pain and sedation, were viewed as dangerous and addictive and were too tightly controlled to be of use in this respect. Likewise, barbiturates were perceived by medical professionals as too risky and dependency producing to meet the growing need of the profession for an ...

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