What Are The Long-Term Side Effects of Citalopram (Celexa)?

Citalopram, also known by its brand name Celexa, is an antidepressant medication that is commonly used to treat depression, anxiety and panic disorders. While it is generally considered to be a safe and effective medication, long-term use of citalopram can lead to some side effects.

One of the most common long-term side effects of citalopram is decreased sexual function, which can include decreased libido, difficulty achieving an orgasm, and impotence. This can be distressing for some people, and it is important to talk to your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms.

Another long-term side effect of citalopram is weight gain. Some people may gain weight while taking citalopram, which can be due to changes in appetite and metabolism. If you experience weight gain while taking citalopram, be sure to talk to your doctor.

Citalopram can also cause changes in sleep patterns, including insomnia or excessive drowsiness. This can be especially problematic if you are already experiencing sleep problems, and it is important to talk to your doctor if you experience any changes in your sleep patterns while taking citalopram.

In rare cases, long-term use of citalopram can cause a condition called tardive dyskinesia, which is characterized by involuntary movements of the face, tongue, or other body parts. This can be a serious side effect, and it is important to talk to your doctor if you experience any unusual movements while taking citalopram.

In addition, some people may experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking citalopram suddenly, especially if they have been taking it for a long period of time. Withdrawal symptoms can include headache, dizziness, irritability, and insomnia, and they can be severe in some cases. To avoid withdrawal symptoms, it is important to gradually reduce the dose of citalopram under the supervision of a doctor.

It is important to talk to your doctor about the potential long-term side effects of citalopram, and to discuss any concerns you may have about taking this medication. Your doctor can help you weigh the potential benefits and risks of citalopram, and determine if it is the right medication for you.