Paroxetine is an antidepressant medicine that is used for treating the symptoms of depression, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalized anxiety disorder, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). These medicines are categorized under the class of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
These disorders are related to mental health. They occur as a result of chemical imbalances happening in the brain. The chemical that is majorly responsible for such disorders is serotonin. It is a natural chemical that is a neurotransmitter that sends signals between the nerve cells in the brain. Its imbalance can affect signal transmission and give rise to such disorders. The medicine treats all these conditions by balancing the levels of serotonin. Its effects help in restoring and maintaining mental balance.
Paroxetine medicines are available in different forms such as tablets, a suspension (liquid), capsules, and extended-release tablets. Your healthcare provider will examine your condition and based on various factors, such as age, severity, chronic health conditions, etc., they shall prescribe the form of medicine and recommend an appropriate dose with a suitable dosing regimen.
Moreover, you should stick to the dose recommended by your doctor. Do not take more than necessary, doing so will increase the risk of serious side effects. Make sure you do not skip any dose. For that, you should take the dose at the same time every day. Also, do not stop using the medicine without informing your doctor first, this might worsen your condition.
Furthermore, the medicine might not be compatible with certain types of drugs used to treat some other health conditions. Before you start using Paroxetine, it is essential to inform your doctor if you are already using or about to use some other drugs for managing any health condition.
Paroxetine side effects
Paroxetine can give rise to some common side effects, which are as follows:
- Sleep problems (insomnia)
- Excessive sweating
- Anxiety and shaking
- Dizziness and drowsiness
- Tiredness and weakness
- Vision changes
- Dry mouth
- Sexual disorders such as low sex drive, erectile dysfunction (impotence), ejaculation disorder, etc.
- Digestive issues like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, and loss of appetite
Some individuals might develop serious symptoms or side effects after using the medicine. Some rare yet serious side effects of Paroxetine are given below:
- Sudden changes in weight and appetite
- Increased heart rate
- Vision-related problems such as tunnel vision, blurred vision, eye swelling, and pain
- Swelling, tenderness, and pain in the bones
- Extreme mood changes
- Nervous system disorder, indicated by high fever, fainting, sweating, fast heartbeats, and stiffness in muscles.
- Sodium levels drop in the body, indicated by headache, confusion, slurred speech, loss of coordination, slurred speech, and uneasiness.
In case you develop any of these symptoms, it is necessary to see your doctor immediately.
Paroxetine and erectile dysfunction
According to the National Institutes of Health, Paroxetine is an SSRI drug, which may potentiate the risk of unwanted sexual side effects such as erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, loss of sexual desire, and decrease in sex drive. Hence, Paroxetine can cause erectile dysfunction in men.