Can prozac cause paranoia? (In the light of research studies)

As a BetterHelp affiliate, we may receive compensation from BetterHelp if you purchase products or services through the links provided

In this blog, we are going to talk about the possibility of prozac causing paranoia. Prozac is an antidepressant which is used to treat a number of mental health conditions. This antidepressant has a lot of side effects. This blog will cover whether prozac can make you paranoid or not.

Can prozac cause paranoia? 

Prozac may cause paranoia. This side effect is not reported commonly, but several surveys have revealed that high doses of prozac can be responsible for making people feel paranoid, especially those who are younger than 24 years of age. 

Paranoia is basically associated with a feeling that someone or something out there is threatening you. This feeling is usually based on hallucinations and is not supported by actual evidence. 

Although this paranoia doesn’t have logical grounds, it can really disturb a person suffering from it because it’s all real in their head. Such people often get sleepless at night, as they think they’re either being watched or someone is about to attack them or invade their home. 

This feeling can be pretty unsettling if true, right? For them, it is true and so is the fear they go through. 

It is indeed involuntary and the person has no control over such thoughts, even though you try to explain to them a thousand times that they are safe and there’s no one trying to harm them, they would still feel the same way. 

People who are paranoid also get offended easily and wonder weird things about people. They feel as if everyone is watching them or noticing their acts and movements. 

Such people develop a negative perspective over time and become unable to see positivity in things. They find it hard to forgive people and develop a sense of hatred for everyone, even people who are close to them. 

What does research suggest? 

Thomas Jefferson University represented a case study of a 42-year old woman. She was diagnosed with depression and was put on 20 mg prozac. Her dose was later escalated to 60 mg, within 8 weeks. She continued taking prozac and it actually madd6her symptoms better. 

She stopped helping her family out like she did before her depression and she stopped socialising. She was pretty much isolated and did not want to enjoy even her favourite activities, but prozac seemed to work well for her. 

Within 5 to 6 months on 60 mg prozac, she began to help out her family again, started socialising and she also restarted the activities she loved. After about 6 months, she stopped the treatment and that’s when things started to go down. 

Even though she was depression free after 5 months of prozac withdrawal, the disturbing symptoms started to come back. She was restarted on 80 mg prozac and bupropion was also added in her depression treatment regimen. 

A month or two later she began to feel that strange people were talking about her or they’re judging her and her movements. She had no problems with her memory and cognition, but she showed significant signs of psychosis and paranoia. 

The experts related this paranoia to three factors. She was fine with lower prozac doses and responded well when her dose was escalated, but after the discontinuation of her treatment with prozac, the med seemed to stop working for her. 

When her treatment was restarted, she had to go to the highest possible dose that should be taken per day, which seemed to produce psychotic symptoms and did not treat her symptoms. The second factor was the addition of bupropion in her treatment regimen. 

The combination may have caused paranoia as both of these medications were being used on high doses. The third factor blamed her underlying health condition, as she was a diabetic patient. 

Her diabetes was worsening by the day and her blood sugar levels were not maintained. Experts believe that this could have contributed to her therapeutic failure. 

Another study in 1991 gathered data from different case studies and indicated that the use of fluoxetine can trigger the episode of paranoia, psychosis and mania in patients who have depression comorbid with psychosis.

A 2009 study later revealed that not only in psychotic patients, but prozac can cause paranoia and psychotic symptoms in patients with no history of psychosis or any other psychological illness.

This indicates that prozac itself is capable of producing mania and paranoia as a side effect and can affect both psychotic and non-psychotic patients. 

A 2016 study monitored the psychological side effects of prozac in children and adolescents, as the previous studies were based on the adult population and prozac is administered in the younger population as well. 

The study concluded that low doses of prozac were safe and did not show signs of paranoia, but 14 to 16 year olds showed signs of mania. 

The study also revealed that this side effect is variable because the actual underlying mental health condition plays a major role in responding to the treatment with prozac. 

Is there anything you can do to get rid of prozac induced paranoia? 

Paranoia is not like other side effects of prozac which are believed to disappear within 2 to 3 weeks of treatment. This side effect clearly indicates that something is not right. 

It may be due to the fact that prozac is not working out that well for you and your depression or anxiety is getting worse. 

Experts suggest that when depression goes untreated, it can severely affect your psychological health and may cause symptoms of psychosis including mania and paranoia. This is more common in patients who have a family history or developing psychological disorders. 

So, if you begin to notice unusual symptoms like people are watching you or strangers are talking about you, you need to visit your healthcare provider as soon as you can. Look out for these signs and symptoms in your close family member or friend taking this medicine. 

