Paxil is a drug that was released by the Glaxo SmithKline corporation aimed at fighting depression. The FDA approved Paxil for research in 1992. In May of 1996 Paxil was approved for the treatment of panic disorder and OCD. Paxil
is a member of the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor family, which increases serotonin levels in the synapse by blocking serotonin reuptake into brain cells. Official Paxil Website
If you or someone you know has had a problem with Paxil feel free to call the advertising section of FDA at (301) 827-2828. Also fill out the Medwatch form and also call FDA at 1-800-FDA 1088 press 0 or call (301) 443-1240.
"I have been taking Paxil for about a week. Already I have tried slitting my wrists and think I am loosing my mind."
I have been on paxil for about 11 months because I have severe panic attacks now I think that is gone but how do I wean myself from this drug. I have stopped taking paxil for 3 days my body feels as if there is a wave of electricity going through it I am having difficulties concentrating what do you suggest i do to ease this feeling. Leave it and my body will come back to normal
I started Paxil about 8 weeks ago. After 1 week I started to experience headaches and zapping. Not knowing that it was Paxil, could cause this situation I went to my medical Dr. and he took blood test, UA, and had a Ct Scan/contrast. Everything came back normal. I decided on 10/7/03 to take myself off Paxil, thinking that nothing could be worse than what I was going through. Well I was wrong; I started going through withdrawal and that is pure hell. I not only still have the headaches and zapping but I am now feeling anxiety, irritable, fatigue, tremors, vertigo, nausea and numerous other symptoms of withdrawal. The nightmares are terrible and so are the hot flashes that I also experienced while taking the medication. I am furious and discussed that my Psychiatrist put me on such a drug that is so addicting and causing so many problems. I am an Alcohol/Drug counselor and had never been addicted to any Alcohol or drugs before in my life. To seek out help for a stressful time in my life and to be put on such a dangerous drug such as Paxil. It appears that I am damned if I stay on it and damned if I go off has me feeling outrageous and angry, not only at the company that put this drug out but also for my Dr. not to tell me the effects or that I would have withdrawal symptoms if I came off. Well I am coming off and I will not be weaned off like so many others it will be cold turkey for me. To me to say that you need to be weaned off is no different than giving someone methadone to get them off heroin. Using one drug to offset another or taking less of a drug at a slower pace, one will never be off and only keep going back to help deter the effects of withdrawal. 4 days now for me and I will fight and get back my sanity.
It is now day eight since I took myself off Paxil. I still have the headaches but they are finally easing up. The zapping is getting worse and the whoosh noise is still there. I have been experiencing the following withdrawal symptoms along with the above. Vertigo, tremors so bad I was beating up myself, nightmares when I finally do fall asleep, irritable, insomnia, nausea, diarrhea, lack of concentration, fearful, anxiety, depression, crying uncontrollably, anger, frustration, heart palpitation, dizziness, flu symptoms, weakness, disoriented and chills. I am wondering what is next. I talked to the FDA today also. Surprising they returned my call. I only wish that I had taped the conversation. The following is part of the conversation I had with them. The person I talked to stated that they don't feel that Paxil is addictive because it doesn't carry the behavior of a person that is dependent on a drug. A person that will go out and steal to obtain their drug of choice or cause harm to another. I explained since I am an Alcohol/Drug counselor that any drug that will cause a person to have withdrawal symptoms especially the ones I stated above that the drug is defiantly an addictive drug and any other term is not going to satisfy the public. I also stated that any SSRI is used to enhance the seritonin in ones body and that doctors need to test to find out if ones seritonin level is low in which they need to enhance. If a person does not have a low seritonin level than these drugs can and do cause more problems for an individual. Doctors aren't given all the facts with prescribing these types of meds and need to do some more studies to make sure others aren't harmed like myself and many of you who are writing in. The one thing all can do is get this advertising stopped that Paxil is not addictive or habit forming. Lets start flooding the lines and start calling the FDA and the dept that handles complaints about advertising Paxil. Please call and tell them your story. The advertising section of FDA is (301) 827-2828. Also fill out the Medwatch form and also call FDA at 1-800-FDA 1088 press 0 or call (301) 443-1240. Lets ban together and get Glaxo-Smith Kline to admit the truth about these effects and to get them to stop lying that it is not addictive or habit forming. Also do your own memory recall as to any symptoms you felt while being on the Paxil or any SSRI. Tell the people at the FDA if you experienced any zapping, whooshing noise, headaches (And how severe they were, Hot flashes or anything else that you may have experienced while being on Paxil. The FDA is basically only hearing about the withdrawals and nothing about peoples experience on the Paxil. Lets speak and fight for our rights and the rights of the future.
