First appearing in the U.S. in 1988, Prozac has been called a “wonder drug,” and “revolutionary,” inspiring books and movies about its effects on mental illness.1,2,3 Despite being one of the most popular medications for depression and anxiety, Prozac does come with risks, side effects, and potential contraindications you should know about. To help you decide if the drug is right for you, we’ll explore how it works, common side effects, and what you can take instead of Prozac, including non-prescription medications like Brillia.
What Is Prozac?
Fluoxetine, sold under the brand name Prozac, is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, or SSRI. It is a similar type of medication as Lexapro and Zoloft and is commonly prescribed to treat depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, bulimia nervosa, and panic disorder, a type of anxiety disorder. Prozac may also be prescribed to treat other types of anxiety as well.
How Prozac Works to Ease Depression & OCD Symptoms
Prozac, like other SSRIs, works by preventing the brain from reabsorbing the naturally-occurring neurotransmitter serotonin, which is involved in mood regulation. By increasing levels of serotonin, Prozac promotes a feeling of well-being and may prevent symptoms of OCD, though it does come with known side effects and risks.4
Common side effects of Prozac include:5
- Increased anxiety
- Sleep disturbances
- Dry mouth
- Loss of appetite
- Weight changes
- Changes in sex drive or ability
- Excessive sweating
- Difficulty concentrating
Some rare side effects include loss of vision, abnormal bleeding, facial swelling, and seizures. Prozac also has several contraindications with other medications and should not be taken by those using the antibiotic linezolid, the antipsychotics pimozide and thioridazine, or the estrogen modulator tamoxifen.6 It should also be avoided by those taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) and the supplement St. John’s Wort to avoid serotonin syndrome. In vulnerable patients, especially users under 24, Prozac may lead to suicidal thoughts.7
The Brillia Story
Brillia is a homeopathic non-prescription medication that is specifically targeted to reduce anxiety, stress, restlessness, and irritability without the use of synthetic chemicals found in SSRIs like Prozac. In place of these synthetic chemicals, Brillia’s active ingredient consists of antibodies to the brain-specific S100B protein. Studies show that when this protein is out of balance in the body, it contributes to anxiety and depression.8 Brillia's mechanism of action is to bind specifically to the S100B protein to regulate its activity without altering the concentration of the S100B protein. This action prevents anxiety symptoms altogether. Brillia causes no harmful side effects and impacts no other systems in the body with its gentle and specific approach. Aside from its unique antibody formulation, another thing that sets Brillia apart is its holistic 5-Pillar program, which is based on complementary and healthier lifestyle changes. By following proper nutrition, getting adequate sleep, controlling screen time, and practicing mindfulness in combination with taking Brillia, those following the 5-Pillar program are tackling their stress, anxiety, and irritability from multiple angles, building a healthier overall lifestyle for effective, lasting change.
How Brillia Works to Ease Anxiety Symptoms
The best way to understand how Brillia works is to refer to a lock and key analogy. When we become anxious, the SB100 protein acts as a key, binding to a target in the brain to unlock symptoms like irritability and an unstable mood. The targeted antibodies in Brillia reduce these symptoms by attaching to the S100B protein and modifying it so that it is unable to bind to this target and unlock these undesirable symptoms. This process is highly effective, yet incredibly gentle, so that it will not cause harmful side effects, mask the personality, or negatively interact with other medications or supplements. When used in tandem with the 5-Pillar Program, users experience less anxiety, more clarity and focus, and have more opportunities to self-regulate despite life’s ups and downs.
How Brillia Compares to Prozac
SSRIs like Lexapro, Zoloft, and Prozac are prescription drugs and often require an official diagnosis from your doctor. Brillia, on the other hand, is an over-the-counter medication that does not require an official diagnosis or prescription. Though Prozac is approved for children over eight to treat depression, OCD, social anxiety, and sometimes bipolar disorder, as stated above, increased thoughts of suicide must be monitored in younger patients. Brillia is also approved in children (as young as five) as well as adults, but there are no harmful side effects to be anticipated. Brillia will not induce drowsiness, lethargy, appetite changes, or depression. It is also safe to start and stop taking Brillia at any time without the risk of withdrawal symptoms commonly associated with SSRIs.9 There are also no contraindications with Brillia, so you can safely add it to your regimen even if you are already taking other medications or supplements.
Reduce irritability and impulsivity.
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Since Brillia is a homeopathic medication, it goes through a different process than Prozac for FDA review. Every box of Brillia is vetted and backed up by substantive documentation with clinical trials and studies confirming its safety and efficacy. Brillia adheres to all FDA standards and regulations and is supported by over 10 years of successful use in Europe.
Brillia vs. Prozac Dosage
Prozac is typically prescribed at 10-20mg to start, though doctors may adjust this dosage and increase it for continued efficacy.10 Sudden stoppage of taking the medication is not recommended and may result in withdrawal symptoms such as irritability, nausea, dizziness, nightmares, headaches, and skin sensations.11
For Brillia, dosing depends on your unique symptoms and their severity. Some individuals may find that Brillia is a better fit for reducing anxiety altogether, but please read through the next section to find out how to safely adjust your regimen.
How to Add Brillia to Your Regimen
If you would like to replace your current medication or add Brillia to your regimen, keep in mind that there are no contraindications to worry about so you can start taking Brillia at any time. While many individuals use Brillia as an effective alternative to pharmaceutical products, always ask your doctor first before stopping any other medication. And keep in mind that it takes two to three weeks for Brillia to build up in your system.
Some people choose to use Brillia in conjunction with their other medications instead of replacing their prescriptions. This is a great way to avoid increasing your dosages. While there is no harm in taking this route, adding Brillia to your regimen will not alleviate the side effects from being on prescription drugs.
Though we recommend waiting two to three weeks to notice the effects of Brillia, for some the results may take longer. If you’re planning on switching over, please continue taking your current prescription medications for at least three to four weeks and then make a plan with your physician to switch over completely. It’s important to continue being consistent and patient, and give Brillia a full three months to see the best results. If this route seems ideal, remember to start taking Brillia at least three to four weeks ahead of stopping the use of other prescription medications.
Learn more about how Brillia works.
Erica Garza is an author and essayist from Los Angeles. She holds an MFA from Columbia University and a certificate in Narrative Therapy. Her writing has appeared in TIME, Health, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Women's Health, and VICE.