Social Anxiety Disorder Resources and Guide
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Paxil and Paxil Side Effects Information

What is Paxil?

Paxil is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) used to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or social anxiety disorder. It may also be used to treat depression and other conditions as determined by your doctor. Although Paxil is an effective drug, many users also report paxil side effects and paxil cr side effects as a result of taking this medication.

How does Paxil work to help with anxiety?

Paxil, or paroxetine HCl, has become one of the top treatments for depression and anxiety disorders in the USA. Paxil is a member of a class of prescription drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRI, that has been proven in clinical trials to be, both, safe and effective with fewer side effects than other types of antidepressant medications (i.e., MAOI). The U.S. FDA has approved Paxil for the treatment of major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Paxil can help restore the balance of serotonin (a naturally occurring chemical in the brain) -- which helps reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression. Treatment with Paxil is continuous and may last a period of weeks, to months to years.

What are Paxil Side Effects?

Paxil side effects may include: Nausea, drowsiness, dizziness, diarrhea, trouble sleeping, constipation, or dry mouth may occur.

If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor promptly.

Additionally, side effect of paxil that you should tell you your doctor about immediately if they occur include: loss of appetite, unusual or severe mental/mood changes, increased sweating/flushing, unusual fatigue, uncontrolled movements (tremor), decreased interest in sex. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: blurred vision, changes in sexual ability, painful and/or prolonged erection, change in amount of urine.

Paxil side effects that need to be addressed immediately include these unlikely but very serious symptoms: fainting, irregular heartbeat, muscle pain, trouble swallowing, unusual swelling, seizures, easy bruising or bleeding, tingling or numbness of the hands/feet.

Paxil and Paxil CR side effects may cause an allergic reaction in a a small amount of patients. An allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include: rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, trouble breathing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

How Much Paxil Will I Need To Take?

The amount of Paxil a patient needs varies with each individual and the condition being treated. The usual starting dose is 10 mg to 20 mg. Your doctor can raise the dose gradually if increases are needed. For people over the age of 65, people with kidney problems and people with compromised liver conditions, the recommended starting dose is 10 mg a day. If taking Paxil for the first time, patients should be aware of potential paxil side effects and precautions.

More Paxil Side Effects:

Side effects of Paxil may be serious if not addressed. Tell your doctor your medical history, especially of: liver problems, kidney problems, seizures, heart problems, other mental/mood disorders (e.g., bipolar disorder), thyroid problems, any allergies. This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy; use caution engaging in activities requiring alertness such as driving or using machinery. Limit alcoholic beverages. Caution is advised when using this product in the elderly because they may be more sensitive to the effects of the drug. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This drug passes into breast milk. Because of the potential risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

How do I stop - are there paxil or paxil CR side effects if I get off of it?

Don't stop taking Paxil before talking to your doctor since symptoms may result from stopping the medication or from your original condition. Some patients experience the following symptoms on stopping Paxil (particularly when abrupt): dizziness, sensory disturbances (including electric shock sensations), abnormal dreams, agitation, anxiety, nausea and sweating.


National Center for Health and Wellness