Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) balance brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) by making more serotonin available. This reduces the number and severity of panic attacks associated with panic disorder.
SSRIs are frequently the first choice of medicine for treating panic disorder and are effective in reducing the number and severity of panic attacks. SSRIs help to reduce anxiety, symptoms of depression, and agoraphobia.
SSRIs reduce the severity and number of panic attacks as well as anxiety related to anticipating a panic attack. You may start to feel better 1 to 3 weeks after you start taking an SSRI. But it can take as many as 6 to 8 weeks to see more improvement. If you have questions or concerns about your medicines, or if you do not notice any improvement by 3 weeks, talk to your doctor.