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DoctorDre

How Long Before Citalopram Starts To Work?

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I have been on Citalopram (20mg/day) for 10 days now and my depression is no better. In fact it is worse. And I have anxiety now too. Also I feel so lethargic and lazy it is unbelievable.

How long does it take before it starts to work somewhat?

I am very saddened and frustrated by its very slow progress if at all.

Is 20mg too low a starting dose?

Thanks.

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Posted

I have been on Citalopram (20mg/day) for 10 days now and my depression is no better. In fact it is worse. And I have anxiety now too. Also I feel so lethargic and lazy it is unbelievable.

How long does it take before it starts to work somewhat?

I am very saddened and frustrated by its very slow progress if at all.

Is 20mg too low a starting dose?

Thanks.

20 mg is the lowest therapeutic dose and is the usual starting dose for citalopram. it can take up to about 6 weeks to feel full effects. some people will notice some effects within the 1st few weeks but u shouldnt really dismiss any AD until u have been taking it at least 6 - 8 weeks. it is frustrating when u just want to feel better but they do take time to get into the system and really start having an effect.

some ADs do actually increase anxiety or depression in the short term. if it gets too bad it wouldnt be a bad idea to speak to ur doctor. it is quite common tho.

i never experienced tiredness with this AD but they effect everyone differently...i found mirtazapine sedating but i know other people who havent. it should wear off a bit when ur body gets used to it but again if it doesnt speak to ur doctor. u do need to give it a bit of time tho.

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Posted

I have been on Citalopram (20mg/day) for 10 days now and my depression is no better. In fact it is worse. And I have anxiety now too. Also I feel so lethargic and lazy it is unbelievable.

How long does it take before it starts to work somewhat?

I am very saddened and frustrated by its very slow progress if at all.

Is 20mg too low a starting dose?

Thanks.

DocDre --

I've taken Celexa. 20 mg is a standard starting dose. Some folks start to feel the positive effects within days, some within the first few weeks. You may feel your depression dip and experience some increased anxiety in the first couple weeks. Those are standard side effects. So is the lethargy. Build up takes time... It's like a dimmer. Very gradual. Try to be patient (it's hard, I know!). In the meantime, take it easy on yourself. Your brain is just beginning to (re)wire positive connections...

Best to you.

HopefulOne

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Posted

20 mg is the lowest therapeutic dose and is the usual starting dose for citalopram. it can take up to about 6 weeks to feel full effects. some people will notice some effects within the 1st few weeks but u shouldnt really dismiss any AD until u have been taking it at least 6 - 8 weeks. it is frustrating when u just want to feel better but they do take time to get into the system and really start having an effect.

some ADs do actually increase anxiety or depression in the short term. if it gets too bad it wouldnt be a bad idea to speak to ur doctor. it is quite common tho.

i never experienced tiredness with this AD but they effect everyone differently...i found mirtazapine sedating but i know other people who havent. it should wear off a bit when ur body gets used to it but again if it doesnt speak to ur doctor. u do need to give it a bit of time tho.

In 6-8 weeks I will probably be dead!

I took Mirtazapine too. Tried it for a week and it was so sedating I could not even drive a car. So I had to stop it. Also it made me short tempered.

Oh well, I will keep taking Citalopram in the hope that it will start to work... one day.

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Posted (edited)

In 6-8 weeks I will probably be dead!

I took Mirtazapine too. Tried it for a week and it was so sedating I could not even drive a car. So I had to stop it. Also it made me short tempered.

Oh well, I will keep taking Citalopram in the hope that it will start to work... one day.

:hearts: if u feel like that u really should call a crisis line and also get in touch with ur dr asap. they may be able to give u something for the anxiety and also some mood stabilisers work more quickly in my experience. just something to help in the short term until the citalopram kicks in.

also it can take up to 4 - 6 weeks but a lot of people will feel some benefit after a few weeks so if u have been taking it 10 days hopefully u may start to notice an improvement soon. i hope so anyway

Edited by nitenurse

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Posted

give the lex 2 weeks and be carefull about what you think about all the time. most of my depression was all the negative stuff i filled my head up with -wht-

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Posted (edited)

It may work for some people, but for me 20mg only gave me side effects. When I increased to 30mg it started to work on my depression. At 40mg, it really helped with anxiety, though lethargy was a problem. Wellbutrin is a popular addition to Celexa to counteract the sluggishness and sexual side effects. The combo worked well for me last year and I'm starting it up again.

After a couple of weeks at 20mg, if you're not feeling any benefit at all, talk to your doctor about increasing the dose. But be prepared for the anxiety side effect with each increase. It was uncomfortable but limited to 1-2 days for me.

Edited by john_v_r

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Posted

I just talked to a friend who is also experiencing the same effects of anxiety and lethargy. He said it lasts mainly until the afternoon hours. I suggested that perhaps he should try taking it at night. When my doctor prescribed it for me he said it would make me sleepy and to take it at night. So far it has only made me sleepy one time so I take it in the mornings. I hope you begin to feel better.

