Worried about starting something new to treat the worry!! I have recently been diagonosed with depression and anxiety and was given Citalopram 20mg to treat these. I have to admit, I am hesitant to take anything of this sort, but I am @ my wits end looking for some type of resolution.
Citalopram - how long does it take to notice a difference and are there any long term side effects?
Question posted by Anonymous! on 2 Feb 2012
Last updated on 4 April 2020
What do you mean Tamoxifen-induced depression? It's not one of the listed side effects?
I have been on Citalopram for 18 months for Tamoxifen-induced depression. I was really worried about how it would make me feel and scared there might be a sudden change of feeling or mood that might freak me out or make me feel dizzy and drowsy, but it wasn't like that. It was a gradual change and one that was in line with healthy changes I made to my lifestyle too, such as cutting out alcohol and eating healthier.
Initially I noticed I was yawning more often, that was the main side-effect really. I would also feel a bit more thirsty and my libido also reduced a little, but nothing major. I'm also a little less sensitive about things too which has helped a lot.
In all honesty I just began to feel a sense of well-being and more levelled out. It was the best thing I could have done and worked well in line with CBT too.
I am/was 3 weeks in. I haven’t slept in 41 hours, I’m shaking like a leaf on a tree and everytime I close my eyes to try and rest, a bolt of electricity runs ear to ear through my brain.
I have taken it for about 15 years and 20 mg. I find when I get off of it..it takes about 3 days before my fuse starts to shorten... and it takes EXACTLY 3 days when I start to feel awesome again... it is like clock work.
I've been taking 40 mg per day of Citalopram for around 20 years straight now. I originally started it due to "passive suicidal thoughts". Those are thoughts where I would perhaps see a TV program about someone who was dying of an illness, and the thought would spontaneously spring into my mind, "Oh, I wish that I was sick like that and about to die."
The med has worked very well since I no longer have those thoughts at all. It does take a few weeks to have its full positive effect. The only "side-effect" that I've noticed is that it makes all my emotions less intense. I'm less likely to cry, in fact very unlikely under any circumstances. Although, please note, I'm a guy and I started out quite removed from my emotions in the first place, like most men naturally are compared to women.
When coming off Citalopram, after about 5-7 days, I will notice myself becoming much more emotional. All my emotions will flare up, come nearer to the surface of my personality. After around 2 weeks off, my passive suicidal thoughts return. Consequently, I stay on it all the time.
I wish anyone trying it the best - it's been a great help to me.
The advice I can offer with my most recent experience is stick with a dose for the recommended 4-8weeks. My doctor messed about with my dose and caused more problems rather than just give it time. It does work, I have had many good years on citalopram.
I am on the 20mg pill and really like it. Typically I start taking it in the fall and slowly get off of it in the spring. I encourage you to do counseling for the anxiety portion (depression too!), it is a great time to learn new tools when you don't have to worry about feeling anxious. When you go off the medication you know how to handle things so much better that you may never need to go back on it.
I have had anxiety and depression for several yrs now and was prescribed 40 mg of citalopram. I had horrible side effects for the first couple weeks of starting it. But once you get passed them the anxiety and depression go away and you will feel better and better as the time goes on. I didn't want to go on any kind of drugs either but it got to the point where my family thought I was dying and I wasn't eating I became very skinny my vision was messed up all I wanted to do was lay around and sleep my life away I would constantly cry but no matter how much my family tried to help it wasn't. So I seen a dr and went to a clinic and after the first few wks of being on the meds I felt a lot better I was getting back to my self again. So it is ok to get help from drs for medication.
I've been on citalopram 20mg for 5 days now. I'm nineteen. This is my second time on it, after about three years without. I'm wondering if that is why I haven't had any major negative side effects.
All I've experienced is fidgeting and trouble staying asleep/feeling very awake. As well as I notice myself clenching my jaw now and then. But these have not bothered me that much.
I haven't felt the "gets worse before it gets better" effect yet - not sure if I will. It may be placebo but I'm feeling a lot more positive as if I've made steps towards that silver lining. Getting to the doctor was definitely a hard first step but I'm so glad I made it.
This medication does work I was diagnosed with the same but now I am trying to come off of it and its absolutely horrible. The withdrawals are aweful I would talk to you healthcare professional about taking something else
I am on week three and still experiencing crying spells, nausea etc., on 10 mg.
I'm wondering if taking the drug at night would help this.
Hi, just to endorse what both Pledge and Delilah said, give it time to work and if you experience anything adverse contact your doctor. Every medication works in different ways for different folks hence why we sometimes have to try many to find the right one. Like Delilah I am now back on 60mg (starting at 20mg/40mg etc) after an unsuccessful trial with Setraline/Zoloft. In response to Crum 60mg is the highest dosage providing patients on this dosage get regular ECG which is the proviso I am returning to it. It will not help any anxiety issues though. Good luck let us know how it works for you. I had no side effects whatsoever.
60mg... I thought I read somewhere that 40mg should be the maximum dosage. For what it's worth: I was on 60mg of Paxil and began having auditory hallucinations, i.e. a machine-like noise. Fortunately the noise went away when I gave it my mindful attention. But more fortunately, of course, I went back down to 40mg.
Hi, Pledge has already told you all you need to know, but i just wanted to add my history with citalopram/celexa... I have been taking it for about 3 years(?) and find it really good. I was first started on 20mg, like you. I was told to expect to wait about 4 weeks until i noticed a difference. It is very common with this anti-depressant that you can feel worse before you feel better, so be prepared for this. If you are feeling very depressed please talk to your doctor, even if it is before the 4 week mark. I was still feeling very upset and tearful by 3 weeks so my doctor took the decision to increase my dose to 40mg, and within a week i felt so much better! I am now on 60mg (along side other mood stabilisers) and i haven't ever had any side effects, except maybe some weight gain? Although this could also be due to other med's? I hope you get some relief from it, don't be scared of it. If it isn't for you then no harm done, and you might need to try an alternative.
Hello Anonymous. Citalopram the non generic is Celexa came on the market in the United States back in 1989. To ease your fears, its generally a drug that has its share of side effects but as prescribed (my own point of view), it has a fairly high rate for helping depression. Anxiety, my opinion it doesn't really work that well, but again depending on the level of your feeling anxious, it can and it does fairly well. In clinical studies, some of the more common and normal side effects were Diarrhea, close to 8%. Insomnia close to 15%, Drowsiness almost 18%. I can add to the list but please remember that the numbers as I just gave are low. And it doesn't mean that you will for example have Insomnia. Most all the side effects of psychiatric drugs are very similiar from one to another. Weight gain, or loss, feeling fatiqued, stomach aches, etc are usually always found in a sat SNRI or SSRI.
You'll feel the drug, Citalopram working theraputically between week 4 or 5. It varies from one person to another. Good health and wishes, I hope you find it helps and don't worry, please, its a medication that does good work,pledge
- Citalopram uses and safety info
- Citalopram information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side effects of Citalopram (detailed)
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