Prozac vs. Lexapro What to Know About Each

3.3.2018 | Ella Bradberry

What happens when you leave depression untreated? The symptoms may start small, then escalate, and affect your life and health.

Serotonin is made in both your brain and intestines. By enhancing serotonin, these drugs treat symptoms of depression. They belong to a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Prozac and Lexapro are antidepressant medications. They help treat depression by boosting the activity of the chemical serotonin. It’s linked with mood control and other functions of your body.

Prozac and Lexapro are each available as generic drugs. In general, generic drugs cost less than their brand-name counterparts.

Serious side effects of Prozac and Lexapro can include:

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These include monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) and other drugs. Be sure to l your healthcare provider about all of the medications and supplements you currently take. Lexapro is a newer drug than Prozac, and it also has fewer interactions than Prozac does. These drugs can interact with other medications.

Prozac vs. Lexapro What to Know About Each

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Talk with your doctor about how long it may take for Prozac or Lexapro to begin making a difference in how you feel. There may be other options to treat your condition. If it seems like the drug isn’t working, l your doctor.

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Usually, medications for mental health conditions are part of an overall treatment program that includes counseling and other therapies. You should take Prozac or Lexapro exactly as prescribed by your doctor to treat your mental health problem.

Here’s what to know about these drugs to see if either may be a good fit for you. These medications work somewhat similarly in your brain, but there are some important differences you should understand before you start taking either one.

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If you talk to your doctor about these drugs, be sure to factor in how the side effects may affect you. It’s important that you understand the many side effects that these drugs may cause.

Common side effects of both drugs can include:

As brand-name drugs, Prozac and Lexapro cost about the same. However, your out-of-pocket costs will depend on your health insurance plan. Most health insurance companies cover both drugs. Both medications are available at most pharmacies.

The table below outlines some features of Prozac and Lexapro at a glance.

Lexapro and Prozac are powerful drugs that have been shown to help many people. Be honest with your doctor when you talk about your health history and your current mental and physical health. The drug that’s right for you will depend on many factors.

You should discuss your safety with your doctor before taking Prozac or Lexapro if you have any of the following conditions:. Certain medical issues can change the ways these drugs work in your body.

Girls may have heavier menstrual periods. Young people who use Prozac or Lexapro may have side effects, such as extreme thirst. Some antidepressants are not safe for younger people, but both Prozac and Lexapro are approved for use in children and adolescents. Young people who take Lexapro may also have trouble urinating, while young people who take Prozac may need to urinate more often.

This means that Lexapro may be a better choice for older adults. Seniors tend to process drugs more slowly. A drug that goes through the body more quickly, such as Lexapro, may cause fewer side effects. Because Prozac’s half-life is longer than Lexapro’s, it takes longer to go through your body.

Lexapro is the brand name for the drug escitalopram. If you suffer from depression, you’ve likely heard of the drugs Prozac and Lexapro. Both medications are used to treat depression and other mental conditions, and they’re only available with a prescription from your doctor. Prozac is the brand name for the drug fluoxetine.

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The side effects of Prozac and Lexapro are fairly similar. However, Lexapro’s side effects tend to be more mild. Sleeping problems also tend to be more intense with Prozac. For example, Prozac is linked with more nausea and diarrhea, especially when you first start taking it.