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Which is Proper For You? — Talkspace

Printed on: 30 Nov 2023

Paxil vs. ProzacPaxil vs. Prozac

Paxil and Prozac are several types of antidepressant remedy within the class of medication referred to as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Regardless that each these medicine deal with melancholy, a temper dysfunction, and are within the SSRI household, the variations between Paxil and Prozac might imply one is extra appropriate to deal with your signs extra successfully than the opposite. 

Overview of Paxil 

Paxil (paroxetine) is an SSRI antidepressant that works by growing ranges of the neurotransmitter serotonin within the mind to enhance temper and emotion. 

“This selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) stops the breakdown and uptake of serotonin within the neural synapse, so the quantity of serotonin retains on growing, serving to the synapse to maintain on working and resolving signs.”

Talkspace psychiatrist Dr. Muhammad Munir

By blocking serotonin reuptake, Paxil can improve ranges to revive steadiness successfully in your psychological well being. It’s typically used to deal with circumstances like main depressive dysfunction, generalized anxiousness dysfunction (GAD), panic dysfunction, premenstrual dysphoric dysfunction (PMDD), and social anxiousness dysfunction.

Like every drug, there are potential unwanted effects of Paxil that vary from nausea and drowsiness to sexual points. That mentioned, Paxil is mostly well-tolerated by most customers. It’s not unusual for individuals to not expertise any extreme hostile reactions whereas taking this drug.

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Overview of Prozac  

Like Paxil, Prozac (fluoxetine) is an SSRI that alters serotonin ranges within the mind to stabilize temper and enhance your psychological well being situation. Prozac is barely completely different in what it treats when in comparison with Paxil, although. Whereas each medicine are widespread in treating melancholy and a few varieties of anxiousness issues, Prozac can also be prescribed to deal with bulimia. 

“Prozac has been the mum or dad remedy for the brand new period of antidepressants”

Talkspace psychiatrist Dr. Muhammad Munir

Model Identify Paxil Prozac
Generic Identify Paroxetine Fluoxetine
Class Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)
Makes use of — FDA Permitted Main depressive dysfunction  
Obsessive-compulsive dysfunction
Premenstrual dysphoric dysfunction
Panic dysfunction
Submit-traumatic stress dysfunction
Social anxiousness dysfunction
Generalized anxiousness dysfunction
Main depressive dysfunction
Obsessive-compulsive dysfunction
Premenstrual dysphoric dysfunction
Panic dysfunction 
Bulimia nervosa
Off-label Makes use of OCD in youngsters 
Postpartum melancholy
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) 
Postmenopausal signs
Untimely ejaculation
Generalized anxiousness dysfunction
Neuropathy or nerve ache attributable to long-term diabetes 
Untimely ejaculation
Aspect Results Dry mouth 
Adjustments in imaginative and prescient 
Elevated anxiousness Nervousness 
Sexual dysfunction
Weight achieve from Paxil
Problem falling asleep 
Drowsiness or fatigue 
Diarrhea or constipation
Adjustments in urge for food
Dosage Varieties/Strengths Pill: Rapid launch in 10, 20, 30, 40 mg 
Prolonged-release pill: 12.5, 25, 37.5 mg
Oral resolution: 10mg/5mL
Capsule: 7.5 mg
Pill: 10, 20, 60 mg
Generic extended-release capsule: 90 mg
Oral resolution: 20 mg/5mL
Capsule: 10, 20, 40 mg
Security Precautions Threat of withdrawal syndrome
Serotonin syndrome
Enhance in suicidal ideas (extra in adolescents and folks youthful than 24)
Change in blood strain
Threat of withdrawal syndrome
Serotonin syndrome
Enhance in suicidal ideas (extra in adolescents and folks youthful than 24)
Elevated danger in aged inhabitants for falls, blood strain points, and electrolyte imbalance

Key Similarities Between Paxil & Prozac

As a result of Paxil and Prozac are in the identical class of medication, they work in the identical manner by growing the mind’s serotonin degree. With each medicine, the elevated serotonin helps with temper regulation. As a result of they work equally, Paxil is likely one of the extra widespread alternate options to Prozac and vice versa.

Efficacy in treating melancholy and anxiousness

Paxil and Prozac have each confirmed efficient for treating melancholy and anxiousness issues. They assist steadiness your feelings by enhancing serotonin’s results, which regularly ends in decreased signs. 

Is Paxil or Prozac higher for anxiousness?

Each drugs are FDA-approved to deal with varied varieties of anxiousness issues — though Paxil can also be FDA-approved to deal with basic anxiousness dysfunction (GAD). In scientific trials, each medicine have been discovered efficient in treating main melancholy that included excessive ranges of tension. How properly one or the opposite works for you’ll depend upon a number of elements.

Individuals can react very in another way to the identical remedy. Physique chemistry, signs, different drugs being taken, comorbid circumstances, and dosage can all come into play when attempting to find out the efficacy of a drug.

Is Paxil or Prozac higher for melancholy?

Each Paxil and Prozac are efficient for treating signs of melancholy. They’re each thought of first-line remedies for main depressive dysfunction (MDD).

