Hi Drew... My name is Chuck and I am one of the Global Moderators here on Anxiety Zone.
I am on Celexa (Citalopram), which is the sister drug to Lexapro. I have been on Celexa for a little over six months now, and it has really helped me tremendously.
Both Lexapro and Celexa are in the classification of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI's). When one initially starts therapy with a SSRI anti-depressant, serotonin level throughout the body are increased. In the brain, this often times will actually increase anxiety and/or panic attack. Over several weeks, the body will adjust to the AD and the increase in serotonin levels, and the anxiety/panic attacks will return to baseline, their level prior to starting medication.
I had a number of unpleasant start-up side effects when I started Celexa. On day 16-17 into my treatment, those side effects diminished rapidly.
About three weeks into my treatment, I noticed a decrease in the small amount of depression I was having, and also negative thoughts subsided greatly. My panic attacks also became much less severe. I didn't really notice a change in my anxiety until around week ten of therapy. This is not unusual, as anti-depressants take from 3-12 weeks to work, with one seeing degrees of improvement during that time, and beyond. Anti-depressants are not a quick fix, but in time, they have really helped me.
Drew, I just wanted to add that for Lexapro, 10 mg is considered the lowest therapeutic dose. Many individuals start off at a lower dose, which helps to keep side effects down, but one needs at least 10 mg for Lexapro for it to work properly. Maximum dose is 20 mg, although I have heard of individual being on higher dosages.
I hope this information helps you.
The very best to you, Drew!... Chuck