What is fluoxetine?(A full guide)

In this brief article, we will be discussing the medication called fluoxetine, the side effects of fluoxetine, fluoxetine as a type of antidepressant medication, and more information about fluoxetine.

An overview of the medication called fluoxetine

Fluoxetine medication is considered as a psychotropic medication which means this kind of medication will cause psychological effects in a person.

This kind of medication is only available in tablet forms or capsule forms. 

Fluoxetine is available in different sizes of this medication.

This kind of medication may have some psychological benefits but side effects have been recorded after taking this medication which will be discussed in the further section.

Fluoxetine, also known as Prozac is an antidepressant medication which makes it useful for people with depressive symptoms.

This kind of medication will show its effect after 4 to 6 weeks. 

Fluoxetine might have been prescribed for treating depressive symptoms and yet, other people are using this kind of medication for people with other psychological disorders that may not have depressive symptoms.

This usage of this medication for these other psychological disorders may make this kind of medication as an over-the-counter medication for people who have other psychological disorders other than depression.

Psychological uses of fluoxetine medication

Fluoxetine has been used to treat the following psychological and physical disorders:

  • Depression. This involves major depression, treatment-resistant depression, depressive episodes and symptoms related to bipolar I disorder.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder. This kind of psychological condition causes intrusive thoughts that won’t go away or obsessions and the urge to do specific behaviours over and over or compulsions.
  • Bulimia nervosa. This kind of psychological condition is an eating disorder with prominent binge eating followed by excessive behaviours to prevent increasing weight such as purging, excessive exercise or fasting.
  • Panic attacks. These kinds of attacks are unexpected episodes of excessive fear and worry even though no outside threat is present.
  • Emotion-related symptoms and signs of the premenstrual dysphoric disorder. These kinds of symptoms and signs involve mood swings or episodes of extreme sadness, anger or irritability.

You can learn more about the premenstrual dysphoric disorder by buying this book on this website.

How does fluoxetine medication work?

Fluoxetine medication works by using the chemicals that are typical in selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors which can minimize depressive symptoms.

As mentioned before, this kind of medication is part of the class of antidepressant medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. 

This is why this group of antidepressant medications work for the same purpose which is to minimize depressive symptoms.

Fluoxetine can increase the number of serotonin neurotransmitters which are needed in regulating mood thereby minimizing the occurrence of depressive symptoms. 

Serotonin can also regulate the balance of our mental wellbeing making us well-adjusted in the challenges of life.

This kind of neurotransmitter when enhanced can minimize the occurrence of the symptoms of depression, bulimia nervosa, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and panic attacks. 

Since fluoxetine can help regain our regulation of mood, this kind of medication has also been beneficial for women who are suffering from the overwhelming emotions that are predominant in the premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

Who can and can’t be prescribed with the fluoxetine medication?

Adults who are suffering from depression, bulimia nervosa, and obsessive-compulsive disorder are prescribed with fluoxetine to minimize their distressing symptoms.

This kind of medication has also been prescribed for children who are at the ages of 8 and older to reduce the occurrence of depressive symptoms.

You need to ask permission from your doctor if you’re going to take fluoxetine even when you have the following conditions:

  • have had an allergic response to fluoxetine or any other medications in the past
  • have a heart complication as fluoxetine can fasten up or alter your heartbeat
  • have ever taken any other medications for depression. Some seldom used antidepressant medications can interact with fluoxetine to trigger very high blood pressure even when they have been eliminated for a few weeks.
  • are attempting to become pregnant, are recently pregnant or you are breastfeeding a newborn
  • have an eye complication called glaucoma because fluoxetine can enhance the pressure in your eye
  • have epilepsy or are having an electroconvulsive medical procedure in which fluoxetine may enhance the potential of having a seizure
  • If you have diabetes, fluoxetine can make it hard to maintain your blood sugar stabilized. You need to monitor your blood sugar more usually for the first few weeks of medical treatment with this kind of medication and adjust your diabetes intervention if appropriate.

