HeadMeds gives young people in the United Kingdom general information about medication. HeadMeds does not give you medical advice. Please talk to your Doctor or anyone else who is supporting you about your own situation because everyone is different. Please read more important details about our site.


Medication type:

Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitor

Other names:
  • Seroxat "se-ROX-at"
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What can it be used for?

  • 18 & Over
    If you are 18 or over, paroxetine can be prescribed for you as a licensed medicine for depression (low mood) and some other mental health conditions. It will usually be prescribed alongside a ‘talking’ therapy.
  • Under 18
    If you are under 18, there is less research about its use and effectiveness in young people, but it can be prescribed off-label by a specialist if it is the right medicine for you. It will usually be prescribed alongside a ‘talking’ therapy.

Ways to take and what's in it?

  • Tablets

    (10mg, 20mg or 30mg strength)

  • Liquids

    Oral suspension 2mg per 1ml; 10mg per 5ml spoonful

If you have taken more paroxetine than it said on the label, you must see a doctor quickly - even if you do not feel any different.

Paroxetine can make some people think about hurting themselves or committing suicide. You must go straight to hospital with your medicine if you have any of these thoughts.

Paroxetine can also cause other serious side-effects: allergic reactions (difficulty breathing, swelling of your face or throat, itching skin lumps), and other serious symptoms that you can find here. Go to a hospital if you get any of these symptoms, with your medicine.

Do not take paroxetine if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor antidepressant (MAOI) like moclobemide, phenelzine, isocarboxazid or tranylcypromine in the last 14 days, or if you take thioridazine or pimozide.

Stopping paroxetine suddenly can cause serious side-effects - go to your doctor if you want to stop, or if you are having these effects.

You might not be able to concentrate very well, and may feel sleepy, in the first few days after taking paroxetine - do not drive a car, ride a bike or operate machines until you see how this affects you.

If you take paroxetine while you are pregnant, it may affect the developing baby. Use good contraception while you are taking paroxetine. It can also cause symptoms in newborn babies if you take it at the end of pregnancy. Talk to your doctor or midwife about this and get their help-