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Old 25-03-11, 13:53
rtb rtb is offline
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 16
Citalopram and emotions

Hi all,

I've recently been prescribed Citalopram for the various anxiety type symptoms i'm experiencing. I'm about a week in (although I've been halving the tablets down to 10mg).

Unfortunately, like I always do I've been reading up on possible side effects of taking this medication. One thing i'm really quite worried about is the potential for cit to blunt all emotions and create a state of apathy. Besides the health anxiety i'm a fun loving cheerful person and I just can't risk the possibility of being turned into a numb zombie. Could anyone reassure me this isn't going to happen?

Also, since taking cit i've found myself going about my daily routine almost on auto-pilot. It's almost as though my mind is slightly detached from my body. I'll be walking to work and thinking inside my head how long its taking, things seem almost dreamlike...Is this something that will pass?
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Old 25-03-11, 14:12
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oldtime oldtime is offline
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Posts: 421
Re: Citalopram and emotions

Hi rtb.
I'm now at wk6 on Cit 20mg. At first I thought it was going to make me pretty dopey, I kept yawning all the time. This last week my head seems to have cleared and I'm feeling more alert. I do not feel emotionally blunted, although many people do mention this in other threads.
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Old 25-03-11, 16:57
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jenbo50 jenbo50 is offline
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Re: Citalopram and emotions

I'm on week 5 at 20mg for anxiety/panic. I haven't felt any numbness or zombie like state at all so far. I will say i have only cried a couple of times whilst on it, once at Comic Relief and then at the Tsunami but for me this is a relief as I was bursting into tears at the slightest of things before the meds...!! Don't worry you won't turn into a zombie. Your personality is still there it just seems to take the edge off depressed/ anxious feelings.....don't expect miracles from it from the start though. It seems to be a real slow burn. Am having some good days now but still get bad days and a bit of anxiety at night. I believe it can take a good few months to feel the real benefits so stick at it xxx
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Old 25-03-11, 18:09
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Lizziesaurus Lizziesaurus is offline
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Re: Citalopram and emotions

Noone can tell you for sure that it won't turn your emotions numb. Give it a chance, if it has that effect on you go back to the docs, there're plenty of others out there that would work just as well without giving you that feeling.
Citalopram made my emotions very blunt and zombie like, I changed to sertraline after a while which made that go away (although that didn't help either) it was nice to feel emotion again.

Try not to worry about it too much and see how it effects your body, everyone is different. After about 8 weeks on it, if it's not helping, that's when you need to see your doc again.

Hope that helps
I can't go back, but I can appreciate what I have right now, and I can define myself by what I am, instead of what I'm not. I'm alive. Everything else is negotiable.
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Old 25-03-11, 21:20
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bronterose bronterose is offline
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Posts: 2
Re: Citalopram and emotions

Hi everyone,

I have been on citalopram for a good few months now, i havn't really noticed alot of change, but my depression was severe! I do feel calmer alot and more relaxed in social situations. I havn't noticed any numbness yet!! I am on 40mg also, so its rather a high dosage, stay strong and im sure it will work wonders for you.

I hope my views have helped you,
Best wishes,
Bronte x
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Old 25-03-11, 21:38
krees69 krees69 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 47
Re: Citalopram and emotions

I took cital a few years ago and i took it for 3 years. I found it very good. It does make you feel a bit wierd to begin with,some insomnia, but when i slept really florid dreams, a feeling of 'spongyness'( one of my words to describe it), but then its even more weird when they start to work as i felt it was like this fog lifting, my thoughts were so much clearer and rational not going 'round and 'round. Certainly didn't become an emotional void.
I think you need to give it at least a month/6 weeks and i think you really did the right thing in halving your dose, and then maybe work upwards if you need to.
A good indicator if they are working or not is when you don't worry so much. You find yourself not reading side effect literature and googleing and certainly (for me anyway) those times when you think you have something seriously wrong go away.
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Old 25-03-11, 22:27
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NoPoet NoPoet is offline
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Re: Citalopram and emotions

Hi, well let's put it this way, I went all the way up to 40mg and although I was constantly drained of energy at that dose, when I backed down to 30mg I pretty much had my life back. I found it harder to get out of bed in the mornings on 30mg because it still sapped some energy but I was basically capable of feeling normal emotions, having a social life and having a job.

While citalopram can dull some of your feelings, remember always that someone who is suffering enough to need medication is probably going to be numbed to some extent anyway, as our bodies and minds partially "shut down" to protect us (this is where some people start to experience derealisation and depersonalisation - these are actually defence mechanisms).

You will probably be mentally and emotionally exhausted by what you've been through. It may be that you unconsciously try to prevent yourself from feeling some emotions, or feeling things too deeply, to protect yourself.

It's this that is going to cause you more problems than the cit. A 10mg dose of cit is very low. The average is between 20mg and 40mg but it can go up to 60mg.
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