User Reviews for Citalopram to treat Panic Disorder
Brand names: Celexa
Citalopram has an average rating of 8.3 out of 10 from a total of 95 reviews for the off-label treatment of Panic Disorder. 80% of reviewers reported a positive experience, while 9% reported a negative experience.
Reviews for Citalopram
"I am a 22 year old female, and have been suffering from panic disorder and anticipatory anxiety for about 4 years. But due to a recent event that occurred about a month ago, my panic disorder and anxiety had become CRIPPLING. I could not get through my days without either worrying about a panic attack to the point where I cause one, or not even thinking about the panic attack and having it happen at any random time.It was getting to the point where I was living my days centered around trying to keep myself "level," but also petrified that I was going to have another attack. I had constant racing thoughts. My doctor recommended an SSRI for me-Celexa (Citalopram). He prescribed 20mg pills. I would take 10mg at night for the first four days, and then after that I would take 20mg at night from then on. I MADE THE MISTAKE OF RESEARCHING ALL OF THE POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS!!!! I completely understand researching a drug before you take it- but it is important to remember that a lot of people who have positive experiences most often do not write about it. It is the people who have negative experiences who will. I was PETRIFIED to take the drug b/c of the horror stories, until one day I realized that the side effects of the pill were worth it if it meant that I could have peaceful days. I took the first 10mg at night and had (and continue to have) a FANTASTIC sleep. I did not experience ANY nausea, no tightness of chest, no insomnia, no panic, no anxiety, NOTHING but a slight headache. It felt as though the pill gave me relief almost immediately. I have been on the pills for a little over two weeks. They have been a lifesaver for me!! I feel at peace. The racing, flooding thoughts have stopped. The panic attacks have been nonexistent. (My doctor gave me a prescription for Xanax just in case I have one) I feel like myself and I am happy again. I highly recommend trying them if you are suffering from anxiety, panic disorder, or depression."
"Hi people! I am here to be your hope. I am 27 years old. I've had severe anxiety and panic attacks on and off for 15 years. This time it got the worst it ever has. CONSTANTLY worrying about every single irrational thing, heart always racing, dizzy, could never catch my breath, panic attacks daily, wouldn't leave the house. Literally 5 days ago I was so hopeless and my anxiety had made me extremely depressed. I've only been on citalopram 10 mg for 5 days and today I feel happier and calmer. I feel like life isn't as scary and that it's definitely going to be worth living, and that it will be awesome! My doctor said it can take 2 weeks until I feel the effects but on day 5 I already feel a big difference. I was terrified to start them-and I did feel very tired, spacey and yawned a lot the first few days. But I just rested and waited. You can do it, and you will feel better!!!!!! I'm praying for you all- I know how horrendous anxiety is. I hope this drug works for you. :)"
Frequently asked questions
- SSRI’s vs SNRI’s - What's the difference between them?
- What is the difference between Celexa and Lexapro?
- What are some common side effects of antidepressants?
"I am currently in limbo about starting citalopram for panic disorder. I was prescribed propranolol (40mg) to take one tablet up to three times if need be. I only started taking one, and had to stop because they where making me ill. Couldn't sleep head aches which made me lie down all the time. So I stopped taking them. But instead of just having anxiety I felt totally worthless, emotional and feeling like I didn't want to be here anymore. Lucky for me I had my wife and family by my side every step of the way. So I went back to my GP in which he prescribed me citalopram (10mg) to be taking every morning. But I only opened the box and read the leaflet. So for four days now I've been bricking it to take them because I've got it in my head I'll will get all the side effects. But after reading about ten comments on here I am going to start them tomorrow. I will post again in a few weeks and hopefully got some positive feedback. Stay safe."
"It’s daunting when your anxious about taking meds isn’t it... a million thoughts of thinking “what if”. You know I’m right because that was me for many years, scared to take that one tablet a day in fear of what might happen! But I did and I stuck with it and I’ve had the BEST 6 years of my life! So please please try it, if your scared make sure you have company with you as I found this helped me, try meditation- do everything you can to help relax whilst starting your meds. You will be ok, it’s just side effects and they will not last ❤️ Light and love! YOU CAN DO THIS!"
Are you taking this medicine?
