Hi MSW, and welcome to Anxiety Zone! My name is Chuck, and I am one of the Global Moderators here on the site.
You are now a member of our community, where you will find support and advice from other members in similar situations. It's always nice to find someone else who understands, and to know you're not alone.
We have sections in the forum that address specific concerns, so feel free to post or start a new topic in the section that best fits your situation. Feel free to explore the rest of the forum. You may find the other topics helpful, and you may be able to offer advice or support to someone else.
We also have a chat room for members over the age of 18. Once you have made three meaningful posts, you will be allowed access to the chat room.
It's funny how in life, we more often hear the bad news that happens, and seldom the good. If you watch 30 minutes of one of the four major network's world news, you will most likely hear 25 minutes of bad news, followed by a few minutes of a feel good story that is suppose to make it all better.
The use of anti-depressants are the same. But I believe that for every negative story you hear about them, there are dozens of positive stories that never get told. I am one of those positive stories.
Lexapro is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), and it is a good one. I am on Celexa, which is Lexapro's sister drug. They are basically the same drug, with some slight differences. I have been on 20 mg of Celexa for five months now, and I would say that I'm 90% better, and have many windows where I feel completely normal
With anxiety disorders, MSW, it is a good idea to start at a low dose of a SSRI anti-depressant, and increase it over a period of time. For Lexapro, it is suggested to start at no greater than 5 mg. One can increase the drug to 10 mg after 1-2 weeks. This helps to keep side effects down.
Regarding side effects, some individuals don't have any, some have a few mild ones, and other more severe, but the side effects don't last long. I had a number of side effects when I started the Celexa. They were not pleasant, but they were tolerable, and knowing they wouldn't last, really helped. Sure enough, on day 16-17 into my treatment, I had a dramatic reduction in all my side effects.
By the way, the number of "mg" varies from anti-depressant to anti-depressant. For instance, 10 mg of Lexapro is equal to 20 mg of Celexa, and 10 mg of Lexapro is considered the lowest, therapeutic dose (it's 20 mg for Celexa).
If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
Again, welcome to Anxiety Zone, MSW. The very best to you!... Chuck