Increase dosage feeling. Worse than before

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I have been on a constant dose of citalopram  for two years+ years now. I have been feeling amazing and happy and was ready to come off the medicine(so I thought). I dropped my pill by half (20mg) which I thought was the proper way to do it. Sadly I was not able to get an apt with my doctor until the end of the month. 

It had been three weeks and I was getting chills, aches, head aches and felt awful. After talking with my doctor over the phone he recommended I go back up to my normal dose and wait to see him until we work on a plan to go down together. 

I increased the dosage back to the normal rate three days ago and I feel horrible. Worse than before. I am so dizzy and have increased anxiety. I couldn't even work today. Has anyone had this with an increase? How long does it last? 

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  • Posted

    I had similar when I first withdrew and found that by reducing by half was too much.  I did eventually come off for a year but had to restart due to family illness.  The second time I came off I reduced by 5mg and stayed on each reduction for 1-2 months before reducing again.  If at any time I felt anxious (I didn't) I could easily go back to the previous dose without side effects as 5mg wasn't a huge jump.  I spent a year doing this and this time had no withdrawal at all.  My doses were 20 / 15 / 10 / 2.5 / 1.25 - I bought a pill cutter and then the last 2 doses I had to crush as they were too small to cut further.  Doing it slowly is much kinder to the body.

    Increasing back to your normal dose is wise, and probably best for you to wait there until things settle again before trying again.  You will get side effects for a while, but don't worry they will settle.  Its your body adjusting to a big drop / increase.  Maybe try the 5mg approach when you're ready as the body doesn't seem to miss that small amount as much, and you can even do it with a smaller dose.  Fiddly, but do-able.

    I reckon it'll be a couple of weeks before you start to feel more comfortable.

    K x

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  • Posted


    I agree with Kate and have intact been on 40mgs for years now so decided to reduce slowly due to constant lethargy and weight gain .

    Monday just gone I used my pill cutter and have been taking 20mg in morning and 15mg in evening instead of a whole 40mg and will do for the next 6-8wks before reducing down again to 30mg.

    I feel fine just a little tired but no side effects although I did make a mistake on first day and dropped straight to 30mg and felt awful just from missing that extra 10mg so it's no wonder you are feeling terrible effects .

    Like Kate said, take it very slowly reducing by 5mgs every 6-8 wks and you will find it alot more manageable .

    Slow and steady wins the race and remember you are not alone 😊

    Big Hugs

    Louise xx

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