"YOU WILL GET BETTER. Before Christmas I had a couple of panic attacks which were horrible and scared me. Went to docs was put on sertraline which was horrible awful drug. Made me feel like I was cracking up and was so anxious about everything and not sleeping at all. Worst feeling I’ve had in my life and I’m a 40 year old male. So after a month changed it to citalopram . Felt loads better took 20mg for a few months. Managed to go on holiday , got back went up to 30mg citalopram - game changer. Now feel great , citalopram has helped me so much get out a scary place. Like I say on the up now , been on holiday , new career. Enjoying life again Thank you"
Celexa (citalopram) "I am 34 years old and have had panic attacks since the age of 7. I have tried everything and nothing was working until I got on Celexa. This drug has totally changed my life. I am a happier person and no longer worry about panic attacks. I wish that I had know about it sooner. I highly recommend this to anyone who has panic attacks. I have not had one panic attack since being on this medication. I have not had any side effects from this drug, and cannot tell that I am even on it besides the fact that everyday I wake up with a smile instead of dreading the day."
"I must say, I went to this very site and read such great reviews about this medication that I was sincerely relieved when my doctor told me that he recommended I try this medication out. I cannot stress enough how HAPPY I have become over the past few weeks. Panic attack free, full night sleep, good and positive energy (most of the time). Celexa (citalopram) really has done a complete 180 for me. My panic attacks typically consisted of shakes/tremors, tightness in my chest/throat, sweating, fast heartbeat, and a sleepless night. Since day 1 of starting this medication, I've been panic attack free. Only side effects were occasional dry mouth and yawning for me . Definitely recommend this medication!"
"It takes about 6 months before you will feel the full effects and for your body to acclimate to this drug...not the 1 week to 1 month they say. I was terrified to start this so I began at 5 mg eventually titrating up to 30 mg before it really worked for me. It made me way worse before it started helping. I'm so glad I stuck with it, it does help tremendously. I had severe panic attacks and fear daily and could not function...out of nowhere when I turned 40. I'm so thankful for this medication, I tried everything natural first but it did not help. Please do not fear it, it's there to help you. Just know that it takes a long time to really work and a lot of endurance before it does. U are not alone."
"25 years of Panic, Agoraphobia, Anxiety, PTSD, Depression, OCD. Have tried Zoloft, Luvox, Lexapro and Anafranil. Citalopram has unsurpassed efficacy for the aforementioned conditions. Quite simply the best SSRI. Panic literally disappeared, anxiety decimated, depression lifted. Also getting relief from OCD symptoms. Zero side effects. Titrated off Wellbutrin which exacerbated my anxiety. Highly Recommend, outstanding medication."
"I have been on Citalopram 20 mg for close to 2 months now. I did not experience any side effects other than being a bit tired for the first 3 days on 10 mg and a few minor headaches. Normally, I got every possible side effect possible when I tried a new medicine. I'm not sure why this one was different. Before I started this medication, I was experiencing severe panic episodes daily and sometimes even panic attacks. It was to the point where I was avoiding almost everything just to reduce my chances of being anxious/panicked. I started it and I do NOT regret it. It took me about 1 month to feel ANY effect at all (So don't lose hope). But now, at 2 months, it just keeps getting better every day. I can say that I'm almost anxiety FREE! TRY THIS MEDICINE."
"First of all, this medicine citalopram has been a life changer for me, my dose is 20mg for panic and anxiety disorder. The first week or so was AWFUL! I had sweats, tremors, diarrhea, increased anxiety and panic attacks (the irony). After about day 6 I started noticing a slight change in my mood, and my panic attacks was vanishing. I am now on day 10 and I feel AMAZING!! I’ve not had a panic attack since day 6, and I am sleeping much better than I did before! Please please please DO NOT look up all the side effects of this medicine. I did, and it made me suffer an extra three months than I should have , as I was too scared to start. I promise you will have a changed life on this medicine. All 3 of my siblings take this and we all have had great success with it. Give it a try!"
