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Citalopram whilst BF and good sites/support re living with someone who is depressed?

(13 Posts)
bohemianbint Wed 24-Jun-09 09:51:51

Have just been prescribed citalopram this morning (thank god - finally some help!) I have taken it before and had horrible panic attacks whilst waiting for it to kick in but that's another thread probably.

I just wonder if anyone else has taken it whilst breastfeeding? All the official stuff says don't, but the doctor is quite happy and says it works. DS is now 10 months and breastfeeds 3-4 times a day so it's obviously not the big deal it would be if he was still brand new and solely dependant on breastfeeding.

Also am wondering if anyone can recommend any good sources for DH who has loads of reservations about me taking ADs and could do with learning a bit about depression etc?

Many thanks. smile

bohemianbint Wed 24-Jun-09 12:37:52

bump!

bohemianbint Fri 26-Jun-09 12:32:07

anyone?

pooter Fri 26-Jun-09 12:34:30

sorry - i meant to post yesterday but got all caught up in a yoghurt incident...
will just do a bit of cutting and pasting ..

pooter Fri 26-Jun-09 12:47:26

well, first of all, im on it too - and was prescribed it when DS was 1.5 and still BF, and the doc didnt seem to think it was a problem. It is great stuff imho! However i am currently cutting down (from 20mg pday) as i am pregnant grinshock( i know i could continue on it, but am trying to do my best do cut down as much as poss) but i have done some research on it - so here goes...

this is from the breastfeeding network www.breastfeedingnetwork.org.uk/pdfs/Antidepressants_and_Breastfeeding_March_2009.pdfhere you have to scroll down a bit to get to citalopram.

my understanding is that it isnt the best AD to be on if bf a newborn, but with an older baby it wouldnt really be a problem - especially as your little one would be getting some nutrition from solids too. i certainly havent noticed any 'excessive somnolence" in DS!! quite the opposite, but he has always been a tricky sleeper.

Im training to be a breastfeeding helper and our trainer says that the benefits of BF will outweigh the negatives of most medicines.

As to your DH - sorry he isnt very understanding. I am lucky that my DH has always been very good with me in that respect so i have never had to find stuff for him to read. i do know that depression is an illness, it isnt you being weak or pathetic, your brain just needs some chemicals that for one reason or another you are not producing in enough quantity. Its like any other medical condition. I can totally recommend taking ADs - they dont make you feel any different that usual, as in, you still feel like yourself, but you just feel like you can cope with the day!

Have you started yours yet? I hope they work for you and your husband comes round. Maybe once they kick in and he can see how much help they are he will start to think differently?

bohemianbint Fri 26-Jun-09 14:49:35

pooter - thank you so much for the reply. I started them on Wednesday but I have to say the side effects are not very much fun! (feel sick, anxious, permanently thirsty, but that could be the weather!) Did you have trouble when you started? I have taken them before, about 10 years ago, the same stuff and the first two weeks were very unpleasant as they made me have horrible panic attacks. Was all fine when they kicked in though.

I think the problem with DH is that he feels a bit depressed too - although not perhaps in the same way that I do. I wonder (and I could be wrong) if he feels like I'm winning the "I'm the most pissed off look at me contest" or something like that. I hope I'm wrong about that though.

How long did it take for you to feel better? (And congratulations on the pregnancy - how far are you?)

pooter Fri 26-Jun-09 17:35:31

hiya, well i didnt have any side effects but that was because i took them in a kind of 'crossover' pattern slowly coming off paroxetine in favour of citalopram - so i cant say how long it took to feel better as i was already on anti Ds, (although they were not working very well). Actually, come to think of it i DID have one odd side effect - RAGE!! not what you want to hear im sure, but i felt so angry for about a month, but then went back to my usual self. (DH bought me a blow up punchbag and video for xmas! blush)

With regard to your DH, could you introduce non -drug depression strategies by stealth? I had a book about curing depression without drugs, and the things it advocated were

- exercise
- omega 3 oils
- waking up gently - i bought a sunrise type alarm clock (now i have a DS though wink)

Im sure tehre were other things - i could have a look if you are interested.

