• Prozac is a well-known anxiety and antidepressant medication that often works well for clients from all walks of life.
  • Prozac can offer clients improved sleep, energy, appetite, focus, and more.
  • It’s important to remember that no anxiety medication, including Prozac, is “better” than another; rather, it depends on how the individual reacts to their medication, and what anxiety symptoms they’re experiencing
  • Prozac may be more stimulating than other anxiety medications, and if clients experience unwanted effects, another anxiety medication, such as Zoloft or Lexapro, may be prescribed.


As one of the most well-known medications used to treat anxiety and depression, Prozac is almost a household name at this point. And for good reason; along with therapy, taking medications such as Prozac for anxiety is often a successful way to treat the challenging symptoms of many anxiety disorders

But even with such a well-known name, you might not know how Prozac works, or how you’ll feel if it’s prescribed to you. Read more below on how to best take Prozac for anxiety, and how a psychiatric professional will work with you to ensure your prescription meets your needs. 

What Does Taking Prozac for Anxiety Feel Like?

The benefits of taking Prozac for anxiety may include improved: 

  • Sleep
  • Energy levels 
  • Appetite
  • Mood
  • Focus 
  • Memory

Taking Prozac for anxiety can alleviate fear, unwanted thoughts, and reduce worrying, as well as the number of panic attacks a client may experience. Prozac may also reduce one’s urge to perform repeated tasks—a key characteristic of OCD.

How Quickly Does Prozac Work for Anxiety?

When starting a new medication, such as taking Prozac for anxiety, time is of the essence. People who begin taking Prozac usually start to notice changes in around 4-6 weeks. It’s important to remain patient during this time period, as your body and mind will need time to adjust to your new medication. 

Is Prozac Better for Anxiety or Depression?

Prozac may be more stimulating when compared to other antidepressants. This stimulation may cause worsening anxiety in some patients, but not for everyone. 

Antidepressants, particularly SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) such as Prozac, work well for treating anxiety and depression. However, some people find it more beneficial in controlling depression.

SSRIs are versatile medications that treat anxiety and depression because they work to stop the reabsorption of serotonin by the brain’s neurotransmitters. Low levels of serotonin, a chemical responsible for regulating mood, appetite, sleep, and energy levels, are thought to be responsible for the development of depression and anxiety, among other conditions.

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What Is Better than Prozac for Anxiety?

There are many medications or classes of medications that can be used for anxiety. To say one is better than another depends on the individual and their individual response.

Psychiatric providers typically differ in what they will and will not prescribe to clients—but, across the industry some of the most common antidepressants, such as Prozac, include: 

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs): 

  • Fluoxetine (Prozac)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Citalopram (Celexa)
  • Escitalopram (Lexapro)
  • Paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Paroxetine controlled release/CR (Paxil CR)
  • Fluvoxamine (Luvox) 

Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs):  

  • Venlafaxine (Effexor)
  • Venlafaxine extended release/XR (Effexor XR)
  • Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq)
  • Duloxetine (Cymbalta)
  • Levomilnacipran (Fetzima)
  • Milnacipran (Savella)

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)

  • Amitriptyline (Elavil)
  • Imipramine (Tofranil)
  • Clomipramine (Anafranil)
  • Doxepin (Sinequan)
  • Nortriptyline (Pamelor)
  • Desipramine (Norpramin)
  • Amoxapine (Asendin)
  • Maprotiline (Ludiomil)
  • Trimipramine (Surmontil)
  • Protriptyline (Vivactil)

Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs): 

  • Tranylcypromine (Parnate)
  • Phenelzine (Nardil)
  • Selegiline (Emsam)
  • Isocarboxazid (Marplan)

Atypical antidepressants:

  • Trazodone (Oleptro, Desyrel)
  • Vortioxetine (Brintellix)
  • Mirtazapine (Norset, Remeron, Avanza, Zispin)
  • Bupropion (Wellbutrin)
  • Vilazodone (Viibryd)
  • Nefazodone (Serzone)
  • Brexanolone (Zulresso), an infusion for postpartum depression (PPD)

Why Is Prozac Not Helping My Anxiety?

Taking Prozac for anxiety is often a successful treatment approach, but it may not be helping your anxiety if the dose is not high enough to control your symptoms. It’s also possible that Prozac is not a good fit for your body’s chemical makeup—certain people may not respond well to certain SSRIs. Also, it may not be helping your anxiety if your anxiety is not mental health-related such as anxiety symptoms that are being caused by a physical condition.

What Is the Most Effective SSRI for Anxiety?

There are many SSRIs that can be used for anxiety. In addition to Prozac, two of the most popular name-brand options include Lexapro and Zoloft.