"I’ve been taking citalopram for just over a month to hwlp my panic disorder. I have only just started taking 20 mg, and so far I have noticed a decrease in anxiety (just from taking 10 mg) but the main reason I wanted to write this review is to let you know I had pretty much no side effects. I know people are put off from medication in fear of side effects but I didn’t have any. I think I may have had 1 or 2 depersonalized days but that’s it. That being said, I know everyone reacts differently, but for people not taking it because of side effects, they may not be bad, you’ll never know until you try. You just have to bite the bullet and try it. It’s worth it."
"Had extremely intense acute anxiety and panic disorder. For about 4 months. Tried everything in the book except meds - saw about 30% improvement. Then started on meds. No effect until 12th day (in fact, anxiety was stronger) where I felt a small bit of calmness. Side effects were very intense but kept going. Gradually, I kept getting better. There were periods of plateau and sometimes even feelings that it has stopped working. But today, I am on my 49th day (full 7 weeks) and I can say that it is 99.99999% gone. I feel like my old self. No panic attacks, no anxiety (thoughts or bodily sensations) - nothing. I started off 10mg on the first week and then moved onto 20mg. I am still on 20mg."
"I started this because I was suffering from bad social anxiety with panic attacks. Whenever I was in a social situation I would have a panic attack. I am a 32 year old mom and I'm always being put in social situations and I knew I needed help. Going on this med was a huge challenge. For me it was an emotional roller coaster of increased anxiety, panic attacks for 2 months. I just completed week 9 and I know its working now because I was recently out and a mom came up to me and started talking with me. Normally I would have had a panic attack with all the symptoms but guess what!? I didn't!!!! I talked to her for over an hour! I went to a crowded beach and had no anxiety. I walked around totally comfortable! It's working! To anyone suffering from social anxiety... you CAN do this! It will be hard the first 2 months but persevere to have this medicine cut the cord in your brain of constant panic!"
"If I had a higher rating I would give it to this medicine!!!!! I am now on month 4 and I can say with gladness that I have not only stopped having panic attacks and anxiety attacks, but it’s also regulated my moods!! I LOVE life now. It’s beyond words what this stuff did for me!! I’ve also missed a few doses, and it’s not hurt me any so if you miss a dose or are late for a dose don’t panic it’s not gonna hurt you too bad. I can tell when I miss a dose though because my moods get swinging again. Overall I would give this a 100 out of 10!"
"I’m 46 and I’ve taken citalopram before (many years ago) for anxiety/depression. This time I struggled with side effects for several weeks (mainly tiredness). But after persevering for 3 months I’m in a much better place. I feel positive - like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I can handle things that used to drag me down. I still get negative thoughts, but not as regularly, and when I do, I take it in my stride. I’m more relaxed generally and haven’t had any panic attacks... it’s a revelation. If you are considering taking this drug then all I can say is try to persevere for a few weeks. You have to give it time to bed in. I’ve wanted to throw the towel in a few times but stuck with it and life is so much better now. Now that I have my mojo back I am looking forward to things... I actually want to see people and feel motivated to exercise again (which I always find a great mood booster). If you are reading this... I wish you peace of mind. Take care x"
"I am 18, and have had panic disorder for as long as I can remember. They were horrible, and most days I struggled to leave the house without medication. I have tried many different medications, each with it's own ups and downs, when my doctor gave me citalopram. Within a week, my panic attacks almost vanished. I have not had any side effects. "
Celexa (citalopram) "I suffered my first panic attack in 1992. I took imipramine for years which got rid of the attacks but gave some side effect and gained weight with Paxil. Doctors then put me on Celexa. It has been wonderful. The only way I can tell I'm on the drug is the panic attacks disappeared. I would recommend it highly."
"I have been on multiple medications all of them had weird side effects for me and weren’t effective enough for continued use. I had succumbed to a life of regular panic attacks for the last 5 years. Someone recommended Celexa and I swear this is the first time I have relief. Aside from a bit of brain fog and mild stomach upset the first 2 weeks I haven’t had any major side effects. I haven’t wondered if I have some catastrophic illness or had a panic attack in over a month. Things that used to trigger me feel like a hazy afterthought. I am able to tackle other issues in my life because I am not at constant war with my own mind. I didn’t think I’d ever feel like myself again but this medication has truly given my life back. I don’t normally write reviews.. however, this deserves one. Grateful .. can’t say enough good things 3 months in- first 1.5 on 10 mg and now on 20mg (thats my sweet spot!) good luck everyone, I hope you guys get to experience this too!"
