According to the British Medical Journal, over the ten year period from 2010 and 2018, prescriptions for antidepressants such as Celexa more than doubled, which has left a significant number of users scrambling for help with Celexa tapering. (1) As of 2017, the American Psychological Association and the National Center for Health Statistics estimated that nearly 13% of the entire population were taking antidepressant medications. Nearly 20% of people over 60 years of age were taking antidepressants in 2017. (2) Likely these numbers have continued to rise as they have done for each of the last 10 years.
Part of the “successful” marketing strategy of drugmakers has been side-stepping the addictive properties of Celexa and other antidepressants. There is no medical practitioner who can truthfully say that stopping Celexa, etc., after six months or a year will not produce Celexa withdrawal side effects. But rarely will that language be heard in the every-day doctor’s office. Instead of explaining the addictive mechanism of antidepressant drugs, or enlightening their patient on what might be expected when stopping Celexa, the doctor who received zero training on treating addiction or dependence to drugs is equipped to say very little at all. And what the doctor does say will most likely be some version of what it says on the back of a pamphlet that some drug sales agent left with them. The pamphlets say nothing at all about how to get off Celexa, etc. or what to expect during Celexa cessation.
What these colorful sales pamphlets are full of is jargon intended to sound convincing and scientific, (but unscientific) and it seems semantics have been cleverly used to blur the facts. Patients are typically advised that Celexa will raise the patient’s serotonin levels, and that will fix their depressed state. They might also be told that getting off Celexa may result in a “relapse” of their depression or other “mental illness”. These are the standard conversation snippets that occur between doctor and patient on any given day in America, and indeed, around the world.
This might even be a reasonable approach were it not for one other set of particularly troubling facts:
The most typical experience of antidepressant users is that either the drugs didn’t work at all, or that they caused unsustainable discomfort and intolerable symptoms, also called side effects. Some of the more common side effects of antidepressants such as Celexa are related to the degradation of serotonin and other natural neurochemicals the CNS needs for normal function. Some of these effects reportedly are:
These adverse reactions and the lack of results from the drugs may lead to wanting to withdraw from Celexa. There are also other concerns which may lead one to consider Celexa tapering. Treatment for Celexa withdrawal is available at the Alternative to Meds Center.
If a woman is taking an antidepressant such as Celexa, and is planning on becoming pregnant, she may want to complete the Celexa taper well before the time of conception. While many “authorities” in proximity to (and likely financially supported by) the drug industry may say that taking drugs during pregnancy is considered relatively safe, there are statistics that show a connection between antidepressants and a doubling or trebling of frequency in birth defects in the baby, as well as postpartum hemorrhage or other complications in the mother. (5) In general, studies document that Celexa is linked to adverse effects relating to the coagulation of the blood, which would remain a concern if planning a pregnancy or for many other health reasons. (6)
A cursory search on the topic of SSRI’s and birth defects will produce much information, some of which may be confusing and contradictory. One would be well advised to search carefully through all possible unbiased literature for oneself, to make a decision regarding getting off Celexa, or other prescription medications prior to pregnancy. A properly done Celexa taper may be considerably less risky than attempting withdrawal from Celexa during pregnancy. Before trying to quit Celexa, seek competent medical advice from a trusted and knowledgable caregiver.
SPECIAL WARNING RE: Trying to Quit Celexa
Please be aware that the FDA advises against abrupt or sudden Celexa tapering methods. If you are considering trying to quit Celexa or any SSRI drug, this should only be attempted with proper preparation, education, guidance and medical oversight in place.
Please contact us at the Alternative to Meds Center for information that you may be searching for regarding how to get off Celexa safely and gradually. Clearly, the more information one can acquire regarding how to get off Celexa or other drugs in a gentle and safe manner, the better one will be equipped for a successful outcome.
The Alternative to Meds Center makes its prime focus tapering medications safely and under medical oversight, with a full roster of fully licensed practitioners and clinicians who are well versed in helping our clients overcome barriers such as physical or mental discomfort during medication tapering programs We are the leading authority on safe Celexa tapering help, delivered in an exceptionally comfortable and luxurious in-patient setting.
Dr. Samuel Lee is a board-certified psychiatrist, specializing in a spiritually-based mental health discipline and integrative approaches. He graduated with an MD at Loma Linda University School of Medicine and did a residency in psychiatry at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. He has also been an inpatient adult psychiatrist at Kaweah Delta Mental Health Hospital and the primary attending geriatric psychiatrist at the Auerbach Inpatient Psychiatric Jewish Home Hospital. In addition, he served as the general adult outpatient psychiatrist at Kaiser Permanente. He is board-certified in psychiatry and neurology and has a B.A. Magna Cum Laude in Religion from Pacific Union College. His specialty is in natural healing techniques that promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself.