If you have been diagnosed with OCD, you may be wondering if Lexapro is a good treatment option for you. Lexapro is a prescription medication that is used to treat OCD and other anxiety disorders. It belongs to a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). In this article, we will discuss how Lexapro works, as well as the benefits and side effects of taking it for OCD. We will also provide tips for successfully managing your disorder.
- 1 How Does Lexapro For OCD Work?
- 2 Lexapro Dosage Information
- 3 What Are The Side Effects Of Lexapro?
- 4 Things To Avoid While Taking Lexapro For OCD
- 5 Are There Any Alternatives To Lexapro?
- 6 Helpful Tips For Using Lexapro For OCD
- 7 Conclusion
- 8 A Word From Mantra Care
How Does Lexapro For OCD Work?
Lexapro for OCD is a type of antidepressant known as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). It works by increasing the levels of serotonin, a chemical messenger in the brain that helps to regulate mood and anxiety.
It is often considered a first-line treatment for OCD due to its relatively low risk of side effects and high efficacy. In fact, studies have shown that Lexapro is effective in reducing OCD symptoms in both children and adults.
Lexapro medication is believed to get licensed in 2002. It has been in the market with various brand names, such as Cipralex and Seroplex. Moreover, this is widely prescribed by doctors for the treatment of depression and anxiety. Lexapro for OCD works by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin in your brain. As a result, it increases the level of this neurotransmitter.
However, it is important to note that Lexapro for OCD is not a cure, but rather a tool to help manage your symptoms. If you are considering starting Lexapro for OCD, it is important to consult with a mental health professional. And, should discuss whether it is the right treatment for you.
Lexapro Dosage Information
Before starting any medication, it is important to speak with a doctor to ensure that the dosage is correct for you. The correct and complete information should be informed to patients. So, they can make the right decision about their treatment. Some of these things you must be aware of;
- The starting dose of Lexapro is usually 20 mg. And the maximum allowable dose is 60 mg. But, it all depends on the individual’s response to the medication and other health factors.
- It is available in both tablet and liquid form.
- If you are taking the liquid form, it is important to measure the dose correctly with a special measuring device/spoon.
- You should take Lexapro at the same time each day, preferably in the morning.
- It can be taken with or without food but if it upsets your stomach, it’s best to take it with food.
- The dose of Lexapro is not recommended for children.
- You must continue taking Lexapro for as long as your doctor tells you to. Discontinuing the medication suddenly can result in withdrawal symptoms.
Therefore, it is important to taper off the dose gradually under a doctor’s supervision. However, you should continue taking Lexapro even if you feel better. This is because OCD symptoms usually return when medication is stopped. The usual length of treatment is 12-16 weeks but some people may need to stay on medication for longer periods of time.
OCD can be a difficult disorder to live with, but there are treatments available that can help alleviate symptoms. And, eventually improves your quality of life.
What Are The Side Effects Of Lexapro?
There are several side effects associated with Lexapro. More often than not, these side effects are mild and go away within a matter of weeks. However, some people do experience more severe side effects that can persist for months or even years.
Common side effects
- dry mouth
- decreased appetite
While these side effects can be annoying, they are usually not enough to make people stop taking Lexapro. If you do experience any of these side effects, talk to your doctor about ways to manage them. In most cases, the benefits of Lexapro outweigh the inconvenience of the side effects.
Serious Side Effects
There are a few serious side effects that have been associated with Lexapro. These include:
- suicidal thoughts or behaviors
- increased anxiety
- abnormal bleeding
These side effects are rare, but if you experience any of them, it is important to seek medical help immediately. If you are worried about the potential for serious side effects, talk to your doctor before starting Lexapro.
Lexapro is a safe and effective medication for treating OCD. However, like all medications, it does come with some risks. Be sure to talk to your doctor about the potential risks and benefits of taking Lexapro before making a decision about treatment. With proper monitoring and care, Lexapro can be a successful part of your OCD treatment plan.
Things To Avoid While Taking Lexapro For OCD
When you are taking Lexapro for OCD, there are a few things that you should avoid doing. These include:
- Drinking alcohol
- Taking illegal drugs
- Driving while under the influence of Lexapro
- Operating heavy machinery while under the influence of Lexapro
By avoiding these activities, you will be less likely to experience any negative side effects from taking Lexapro. Additionally, it is important to follow your doctor’s instructions when taking this medication. Doing so will help ensure that you get the most benefit from treatment and minimize any potential risks.
Moreover, you must discuss with your doctor some other vital points such as:
- Inform your doctor about any other medication that you are taking currently.
