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Anxiety With Medication

Hello Everyone,

Hope everyone is doing well today.

I had a quick question for those of you who have taken Celexa for anxiety/depression.

I just started taking the generic form of celexa over the weekend. The first few days were wonderful! I felt like myself again then yesterday and today I have been very, very anxious and even experiencing a little paranoia.

Did any of you experience this as well when you started taking your medication and if so how long did it last?

4 Responses
370181 tn?1428180348
Welcome to the forum, joy! I hope we can help you with some of your concerns.
You said that you just began taking Celexa this week-end and the first few days were wonderful and you felt like your old self. I hate to be the Grinch that popped your bubble, but I'm afraid what you were feeling was, for want of a better word, a sort of "placebo" effect. You wanted this med to make you feel better and so it did. Unfortunately, the truth is that it can take as long as 4-6 WEEKS for Celexa to reach therapeutic levels. (The point at which you will actually begin to feel it's effects) It is very common with Celexa for your anxiety to increase during the first week or so of treatment. This is quite common for many SSRIs. It is just a side effect and should pass as your body/brain adapts to the drug. If, after 6 weeks, your anxiety is still out of control, you need to revisit your doctor as this medication may not be for you. Which is also another common "side effect" of psychotropic meds. Sometimes we have to try several before we find one we can tolerate. Don't be too quick to assume they aren't working. One thing those of us with anxiety or depression absolutely must learn is patience! And we must be prepared for things to get a bit worse before they get better. I'm angry your doctor did not explain all of this to you. Do your best to stick it out for the 6 weeks and then re-evaluate how you're feeling.

Some people think they are going to feel on top of the world in just a few days and when that doesn't happen, when, in fact, they seem to be getting worse, or don't feel any change at all, they stop taking it and try something else, and then something else, on and on until they decide that the drugs are bad and don't work. If most of them had just given the medication time to work, they'd be feeling much better. Patience.

If you have any questions or concerns about how you're feeling or experience a side effect, never hesitate to call your doctor or a pharmacist to make sure what you're feeling is a common/normal side effect of the drug you're taking.

I have been on quite a few antidepressants and some were a nightmare FOR ME, some were tolerable and the one I'm on now I had no side effects at all. We all react differently and that is important to remember if you read any posts on here. You will, more than likely, read someones opinion of Celexa and it won't be a stellar review. Before you freak out and think that will be your experience, just ask yourself calmly if YOU are feeling the same. My guess is that you aren't so you remind yourself that what works for you may not be working for that person. There are a great many people on this forum who think what I'm taking is the worst drug ever invented and they think it should be taken off the market! Over my dead and un-depressed body.................
Write us any time you need to talk. Someone is always lurking about.
Glad you found us.
Avatar universal
I have been on the generic celexa for 10 weeks.i started to feel better after a week as far as the physical symptoms and was finally able to eat. I didn't feel like myself until about 8 weeks. You will notice everyday is a little better. I would have a clouple of good days then a bad one but then i started having more good days then bad. I was started on 10mg then after 6 weeks bumped up to 20 which really helped. I love this drug...I have had no side effects from it and it has knocked out the anxiety. I will still get the occasional panic attack in the middle of the night but they are so much easier to deal with and go away a lot faster. I was given klonopin to help until the celexa kicked in which made me feel a lot better.
Avatar universal
Thanks guys, I kinda figured it was the placebo effect. LOL But it sure felt good. I think whats freaking me out is that I started having really really bad paranoia that I have not felt since March/April of last year. It's almost like I'm going right back to the very beginning of this nightmare.

I emailed my doctor and she hasn't responded. I dont think that this type of thing is her specialty so I'm going to have to find a new doctor. I tried to stick it out with her for a year and I think she is a sweet person and has helped me in other areas but this is the area I need help with now and it's just not working.

I have an evaluation lined up with a cognitive therapist this Sat.. So I hope she will be able to shed some light on this situation.

I want to stay on the meds so I will see how it goes.
370181 tn?1428180348
Most of us have experienced what you're going through when we began taking an SSRI, which is a highly UNAMUSING worsening of symptoms or a RETURN of symptoms we've not had in a long while. There is a reason for that but it had too many big words in it so I forgot it. (MY BAD) Just know that it is very common and will go away. I think I said this earlier, but many of the ADs make us feel worse before they begin to make us feel better. One must simply soldier on until the smoke clears.

I will assume your doctor is a GP or an Internist/Family Physician. If you like her and have been happy with her professionally, there is no need to find a new doctor.

It has, for a very, very long time been my opinion that GPs have no business diagnosing or treating ANY sort of mental issue/disorder and they most definitely should not be allowed to freely hand out seriously powerful psychotropic meds.
I am not "doctor bashing," and I have as much respect for GPs as the next person, but through my own experience and the experiences I've read about in my 4 years on this site, I am totally convinced they do not posess adequate education to diagnose or treat mental illness. A 3 month rotation in a psych ward during med school simply is NOT good enough.

GPs are incredibly busy doctors and they must keep abreast of so much. An impossible overload of new information, new treatments and new medications that hit the market almost daily. How do the GPs absorb all of this? For the most part, simply put, they don't. With so many specialists out there, many of them your doctors partner, why should YOUR GP spend time trying to keep up with the latest in cardiology when it's so much easier, (and thank god, so much safer) for them to send you there?
I'm getting off onto one of my favorite rants, so to get back on track, the problem with GPs prescribing these powerful medications to us is the rather scary thought, but the truth, nonetheless, that the ONLY thing your GP knows about that psychotropic drug he just put you on is what he remembers some drug rep (who, btw, works for the big pharmaceutical company who made that drug) several weeks ago and he thinks he remembers the rep talking about anxiety or depression.....whatever. That's usually when they leave the room for a few minutes while they race to the drug locker and read the back of the box. They toss a few samples in a bag and walk back in, tell you to take these, here's a script, good luck, wink, wink, nudge, nudge. And let's not forget that if a doctor then prescribes that particular medication whenever the word "anxiety" comes into the conversation, said doctor will more than likely get a nice little kick-back from the pharma.

Oh dear me.............I HAVE run off the rails, haven't I? So sorry.
But is, unfortunately all true.

I have, over the years, been convinced that a person should be diagnosed by a psychiatrist, whom we all know has spent more than a single rotation studying mental issues. In one or maybe two sessions, you will receive an accurate diagnosis as to exactly what kind of anxiety or depression you're  dealing with. You then get referred to a therapist, hopefully one who specializes in anxieties and depressive disorders. It should be you and your therapist, together, who decide if trying a medication might be the way to go and it's you and your psychiatrists who will decide which medication you'll try. He/she is basing that decision on years of experience with your particular disorder and years of experience on which meds are the best for that disorder. They are not relying on information given them by a drug rep in a 5 minute presentation between patients.

The CB therapist will be of great help to you, I believe. She knows a great deal more than your GP and together you will discuss if you want to stay on the meds your GP prescribed or if you want to begin from square one.
Never hesitate to speak your mind with a therapist. That's the whole point.
Really sorry for the rant...........I've had entirely tooooo much coffee.
Which is why we are "Sleepless In Seattle."    :)
Damn you, Starbucks!
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Arlington, VA
370181 tn?1428180348
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