I hope your side effects are short-lived, they sound horrible.

I've only just found out about the pregnancy - bit of a surprise, but a welcome one. I think im about 9wks, but who knows! The midwife seems to think ive done this to purposely inconvenience her hmm but at least with this pregnancy im more clued up about depression meds and am in more of a position to fight my corner. Im actually scared stiff - i had a horrible labour with DS and am going to get on a hypnobirthing course.

ooh, thats another idea - when i was at my worst i got a load of hypnotherapy tapes and woudl listen to them at night - could you tell your DH you need to listen to them, and would he like to do it with you?? sneaky. (and then eat walnuts and linseeds whilst running on the spot grin)

castlesintheair Fri 26-Jun-09 17:41:58

I felt sick and thirsty for a couple of weeks. I think it is normal. I felt great after that though. One side effect, for me, was weight gain. I also think this is reasonably common. I also found coming off them really hard. I had to withdraw very slowly over a few months.

My DH didn't like me being on ADs but he liked who I was when I was on them IYKWIM. Maybe your DH will feel the same.

I hope you start to feel better soon.

bohemianbint Mon 29-Jun-09 20:07:00

pooter - totally recommend hypnobirthing. Did it with my first child and whilst I didn't actively practice much the second time it certainly helped. I hadn't thought of using hypnosis stuff, I've got a few cds that would be good. Thanks for the other tips too - what was the book out of interest?

castles - yup, I've got the constant nausea and unquenchable thirst thing going on as well, it's grim. I wasn't sure at first that it was side effects or if I was ill!

With the anxiety - I think I brought it on myself a bit with worrying about it happening and therefore it did, IYSWIM. I think the valium has helped with that though and it seems to be easing the last few days. (Only started it last Weds.)

I am quite confused, forgetful, and struggling to type as well - dunno how normal that is?

Thanks for replying - I don't really know any other people I can talk to about this that understand what it's like.

Babbity Mon 29-Jun-09 20:13:49

Fallout http://www.depressionfallout.com/ Depression Falloutis a great website amd related book for those living with a depressed person.

But the best book ever about depression is Depressive Illness: The Curse of the Strong - can't recommend it highly enough.

bohemianbint Tue 30-Jun-09 19:14:55

Thanks Babbity. Will hunt out that book...

BaronConker Wed 01-Jul-09 18:41:32

This time last year I was in exactly your situation, and worried constantly about what to do re bf and taking citalopram. To begin with was given lustral as it is supposed to be a better choice for bf, but had some very, very nasty side effects and was taken straight off it. Had citalopram before and did well on it, so the GP spoke to the liaison psychiatrist at the hospital who said that the royal college of psychiatrists 'support the use of citalopram in breastfeeding mothers.' I gradually switched over to mixed feeding (baby was 4 months) but ended up continuing doing 2-3 feeds a day up till 9 months. My baby is now 15 months and has never suffered any ill effects and I couldn't see anything at the time that made me think it was harming him, although every time he slept more/ less than usual I got a bit jumpy about it, as neurotic mum-types tend to do! I really, really believe that the benefits far outweight any risks, and both my parents are doctors and agree, as does my DH.

As for your DH, I can recommend the PND section of the netmums website - it's quite basic and simple but I read it whenever I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and found it very reassuring. There's a checklist for partners of sufferers to read.

Good luck with everything, I hope you start to feel better soon, I really don't think I could have carried on without citalopram, I felt so awful, but am now off them and back to my old self!

bohemianbint Sun 05-Jul-09 19:29:16

Thank you Baron. That makes me feel better - and have just checked the netmums site and it is actually really good!

I am starting to feel much better now, thank you, it will be two weeks on Weds and I seem less able to think myself up into a panic now. I'm really glad to hear that things are on the up for you now. How long were you on them for?

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