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Posted

I just talked to a friend who is also experiencing the same effects of anxiety and lethargy. He said it lasts mainly until the afternoon hours. I suggested that perhaps he should try taking it at night. When my doctor prescribed it for me he said it would make me sleepy and to take it at night. So far it has only made me sleepy one time so I take it in the mornings. I hope you begin to feel better.

I started taking mine at night too because it makes me kindof sleepy and nautious. As time goes on (been almost 3 weeks) the side effects seem to lessen. Also the good effects seem to increase marginally.

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Posted

I have been on Citalopram (20mg/day) for 10 days now and my depression is no better. In fact it is worse. And I have anxiety now too. Also I feel so lethargic and lazy it is unbelievable.

How long does it take before it starts to work somewhat?

I am very saddened and frustrated by its very slow progress if at all.

Is 20mg too low a starting dose?

Thanks.

Anti-depressants take sometimes months for the effects to reach full potential. At the moment I would say you're a couple of weeks away from noticing the effect. For me it took months but I was on a very low dose (10mg).

As for the side-effects, I recommend riding them out, as most of them wear off after a couple of weeks, maybe longer. Don't be too quick to give them up for the side effects as you will have a longer experience of coming off them and starting a new medication.

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Posted

Well then, I must be v. different

as my dosage is 5 mg.

been on about one month now

and do feel better

but must say.. it does give some lethargy

when I take it.. ie not much seems to bother me

immediately after taking it

then effect wears off a bit

also at night.. sometimes I wake up early

but many have issues with sleep

Now, I dont want this dose increased

so, how would they do a taper off this

such a small amount, I imagine you would still notice

quitting the meds??? 5 every other day or so

I also take BP meds, so combined

and do notice my BP has dropped..

The days are getting a bit brighter, so feel

better and I am doing a lot of pro-active work

to help self.. likely am older than most of you

as well

Tks in advance

Chantilly

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Posted

Well then, I must be v. different

as my dosage is 5 mg.

been on about one month now

and do feel better

but must say.. it does give some lethargy

when I take it.. ie not much seems to bother me

immediately after taking it

then effect wears off a bit

also at night.. sometimes I wake up early

but many have issues with sleep

Now, I dont want this dose increased

so, how would they do a taper off this

such a small amount, I imagine you would still notice

quitting the meds??? 5 every other day or so

I also take BP meds, so combined

and do notice my BP has dropped..

The days are getting a bit brighter, so feel

better and I am doing a lot of pro-active work

to help self.. likely am older than most of you

as well

Tks in advance

Chantilly

To taper off 5mg? Depends how long you've been on it. I imagine the doctors will advise a couple of alternate days for a week and then come off it altogether.

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Posted

ONLY l month

I would think that as well

not much to do with 5 mg.

Thanks..

best to you

Chantilly

:)

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Posted

This is my first post here. I have been been on citalopram for 6 1/2 weeks now. Started at 20...went to 30 after 3 weeks. I too thought it would never kick in. I had horrible side effects as well. I hung in there and things slowly started to get better after 3 or 4 weeks for me. At 6 weeks, there was no doubt. My depression is gone....Zilch. I have recently started feeling euphoric. It is incredible. HANG IN THERE!!!!

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Posted

This is my first post here. I have been been on citalopram for 6 1/2 weeks now. Started at 20...went to 30 after 3 weeks. I too thought it would never kick in. I had horrible side effects as well. I hung in there and things slowly started to get better after 3 or 4 weeks for me. At 6 weeks, there was no doubt. My depression is gone....Zilch. I have recently started feeling euphoric. It is incredible. HANG IN THERE!!!!

YAY Joebill!!!!!! That's fantastic news! We're always so happy to hear stories like yours. Yes, it really is amazing when that black blanket lifts. Thanks for sharing! :hearts:

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Posted

the medication has already started to work. Anxiety etc are side effects. The depression gets better after about 3 weeks. In week 3 I suddenly became very relaxed and happy and excited about life. After a while that feeling stabilizes and calms down and you may find that you want to up the dosage because you may start to feel like you're not on the ADs anymore.

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Posted

hey, i 've been wondering some similar --ish things.

i've been taking citalopram for at 40 mg for 5 weeks today. I believe i was on 20 mg for 4 weeks. at 20mg, i had some improvement, which didn't last. two weeks ago i had a few days where i was doing very well, but then the benefits seemed to die. i know they say to give it 6 weeks, as if it's the magic number, but this improvement hasn't maintained itself, so i don't know that i believe another week will make a difference. (?)

it is true that i have stopped crying so much and for so long. but, my biggest problem is this horrible fog. i can't think clearly, i feel cut off from my thoughts, i am a writer and i can't write. i feel like my stream of consciousness has died. this is the depression, and not a side affect, b/c it's been like this prior to the meds. after starting the meds, i did have a few gloriously mentally clear days, where i felt like myself, it was 3 weeks into the 40mg. i normally love literature and philosophy, but when i feel like this i don't give D***. i also have some anxiety. i'm a college student and today i was rather freaked out in class, which was absurd, b.c we were just talking about Jane Eyre

so frustrated, i don't know what to do.

