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to think taking propranolol (adrenaline blocker) for a marked presentation isn't cheating

(36 Posts)
user1489509816 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:08:48

On Monday I have a presentation which is marked out of 50 overall. Content and the way the content is presented is all marked.

Everyone is really nervous and I suspect most people will be shaking/sweating their way through it. It's a never wracking experience and the highest marker will be kept on after the internship. I have got a prescription of propranolol which completely stops my shaking and other adrenaline related effects so while I will be nervous I won't look it and I will be able to concentrate more on the delivery of the presentation.

I asked anyone else if they took beta blockers and they all looked at me blankly so I presume they don't know about them.

I now feel a bit guilty about this. If I didn't have propranolol I wouldn't even be able to do the presentation I would be too nervous.

I'm very good at my job but can't do presentations or speeches. I hate them.

Am I cheating? AIBU to think it's not cheating to take this medication? I know it's an unfair advantage.

JoJoSM2 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:12:23

Are you in therapy? Why would you feel guilty? Cheating in a presentation would be of you stole someone else's work and presented that as your own. If you've got anxiety issues and get treated for the by a doctor than it's clearly nothing to do with cheating. Others might have been surprised as they will have coping mechanisms - relaxation, preparation etc to deal with stress rather than take medication for it.

JamDonutsRule Wed 15-Mar-17 10:13:16

YABU to think you're cheating. You were smart enough to investigate a medical solution, they were not. You deserve any (small) advantage you're given.

I realise that may be a bit controversial, but I'm in the mood to risk a flaming today 😜

Bundesliga Wed 15-Mar-17 10:15:24

I wouldn't think you are cheating unless the use of this type of drug is contractually specified in the job description. You get over adrenalised, this helps.

Propranolol would make me do a worse presentation as it sends me into a mental coma! So don't think it's a performance advantage over everyone- I perform well under pressure like that, better than I do without the pressure. That seems more of an advantage than taking drugs to mitigate detrimental effects of pressure on you.

ItMustBeBedtimeSurely Wed 15-Mar-17 10:16:27

Of course not. I suspect most people don't take them simply because they haven't heard of it.

I take propranolol occasionally, it's great stuff.

Incidentally, what dosage were you given - I'm curious because they can vary hugely and I wondered if there was a standard dose for stage fright related symptoms.

SquatBetty Wed 15-Mar-17 10:16:46

You're not cheating - unless there are specific rules in regards to the presentation saying you can't give it if you're under the influence of drink/drugs etc?

So don't worry about it, I'd probably do the same as you as I too hate giving presentations and public speaking! Good luck for Monday.

Wishiwasmoiradingle2017 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:16:54

When I was learning to drive my instructor suggested I get some to take before my test. . She was a very straight laced woman. . So no. Def not a cheating tactic. .

WorkingBee Wed 15-Mar-17 10:17:30

not cheating at all! It's just one way of tackling anxiety symptoms. Why wouldn't you?

PietariKontio Wed 15-Mar-17 10:18:00

If you have a diagnosed condition for the propranolol, rather than everyday anxiety that most people get, than it's not cheating.

Equally adrenaline is actually a useful thing, and getting a little (manageably) nervous is actually beneficial in facing challenging situations, so if others are experiencing that it helps them rather hinders them, and all you're doing it leveling things out.

Good luck anyways smile

DratThatCat Wed 15-Mar-17 10:18:17

Absolutely not cheating. I took propranolol for my driving test and for a job interview (which I got). A person taking antidepressants to manage their depression would not be cheating so if you take propranolol to manage your anxiety, that is not cheating either. Good luck with your presentation!

user1489509816 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:19:23

I don't have anxiety issues generally. I'm actually a very calm person but presentations/public speaking leaves me a nervous wreck. I can't stop the shaking or sweating.

A little nerves help me, but not that extent. Propranolol doesn't stop the nerves completely but it stops the physical symptoms.

ElizaDontlittle Wed 15-Mar-17 10:19:41

Like a PP, I need the adrenaline to perform! So it's something that helps you, not an unfair advantage.
Good luck with it OP - it's such a tough market for jobs that you really want out there!

Honeybee79 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:20:57

If you have been diagnosed with anxiety then taking the medication you'be been prescribed is not cheating!

MiscellaneousAssortment Wed 15-Mar-17 10:21:47

If your gp has prescribed it after a thorough consultation then I fail to see where the cheating is?

Are you worried because it's possible to misuse drugs like propranolol for recreational purposes?

If you are taking them for a medical reason, you aren't cheating in the slightest. If you are taking them for an 'off-prescription' use, using them in a way not intended by your prescribing physician, then maybe you are cheating. Can you see the difference though? There is s big one.

I take medicines to stablise my blood pressure, so am I cheating too? confused

Stop worrying and good luck for the presentation! smile

user1489509816 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:24:17

Thanks everyone.

I'm on 80mg which I only take on the day of the stressful event.

PollyBanana Wed 15-Mar-17 10:28:01

If it's a prescription only drug and you've been legitimately given it, fine.
You're just levelling the playing field

Iamyourmotheryours Wed 15-Mar-17 10:28:02

It's not cheating.

And I find that, while it's true that most people do get nervous before a presentation, their bodies don't produce as much adrenalin as few unlucky ones and they are able to control their visible nervous symptoms better because of that. So if anything, it just puts you on the same level as others. 'Nervous' can mean so many different things to different people. For most of the people I have talked to it means having some symptoms of nervousness but then being able to control them. For me it means uncontrollable shaking, extremely fast heartrate that won't come down, struggling to breathe, nearly passing out, struggling to control any part of my body.

I take propranolol just to try to get to the same level as other people. Without it, I wouldn't be able to do most normal every day things, let alone a presentation.

repaintthesky Wed 15-Mar-17 10:36:58

IMO it's quite in order to take beta blockers for performance anxiety. You are not attempting to procure an unfair advantage, merely to control your symptoms. Don't give it another thought.

Mari50 Wed 15-Mar-17 10:37:40

Def not, I took them for professional exams and they were a life saver. My nerves can be overwhelming and physically manifest as shaking which isn't ideal.

1AnnoyingOrange Wed 15-Mar-17 10:39:42

No its not cheating. You are being assessed on presentation and content, not how much adrenaline your body produces and how your body reacts to that. This is part of your preparation, like reading it out at home infront of the mirror (or whatever you do to get ready).

LuxCoDespondent Wed 15-Mar-17 10:41:19

Taking prescribed medication is no more cheating than Stephen Hawking using his wheelchair and voicebox to make a presentation. I'm not sure why anyone would think it was an issue.

Foureyesarebetterthantwo Wed 15-Mar-17 10:45:02

You have no idea what drugs/medicines other people may be taking, anti-depressants, anti-anxiety, all kinds of things. If it steadies your nerves in a presentation, all to the good.

pho3be Wed 15-Mar-17 10:48:19

What do you mean cheating? Os it competition?

chemicalCat Wed 15-Mar-17 10:57:51

Unless you're a snooker player, it's not cheating.

I have similar issues and take PP when I have a presentation or stressful situation. Cuts out the shakes and quavering voice but not the nerves.

I have found that I only need a small dose to get the effect. I did take 40mg but found exactly the same when I took 10mg. So that's what I take now.

Foureyesarebetterthantwo Wed 15-Mar-17 11:00:07

I do think 80mg is quite a high dose. It doesn't really matter if it works, but I also agree a smaller dose may work just fine if it's for steadying the nerves and you don't want to end up too like a zombie.

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