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Citalopram is commonly used to treat mental health conditions like depression, panic or anxiety disorders

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How to take - Side Effects - Things To Avoid - Pregnancy

Citalopram (which also goes under the brand name ‘cipramil’ in the UK) is a type of antidepressant that belongs to a class of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and works by inhibiting the brain’s ability to reabsorb the neurotransmitter serotonin - increasing the overall levels of the substance.

If you’re suffering from a mental health condition like depression, anxiety or panic, and are wondering if citalopram is right for you - don’t rely on guesswork, speak to a doctor online now.

Our GPs can discuss how you’ve been feeling, whether or not you’ve tried - or are currently taking - any other medications and work with you to decide whether citalopram could be the right treatment option for you.

how is Citalopram taken

How citalopram is taken

Citalopram is taken orally - either in tablet form or as liquid drops. Your doctor will advise you on how often to take it and you should make sure to follow any instructions on your prescription. They may also decide to switch up the dosage on occasion to ensure you’re getting the best results, but you should not change the amount you take without consulting a doctor first.

You shouldn’t suddenly stop taking citalopram, even if you think the drug isn’t working or are feeling better. Withdrawal symptoms can occur if you stop suddenly, so be sure to speak to a doctor before making any changes to your medication.

If you miss a dose, simply take this as soon as possible, unless it’s nearly time for your next dose. It’s vital not to ‘double up’ on dosage as this can negatively affect your treatment.

What can citalopram be used to treat?

Citalopram is mainly used to treat depression, however, it can also be used in cases of:

  • Bipolar disorder
  • Panic and anxiety disorders
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD)
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What Are The Side Effects of propranolol?

Like many antidepressants, there are a range of potential side effects associated with citalopram. However, many are rare and some people taking the drug will be largely symptom-free.

Some of the most common side effects of the medication include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Drowsiness and low energy
  • An excessively dry mouth
  • Sweating

Some rarer side effects include:

  • Fainting
  • Hair loss
  • Hallucinations
  • Aggression
  • Feelings of detachment
  • Rashes
  • Liver problems
  • Fits
  • Sunlight sensitivity
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side effects

Things to avoid

It’s vital to inform your doctor of any medication you’re already taking - whether that’s prescribed or bought over-the-counter - before starting a course of citalopram.

As with many SSRIs, it can have negative interactions with a range of other substances, including:

  • Antipsychotics
  • Antibiotics
  • Other types of antidepressants
  • Herbal mood remedies like St John’s wort
  • Cancer medication
  • Anti-malaria medication
  • Medication used to treat migraines.

Citalopram and alcohol

While it’s generally safe to drink alcohol during a course of citalopram, it’s not recommended since it can drastically enhance the symptoms of side-effects like drowsiness.

Is It Safe to Use Propranolol During Pregnancy?

As a rule of thumb, doctors will try to avoid prescribing drugs for pregnant women and, on a case-by-case basis, judgements have to be made that take into account the potential benefits and risks of medications like citalopram.

You should be sure to inform your doctor if you’re pregnant or are trying to conceive before being prescribed citalopram. Research in this area has highlighted potential risks in terms of birth defects, while taking the drug during pregnancy could lead to a range of serious withdrawal symptoms in newborns.

Similarly, if you’re taking the drug while breastfeeding, there is a risk traces of the drug could be passed to your baby.

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Citalopram and pregnancy

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If you’re experiencing depression, an anxiety or panic disorder, and are wondering whether citalopram might be the right treatment option for you - don’t rely on guesswork, speak to a doctor now.

Our GPs can discuss how you’ve been feeling, what other methods you’ve tried and work together with you to find the best form of treatment.

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