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Fluoxetine is sold under the brand name Prozac. It’s an antidepressant medication used to treat depressive symptoms and other mental health conditions like:
Prozac helps manage severe symptoms of mental health disorders such as depression, binge eating behaviors, obsessive thoughts, and compulsive behaviors.
Fluoxetine (Prozac) is one of the most recognizable SSRIs. SSRIs are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
These drugs treat depression and other mental health disorders. They work by increasing the amount of serotonin available in the brain.
In 1987 the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Prozac for marketing as an antidepressant drug. Prozac is also FDA-approved for use by children ages 7 to 17, depending on the condition being treated.
Take Prozac exactly as prescribed. Your doctor may adjust the amount you take until it’s right for you.
If you mistakenly skip a dose of fluoxetine, take it as soon as you remember. If it’s almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time. Don’t take 2 doses at the same time.
Prescribed antidepressants like Prozac have side effects.
To avoid unwanted effects, seek professional medical advice before taking or combining any medications.
Below are some common side effects you might experience when you start taking Prozac.
Call 911 and seek medical attention if you have serotonin syndrome.
This condition can be life-threatening, with symptoms that include:
It’s advised not to drink alcohol while taking Prozac. Consuming alcohol and Prozac may lead to an increase in adverse effects such as feeling tired or fatigued, changes in sleep habits, and stomach upset.6
Drinking alcohol affects the brain and the entire central nervous system (CNS). Since alcohol and Prozac both affect the CNS, drinking can worsen medication side effects.
Speak to your doctor if you are concerned about drinking alcohol and taking Prozac.
Drinking alcohol will affect your motor skills, coordination, concentration, and judgment.
Combining alcohol and Prozac may lead to an increased risk of impaired driving and poor decision-making.
There are some antidepressants, such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), that can cause serious side effects when combined with alcohol. These include dangerous increases in blood pressure and stroke.
Alcohol should be avoided completely when taking medications like MAOIs.
Alcohol use disorder (AUD) and depression may co-occur, and one can make the other worse. Drinking may counteract the benefits of antidepressant medications.
Alcohol is a depressant. Although it may improve mood in the short-term, over time, it can make depressive symptoms worse.
Alcohol might have a short-term positive effect on mood, but it can worsen mental health disorders. Alcohol consumption has been linked to depression and memory loss.1
It’s safer to avoid drinking alcohol when taking antidepressants like Prozac to avoid making your depressive symptoms or medication side effects worse.
If you must drink alcohol when taking Prozac, drink only small amounts and pay attention to how you feel.7 Don’t stop taking your antidepressant just because you want to drink alcohol, or you may experience withdrawal effects.3
If you’re taking monoamine-oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), avoid drinking alcohol completely. However, manufacturers generally advise against drinking alcohol while taking any antidepressant medications.
Here are some things to keep in mind while taking antidepressants:
Most people that are addicted to alcohol find it difficult to stop even when it hurts them and makes them feel more depressed and anxious.
For someone showing symptoms of alcohol addiction, a common initial option for seeking addiction treatment is attending a rehabilitation program.
A rehab program could be inpatient or outpatient, full hospital admission and partial admission, respectively. Both provide you with the support needed to recover and manage alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Also, behavioral therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) are helpful when treating alcohol addiction.
Some people who use alcohol attend 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) to treat alcohol use disorder. AA is an internationally recognized mutual aid group that focuses on helping people who use alcohol achieve sobriety.
There are other addiction support groups that don’t follow a 12-step program model like AA that you can join. These communities will help support you on your path to recovery.
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