Daughter on Citalopram, advice

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My daughter has suffered anxiety and depression for 3 years since being bullied at school. It took 2 years to get it taken seriously, and eventually she managed to get CBT (which I feel has helped slightly but not as much as we hoped), and 3 months ago was put on 10mg Citalopram. She experienced no side effects at all, and they did seem to improve her mood. She went back to the doctor after 2 months and because she said they were working but not as well as she had hoped the doctor increased the dose to 20mg. She now seems to be back where she was 6 months ago, very depressed, and anxious, picking her skin & hair pulling, not sleeping, vivid dreams & a very sore mouth & tongue. She has an appt. tomorrow & is planning on telling the GP they aren't helping and asking for something different.

I have read that they an make you worse before they make you better, and wondered if this is the case, but its now 4and a half weeks down the line on the new dosage so surely she should begin to feel better by now? any help very much appreciated xx

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  • Posted

    Hi, I was bullied at work (I am a 54 yr old women!) and experienced severe depression anxiety and stress.  I too was put on 20mg of cit.  I did get some very practical counselling from my surgery.  Not the kind that gets you just to talk all about your problems but I was given exercises in breathing and discussion about my situation and understanding.  With regard to CBT if you are the one who is getting bullied quite honestly I did not find this helpful.  I have actually been fired from my job because I would not go back to the office where I was being bullied and do you know what I feel great I now longer have to deal with the spitefulness and drawn out pressure and office politics.  I have come off the cit as this had caused me to gain a 1.5 stone which did not help with the depression but for the first time in 18 months I am looking forward to the future.

    I think what I am trying to say is don't let your daughter blame herself for other peoples bad and damaging behaviour.  You are concerned about her and its great to know you have people who love and understand you so stick with her and discuss if she wants to about the situation.  

    I too developed the habit of scratching my skin till it bleed and experience bad sleep problems in that I sometime would only have about 2hrs a night.  I was prescribed sleeping tablets but limited these as I did not want to become dependent on them so I tried three nights without and 1 night with assistance.

    Your daughter is still very young and has a lot of wonderful things to look forward to.  I was given some reaffirming life statements and re read these now and again to give myself a pat on the back that although I was a victim it is not my fault and it is others who have a problem with life that they feel the need to bring other people down.  Understanding what a bully is certainly made me feel better about myself and my being.  All the best to your daughter and let her know that there are great people out there that understand and will appreciate your daughter and what she has to offer life

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    • Posted

      Thanks Jayne

      The bullying has now stopped as it was while she was at school. But due to this she has no friends & is unable to form friendships. Still feels she isnt good enough. She has started a part time job (which is amazing because a few months ago she wouldnt have been able to), but still says she feels she doesnt fit in. She is desperate for friends sad

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  • Posted


    sorry to hear about your daughter, kids can be so cruel , I really don't understand why somebody would want to physically or verbaly get there kicks out off hurting another person. I have suffered  from stress/depression for the last 10 years I personally think but this is my oppinion if you suffer from stress/depression you will always suffer like I said I'm not a perfessional or a medical person this is only my oppinion ,when I suffered a break down about 10 years ago, my doctor prescribed antidepressant it was at that point I though I'm stronger than this I can get through it and I don't need these tablets I got up showered and dressed I made my self goto my local holland and barret herbal shop I explained to the shop assistan how I was feeling and what the doctor prescribed I told her I don't want to become dependent on prescribed medication, I asked if they had anything that acted in the same way as the prescribed drugs she recommended lemon balm casuals , they where pricey but worth evey pennie , they took about 4/6 weeks to kick in I took these for about 6months I can honestly say they where the best thing ever and they worked for me they may not work for everyone but I didn't want to take prescribed medicine , I again think you have to me mind set and keep telling yourself I'm not letting this beat me, I'm stronger than this, don't get me wrong it's a ongoing thing is stress/depression but only yourself can get you out of how your feeling don't get me wrong we all need that help but it's where and how you help your self when I start to feel life is getting to me again think how lemon balm helped, I've just recently suffered another bout off depression and couldn't pick myself up and ended up on the sick again they prescribed antidepressant , I'll be honest I did take one last night but then stayed away all night wishing I hadn't I feel I'm not in control so I'm going back to the pharmacist to see if its ok to stop taking them as I've only taken one and I'm going to stock up on lemon balm which act almost the same way as prescribed medication for me ,anyway your daughter will be ok it may take some time but she herself will need to find the strength within herself to deal with the bullying hope this helps smile 

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  • Posted

    Hi, Im 23 and was on Citalopram for 2 years, I just recently switched to sertraline. You don't say how old your daughter is? I found when I first started taking cit my depression did get worse before it got better. But i was also drinking very heavily and in a very bad place. Does your daughter drink? I found sucicidal thoughts etc got worse at first too and I think the younger you ar, the more difficult this can be becuase you can't make sense and get a hold of what's going on.So I would definitely watch out for that. But it definitely does get worse before it gets better, i think with all these types on medications. Even when switching over to another med. Not to sound insensitive but 4 and a half weeks isn't really a long time. And I think people are always dissapointed when they start on anti-depressants because the expect to feel better instantly but there is no quick fix, unfortunately. If she can, I would try and ride it out, just for a few more weeks and maybe then think of switching over. Get her to sign up to headspace, they teach meditation which will help relax her and hopefully sleep. Also look muscle relaxation exercises, that can help aid sleep too. I finished a course of CBT a few weeks ago. And at first thought it was a waste of time but Ive know taken the therapies into my life. Mindfulness has helped especially. And I am currently doing something called 100happydays where you write down or take a picture of something that has made you happy that day. Something small, unsignificant even, that you would normally take for granted. See if your daughter might try that.It has really improved my mood, it could maybe help her. When you suffer from depression it's so easy to lose sight of things that make you happy. We just focus on the negative. Her day 1 could be that she's happy to have a loving mother who's always there for her smile... Hope this has helped. Sorry it's long! xxx 
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