Nevertheless, whereas they’re beneficial for and might be helpful in treating melancholy, the end result might differ from individual to individual relying on elements like depth of signs and basic well being. Scientific trials discovered no important distinction between Paxil and Prozac within the efficacy of treating main melancholy.

Shared unwanted effects

Among the shared widespread unwanted effects of Paxil and Prozac embrace:

  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Dry mouth
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Upset abdomen
  • Change in urge for food

Drug interactions

Like every remedy, sure drug interactions are necessary to concentrate on earlier than taking Paxil vs Prozac. Most medicine can have interactions with quite a few drugs, each prescription and over-the-counter. Be certain that your physician is aware of for those who’re taking any of the next:

  • NSAIDs
  • St. John’s Wort
  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI)
  • Thiazide diuretics 
  • Opioids 
  • Blood thinning drugs, together with Warfarin and aspirin
  • Anti-nausea drugs, together with Zofran 
  • Every other drugs that improve serotonin ranges — together with ADHD drugs like Adderall, TCAs, Buspar, and a few migraine drugs

Key Variations Between Paxil & Prozac

Though there are various similarities between Paxil and Prozac, there are some key variations, too. Regardless that the medicine can be utilized to deal with melancholy, Paxil has a wider vary of FDA-approved makes use of. One other main distinction is that there could also be fewer unwanted effects of Prozac than Paxil.

Mechanism of motion

Each drugs belong to the SSRI class of medication, however they’ve completely different mechanisms of motion. Prozac blocks the reuptake transporter protein within the presynaptic terminal to successfully block the reuptake of serotonin into the presynaptic serotonin neurons. 

Paxil works barely in another way — it will increase the synaptic serotonin focus by blocking the serotonin reuptake transporter. 

Permitted makes use of

FDA-approved medicine have gone by rigorous testing and are beneficial to deal with sure circumstances. The FDA has authorized each Paxil and Prozac for treating melancholy, however Paxil can also be authorized for the remedy of generalized anxiousness dysfunction and social phobia, whereas Prozac is authorized for treating bulimia.

Particular unwanted effects

As a result of individuals can react in another way to drugs, not everybody will expertise each aspect impact of a drug. That mentioned, there are some particular reactions that could be extra widespread with one drug vs. the opposite.

  • Extra distinctive to Paxil: Paxil would possibly trigger extra drowsiness in some individuals than Prozac. Lowered libido and weight achieve from Prozac are two unwanted effects that will even be decrease than Paxil.
  • Extra distinctive to Prozac: Prozac may cause insomnia attributable to its stimulating impact.

Selecting Between Paxil and Prozac

Deciding on remedy isn’t a one-size-fits-all train. Making the selection between Paxil and Prozac depends upon your physique chemistry, your situation and signs, your medical historical past, and the way properly you tolerate every drug’s unwanted effects and potential withdrawal signs.

Your physician or psychiatrist will play a big position in serving to you resolve on the perfect course of remedy to successfully cut back or remove your signs. They are going to think about all of the variables at play earlier than making any suggestions. 

It’s additionally important to do not forget that the primary drug you strive is probably not the final. Efficient remedy plans can take time to finalize. Keep involved together with your physician, and allow them to know for those who’re having any uncommon or uncomfortable unwanted effects. They may regulate the dose or resolve {that a} new remedy ought to be tried.  

Get a Skilled Analysis with Talkspace

Talkspace makes getting knowledgeable analysis and deciding on a remedy plan easy, reasonably priced, and accessible. You don’t need to face the problem of figuring out which remedy is true. Talkspace will join you with a licensed psychiatrist who will assess your signs and situation and supply a remedy they assume will finest show you how to.

An correct analysis is a crucial first step in deciding on a medicine or drug. From there, ongoing and open communication about how properly your remedy plan works will guarantee optimum outcomes.

Attain out to Talkspace at present to be taught extra about how one can get a remedy plan in place so you possibly can overcome your signs and get again to residing. 


  1. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (ssris). SSRIs – Exams & remedies | NHS inform. Accessed September 24, 2023. https://www.nhsinform.scot/tests-and-treatments/medicines-and-medical-aids/types-of-medicine/selective-serotonin-reuptake-inhibitors-ssris
  2. Fava M, Rosenbaum JF, Hoog SL, Tepner RG, Kopp JB, Nilsson ME. Fluoxetine versus sertraline and paroxetine in main melancholy: Tolerability and efficacy in anxious melancholy. Journal of Affective Problems. 2000;59(2):119-126. doi:10.1016/s0165-0327(99)00131-7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10837880/. Accessed September 24, 2023.

Talkspace articles are written by skilled psychological health-wellness contributors; they’re grounded in scientific analysis and evidence-based practices. Articles are extensively reviewed by our workforce of scientific consultants (therapists and psychiatrists of assorted specialties) to make sure content material is correct and on par with present trade requirements.

Our objective at Talkspace is to supply essentially the most up-to-date, helpful, and goal info on psychological health-related subjects so as to assist readers make knowledgeable selections.

Articles include trusted third-party sources which are both instantly linked to within the textual content or listed on the backside to take readers on to the supply.

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