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Has anyone been on Citalopram for depression?

(18 Posts)
deuxmoulins Sun 21-May-17 21:42:20

I would really appreciate hearing anyone's experience of being on citalopram for depression.

I've tried Fluoxetine and Sertraline to varying degrees of success over the past few years. I've had a very difficult year, and, although my mood is better, it's never been stable. I find it very easy to slip back into my former depressive patterns after even a minor setback. There is a load of other shit to come (DPs are in the process of divorcing, I'm a student so still live at home with younger siblings) so I want to feel stable in myself, and, crucially, able to cope.

The nurse at uni suggested thinking about citalopram. My only worry is that I have uni exams in a month which I really need to pass, and I don't want to be really ill with side effects. I also have trouble sleeping which is obviously important around exams. I would love to hear people's experiences with it so I can talk to my GP about it (appt on Tuesday). Thanks in advance.

bakingcupcakes Sun 21-May-17 21:54:50

I found citalopram side affects awful. I didn't take it for long. I was ok with fluoxetine - mentally it worked well for me but I didn't like the weight gain.

I don't think you can really know without trying as they affect everyone differently but I can see why you wouldn't want to be switching at exam time.

Cluesue Sun 21-May-17 21:57:56

I gained a lot of weight and had sweats awful but stabled me mentally.

han01uk Sun 21-May-17 21:59:49

Been on it for a while,varying between 10-50mg and aside from jaw clenching on the high dose (which I think has a link) I haven't really noticed any side effects at all!!

TheGrumpySquirrel Sun 21-May-17 21:59:54

Terrible for the first week then brilliant. Bit of weight gain but worth it.

TheGrumpySquirrel Sun 21-May-17 22:00:19

Was on 20mg

han01uk Sun 21-May-17 22:00:37

40mg that was supposed to say. And I have gained weight...but thought that was too much cake rather than the tablets?!!

Reow Sun 21-May-17 22:02:16

I absolutely hated citalopram. It made me more anxious and I put on a stone.

Venlafaxine however was brilliant for me once I got onto 100mg

smu06set Sun 21-May-17 22:02:42

Citalopram worked for me, though I had terrible nausea for the first month so I wouldnt start on them before your exams! I started on 10mg, then 20mg, got up to 40mg at one point but am now off them.

LorLorr2 Sun 21-May-17 22:03:00

It's really hard to either recommend or discourage these things as everyone has a different experience with different medication!
Which one out of the two you've tried before gave the best result? Would you consider going back onto that as you know what it'll be like?
If you think potential side effects would be worse than how you feel now, you may just want to power through the next month with all your focus on revising for the exam and then see what your stance is afterwards with that out of the way. Or, if getting through that period with no medicinal help feels unbearable then it's worth a shot.
Ultimately the chat with your doctor should clear things for you! smile

IfYouGoDownToTheWoodsToday Sun 21-May-17 22:04:31

My dd was on it whilst a student. it helped her enormously. She had side effects for about a week.

You could always give it a go for a week and see if it helps. Good luck with it all!

paddypants13 Sun 21-May-17 22:09:53

I take it, I've been on it for 3 years now. The first couple of weeks were awful but after that things improved dramatically.

I didn't put on any weight with it.

ASqueakingInTheShrubbery Sun 21-May-17 22:37:20

The only side effect I had with it was night sweats. Fluoxetine made me feel absolutely rough, like early pregnancy.

mortificado Sun 21-May-17 22:39:44

I've taken it. Side effects were awful for 2weeks or just over. But after that I felt bloody fabulous!
All much energy, patience and time went by 'normally' (if that makes any sense!)
I slowly stopped taking it a few months back, but have come to realise it may be a bit soon.
I sat with the packet in the kitchen for over a few weeks months because I was terrified of the side effects. And wish I had taken it sooner.
Wishing you luck---- brewcake

OhBlissOhJoy Sun 21-May-17 23:16:29

I've been on it for the past 4 years. Side effects were awful for the first 3 weeks, perhaps longer. I just yawned all the time bizarrely, nausea, feeling spaced out and not able to sleep (although that has always been a problem). Now, I never want to come off it, my moods are completely stable and I feel like I imagine "normal" must feel. However, my sex drive has completely disappeared.

IBelieveInPink Sun 21-May-17 23:43:17

I've just started taking it. Had quite a few side effects, but I've been taking it in the evening so most of them are over the worst by the morning.

I have also noticed 'withdrawal' symptoms if I forget to take one... those weren't pleasant!

Rockhopper81 Mon 22-May-17 11:12:27

I've been taking it for about 15 months, an increased dose since Christmas (was 20mg, now 40mg daily).

I'm not quite sure if it's having any effect to be truthful - my anxiety and depression feels a little more under control, but I certainly don't feel like a different person and I'm not sure how much of the improvement is down to time and behavioural changes.

That being said, other than headaches for the first couple of weeks (I get terrible headaches anyway, so this was nothing new for me), I didn't have any side effects. I do, however, notice 'withdrawal' symptoms is I forget to take it - not severe, but bizarre, like lightheadedness and mild nausea.

In your situation, it might be worth a go and see how you get on with side effects in the first week - SSRIs need time to work, so it's difficult to say how much effect they would have in a week (possibly not a lot), but you should know whether side effects are bearable or not.

deuxmoulins Mon 22-May-17 12:47:58

Oh wow, wasn't expecting so many replies! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences.

I would be reluctant to go back on sertraline as it made me feel physically awful, even after about 6 weeks on it. The Prozac is a possibility, but I actually overdosed badly on it last year when it stopped helping - it had worked previously though.

The reason the nurse suggested citalopram is because anecdotally the side effects are less severe and my doses could be titrated, starting very small if I wanted. Even though
there probably wouldn't be an effect on my mood before exams, hopefully the worst of any side effects would be over by then (4 weeks time). I'm also thinking about the long term - it's a long summer holiday! I will chat through with the doctor obviously, but it's really good to hear some anecdotal experiences.

Thank you again for all your help smile

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