I was taking a similar anti-depressant by the name of Paxil, and experienced the same withdrawal symptoms. The most disturbing for me was the electric shock feeling from the top of my head through to the bottom of my feet. I was considering taking a different SSRI such as Zoloft or Prozac, but now that I know the same symtoms may occur with these ones as well I am wondering if there isn't another alternative for anxiety disorders. I would really rather not be doomed to a life of pill popping, just as I would rather not be doomed to a life of anxiety.
I started taking Paxil ( Bad Stuff ) about 6 months ago. I put on 30 lbs while taking it. For that reason alone I quit cold turkey. Not realizing what was about to happen. I literally went to the brink of insanity. My husband was afraid to leave me alone. My entire family was horrified. My parents came from out of town so I wouldn't have to be alone.
I cried uncontrollably, went into fetal position, nausea, diarrhea, involuntary muscle stuff, extreme confusion, the zaps, I could go on. Then it would leave as fast as it came. Then back again.
I have now been tapering, I'm down to a quarter of a 20mg tablet every third day. This last drop has been horrible.
I know when I'm about to start going through withdrawal because I'll start to get nausea, and Gi symptoms. Not to mention I can be out somewhere and all of the sudden become confused, to the point that I should not be driving.
I'm not exaggerating when I say that Paxil has taken control.
In my late teens and early 20's I messed with street drugs, none of them ever did this to me.
Anyway, I'll get through. I hope this helps someone else.
( The suicide thing scares me too) Los of control scares me.
I haven't seen anything regarding this on your web site, but I am hoping that I am not the only person who finds it difficult to share a life with paxil user. Now, some people might misinterpret this and ask "what is better, living with a person who has constant panic attacks or with somebody who is on paxil". In order to clarify this, please let me tell you my story and I will make it as short as possible:
** my husband started using paxil this March. Had regular side effects at the beginning, but now he is fine. He is not depressed any longer, no more panic attacks, can go thru car wash without problem, can fly in small planes and all that.
But, now I have a problem: my husband is not the person I feel in love with any longer. Instead of having passionate, funny, always on the go guy, now I am with a person who appears to be as one who does not care if the sky falls down tomorrow. He has no sense of responsibility no longer, everything is fine with him, does not care for anything. When I approached him with a same question, he said he does care but maybe not showing it. In the meantime, I am father, mother, lover, friend and everything else to myself and him and our child.
I have been taking Paxil for almost 3 years. I have tried to stop taking the pill on several occasions and always end up in an emergency room. As of last week my doctor lowered the doses from 20 milligrams to 10, after the first two days I had to go back
to the regular doses since withdrawal effects were so bad that I thought I was going to die. I started getting headaches, nausea,
all kind of body aches. I feel that I am addicted to the medication. I have also gained 40 pounds.
Paxil is a habit former.
HI. MY NAME IS XXXXXX
WHAT PAXIL DOESE TO ME
BAD HEAD ACHES
SORE LOWER BACK AND SHOLDER MUSCLES
SHACKES AND MUSCLE TWICHES
MAKES ME FEEL HUNGREY ALL THE TIME
NO ENERGY WHAT SO EVER
I HAVE BEEN ON PAXIL FOR 5 MNTHS NOW
I THINK IT'S TIME TO TRY SOMETHING ELSE.
THANKS FOR YOUR TIME.