"2020 and my anxiety and panic is back with a vengeance! Think this was down to being told that I had high blood pressure at a fitness assessment. My anxiety has always been triggered by ill health ANYTHING I can control about my body or health. So anyway back to the docs I go he’s put me back on Citalopram 20mg, I’ve been taking one every morning and I’m on day 7 My anxiety and panic seems high, I’m not sleeping great and when I do I wake up covered in sweat! My hands and feet feel constantly clammy. I have had very loose bowel movements, loss of appetite, terrible dry mouth. And have an awful feeling in my chest like fuzzy and tingling followed by heart flutters. After reading all the reviews on here I am going to solider on with the meds and give them another few weeks to work as I know that the last time I took them they worked wonders for me. Fingers crossed this all comes right."
Celexa (citalopram) "One day six years ago, I became consumed with anxiety. Panic attacks, head pressure, foggy head, pressure in my ear, nausea, dizziness, tingling appendages appeared literally from out of the blue became my life at 26 years old. I went to numerous Doctors who tested me for EVERYTHING. I managed with Xanax, which seemed to be the only thing that made me feel normal again for brief periods of time. I just wasn't myself and I longed for my old life when I felt confidant and in control. I didn't want to believe that it could all be in my mind and was convinced that I had some unknown disorder. Finally, I went to a Psychiatrist who diagnosed me with Panic Disorder and GAD. I was prescribed Celexa 20. "
"I had been taking beta blockers for three years trying to push through panic attacks, OCD and anxiety. The beta blockers stopped helping and my anxiety reached a new horrible level. My doctor prescribed citalopram and I was petrified, I was convinced I would have all the side affects. Weeks of not having the courage to take the tablets my doctor prescribed a short course of diazepam to take along side the tablets. I am on 10mg, for the first week I split the tablets in half to 5mg. Once I had started to take the correct dose I had no side effects apart from not being able to sleep for the first three weeks. I have only had a positive experience with this drug, some times I have anxious days but mostly are good. It’s been three months now and I am so happy that I’ve stuck to the drug and I wish I had started them sooner."
"THIS MEDICATION HAS CHANGED MY LIFE. Honestly, I've suffered with panic disorder for years and I've always had general anxiety too. At the start of the year my panic attacks were happening several times a day and I was very suicidal. My mum and Nan are both on citalopram (celexa) and recommended it to me. Not gonna lie, the first and second week was hard (started on 20mg) as my anxiety was heightened and my panic attacks were worse and I felt shattered all the time. But I'm now on week 4 and *touch wood* I haven't had a panic attack in almost 2 weeks, I no longer feel anxious and if I do start to feel anxious I can quickly get myself out of it. Highly recommend for anyone that is a sufferer. This medication is my freedom."
Celexa (citalopram) "I have been using Celexa for a little over a year now. I was really going through some very stressful situations. Over the years I have been on other medications and was taken off after about a year. I had got to the point that I was having chest pains and could not stand to be around people. I did not want to leave the house. This medication has worked wonders for me. I enjoy being around people now and I no longer have chest pains and I no longer shake like I am freezing. I would recommend Celexa to anyone that needs it."
Reviews may be edited to correct grammar/spelling or to remove inappropriate language and content. Reviews that appear to be created by parties with a vested interest are not published. This information is not intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews may be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, knowledge, and judgement of healthcare professionals.
Learn more about Panic Disorder
- Antidepressants: Options, Advantages, and Precautions
- Anxiety Medications and Alcohol Interactions
- Benzodiazepines: Overview and Use
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"*update* I reviewed earlier on 2019-06-14 under the same name I am now on my fourth week of citalopram. Every side effect has essentially faded and has passed. I still get tremors from time to time, but it’s well worth it. I’ve not had a SINGLE panic attack after week one. I am now able to drive by myself because the world isn’t so scary anymore! The Lord and this medicine has helped me TREMENDOUSLY the past month! Please do yourself the favor and take this medicine if you’ve been prescribed it. I am on 20mg and it’s worked wonders for me. Don’t be scared of the side effects either! The worse ones are >.1% of those who took it! Praying for everyone who is suffering from panic attacks and anxiety."