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PAXIL ® is used to treat depression, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorders (OCD), social anxiety disorder (SAD) and generalized anxiety disorder. Paxil works by helping to restore the balance of certain natural chemicals in the brain.


If your doctor has prescribed Paxil for you, you are now taking an FDA-approved medication proven safe and effective for the treatment of depression and several anxiety disorders.

The exact cause of these conditions is not completely understood. Research has shown that depression and anxiety disorders could be linked to a chemical imbalance in the brain. A family history of these conditions might also play a role in their development.

Paxil, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), is commonly used to treat depression and anxiety disorders. Paxil is safe and effective for long-term use and is well tolerated. Benzodiazepines are another class of drugs used to treat anxiety disorders. Unlike Paxil, benzodiazepines are not indicated for the treatment of depression. In addition, they are potentially addictive and should only be used long-term with caution.

With continued treatment, Paxil can help restore the balance of serotonin (a naturally occurring chemical in the brain) -- which helps reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Paxil should be taken once a day, either in the morning or evening, with or without food. You might find it convenient to take Paxil with breakfast. Your healthcare provider can make suggestions about the best time of day for you.

The usual starting dose for most people is 10 mg to 20 mg, once a day, depending on your condition. Because individual conditions can vary, your healthcare provider may start you on a low dose and raise it gradually (up to 50 mg to 60 mg) as needed, depending on your condition.

The recommended initial dose for people age 65 and older is 10 mg a day. Literature has shown Paxil is an excellent treatment for people in this age group -- where chronic depression can affect a large proportion of this population.

Depression and anxiety disorders usually require long-term treatment because of their chronic (ongoing) nature and the risk of relapse. So, even if you begin to feel better, it is important to take Paxil for as long as your doctor advises. Do not stop taking Paxil before talking with your doctor.

Try not to feel discouraged if your symptoms don't improve right away; it could take several weeks before you start feeling better.