E MAIL ME
I went to my doctor for chest pains. After ignoring me for a while, he did several tests, like chest x-rays, mammograms, blood work, ct-scan and many more. After doing all these tests he said I was just stressed and had anxiety and recommended Paxil. Reluctantly I took paxil and changed doctors. The first week I was on Paxil, I started having nightmares, twitches all over my body, my heart started racing, major anxiety, I though I was going to die. The doctor said to give it some time for the medication to work. I knew the medication was working after 11 days of hell because my pain got worst and I didn't care. I still felt like I was going to die from the pain, but did not care. I decided to get off Paxil after 19 days because I completely lost my sleep. The withdrawal symptoms were worst than my chest pain, not only did I have pain, I also felt horrible and I couldn't sleep. My doctor wanted to put me on another medication and I refused, the pain got worse. I requested to see a psychiatrist He told me that I would feel better after 3 weeks, when the effects of Paxil die down. He also recommended I changed doctors again or go to someone else. The psychiatrist thought I had gallstones. I ended up going to a low income clinic and paying with my own money. The doctor in that clinic was the nicest doctor I had come across in more than a year of hell. He took he time and listened to me. He spent about an hour with me asking me questions and feeling my belly. He also told me that I might have gallstones. Instead of feeling sad, I felt happy, finally someone had taken the time to listen to me. After a sonogram, he said that I did not have gallstones, then I felt devastated and insane. Then he kindly told me that we were going to find out what was wrong. He took another test and it was positive. I was HE-pylori positive and had GERD, all that time I had and ulcer and too much acid going into my esophogus. I'm now taking prevacid and feel like a need person. However, my experience with Paxil left me scared for life.
I have been on Paxil for about 2 years. It has been a life saver for me. I was suffering from extreme anxiety when Paxil was first prescribed to me. My anxiety was stemming from hormone inbalances. I had my tubes tied and went off of my birth control pill. About two weeks later my body went crazy. I though I was dying - my heart was racing, arm and chest in pain and experienced frequent episodes of fainting. I found out through blood work that I was in full blown menopause (I was only 39). My Dr. prescribed a HRT and Paxil. Since then I have had a complete hysterectomy and changed my HRT to Premerin and have stayed on Paxil.
I know I would not have made it through this difficult time with my body chemistry changing had it not been for the Paxil. I fortunately did not suffer any of the symptoms associated with anti-depressants. I used to be on Zoloft for depression about 8 years ago and find the Paxil works better for me. The hard part is getting off of the drug. They say these drugs are not habit forming but I do not believe that. I am getting ready to start "weaning" myself off Paxil. I know from past experience you can not just stop taking it. That, is my only complaint about the drug. Given the positive effects it has had on my quality of life, I can deal with the issue of getting off of it.
Thank you for your website and the information you provide.
I started taking paxil about a year ago, because at that time I was diagnosed with a cyst on the brain that had grown and needed a biopsy to be done, the doctor had prescribed Paxil prior to surgery about three weeks.I was having such anxiety from attacks the cyst on the brain was causing that I was agreeable to try anything. By the time of the biopsy was being done I felt wonderful,as if I was getting my life back.After the biopsy was done and everything good my doctor felt I should be on Paxil for at least a year, I couldn't complain.During this time my mother advised the warning of taking Paxil and what it was doing to me, I had become as if I didn't care about how my house looked inside( that was not me before taking Paxil) and not to mention the weight gain, at least 40 ponds now and few sizes bigger in clothes.I knew something had to be done.I spoke with my doctor and he warned me of the side effects of getting off the pills.He mentioned the slow weaning process, I thought "no problem". I'm now at half the 20mg I was on and starting to feel some strange feelings.Numbness, slight dizziness, confusion at times, diarrhea and at times headaches.At first I thought maybe it was the cyst coming back, had a MRI done and it wasn't that thank goodness.Just symptoms of withdrawal. After reading everyone else's withdrawal symptoms, does anyone know how long do the symptoms last? how about losing weight afterwards? And last but not least I'm going to kick this little pink pill out of my system! Most importantly, listen to your mother!
I have been taking Zoloft for a week now and every time I take it I have severe stomach camping, diarrhea, I have trouble sleeping and I still have headaches. I started off taking Paxil but I got a non controllable migraine. I had a lot less side affects with the paxil. Don't know how much longer I can take these affects.
I have been taking paxil for 9 days now .The first 5 days 10 mg and the next 4 days 20 mg.I started taking it because i was depressed and started having bad panic attacks.When i have panic attacks i have a rapid heartbeat(normal).But now my heart races all the time?? I have to really relax to get my heart rate down?It seems to me also my mind races more now that i have been on it?I seem to be a lot more grouchy(i keep it to myself though).Does this sound like i am having side affect from paxil?I really get tired of my mind racing and my blood pressure is way up !! The doctor also gave me larazapam 1 mg,it seems to work really good to calm my nerves.I would rather be on that and get off paxil.I know they say to give it 2-3 weeks.........i dont know what to do.