You can learn more about several treatments for diabetes by buying this book on this website.

How much of the fluoxetine medication should I take?

You can take fluoxetine once a day. Also, you can take this kind of medication with or without food.

You can take fluoxetine at any time of day as long as it is the same time for each intake.

If you are having sleeping problems, you should take this kind of medication in the morning.

How much to take fluoxetine medication

The amount of fluoxetine medication that adults who are prescribed with this kind of medication is 20 mg.

This dosage of this medication will be gradually increased after taking this kind of medication into 60 mg each day. 

Some people who are prescribed with the lower dosage or take fluoxetine not each day.

These kinds of people are those with liver complications or the elderly who may be too sensitive with this kind of medication.

In children, the typical dosage of fluoxetine is 10 mg a day which can increase into 20 mg a day if the effects might be too minimal.

You can learn more about how this kind of medication is used in children by buying this book on this website. 

What if I miss or forget to take fluoxetine medication?

If you frequently miss a dosage of fluoxetine, you don’t have to get all anxious about it.

You can make up for this by taking this kind of medication in the typical time on the next day. 

You can’t take 2 dosages of fluoxetine due to you forgetting about your intake.

You could even set an alarm so that you won’t forget taking this medication. 

You can also ask some advice from your pharmacist on how you can be aware of when you are going to take your daily dosage of fluoxetine.

What if I take too much dosage of fluoxetine medication?

If you take too much of the fluoxetine medication, you may be signing yourself to overdose but this effect varies from each patient.

What are the common and unusual side effects of fluoxetine?

Like all medications, there are common and unusual side effects of fluoxetine but not all patients will have the following side effects.

Some people may not have side effects from this kind of medication once they start getting used to this medication.

Typical or common side effects

These typical side effects can happen to some people.

You can keep taking fluoxetine but you should alert your doctor once you have the following side effects:

  • feeling sick 
  • headaches
  • being incapable of sleep
  • diarrhoea
  • feeling sleepy or fatigued

You can learn more about the effects of fluoxetine by buying this book on this website. 

Chronic side effects

Chronic side effects of fluoxetine occur infrequently but people who get these side effects are more likely to set themselves in danger.

Here are some serious side effects that you need to alert your doctor immediately once these effects appear:

  • chest ache or pressure or shortness of breath
  • chronic dizziness or passing out
  • harmful erections that last longer than 4 hours and this may occur even when you are not engaging in sexual activities
  • any bleeding that is very horrible or that you cannot prevent such as cuts or nosebleeds that doesn’t stop within 10 minutes

You need to address a doctor immediately if you have the following:

  • headaches, memory problems, difficulty focusing, not thinking clearly, seizures, weakness or losing your balance which can be signs and symptoms of low sodium levels
  • thoughts about destroying yourself or stopping your life
  • fits, excessive enthusiasm or excitement, euphoric feelings or a feeling of sleeplessness that means you can’t sit or standstill
  • Throwing up blood or dark throw up, blood in your tinkle, coughing up blood, black or red poo which can be signs and symptoms of bleeding from the gut
  • bleeding from the gums or bruises that are present without a reason or that get larger

You need to book an appointment with your doctor if you have the following experiences:

  • weight gain or weight loss without attempting to overeat or restrict food
  • alterations in your periods such as heavy bleeding, bleeding between periods or spotting on your lower clothes

Serious allergic response

In some people who are taking fluoxetine, these people may have a severe allergic reaction or anaphylaxis.

How to overcome the side effects of fluoxetine medication?

You can minimize the side effects of fluoxetine by taking this kind of medication in the evening which is also prescribed by doctors.

