Citalopram – weening off anti-depressants  .. My experience part one

As I go through the transition of weening myself off Citalopram I thought it might be useful to keep a bit of a diary.. 

So, I went to see my doctor a week or so ago to discuss coming off the antidepressant I have been on for the last seven or so months.

We had a very brief discussion. As I have been taking the very lowest dose of citalopram, 10mg tablets with one per day, the doctor said I could stop immediately. 

We decided though to reduce my intake to every other day. Till I run out of the tablets I have left. Which is a grand total of seven .. That is two weeks left!

Now, I started immediately on this process. Fairing well for the first four days or so. The fifth though saw a decline in my outlook.

Day seven saw me in the full grip of the storm. Yet with the help of my wonderful partner and having expected the going would not be all plain sailing I have managed to right the ship! 

It is now day eight as I write this piece. I seem to be doing quite well. Though I realise I am not out of the woods or into the safe calm waters yet.

So what happened and what have I been doing to help myself?

Well with reducing the intake of citalopram it has meant a chemical change in my body. I forgot to take one pill on day six when I should have which meant my body had been without citalopram for forty eight hours. 

Now have you heard of the half life of psychiatric drugs? 

I hadn’t either. It would have been a bit better if I had. The half life of citalopram is thirty six hours. That is it leaves the body in thirty six hours. Hence, what seemed like a sudden Storm ranging within me was caused by my body reacting to no citalopram helping steady that ship.

Being one of those annoying people who are not content to accept things I had to find out more and take positive action to get control again. I first of all focussed on all those good things I know I should do… Sleep properly, eat properly, exercise and share my experiences. 

At this point I have to say that my partner has played a crucial role. She listened, accepted and gave me support. Held me and guided me when the world seemed against me. Turning the seeming  mountain of challenges into mole hills. 

Another big help has been to find the Mind charity’s guide to coming off psychiatric drugs. Something I wish the doctor had given to me when I saw him. I have yet to read it properly. A quick glance through shows that it is a well put together booklet. I will let you know what I find and probably write it all up here soon.

You can find the Mind Guide to coming off psychiatric drugs here…

Copy and paste the link above if it doesn’t work.

So I am at the end of day eight. Currently feeling ok.

Check back to see how I am getting on… And what I have learnt…


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