I have been involved in a drug court in IL for 2 years now. I'm an alcoholic, and have stuggled to stop. I also suffer from depression and anxiety. I was perscribed paxil July of '05. During this time I entered 2 rehabs. The second I was feeling very suicidal when I entered (November '05) while taking paxil. Eventually while at rehab I was able to over-come those feelings. I do also have a history of 2 suicide attempts in '01. My depression I don't feel got better on paxil. I left rehab Febuary '06. I began drinking again and relapsed which in turn landed me in the county jail for 6 days. Being the great facility it is, mind you I brought my script with me so I could continue the paxil use, I recieved not one dose that whole time... While there I will say my mood there was not all bad. But at night I would just lie there, not being able to sleep for 6 days, and the thought of suicide consumed me immensely. I could not think staight at all. I had come up with my plan and rehersed it over and over... Upon my release I went through with the plan. I got drunk, and then consumed 90 vicodin, 50-50mg. nortryptilines, and 15 200 mg. seroquel. I was found in time by my mother. After being hospitalized for 6 days and stabalized on Lexapro and Depakote, I was put back in jail for taking perscriptions that weren't mine. SWEET! Luckily I was given a bond, and was able to remain on the meds I just started to take. I have remained sober since (a little over a month) and continue to discuss with my doctor the effectiveness of the new meds. thanks-hope I could help
Has anyone had an increased desire to drink while on Paxil?
I have been on amphetamine salts 10mg for a month while taking tylenol pm to help me sleep. one night i took pain reliever pm instead of tylenol pm and felt sick dizzy and this weird numbness feeling.. i have never felt this before when i took them. so i quit cold turkey off all meds even amphetamine salts and i still got the numbess feeling except it was worse with the shakes which was probley from the amphetamine salts. i tapered myself off liek the doctor said 1/2 for a week then next week 1/2 one day then none the next then i am taking none. its like it got worse. and i still feel this numbness feeling. i just want to know if anyone knows about whats causing this numbness out of my body feeling.. is it really normal? could the sleeping pills have caused this? why am i still feeling like this for 5 weeks its been.
I have been taking Paxil for quite a while now and there was a time when I thought I would try to stop it. Well, what I started feeling that night was about the scariest thing I had ever been through. I don't really even know how to describe how I felt. I had absolutely no idea what was happening to me. I was pacing the floors back and forth, crying like I had never cried before, rubbing my face alot, pulling at my hair, MAJOR BRAIN SHOCKS or ZAPS whatever you want to call them. The Zaps were getting about 1 or 2 minutes apart, so I called the emergency on-call doctor and he told me that "If it is the Paxil, try taking a half of one" and (again) "If it is the paxil, it will feel better within an hour or 2." Guess what? Within an hour or 2, I felt better. The crying stopped, I wasn't as anxious, I wasn't rubbing my face, and the Brain Zaps even went away. Nobody told me that they were addictive. I had no clue what was going on. I thought I was losing my mind. But here I am today, still on Paxil because now I'm scared to stop them. And you know what? I'm still having "BRAIN ZAPS" a year later. Who would've thought? Apparently there is some long-term damage affects. Never had these Zaps before my 1st withdrawal, but here I am a year later, still having Zaps every couple of days. One day I may be fine, the next I'm Zapping all day. Talk about mental anguish, emotional anguish, physical anguish to feel like every couple of minutes somebody has an electrical cord spliced into your brain and just keeps shocking the crap out of your brain. Anyway, my point is, if you think about taking Paxil, PLEASE, PLEASE read alot of research about withdrawing from it when you eventually stop it. Know what you are taking and how to stop it. Nobody tells you that it is addictive. Take it from me, it is very, very addictive. I just so happen found out the hard way and I'm still dealing with it. Also, my sister-in-law has been taking Paxil for a long time and she had a very bad situation with withdrawing from it, not too long after I did and she also still has the Zaps from it and she still takes it. So it does do some kind of permanent damage to some people. I don't care what anybody says about it. The emergency on-call doctor that I talked to the night of my experience said that it would not cause any permanent damage. That's BULL!!!!! Be Careful with this medicine, I would not wish what my sister-in-law and I have went through and still going through on my worst enemy.
I call paxil poison!I have gained 30 pounds, and have had major hair thinning.This is an awful drug.It is extremely hard to get off of too.I am determined to take control of my life again,and quit this!If anyone is considering taking this,please research first.My doctor thought that it would be a great thing for me,but it definately was not!!!
When I was 18 or 19 I had a panic attack. It was followed by surreal anxiety and fear of another attack for a week or so. My mom gave me some of her Paxil when I wasn't getting any better. I can't remember how long it took but it seemed instant. I felt great. I no longer suffered from insomnia or deppression. I did start to drink alot but whether it was due to the paxil or not I don't know. I have always drank but I seemed to drink more often. I was on it for a few months and felt so good I would forget to take it and would have ZAPS as a result. It was literally like something was giving me a little shock through my body. At the time I thought it was because of taking the paxil not withdrawl from it, so I stopped taking it and eventually the ZAPS ceased.
I got divorced in 99' and depression and anxiety set in. My doctor gave me options such as Lorazapam and paxil. I went with the lorazapam remembering the withdrawl symptoms from the paxil. It calmed my anxiety so I could sleep at night but it would knock me out during the day so I would have to make it through the day feeling anxious and very depressed.
I went back to the doctor and got back on the paxil. Everything was good again; I could sleep, no anxiety, depression....gone. So I stayed on it until two weeks ago. I wasn't depressed, no anxiety, nothing. And that's exactly it, I felt nothing. I was a shell the last couple of years. I was continuing to drink more and more and that left me even more apathetic and depressed.
I decided to see a Psychiatrist, someone with experience with antidepressants. He tapered me off of the paxil, a little faster than I have read many people here say they have, but he put me on lexapro and it has been four days without paxil. It is very difficult dealing with the withdrawls but I "feel" again, though sometimes nervous or lethargic but I "feel".
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I have been taking Paxil at 40mg for over a year. I had noticed sometimes if I forgot to take my meds for a few days I would feel queasy and lightheaded. But there were always other things going on so I was unsure as to the real cause. My doctor decided to take me off paroxetine on Tuesday of last week, and start me on something else. But what I have been through since then is unbelievable. To list all my syptoms would take more time than it's worth. I'll just say that this has been one of the wrost experiences of my life. After reading online about how many other people have had problems with this I am incredibly frustrated. Two main things bother me. If this was known before I started taking it why didn't my doctor mention this to me when we were discussing options? Also, if this is such a well known phenomenon why would tell me to quit cold turkey?? I am so angry I don't know if I'll be able to go back to him. But I guess I shouldn't have trusted him and checked it out on my own. Also, I think there should be more information about the extensive list of debilitating withdrawal symptoms on the product label. But that's my two cents. And if anyone has any ideas as to how to ease what I'm going through (I'd rather have to start taking it again, but I after a week I don't know if I can take much more) that would be great! Thanks!
when i started taking paxil my doctor gave it to me for my bi-polar disorder.it made my anger worse and it made me very edgy. i asked my doctor if it was normal and he said yes, i took it for 2 years and it never helped me.when i quit taking them. i was better my mood was fine and i hardly got angry
I'm so glad I came across this!! And yet I thought my doctor was taking real care of me,but obviously he wasn't, he never mentioned to me that these side effects would occur. I've been feeling so emotionally and mentally drained from feeling not myself,meaning that i've had many body zaps,nightmares that feel real,tired, thirsty all the time,dizzy,nausea,sore neck,headaches it's drives me crazy and i feel mad that my doctor did not tell me I would feel like this..And still to this day he says it's not the medication it's my body getting use to being on this.. But after reading everyones story I now know that Im not alone and I hope I get the help I need. Please contact me.. I need to feel like myself again before ever taking paxil!!!
I have been on paxil 30mg. for 4 months. I am feeling better.Wondering how long I have to stay oni it.
I hated Paxil. I have been on it for a few months now and I am finally weaning myself off because I can't take it anymore. My doctor said to start taking 10 mg a night. I am feeling zaps of electricity through my body and I hate it. This drug is crazy and I DON'T Reccomend it.
