Was just prescribed Paxil - is it worth it?

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kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/15/2017 2:09 PM (GMT -7)   
I was prescribed 10 mg of Paxil (which is to be upped to 20 mg in two weeks) for generalized anxiety and mild depression. Reading stories about it on the internet is making me MORE anxious, haha. The side-effects (nausea, crazy weight gain, and blacking out if you drink alcohol on it) terrify me, as does the withdrawal everyone is talking about. I'm a 27-year-old female if that makes any difference. Are there any success stories out there? I'm tempted to just throw the pills in a drawer and forget they even exist. The side effects sound worse than how I feel right now.

Scaredy Cat
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Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 27082
   Posted 8/15/2017 2:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi KP and welcome!

I am sorry you are dealing with anxiety...and the confusion of whether or not to start your Rx. I know how this feels...so I will share my story.

I had the same situation and concerns. I was hesitant to start a medication until I had explored all other options. Not because I am anti med...quite the opposite...I just felt this was the way for me to personally pursue my treatment.

So I set myself up in therapy (CBT) for my anxiety/panic disorder...with the intention of seeing how effective it was, and then later having my prescription filled if I needed it.

It turns out therapy and self help (and this community of support) were sufficient for my management. However, if the need arises...I will not hesitate to return to my doctor for medical guidance.

So, you may want to explore your options if you are hesitant about taking your Rx. Try therapy and self help...see how you do.

If you do decide that medication is a valuable tool you want to use...then remember that people are way more likely to post about a negative experience than an neutral, or positive one! Try not to let those things you read on the internet worry you.smile For every bad review, there are several you'll never see that have gone unwritten!

Post with us anytime for understanding and support...and be sure to see our Resources at the top of the main forum page for great self help suggestions!

Scaredy Cat
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/15/2017 4:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you for replying! I think I just need to stay off the reviews and scary stories of it until I actually start. I've been trying self-help for months to no avail, and will start counselling shortly alongside the meds. Being on medication seems like such a huge leap and such a big deal compared to everything else. I just have to remind myself to take things one day at a time smile

Scaredy Cat
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 27082
   Posted 8/15/2017 4:18 PM (GMT -7)   
There you go...great attitude/outlook!

Glad to hear you are starting counseling too! smile

Keep posting if you find it helpful...we will be here to encourage you!

S.C.
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

sylknmyst
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 546
   Posted 8/15/2017 6:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Kernel,

I wanted to respond to your post to first welcome you and second, tell you about my experience with Paxil.

Paxil was the very first SSRI I was put on at 19 and I had the same concerns as you. Paxil saved my life...literally gave me my life back. I had too many panics to count on a daily basis as well as being agoraphobic. I remember just waking up one day feeling different, calmer! I hadn't felt that way in so long and I it was all thanks to the Paxil. I was on it for over 8 years...

I also had an occasional drink while on it and had no ill effects, but that was after my body adjusted to the medication and I was feeling better.

I hope this helps you a little. I know it's always scary when taking a medication and reading the bad reviews along with the GOOD ones can make matters worse! Give it a shot and see how you feel. If I can help you with anything else, please just let me know!

I hope you're doing well as of right now.

Sylk
~Sylkn~

Panic Disorder
Medications include: Effexor XR 150 mg, Klonopin .5 mg 3x/day, Zoloft 25 mg, Trazodone 50 mg, Protonix 40 mg 2x/day, Synthroid 25 mcg, Folic Acid, MultiVitamin Daily


“Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday.”

~ Ann Brashares

kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/15/2017 8:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi sylknmyst!

Your post actually helped calm me down smile Did you experience weight gain taking Paxil? This sounds really vain, but I'm naturally quite tiny, so when I put on any weight it shows fast. I read some horror stories of people gaining 20 plus pounds in three months, and I can't see that really making my mental state any better.
Did you also have bad withdrawals going off of it? Another thing that is scaring me is having to wean myself off of it if it's not right for me.
Basically, I'm scared that if I start it and then have to stop I'll be worse off than I was before I even began :/

Hibee
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 7060
   Posted 8/16/2017 8:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi

Welcome to the forum.

I have taken Paxil and found that it worked really well on my anxiety and depression but I can't remember what dose I was on. I did not have many side effects during start up but it seems to be the norm for things to get worse before they get better again when starting a new medication and this period is usually a couple of weeks.

I did find it a difficult one to stop and had to do a very slow wean over a few months to reduce any withdrawal effects.

Hibee
I try not to worry about the future -- so I take each day just one anxiety attack at a time.

ANXIETY & PANIC FORUM MODERATOR

Diagnosed with:- Asperger's Syndrome, Dyslexia, GAD, Social Anxiety Disorder, Health Anxiety, OCD, Depression and Scheuermann's Disease (Adult)

Medications:- 60mg Prozac, Olanzapine 10mg, Dihydrocodeine 180mg per day

sylknmyst
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 546
   Posted 8/16/2017 10:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Kernel,

Aw, I'm glad my post helped ease your mind a bit. I did put on a few pounds, but nothing major that I couldn't handle. I was willing to deal with the few extra pounds than with the anxiety. 😉

When I weaned off the Paxil, I did it very slowly. I had some minor withdrawals, but nothing that I wasn't able to handle.