- Do not abruptly stop taking Lexapro, as this may lead to withdrawal symptoms.
- Medical history if you have had any kind of allergic reaction to similar medications in the past.
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Lexapro can be an effective tool in treating OCD with proper care and precautions. If you have any questions or concerns about taking this medication, be sure to talk to your doctor. With their guidance, you can make Lexapro work for you and manage your OCD successfully.
Are There Any Alternatives To Lexapro?
Yes, there are other options available for treating OCD. And, the other options may be more effective for you depending on the severity of your OCD and other factors. If you and your doctor have decided that Lexapro is not the right treatment for you, there are a few other options to consider.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is often recommended as the first line of defense against OCD. This type of therapy helps patients learn how to control their thoughts and reactions to anxiety-inducing stimuli. In some cases, CBT can be as effective as medication in treating OCD.
You can also try other medication options such as Zoloft, Prozac, or Paxil. These medications work by increasing levels of serotonin in the brain, which helps to reduce anxiety and improve mood.
If you have tried other treatments without success, you may want to consider deep brain stimulation (DBS). DBS is a surgical procedure that involves the implantation of electrodes in the brain. The electrodes are connected to a device that sends electrical impulses to specific areas of the brain involved in OCD.
However, DBS is only recommended for people who have severe OCD. And, those who have not responded to other treatment options. No matter what treatment option you and your doctor decide on. But it is important to remember that there is hope for successful treatment of your OCD.
Helpful Tips For Using Lexapro For OCD
Lexapro for OCD is a common and effective treatment option, but it’s important to be aware of some potential side effects and know how to manage them. To get success in the treatment, it is necessary to follow some tips;
Start with a low dose
It’s usually recommended that people start with a lower dose of Lexapro and increase it gradually over time. This can help your body adjust to the medication and lessen the chance of side effects. Moreover, starting dose for OCD is generally lower than that for depression. And it is important to note that it can take several weeks for Lexapro to start working. Even, this can make you realize if it is working or not for you.
Do not skip doses
Doses are typically taken once a day, but it’s important to not skip doses or take them irregularly. Skipping the dose can make the medicine less effective and may increase the risk of relapse. Moreover, doses are prescribed in a way that they gradually build up in your system to be most effective. So, if you skip or withdraw too soon, it can make the treatment less successful.
Take with food
Usually, the medication can be taken with or without food. But, some people find that taking it with food can help to reduce side effects like nausea. It is widely advised by doctors that if you do experience nausea, try taking the medication with food and see if that helps. Consequently, if you have any other questions about taking Lexapro, be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Monitor side effects
Most people don’t experience any serious side effects from Lexapro. But, it is still necessary to be aware of potential side effects and monitor them. Although it is common to experience some side effects like headache, nausea, or drowsiness when starting Lexapro, they typically go away after a few weeks. However, if you do experience any serious side effects, be sure to contact your doctor right away.
Take at the same time every day
Setting a routine can help you remember to take your medication every day. Try to take it at the same time each day. For example, if you’re taking Lexapro in the morning, try to take it at the same time every day. This can help make sure that you don’t forget a dose and that the medication is working consistently. Moreover, it can help to set an alarm or reminder on your phone to take the medication at the same time each day.
Give yourself time to recover
It is important to give yourself time to recover from OCD. Recovery from a mental disorder is a process that takes time. Be patient with yourself and don’t expect to be cured overnight. Remember that relapse is common in OCD, but it doesn’t mean that you’re not making progress. If you do have a setback, don’t get discouraged, and try to get back on track as soon as possible.
OCD is a lifelong condition, but treatment can help you manage your symptoms and live a fulfilling life. If you’re considering Lexapro for OCD, talk to your doctor about what to expect. And whether it’s the right option for you. Moreover, these tips can help you make the most of your treatment and get the best possible results.
Consequently, don’t hesitate to ask for help if you feel like you need it. There are many resources available to help you manage OCD. And, with treatment, you can live a full and satisfying life. So, don’t give up hope and reach out for help if you need it.
To conclude, Lexapro for OCD is an extremely effective treatment option that can help you take control of your disorder and improve your quality of life. If you are considering this medication, be sure to speak with your doctor about all the potential risks and benefits involved. With proper care and treatment, you can successfully manage your OCD and live a happy, healthy life.
In fact, studies show that people with OCD who take medication like Lexapro combined with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) experience the best results. So, if you’re struggling with OCD, know that there is hope and help available. Seek a qualified mental health professional to develop a tailored treatment plan that will work for you. Thanks for reading!
A Word From Mantra Care
Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.