Doctor put me on citalopram, need advice please

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I've had severe anxiety for many years now, I went to the doctor almost three weeks ago and as well as c.b.t he put me on citalopram 10mg, I've taken propranolol fast release three times a day for over a year and a half, still on those but also citalopram. Since taking the citalopram I have had insomnia and loss of appetite/nausea although last night I got 10 hours sleep which I feel better for after two weeks of taking them I went out with my little sister and had 4 panic attacks since that day I have been very anxious and feel constantly like I'm catching my breath. My anxiety wasn't this bad before I started. I'm having new and strange symptoms of anxiety that I didn't get before. I'm speaking to the doctor later on today to see what they advise but I would like to know if anyone who has taken citalopram has had similar side effects, how long before they passed and if upping my dose from 10mg to 20mg will help or will it further my anxiety even more? The leaflet says for anxiety 10mg for a week then upped to 20mg after that I've been on 10mg for three weeks now. Although it's made my anxiety worse I do feel better in my mood less down although when I have an anxiety attack that obviously effects my mood, I just want to feel better I'm doing the cbt and hoping these meds help me while I overcome this. The doctor also said my anxiety was caused my a chemical imbalance in my brain which is why I'm on the citalopram to change that so I can work to overcome it. Please let me know if anyone has had a similar experience and what happened thanks

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10 Replies

  • Posted

    this is how it can be with meds unfortunatly, they can work well - or they can not work at all, or they can be at any stage in between. theres no hard and fast rules im afraid. could be that med isnt suited to you.  for me when i was on citalopram years ago they sent me round the bend, they just react differently with people
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  • Posted

    also - its quite dangerous for a gp to say your problems are caused by an imbalance - this can often be the case, but only really should be a qualified psychaitrist who makes that diagnosis, there is no way for your gp to know that. its dangerous because some meds will work well and as expected based soley on the causes of issues, they can also cause undesirable problems if they diagnosis is wrong
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    • Posted

      I understand going to see how I am on these for a few more weeks give them a chance and then go from there. My gp that I see is brilliant with mental illness he used to be a psychologist and he spent almost an hour talking it all through with me trying to figure out where my anxiety stems from. He also asks that I see him fortnightly so I get imput from cbt but also from him so get more than one angle on how to overcome it. Best gp I've seen about my anxiety usually they just ramble some stuff and shove you on medication but he was very understanding he even gave me a hug and said that he had two daughters and anxiety is horrible. Made him tear up a little as I left bless
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  • Posted

    Hi there,

    Everyone rreacts differently to different meds. You should, I think, give the higher dose of citalopram a fortnight's trial, then re-evaluate how you feel.

    The panic attacks could be related to citalopram, or they may be an entity on their own. It's good that you're having CBT.

    I've taken various anti-depressants over the years and some worked better than others. I don't think you need to worry too much about this at the moment, because if you and your doctor figure out that citalopram is unhelpful, there are many others that can be prescribed, which work in different ways.

    i feel great sympathy for you - please post on the site again so we know how you're doing. love Tess.

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    • Posted

      I will do, thanks for replying. Going to see how I go on the 20mg for a few weeks because I do feel some benefits and hoping the anxiety symptoms will pass or at least get less and less. If not I'll speak to a doctor about switching. Will keep you posted how it's going.
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  • Posted

    I started Citalopram 3 weeks ago too and have noticed that my mood is better. I also have had an increase in anxiety and I take Ativan for that right now.

    I have heard it is common with Citalopram to have that increase in anxiety and that later it goes away. That is my hope that in a few weeks or months I can ween off the ativan. I start counseling on June 20th.

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    • Posted

      I've heard that too, I just wasn't sure about upping the dose so soon but feel it would perhaps benefit me more and also taking it at night instead of the morning so the side effects are during the night while I sleep instead. Going to give it a trial for a few weeks see how I go and if I'm still the same on 20mg after say a month then it's obviously not the one for me. Going to stick with it and hopefully feel the benefits soon. Good luck with yours
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    • Posted

      I have heart medication that I have to take at night so I take Citalopram around 10:30 am . I am not sure it would make a difference when take but I honestly don't know.

      Good luck with yours and let me know if the 20 MG improves things.

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    • Posted

      Seen the doctor today and she upped my dose to 20mg and going to review me in a month because she said these tablets take up to 6 weeks before you feel the full benefits. I also asked about taking it at night instead and she said they lift your mood after you take them so taking in the morning is more beneficial to you and your still going to get the side effects until they decide to subside so I should take it in the day but if I'm still feeling like I am in a month then they will look at changing the meds although I was anxious this morning before going to the doctors I had no anxiety actually going to the doctors and felt very happy to be out for the first time in a long time so they must be doing something going to take my first 20mg tomorrow and see how I get on
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