Paxil Addiction

When the drug was introduced in 1992, the market seemed so saturated with antidepressants that it was hard to imagine Paxil would ever catch up. A decade later, it’s poised to become the world’s best-selling SSRI. Unfortunately GlaxoSmithKline leaves out one little detail: For thousands of people, it seems that Paxil could well be addictive.

Thank God I’m on Zoloft which is completely free of any such findings.

8 thoughts on “Paxil Addiction

  1. th0m

    I can vouch for this. Totally not psychologically addictive, but VERY physically adictive. I had what I can only describe as alarming shooting-nerve-like pain whenever I didn’t take it. Ironically, smoking cigarettes stopped that, and I’ve been smoking ever since.

    Yes, I had try to go back to my psychiatrist to get off of them, but he only recommended going over to Prozac, and I was like “another one? no thanks”

    Sadly, when these side effects were a part of a class-action lawsuit, I was ineligable because I had “not saught follow-up care”.

  2. Andy

    I’ve been thinking of trying Wellbutrin. I think I’ve been off and on Zoloft so many times that it’s not effective much more.

  3. Natalie

    For the good part of a year, I had lived life so differenty from how I grew up. I was so up, up to the point that I was talking loudly, and living life as if I was racing down a highway in the fast lane and nothing was stopping me. I was FINALLY living a life where I could wake up in the morning and not have the first feeling I felt be the one known as depression. This was something that never became a part of my daily life feelings until Paxil.

    I had not realized how shifty I had become not being on my medication. “…Woah..” I thought to myself recently after talking to my family and friends about the difference they had noticed since mid-summer with the withdrawl symptoms. The frustration from my body craving it, and having these feelings back that I had not been exposed to continuously for months was like being reborn.

    Paxil eventually controls and manipulates the way that you think. It’s a drug to help things such as anxiety disorders, depression and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). When you go from living down for years and you’re introduced to a pink pill that helps the chemical imbalance in your brain, you think to yourself, “This is what it’s like being alive and happy? I really was missing out.” You become so optimistically pleased with things around you that you are completely oblivious that you are taking something for granted. You’re not leading your own life, Paxil is, but you’re tasting something that you’ve always wanted to experience.

    I lived like a black and white TV until I came off Paxil. Think of the TV being low maintenance, because that’s pretty much the way I always have been. In a way, adding in some new channels (Paxil) was new and exciting. You’re joyful, estatic, and the feeling is awesome when you get something new is it not? Paxil didn’t just give me new channels(happiness), but it started becoming the power source that ran my “TV” (my life), and it powered me until I decided to try living without it.

    The reception became fuzzier (withdrawl) and the channels were becoming worse as the power source controlling everything was slowly being cut off. My “TV” was losing it’s abilities. You get mad when channels get fuzzy and things don’t work well with a real TV right? In my case I was getting frustrated because I wasn’t working the same anymore either. Did I recognize what was happening? In all honesty, no.

    Finally, I took my last pill. So I guess you could say that the “TV” was now turned off because the Paxil that acted as the power supply to controlling how I worked was completely gone. It was no longer a part of “Me”, and I was different without it.

    It was like a new year revolution starting, taking steps to improving something for yourself, something that I was doing so great at, so I thought. Paxil gave me something that acted like tree bark because I felt protected, and nothing could harm me, but things changed coming off of Paxil. Once I had finally gotten off of my meds, I had shrunk in size to a feable twig on that tree. And you never realize when twigs/branches can “snap” do you? I was unaware of my size, because I thought everything was fine. My sensitivity to people trying to talk to me had become shamefully weak, even irritating, and I have snapped from my tree.

    It was like storms were coming in on me all the time, and a new “TV” was thrown at me and turned on in colour. Everything was new, and it scared me to the point that I’ve cried, shaken and have had nightmares. You’ve heard of heroine addicts, or chronic marijuana users getting back to a life without drugs and how they need to re-adjust. It feels pretty much the same, except my drug was legal. 20mg doesn’t sound like a lot but if I didn’t take it every day, I felt dizzy from not taking it(everyone has different body chemistry too). How’s that for personal addiction?

    When something would bother me after being completely off of my medication, it would feel like an atomic bomb was being dropped on me. Some people don’t understand what severe anxiety attacks feel like, so I tell them this scenerio:

    Take those estatic feelings you used to get when you were waiting for Santa on Christmas Eve when you were six years old. Were you not so excited that you could not sleep? That excitement caused your blood to flow faster and faster into your pulsating heart did it not? Pretty intense if you stop and think of how that rush felt flowing through your body eh? You were that restless you didn’t know what to do with yourself did you? You want to know what a abrupt severe anxiety attack feels like after not being used to such a feeling anymore until it hits you? Take the six year old’s subjectivity(mental set) on Christmas Eve and flip it. Was I that tense and shakey that I could not sleep?… Did it cause the blood to flow faster and faster into my pulsating heart?… It’s pretty intense if I stop to think about it, that anxious rush flowing through my body. I was that distressed that I didn’t know what to do with myself did I? No, I didn’t.

    Take the way I got used to living and erase it. Take the 6 year old scenerio and blow it up. Add in regret and sadness when it gets out of control because you’re not used to this and you end up with a really flustered, emotional person who may vent to the point of no return with being frustrated with themselves, not knowing how to react or what to do. Equations have different out comes, but my answer is not returning to Paxil. (Not to mention how addictive drugs are).

    I came down on myself a few times so hard that I ran to Loch Lomond road and bauled and I’ve lost numerous hours of sleep. Unfortunately at the time I couldn’t tell anyone what was going on because I couldn’t even see it for myself and that’s the part that sucks the most. So I’m not getting counselling for being a heroine addict, so I’ve never done recreational drugs, so I wasn’t smoking 10 joints a day. A drug’s a drug and when you’re on it for a period of time, it takes time getting everything back into perspective for yourself. I’ll be 19 in 2 weeks.

  4. Kiira

    Natalie,

    You describe the anxiety and the after effects eloquently. I started taking Paxil after the aforementioned unnecessary high levels of Christmas anticipation (in mid-December, ironically enough) due to stress at my job. I was assured this drug was non-addictive, gentle, and effective. I agreed, and was pleased with the calm I had (after a two week period of acclimation in which I wanted to throw up every morning instead of facing the day), until I began weaning myself off it a few weeks ago. I have dizziness, vertigo, and nausea. While I’m a bit put out that I wasn’t fully aware of the implications of taking Paxil, I’m thankful to know I’m not the only one going through crazy physical reactions as I try return to myself.

  5. claire vasile

    How long do the brain spikes last once you go off paxil 40 mg, this is my only problem so far.

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