What is the
Lexapro Medication Used For?
The Lexapro medication is used in adolescents (12 – 17 years old) and adults to treat major depressive disorders, otherwise known as MDD or clinical depression, and generalized anxiety disorder, also referred to as GAD.
Let me digress a minute and talk about MDD and GAD. A clinical depressive disorder is diagnosed based on a person experiencing the following symptoms for at least 2 weeks in a row. Have you had a significant change in your appetite and/or weight? Do you feel the need to sleep all the time or have trouble sleeping at all? Do you feel the need to move all the time or not at all? Do you feel more fatigue than usual? Do you feel guilty without a real reason? Do you have trouble concentrating? Have you thought about suicide or attempted suicide? Have you lost interest in activities you used to enjoy?
If you answered yes to at least 5 of these then you may be clinically depressed and Lexapro medication may be a good solution for you. If you think this is the case you can take a depression test on my site. There are quite a few to choose from depending on your demographic and situation.
Someone with GAD exhibits extreme worrying or anxiety, having difficulty concentrating, trouble sleeping, feeling tense and restless and irritable for at least 6 months. If you think you have GAD, then Lexapro may be a good solution for you as well.
If you feel you may be suffering with both, consider taking my Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale to obtain further information about your condition.
Lexapro medication is usually taken as a 10 mg daily dose and it does not matter if it is taken with or without food. In some cases, the dose is increased to 20 mg per day. In very few cases does it go above 20 mg because there has been no known benefit observed.
Individuals should take the medication for at least 8 weeks before reaping the true benefits of the Lexapro medication. However, continued use should be supervised and monitored by a physician to ensure that the medication is still effective in treating the condition.
Lexapro is also approved for use in elderly patients. However, it is not recommended that the dose exceeds 10 mg per day.
Serotonin Syndrome has been documented with some users. This is when the patient experiences hallucinations, coma, hyperthermia, vomiting, diarrhea, and rapid changes in vital signs. This medication should not be used with other antipsychotic drugs.
Use of this drug can cause an increase in risk of suicide. Particularly in patients that are under 18 years of age. A risk still exists if you are between the ages of 18 and 24. Less risk exists if you are 24 years old and over.
There is a slight (< 0.1%) risk of Lexapro triggering hypomania or mania, particularly in those patients being treated for depression.
Lexapro may increase the risk of bleeding so it should not be taken in conjunction with other anticoagulants, including asprin.
It is highly recommended that you do not take Lexapro, an SSRI (serotonin reuptake inhibitor), with an MAOI (monoamine oxidase inhibitors) such as Nardil, Marplan, Parnate because serious conditions can result including hyperthermia, serious vital sign fluctuations, delirium and induced coma.
How to Stop Taking Lexapro
If you decide to stop taking the medication it is recommended that you do it gradually as opposed to stopping cold turkey. If you experience Lexapro withdrawal symptoms that are severe, then your physician may elect to have you wean off of the medication more gradually than originally anticipated.
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