Here are the following ways that you can do to overcome some of the side effects of this kind of medication:

  • feeling sick -you need to try taking fluoxetine with or after eating food. This routine may also help to stick to simple meals and avoid rich or spicy food which may affect some effects of this kind of medication.
  • headaches – you need to make sure you rest and drink lots of fluids, especially water. You must not drink too much alcohol while taking fluoxetine. You need to ask your pharmacist to recommend a painkiller medication for this side effect. Headaches should often leave after the first week of taking this kind of medication. You need to talk to your doctor if this side effect lasts longer than a week or are chronic.
  • being incapable of sleep – you need to take fluoxetine first thing in the morning after your breakfast or not
  • diarrhoea – you need to drink plenty of water or other fluids to prevent the feeling of dehydration. Signs and symptoms of dehydration involve peeing less than typical or having dim strong-smelling tinkle. You must not take any other medications to treat this side effect or throwing up without talking to a pharmacist or doctor.
  • feeling drowsy or fatigued – if fluoxetine makes you feel sleepy or weak, you need to eliminate what you’re doing and sit or lie down until you feel better. You must not drive or use materials or machinery if you’re feeling drowsy. You must not drink alcohol as it will make you feel worse than this side effect. If these symptoms and signs don’t stop presenting themselves after a week or two, you need to ask your doctor for guidance.

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What are the withdrawal side effects of fluoxetine medication?

There are withdrawal side effects of fluoxetine once the patient suddenly takes off from this kind of medication.

These withdrawal side effects are the following:

  • brain zaps
  • dizziness
  • confusion
  • Vivid nightmares and having trouble sleeping
  • vertigo
  • nausea
  • tremor
  • gastrointestinal problems
  • flu-like symptoms
  • anxiety or easily startled
  • bouts of crying
  • irritability
  • aggressiveness

The patient who suddenly stops taking fluoxetine for 6 weeks or more is giving him or her the risk to get the withdrawal syndrome from his kind of medication.

The reduction of the intake of this medication tends to do this kind of syndrome which is what most psychotropic medications have.

These side effects can be minimized by stopping fluoxetine for 4 weeks.

Although some people don’t have these withdrawal side effects in taking this kind of medication for a few weeks. 

However, some patients need to stop taking fluoxetine immediately such as for the reason of going through pregnancy.

You need to ask your doctor and the doctor will discuss to you the safe method in stopping this kind of medication if you have a valid reason.

By the information mentioned above, you can see how well Fluoxetine performs its function. However, doctors are still trying to figure out which drug is more effective, Fluoxetine or Citalopram.


In this brief article, we have discussed the medication called fluoxetine, the side effects of fluoxetine, fluoxetine as a type of antidepressant medication, and more information about fluoxetine.

If you have any questions about fluoxetine, please let us know and the team will gladly answer your queries.

FAQs: What is fluoxetine

What is the difference between Prozac and fluoxetine?

The difference between Prozac and fluoxetine is that these medications are brand name medications.

This can be seen since Prozac is the generic form of the medication which is fluoxetine.

Both of these medications are classified under the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors class which is a type of antidepressant medication.

Can you get addicted to fluoxetine?

Yes, you can get addicted to fluoxetine.

This situation can happen if you combine this kind of medication with another selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor.

Overall, this kind of medication is not all that addictive but it can become addictive if you did the combination.

Is fluoxetine the same as Xanax?

Fluoxetine is not the same as Xanax since these medications work in different ways.

Xanax is a medication that is used to treat anxiety symptoms in affected people while fluoxetine is an antidepressant medication that is used for people who have depressive symptoms.

Is fluoxetine a happy pill?

Fluoxetine is not a happy pill since it isn’t only effective for depression.

This kind of medication has been helpful with other mental health problems such as sleeping problems and anxiety.

Does Prozac give you energy?

Prozac can give you increased energy levels.

This might happen because as an antidepressant medication, this kind of medication will give you the effects of mania which is somewhat an opposite of depression.


Healthline. Fluoxetine, Oral Capsule.

MedicalNewsToday. What is Prozac (fluoxetine)?.

NHS. Fluoxetine (including Prozac).