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What is Escitalopram?

Escitalopram, also known as Lexapro, is an antidepressant drug that treats anxiety and depression disorders in adults and teenagers of 12 years and above. It falls in the category of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class. The chemical acts as a mood enhancer for patients. The drug may be prescribed as a part of combination therapy. This implies that the medicine may be prescribed with certain other medications to help overcome anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders.

What are the uses of Escitalopram?

Escitalopram is a drug used to treat general anxiety disorders (GAD) and severe depressive conditions. This antidepressant regulates the brain chemicals or the neurotransmitters of the body. Escitalopram works to increase the levels of the natural substance ‘serotonin’ in the brain. Serotonin regulates mental balance. The medicine acts as a mood elevator and helps mitigate anxiety and depression leading to panic attacks.

Dosage considerations of Escitalopram vary for adults and children:
Adult Dosage: 10mg once a day for the first week. Subsequently, it may increase to 20mg.
Pediatric Dosage: 10mg once a day for the first week. Dosage can be increased to a maximum of 20 mg after three weeks.

However, precautions need to be considered before taking the treatment for depression and anxiety disorder,:

  • Talk to our medical experts in case of any history of allergies. 
  • Do not take the medication if you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you suffer from any heart problems or have a family history of the same. In such a scenario, intake of Escitalopram drugs may increase the risk of QT prolongation.
  • Avoid Escitalopram if you are suffering from bipolar depression. It may worsen psychosis in bipolar patients.
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What are the side effects of Escitalopram?

Usually, the side effects of Escitalopram are mild and do not need medical attention. These include:

  • Constipation.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Nausea.
  • Dizziness.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Sexual complications.
  • Tenderness around eyes and cheekbones.
  • Joint pain.

Side effects observed in children include:

  • Abnormal increase in muscle movement.
  • Heavy menstrual periods.
  • Increased thirst.
  • Bleeding nose.
  • Urinary problems.
  • The slow rate of growth.
  • Change in weight.

You may consider consulting our medical experts at Yashoda Hospitals in case the adverse effects of the drug are troubling or long-term.

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FAQ's

1. What is the lowest dose of Escitalopram?

To treat generalized anxiety disorder or depression, a dose of 10mg once a day is advisable. The dosage is the same both for adults as well as teenagers 12-years and above. If required, the dose may be increased after three weeks of treatment to 20 mg once a day.

2. Is Escitalopram an SSRI?

Yes, Escitalopram is a part of the drug class of Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor or SSRI. SSRI helps regulate mood, emotions, and sleep. Serotonin is a substance that is absorbed by the nerve cells each time a message is transmitted. SSRIs block these cells thereby, making more serotonin available to transfer messages.

3. Can Escitalopram get you high?

Although Escitalopram is not addictive as compared to other antidepressants or narcotics, larger doses of Escitalopram may be taken to experience a good mood or feel relaxed. With high doses of Escitalopram, you may feel high and gradually sleepy. Consult our medical experts for proper guidance.

4. Does Escitalopram work?

Clinical studies claim that Escitalopram is effective for the treatment of anxiety and depression disorders. Escitalopram is immediately absorbed in the body. It reaches plasma concentrations and comes into action within 3-4 hours after intake. The success rate of the drug is approximately 68.4%.

5. How To Stop Taking Escitalopram?

To begin with, reduce the drug dose to small amounts, in due course, decrease the quantity and the number of times you take it in a day. Follow this for a couple of days or weeks to avoid adverse symptoms. Consult our medical experts who will create a dosing schedule for you and help you stop taking Escitalopram.

6. Can you overdose on Escitalopram?

One should not take too much Escitalopram. If you take too many doses of Escitalopram, it may lead to dangerous levels of drug accumulation in the body. Overdose of the drug may lead to nausea, vomiting, increased heart rate, low blood pressure, dizziness, or insomnia. In the worst case scenario, an overdose may induce coma.

7. When should I take Escitalopram 10 Mg?

Escitalopram 10 mg should be taken once a day at any time per your convenience. Maintain taking it the same time every day. In case you have trouble sleeping, it is advisable to take the medicine in the morning. The antidepressant can be taken on an empty stomach or with food.

8. Is Escitalopram safe?

Intake of Escitalopram for a short time does not have any significant side effects reported. However, in some cases, prolonged consumption of Escitalopram may lead to severe issues such as increased heartbeat, trouble in breathing, and sexual problems. In rare cases, long-term use of Escitalopram can lead to life-threatening conditions or suicidal thoughts.

9. Is Escitalopram a controlled substance?

No, Escitalopram is not considered a controlled substance in the medical field. It does not cause any physical or mental dependence in the patient. Escitalopram is not addictive. It is well-suited for a person suffering from depression and anxiety disorders. It is a well-tolerated drug.

10. Does Escitalopram make you sleepy?

Yes, consumption of Escitalopram can indeed cause increased sleepiness. Antidepressants function by acting on brain chemicals known as neurotransmitters. Serotonin and norepinephrine are the chemicals that create spaces between nerve cells. These brain chemicals carry out mood changes between these gaps sometimes, causing fatigue and sleepiness. Call Yashoda Hospitals to consult our expert medical advisors on the uses, side effects, and dosages and precautions when taking Escitalopram.

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