Published on 06 June 2023

How Long Can You Stay On Citalopram?

Citalopram (Celexa) How-Long-Can-You-Stay-On-Citalopram
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Depression is one of the leading conditions in the US. According to the research, approximately one in 10 people suffer from this condition. The reason for such a condition can vary among different individuals.

The common reasons for a person to face depression are genetics, mood changes in the brain, or stressful happenings around a person. A person can go through different disorders, such as major depressive disorder, post-partum depression, persistent depressive disorder, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, or seasonal affective disorder. 

When treating such conditions, various options are available, from natural remedies to medicines that work the best for depression. Natural remedies do not work the same as medicinal, but once the natural remedies do not work, medications are the only way to cure the condition.

Medications play a significant role in curing the condition by their medicinal properties. Citalopram is one of the best medicine to treat the disease; know about longevity, you should stay on the medicine.

What Is Citalopram?

Citalopram is a drug used for the treatment of depressive disorders. Not only does it work for a single condition, but also it treats various conditions such as Bulimia, anxiety disorders, OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder), and other diseases related to depression. 

Citalopram for anxiety is used off-label, which means the FDA does not officially prescribe it. You must have a prescription to buy Citalopram from a drugstore. When other SSRIs do not work for the conditions mentioned above, Citalopram can be a savior.

How Does Citalopram Work?

Citalopram exists in the drug class of antidepressants called SSRIs (Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). Any medication that comes under this drug class works the same way. 

Citalopram works by raising the levels of Serotonin in the brain. It is a chemical that bridges the gap to pass on the signals between nerves. Positive effects have been seen in patients taking Citalopram at night because it has Serotonin which influences various aspects, such as mood, metabolism, and sleep.

According to the research, if a person is suffering from low Serotonin, it is linked to anxiety and depression. Once the Citalopram works on the body effectively, it improves mood and brain functioning. 

How Long Does Citalopram Take To Work?

Generally, Citalopram is a medicine that is as effective as other antidepressants. Any medication you consume for a condition takes time to work on your body. But it also depends on different factors of the human body such as weight, age, and other faced conditions.

For effective results to be seen in your body, take medicine for atleast four weeks. You will see improvements in your mood, energy levels, and other depressive symptoms. If your condition is not changed or you don't see any progress in depression, talk to your medical practitioner for solutions.   

How Long Can You Stay On Citalopram?

For better results in depression situations, you should work with a doctor. Working together can help you get depression under control. 

There are possibilities that you might use Citalopram for months. This will prevent the depression from striking back at you (depression relapse). Once your depression is under control, you must consume the medicine for several months. 

It is widespread among people who consume Citalopram for months and years continuously. According to a study, people have used Citalopram for 28 months, and no issues backfired. 

Whenever you have been prescribed the medicine, the must thing you should do is, be in contact with your doctor and update them with progress. Your doctor might change the dosage as and when needed. 

Possible Side Effects

Side effects are common to suffer while on medication. But it all depends on common or severe side effects. If you have been suffering from common side effects, it can wipe off, but severe side effects should be informed to your doctor.

Common Side Effects

Severe Side Effects


Nose bleeding


Blurred vision


Severe headache

Digestive system problems

Suicidal thoughts 

Muscle aches

Heart palpitations

Change in appetite

Worse depression 

Side effects should be taken into consideration. There are other side effects too, that are not included in the list. Talk to your general practitioner immediately if you suffer other side effects.

What If You Stop Using Citalopram?

At a point, you have to stop using a particular medication if it's related to mental health once it is cured. But when to stop consuming a medicine is quite essential. You cannot stop taking the drug abruptly as it can show withdrawal symptoms. You might use the medication even after curing. This is termed continuation therapy.  

Withdrawal symptoms can be harsh on your body, and side effects can harm your health. Instead, contact the medical provider, Your dose will be adjusted accordingly, and the medicine can taper off from the body smoothly. 

Dosage Of Citalopram

Dosage plays an essential role in getting cured. It can't be more or less. When a person consumes a drug, it should be first prescribed by the doctor. Citalopram should be taken at night for better results; All other information should be gained before you consume.

  • Initial Dose: 20mg (Once a day)
  • Continuation Dose: 20mg - 40mg (If the first dose didn't work well)
  • Maximum Dose: 40mg- 60 mg (This will depend on the doctor)

These dosages presented are a standard dosage pattern. Your dosage might differ according to your condition and the severity. You should not overdose on Citalopram as it can lead to serious effects may even lead to death.

Warnings And Precautions

There are fewer chances of side effects if you take the following precautions. You should follow the doctor's guidance and the information that is needed. Also, read the medicine box/leaflet for an easy understanding of drug precautions.

  • Inform the doctor about allergic reactions you faced in life.
  • You should inform the doctor about other medicines that are being consumed
  • Consuming alcohol with Citalopram can affect your health severely
  • In case you use any herbal or other supplements, inform your medical practitioner.
  • It is harmful to take Citalopram if you are pregnant. Do not breastfeed if you are on Citalopram medication.
  • Know before you eat anything while you are taking Citalopram

You should freely inform all the pre-medical conditions you have faced. You will be suggested with a proper dose or else change medicine. 

Drug Interactions

You might suffer from side effects if you consume two medicines interacting with each other. Always follow certain precautions and know before you take the medicine. 
Medicines that should not be taken with Citalopram:

  • Fluoxetine
  • Celecoxib
  • Amitriptyline
  • Fluconazole
  • Escitalopram
  • Linezolid
  • Desvenlafaxine

These are a few medicines that should be avoided. Inform your medical history to your doctor.

Also, Read 

Bottom Line From Practical Anxiety Solutions

It would be best if you always had clarity about consuming a medicine, but for how long. This will assure you that you will stop the treatment after a moment. When it is related to a mental disorder, you might already suffer from many issues, so preventing a medication can be an excellent thing for you. 

When it comes to Citalopram, you might take the medicines for months or years because depression isn't a manageable condition that can fade off quickly. It does take time to cure the disease. In terms of Citalopram, you can take medicine for months or years, but it would all depends on your mental health condition. Also, you might use the medicine after curing to prevent not getting affected by depression again. 

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