Can't Sleep :(

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OK so I'll start from the begining...

I'm originally from Dublin,Ireland and moved to Canada just over a year ago.. Recently I started having panic attacks and started having weird sensations in the back right hand side of my head... so I went to my doctor and she gave me citalopram 10mg as she told me I was suffering from anxiety... I've had a lot of blood work done an all came back fine..

I've been taking it for 3 wks now but I still feel off and jittery and can't sleep at night I'm mentally exhausted... I also have been experiencing tension behind my eyes which is very frustrating,plus my emotions are running high all I want to do is cry.... 

Any body experience these symptoms 

Any help would be great 

Thanks Cheryl 

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9 Replies

  • Posted

    I recommend you stick with the Citalopram for at least two more weeks.  It takes awhile for it to get into your system.  As for the pains in your head, did the doctor say they're tension related?  I've never heard of that symptom.  
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  • Posted

    Hi Cheryl, I'm a night owl too (we should have a night owl thread here, I'm sure there's quite a few of us smile.    Just quickly, yes sounds like classic citalopram early weeks side effects.  There's loads of posts here as I think we all find this place as we all struggle with those early weeks, so do have a read , if nothing else it'll pass an hour or two!   For me, and quite a few of us, our anxiety got worse when starting cit before it then got better.  It can be a bit disconcerting as you expect a steady improvement from the off, but it does seem a common experience that the early weeks can be difficult.  Stick with it, it takes time possibly a couple of months to settle down but you will start to feel so much better very soon.  regards your eyes head pain etc, I found jaw clenching whilst asleep went through the roof, and as well as jaw ache/tension headaches, I also had eye pain (some experience visual disturbances which sound like loss of focus etc) and for me the only way I can describe it is it was worse after waking up (I linked it to the jaw clenching) and it felt as though my eyes must have spent the entire night whilst I was asleep spinning round in my sockets!  They were tired and achy.  This all pretty much stopped for me around the 7 week mark.  As to sleep, I'm just starting to settle into a better routine and am getting a good 7 hours now, as well as dropping off in front of the telly of an evening, which is something I haven't done for years! But yes, you're certainly not alone, the early weeks are difficult, but if you have any concerns do speak to your GP.  It does take time, but is well worth it.  You'll be feeling fab and like the old you very soon xxx
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  • Posted

    Hi Tara,Chris 

    Thanks for your reply smile

    The doctor did tell me that it would that 4-6 weeks for it to work but not much about side affects.... that's why I'm freaked out 

    In regrads to the sensations in my head.. I was told that it's a tension headache but there's not much pain more of a tingling sensation that travels around my head (originally it did start at the back right comes an goes from time to time) 

    I do feel the 10mg is slowly working but I think I'm just impatient to get better an feel myself again and enjoy all the things I used to....x

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  • Posted

    Cheryl just persevere you will be glad you did, try not to let ur anxiety about the citalopram trick u into feeling worse, as thats what happens,i believe what ur getting may be brain zaps some folk get them with anxiety... i was where you were last October and believe me could see no way out, it took me 7 weeks to be back to normal and be able to see a future again, now a year on everything is still back to normal, cit really gave me back my life, but it takes a few weeks for ur body to adjust, so be strong you will be normal again, well done 3 weeks in already xx

    take care and know its part of a journey to be well again.

    ​Anne smile

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  • Posted

    Maybe go back and see your gp as it sounds like they are not doing anything for you. I was like that. No response to them. Still crying constantly and couldn't sleep. I'm on 30mg now and finally getting some sleep. It's been quite a progress though. I started taking them in July so it's 5 months and I'm still off work. Hope this helps x
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  • Posted

    Hi Anne,Loo 

    I really don't no what to think because when I first started getting the sensations in my head I went to a walk in clinic (didnt  have a family gp  at the time) and I was told it was nerve damage... I was given tablets but still didn't feel right so I we t to the hospital  3 times an was told each time I had something diffrent migraine, tension  headache,inflammation. ..

    Eventually I was diagnosed with anxiety....

    I'm very scared because it feels like the sensations will never stop an I no it does take time for the tablets  but I'm n ow starting to think if it's anxiety related...

    I'm 25 in a diffrent  country with  no family here in Canada  appart from the boyfriend 

    So it's very hard for me at the moment  ....

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  • Posted

    I agree with what's been said but homesickness can manifest in many ways and I imagine that's the root cause. Tackle that at the same time - find a local Irish bar, an Irish blog page (or start one) and see if you can touch your home-base in some way. Isolation and an innate sense of exclusion or not belonging is horrible. It's the first thing u mention in your message so hit that first and the citalopram will help u feel brave enough to cope. I have a little tipple before bed to help me go off,  but wine just makes it worse. I wouldn't advocate too much of course - a wee toady glass!  Gilly
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    • Posted

      Hi Gilly Mary

      I do have a group of Irish friends here... but there attitude is to just get on with it (easier said then done as they've never experience this before).

      so I went to the gp today and she tried to up my dosage to 20mg but I am anti tablets and hate taking them plus I don't think I could take anymore side affects... so I'm still taking 10mg

      I have noticed I have the shakes alot plus I'm very itchy an have night sweats when I do mange to  go asleep...slowly I do feel a bit better on the 10mg

      it's very hard for me as my boyfriend doesn't understand what I'm going threw I ask him to meet me after work or to come to the doctor just to make me feel better and he wont... I feel my parents are the only support I have at the moment an there 1000s of miles away... 

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  • Posted

    Oh dear Cheryl - do persevere - you need more than the citalopram and that's some understanding and friendship.  The pills help but don't cure.  Your boyfriend sounds like he doesn't understand at all.  Be assured that others do understand and that your doctor does too.  Happy to chat at any time if it helps you in any way.  On citalopram I've managed to deal with two redundancies, start my own business, manage the death and funeral of my mother, sell three houses, move into another and get married.  I'm settled and happy now and coming off the pills but although I can't assign the success and management of my problems and stresses completely to citalopram, I know they've helped me remain in sound, controlled and sane mind all the way through.  Persevere and once you've conquered your world you can think about managing without them.You WILL be fine - you're a woman!!!  Continue with connecting to your roots despite your boyfriend - you might find another boyfriend more in tune with you!  For me 10 mg didn't make any difference and 20 mg brought me back to life and seemed to give me a bravado I'd never thought was in me. It wasn't the pills as such, but something witheld inside me that was released.  It will happen for you too.  Set yourself some goals and tick them off and develop a vision board with all the things you'd like to see yourself achieving/doing/having/enjoying and loving.  I cut out pics I like and stick them in a book and Pinterest app on your phone is good for follwing and developing a theme.  Good Luck Cheryl - here if you need a friend.   Gilly x  
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