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Lexapro Side Effects In The First Week (Escitalopram)

lexapro side effects in the firsr week


Lexapro, also known by its generic name escitalopram, is a popular antidepressant medication in the SSRI (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor) class. It is often prescribed to treat depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders. However, like all medications, Lexapro can cause side effects. In this article, we will focus on the side effects that may occur during the first seven days of use.

Understanding Lexapro (Escitalopram)

Lexapro works by making more of a chemical called serotonin available in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, which means that it helps nerve cells in the brain work together effectively.

We believe that low amounts of serotonin are often linked to depression and anxiety. By making more serotonin in the brain, Lexapro helps people with depression and anxiety feel better. It does this by stopping serotonin from leaving the spaces between nerve cells, which is called reuptake. This lets more serotonin stay active in the brain.

It’s important to know that Lexapro may not start working for a few weeks and that it should be taken exactly as your doctor tells you to. It is also important to talk to the doctor about any side effects you may have and any other medicines you are taking.

Common Side Effects

When starting Lexapro, it’s important to be aware of the potential side effects. Some common side effects of Lexapro include:

  • nausea,
  • headache,
  • insomnia,
  • and diarrhea.

These side effects are generally mild and go away after the first few weeks of treatment. However, in some cases, they may be more severe or persistent.

Lexapro Side Effects In the First Week of Use

During the first weeks of use, these side effects may be more pronounced. In the beginning, the body is still adjusting to the medication. At first, some patients may experience more severe symptoms such as nausea, headaches, or insomnia. It’s important to note that these symptoms should decrease as the body gets used to the medication. Some of this kind of medication can increase suicidal thoughts.

If you do get suicidal thoughts, please see help.

Here are some numbers

Sexual Side Effects

Lexapro, which is also known as escitalopram, is an SSRI that is often used to treat depression and anxiety. Some of the most common libido side effects of Lexapro are a lower libido (sex drive), trouble getting or keeping an erection (erectile dysfunction), and a delay in ejaculation.

But not all patients have these performance effects, and they may go away as time goes on. If you have a sex side effect that is severe or lasts a long time, you should talk to your doctor. They may change your medication or dosage.

Serotonin Syndrome

It’s also important to be aware of the potential for more serious side effects. Lexapro, like all antidepressants, carries a risk of serotonin syndrome.

This is a rare but serious condition that can occur when the level of serotonin in the body becomes too high.

Symptoms of serotonin syndrome include

  • high fever,
  • muscle rigidity, and
  • changes in mental state (ie delirium and confusion)

If you experience any of these symptoms while taking Lexapro, seek medical attention immediately.

In addition to the physical side effects, some patients may experience sexual side effects while taking Lexapro.

These can include decreased libido, difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection, and difficulty having an orgasm. If you experience these symptoms, speak to your doctor about adjusting your dosage or switching to a different antidepressant.

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10 Tips on Managing Escitalopram

  1. Start with a low dose and slowly increase it until you reach the recommended dose. This will keep side effects to a minimum.
  2. Stay hydrated by drinking a lot of water.
  3. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet to keep your blood sugar levels steady.
  4. Don’t drink or do drugs for fun.
  5. Get regular exercise and sleep at the same time every night.
  6. If you get side effects like feeling sick, take the drug with food.
  7. If you have side effects like trouble sleeping, take the drug in the morning.
  8. If you have sexual side effects from your medicine, talk to your doctor about switching to a different medicine or changing the amount you take.
  9. Tell your doctor if you have had seizures, bipolar disorder or mania in the past.
  10. Tell your doctor if your mood or behaviour changes in a way that worries you.

Interactions With Other medication

It’s also important to be aware that Lexapro may interact with other medications. If you are taking other medications, especially blood thinners or other antidepressants, be sure to inform your doctor before starting Lexapro.

When taking Lexapro, it’s important to be aware of the potential side effects and to notify your doctor if you experience any severe side effects or persistent symptoms. Your doctor may adjust your dosage or switch you to a different antidepressant. It’s also important to inform your doctor of any other medications you are taking.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take for It to start to work?

Lexapro might not start to take effect for a short while, but even if you don’t feel better right away, it’s important to keep taking the medicine as your doctor advised you to.

Does lexapro make you feel weird at first?

Some people may feel more anxious or agitated, while others may feel more sleepy or lethargic. Most of the time, these side effects are mild and go away after a few days to a couple of weeks as the body gets used to the medicine.

How long do initial side effects last?

Initial adverse effects of may last for a few days to a couple of weeks.

Why does Lexapro make your Mental Health worse at first?

Some people might have side effects when they first start taking Lexapro,  Some of these are nausea, drowsiness, trouble sleeping, and headaches. Some people may also feel anxious or irritable as a result . Most of the time, these are mild and go away in a few days to a couple of weeks. 

Can I drink Alcohol?

Most of the time, people taking Lexapro shouldn’t drink alcohol. Alcohol can increase the risk of side effects and may make the medicine less effective.

Can I drive or use heavy equipment?

You shouldn’t drive or use heavy equipment until you know how Lexapro makes you feel. Some people may get drowsiness or dizziness.

Will It make me gain weight?

Taking Lexapro might cause you to put on weight. Talk to your doctor if you gain weight while taking the medicine.

Can I take It if I’m pregnant or nursing my baby?

Most of the time, you shouldn’t take Lexapro if you are pregnant or breastfeeding because we don’t know how it will affect a developing baby or a baby who is fed by the mother.

Will I get hooked on it?

Lexapro is not thought to turn into a habit or be highly addictive. But, like any other medicine, you should only take it as your doctor tells you and not stop taking it all of a sudden.

What do I do if I forget to take It?

If you forget to take your Lexapro, take it as soon as you think about it. If your next dose is coming up soon, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule.

What should I do if It makes me sick in any way?

Talk to your doctor if you feel sick, tired, or have changes in your appetite or weight. They may adjust your dosage or switch you to a different medication.


In general, Lexapro is a safe and effective medication for treating mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety.

If you experience any severe or persistent side effects, seek medical attention immediately. If you are experiencing symptoms such as suicidal thoughts, please seek immediate medical attention or call 911.

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Further Reading

  1. The U.S. National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus page on escitalopram (Lexapro):
  2. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) page on escitalopram (Lexapro):
  3. The U.S. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) page on medications for mental health conditions:

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