I took Paxil for about 13 years. I tried to go off it before but I would get cranky and head zaps so bad that I would go back on it within 4 - 5 days. I have been off paxil about five weeks. I still feel sad,and break into tears frequently. It took four weeks for the head zaps to leave.I still have weak ones occassionaly. I also feel depressed much of the time.... I never felt this bad before I went on Paxil
I am 23 and have been on paxil for 3 years. I was placed on it for anxiety attacks associated with school. The past 6 months I started realizing I would cry and not know why. Then about 3 months ago I started to have the feeling of not wanting to live. I realized that the paxil was messing with me. I have slowly gotten off of it (taking one pill every other day then every 2 days as the dr said) and have not taked it at all for a 5 weeks. I still am struggling with depression, but not as much. I dont understand how I got on this pill for anxiety and it gave me depression after being on it for as long as I was. I only have thoughts of not wanting to live about 2 times a week instead of everyday. I am wondering if its going to get better. I dont want to get onto another drug cause I feel paxil screwed me up. My husband says I need a drug cause its all chemical in my brain because we have done things that I thought would make me happy and I still have depresssion symptoms. Is it going to get better..its gotten better since Ive been off the paxil, but not completly back to my old self and that what I want. I have never had any problems with depression and could not understand the people who did..now I do.
I was given a months worth of Paxil CR as a trial. I started feeling nasty the first day --
mentally as well as physically. I got sluggish, disconnected,more absent minded than ever, and my stomach ached. I took it for the month and then just stopped. I couldnt tell if I felt any worse after I just stopped, and now--its been about two months and my gallbladder is acting up. I believe it to be related to the paxil experience--although I am considered mentally unstable!
I think that paxil is bad and Doctor's lie about this drug,my wife has been taking this drug for more than 10 year,she has try to leave but is not possible,she was taken 20mmg,she manage to bring it down to 10mmg but you have to start 20mmg,one day then next day 10mmg and so on and on untill you start taken just 10mmg for a week,also Natural herb's are good like teas for your nerves,to relax them continue taken paxil,but 10mmg Natural herb's they do help her behavir is different,the idea is low the dosage of paxil,and mabe some day she'll be free of paxil but with time.
It's been 10 years-I still can't remember who I was before I took paxil. I have never been the same- nomatter how hard I try, I can't remember who I was. I was not crazy or violent, I was happy, caring, calm, loving, able to take care of myself, able to work, I think. But I just cant remember any of that anymore. I was a totally different person before paxil. And now, even though I have been off it for seven years or so, I am still not the same person. Nomatter how much I pray, or how hard I cry, I still can't remember. I feel like I just don't know anything anymore, so I am unsure of what I am supposed to know.
I just started taking Paroxetine (Paxil) yesterday, start at 10mg, and I was instructed to up it to 20mg in 2 weeks. Since yesterday when I took my first pill, I have been feeling extremely nauseous, I vomited a few times, I have diarrhea, a headache, I'm too hot and too cold all at once, I feel a bit dizzy or disoriented, I've only been able to sleep for 3 hours of the past 48, and I woke up to my jaw chattering and my muscles feel like they're shaking on the inside. I'm on Paroxetine for various anxiety disorders, but this drug has tripled my feelings of anxiety, which were already unbearable before!! My doctor told me this drug was CALMING and would not cause shakes...but not only do I have the shakes and feel very weak, but my stomach is tied in knots, my mind is racing, I have insomnia, and I can feel the muscles in my entire body stressing out. I feel like I'm having a bad ecstasy overdose...this is ridiculous.
Are these reactions and this severity of them normal after only taking 10mg for 2 days? If so, how much longer will this last?? This is unbearable. Also, I was not cautioned about the extreme weight gain that some of you have written about. Is the weight gain due to the actual drug, or just the fact that you eat more because it makes you feel hungry?
Thank you to anyone who can help me...
If you need help please visit www.hopeline.com or call 1-800-442-HOPE.
Demystifying Depression is a great article which helped me understand some of the ways depression was affecting me.
Start a Blog
Many people who are depressed simply lack the ability to channel their energies or express themselves. Sometimes just by writing things down it is easy to feel better about things that happen to you.
If you think expressing yourself or writing your thoughts down might help you then you may want to start a blog. Blogger is 100% free and easy to use.
Here is my friend Heather's Health Bee, which is about recovering from depression and other related illnesses.