Sometimes these symptoms become so disturbing that the patient stops differentiating between reality and imagination and does not feel the need to inform the doctor. This is why you should keep an eye on someone taking Prozac who’s close to you. 

You should also keep an eye on your child if he or she is taking this antidepressant. 

There is one more thing to bear in mind that prozac may induce suicidal behavior in people younger than 24 years of age and these symptoms of paranoia can really affect this suicidal behavior and can make it much, much worse. 

In these conditions, prozac should be tapered off until it’s completely out of your system. 

Additional side effects of prozac 

Common side effects of prozac include:

  • Restlessness 
  • Anxiety 
  • Drowsiness 
  • Dizziness 
  • Skin rash
  • Muscular pain
  • Joint pain
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting 
  • Tiredness 
  • Sweating 
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Loss of sexual desire 

Prozac is also associated with some serious side effects, which often require immediate medical attention. These include:

  • Allergic reaction associated with symptoms like redness of skin, itching, burning sensation, blisters, blue-purple patches, tightness of chest, wheezing, difficulty in breathing, hoarseness etc. 
  • Convulsions 
  • Dark grey-brown colored vomiting
  • Tarry or bloody stools
  • Eye problems including pain, swelling, redness, vision changes etc. 
  • Abnormal mood changes including, excitement following by sudden sadness, erratic behaviour, paranoia etc
  • Kidney function abnormalities, including severe pain, elevation of serum creatinine, difference in urine output and colour, blood urea nitrogen levels etc. 
  • Suicidal behavior 
  • Excessive muscle tremors

These side effects can vary from person to person. In order to achieve the maximum therapeutic response from a drug, it is extremely important to use it right. 

Make sure prozac is the right choice of antidepressant for you. Stick to your doctor’s recommended dose. Do not take more or less than that. 

Ask your doctor before taking prozac if you’re pregnant, trying to conceive or if you’re a breastfeeding mother. This drug can pass into the breastmilk, which is why it is important to ensure its safety in a breastfed baby. 

If you fail to understand how to use the drug properly or have any other question, ask your doctor or pharmacist. In case of overdose, immediately reach out to the hospital. Make sure you properly guide them about how much drug you have taken and when. 

Conclusion 

In this blog post, we have talked about the possibility of prozac causing paranoia. Prozac is an antidepressant which is used to treat a number of mental health conditions. This antidepressant has a lot of side effects. Prozac may cause paranoia. 

This side effect is not reported commonly, but several surveys have revealed that high doses of prozac can be responsible for making people feel paranoid, especially those who are younger than 24 years of age. 

Paranoia is basically associated with a feeling that someone or something out there is threatening you. This feeling is usually based on hallucinations and is not supported by actual evidence. 

Although this paranoia doesn’t have logical grounds, it can really disturb a person suffering from it because it’s all real in their head. Make sure you report these symptoms of paranoia to your healthcare provider as soon as you can. 

FAQs: prozac paranoia 

Can antidepressants cause paranoia?

Prozac may cause paranoia. This side effect is not reported commonly, but several surveys have revealed that high doses of prozac can be responsible for making people feel paranoid, especially those who are younger than 24 years of age. 

Can Prozac trigger psychosis?

The use of prozac can trigger the episode of paranoia, psychosis and mania in patients who have depression comorbid with psychosis. Experts also believe that prozac can cause paranoia in people who are non-psychotic. 

Does Prozac make you confused?

Prozac may make you confused, but this effect is not common and can be more prominent in people who are either at high doses or those who are not gaining any benefit from prozac. 

Can Prozac change your personality?

Prozac can fix your personality if your depression has ruined it in one way or another. Some people become agitated when they suffer from depression. They isolate themselves and stop hanging out with their friends and family. 

They stop engaging in their favourite activities and don’t even feel like leaving their house. This long-term isolation, anxiety and overthinking can mess up a person’s brain. Prozac fixes these depression symptoms. 

Over time, people start feeling better and start engaging in normal activities which seemed nerve-racking during the episodes of depression. This is how prozac affects your personality.

Why should you not take Prozac?

  • Monoaminoxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) 
  • Pimozide 
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) 
  • Alcohol 
  • Warfarin 
  • Clopidogrel
  • Antipsychotics 

Does Prozac cause dementia?

No, prozac does not necessarily cause dementia, at least not on its own. There are several underlying psychological conditions that may contribute to your random loss of memory, but prozac can not solely produce this effect. 

References

What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

[Sassy_Social_Share type="standard"]