I hope your day is good today!

Amy

kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/17/2017 8:12 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello,

Thank you for both of your answers! Much appreciated. I feel much calmer about the whole situation now. I will definitely be posting my experience, positive or negative, after my body has adjusted to the meds in a few weeks.

I hope you all are doing well smile

sylknmyst
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 546
   Posted 8/17/2017 10:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes, definitely keep us posted! Wishing you all the success with Paxil!

Amy

AnxiousTexan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2014
Total Posts : 363
   Posted 8/17/2017 10:42 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm on Lexapro, another SSRI and it has been a great med for me. However, at first you may feel worse with more anxiety, maybe some dizziness and digestive discomfort. The reason for the last thing is that your digesting tract has most of your body's serotonin.

Having given that disclaimer, I think you will find it works great once your body adjusts. I stuck with it and glad it did. Just be kind to yourself during the transition time and take it easy when you feel a little more off than usual.
Anxiety Sufferer Since the 1980s

Medications:
Lexapro @ 10mg per day
Trazodone as needed for sleep

kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/17/2017 12:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you smile I am very mentally prepared for the crappy feelings I will get over the next bit. I'm already feeling a bit nauseous, which sucks, because I get nauseous very easily anyways, and then it makes it hard to eat. It's going to be interesting trying to eat well while feeling like this (or doing exercise, the two things my doctor said to start doing alongside everything else.) But I'm going into this with a positive mindset. I know that if I'm not feeling well, it's because the medication is working in my body and it's only temporary. I need to tell myself that if I feel like crap, it's okay to take a day off and rest.

sylknmyst
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 546
   Posted 8/17/2017 1:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Kernel,

Your attitude is amazing...keep up the positive attitude, it truly does help.

To help with nausea, try eating something little before you take the Paxil. Also, you should be able to take some pepto if it's bad...I use my kids pepto, lol, it works better!!!

You got this!!!

Amy
~Sylkn~

Panic Disorder
Medications include: Effexor XR 150 mg, Klonopin .5 mg 3x/day, Zoloft 25 mg, Trazodone 50 mg, Protonix 40 mg 2x/day, Synthroid 25 mcg, Folic Acid, MultiVitamin Daily


“Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday.”

~ Ann Brashares

Anxious Scientist
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2017
Total Posts : 206
   Posted 8/18/2017 10:25 AM (GMT -7)   
I was maintained on Paxil for 12 years and was successful. The only thing I didn't like about it was the massive weight gain. I am 5'9" and I was 210 lbs at my heaviest on Paxil.

Now I'm on Zoloft and don't have any weight issues.
Diagnosed With: Bipolar Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder
Treatment: Lithium Carbonate ER (450 mg), Sertraline (100 mg), Propranolol (10 mg)

kernel.panic42
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/18/2017 3:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the food tip! I took my pill yesterday on an empty stomach and it wasn't very happy with me, although I did find the nausea subsided once I ate something. I'm finding I'm not hungry today at all, which is never heard of from me. I love my food, but today nothing is appealing to me. I know I need to eat, but nothing interests me. Guess this means the pills are starting to take effect smile

AnxiousTexan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2014
Total Posts : 363
   Posted 8/18/2017 5:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Just give it time. If you're like me, your serotonin levels were very low...taking a med to increase them will cause the other neurotransmitters to rebalance. This takes time but as you start to feel better it'll be worth it.

Hang in there! smile
Anxiety Sufferer Since the 1980s

Medications:
Lexapro @ 10mg per day
Trazodone as needed for sleep

lrm22
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 9/4/2017 6:33 AM (GMT -7)   
How's it going now? Trying to build up the courage to start a medication.

Jakes64
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2017
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 11/2/2017 10:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I would probably try Lexapro first I hear its a better drug with less side effects.. Ive been on paxil 15 years it has helped me for a while but you will have side effects, weight gain and less emotional. depending on how much you take.

Anxious Scientist
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2017
Total Posts : 206
   Posted 11/3/2017 1:22 PM (GMT -7)   
I was on Paxil for 12 years and I never had any problems with anxiety while on it. The doc back then actually thought I had major depressive disorder but that wasn't the case. The only problem I had with Paxil was weight gain. I didn't have any other side effects. The weight gain was a huge issue for me however. A friend of mine was also on Paxil and he blew up big time. He lost weight again after he was switched to a different medication.
Diagnosed With: Bipolar Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder
Treatment: Lithium Carbonate ER (450 mg), Sertraline (100 mg)

sylknmyst
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 546
   Posted 11/28/2017 11:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Kernel! I was just wondering how you were doing on the Paxil? I check back to see if you update, but haven’t seen anything. I hope you’re doing well!!!
~Sylkn~

Panic Disorder
Medications include: Effexor XR 150 mg, Klonopin .5 mg 3x/day, Zoloft 25 mg, Trazodone 50 mg, Protonix 40 mg 2x/day, Synthroid 25 mcg, Folic Acid, MultiVitamin Daily


“Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday.”

~ Ann Brashares
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