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Posted

hey, i 've been wondering some similar --ish things.

i've been taking citalopram for at 40 mg for 5 weeks today. I believe i was on 20 mg for 4 weeks. at 20mg, i had some improvement, which didn't last. two weeks ago i had a few days where i was doing very well, but then the benefits seemed to die. i know they say to give it 6 weeks, as if it's the magic number, but this improvement hasn't maintained itself, so i don't know that i believe another week will make a difference. (?)

it is true that i have stopped crying so much and for so long. but, my biggest problem is this horrible fog. i can't think clearly, i feel cut off from my thoughts, i am a writer and i can't write. i feel like my stream of consciousness has died. this is the depression, and not a side affect, b/c it's been like this prior to the meds. after starting the meds, i did have a few gloriously mentally clear days, where i felt like myself, it was 3 weeks into the 40mg. i normally love literature and philosophy, but when i feel like this i don't give D***. i also have some anxiety. i'm a college student and today i was rather freaked out in class, which was absurd, b.c we were just talking about Jane Eyre

so frustrated, i don't know what to do.

I am on 60mg for 8 weeks today and I only had like 3 days of energy over a week ago.

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Posted (edited)

hey, i 've been wondering some similar --ish things.

i've been taking citalopram for at 40 mg for 5 weeks today. I believe i was on 20 mg for 4 weeks. at 20mg, i had some improvement, which didn't last. two weeks ago i had a few days where i was doing very well, but then the benefits seemed to die. i know they say to give it 6 weeks, as if it's the magic number, but this improvement hasn't maintained itself, so i don't know that i believe another week will make a difference. (?)

it is true that i have stopped crying so much and for so long. but, my biggest problem is this horrible fog. i can't think clearly, i feel cut off from my thoughts, i am a writer and i can't write. i feel like my stream of consciousness has died. this is the depression, and not a side affect, b/c it's been like this prior to the meds. after starting the meds, i did have a few gloriously mentally clear days, where i felt like myself, it was 3 weeks into the 40mg. i normally love literature and philosophy, but when i feel like this i don't give D***. i also have some anxiety. i'm a college student and today i was rather freaked out in class, which was absurd, b.c we were just talking about Jane Eyre

so frustrated, i don't know what to do.

Some anti-depressants begin to work and suddenly stop again for a few days. It can be the nature of the medicine but it does get better. I notice I have a period of feeling in love with the world, then two days later I feel this effect is lost, I have been on the medicine for two months. Over a few days they begin to work again without me having to do anything.

The meds can make people a lot more anxious, and it's best just to not think too hard about them not working as it all contributes to anxiety.

Edited by kirkwuk

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Posted

Some anti-depressants begin to work and suddenly stop again for a few days. It can be the nature of the medicine but it does get better. I notice I have a period of feeling in love with the world, then two days later I feel this effect is lost, I have been on the medicine for two months. Over a few days they begin to work again without me having to do anything.

The meds can make people a lot more anxious, and it's best just to not think too hard about them not working as it all contributes to anxiety.

That is kind of what it's like, I'm like "Yes! I can think more clearly. Life is beautiful. I am not apprehensive anymore." And then it will suddenly it dies. But if the med does truly work at times, does that mean the med is the right one for you? I've had two and a half good days again... :hearts: I hope it's stays this way for awhile.

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That is kind of what it's like, I'm like "Yes! I can think more clearly. Life is beautiful. I am not apprehensive anymore." And then it will suddenly it dies. But if the med does truly work at times, does that mean the med is the right one for you? I've had two and a half good days again... :hearts: I hope it's stays this way for awhile.

The problem is going onto the meds, then coming off them and going onto another one. The process is draining. I've learned it's best just to hang in there, tomorrow might be the same, or different. If you don't look into it too much it's a lot better.

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Posted

I started on 20mg to and had similar side effects, but after a month i started to improve.

Hope you do aswell soon.

x

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Posted

I have been on Citalopram (20mg/day) for 10 days now and my depression is no better. In fact it is worse. And I have anxiety now too. Also I feel so lethargic and lazy it is unbelievable.

How long does it take before it starts to work somewhat?

I am very saddened and frustrated by its very slow progress if at all.

Is 20mg too low a starting dose?

Thanks.

20mg is a just fine starting point. I'm just now heading into my 7th week, and it has taken me this long to feel like my old self again. So hang in there!

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Posted

the anxiety, nausea etc go away after 2-3 weeks.

Hang in there

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Posted (edited)

Every meds act different on everyone. I started taking lexapro for the second time on Feb. 25th and it's still not working all the way, (well at least I think) and I still get kinda sick from it. Again, I'm pregnant so I have absolutely now idea how it's working this time. First time I took lexapro, back in August 2006, it took about a month to kick in with 2 weeks of nausea. It scared me so bad this second time to see that people would start feeling better after just a few weeks cause I was still SO anxious, depressed, thoughts going 100 miles an hour, no sleep, etc. I say hang in there, stick to the meds for at least 3 months, then you can discuss to your doctor about it.

I'm starting week 6 and I steel feel nauseous after I take the pill.

Edited by Izzy85

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