Does Lexapro fatigue go away? (5 Tips)

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In this blog, we will answer the question, “Does lexapro fatigue go away?. Lexapro is one of the most commonly used antidepressants and is considered as the safest option to cure depression, but it still comes with side effects, one of which include fatigue or tiredness. 

Does Lexapro fatigue go away? 

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Yes, lexapro induced fatigue starts to fade away within a few weeks of your treatment. You just need to give your body enough time to adjust to the medicine. 

Antidepressants don’t work overnight. These meds alter the amounts of excitatory neurotransmitters in your brain and they need sufficient time to do that. 

Why does lexapro cause fatigue? 

Lexapro, brand name for escitalopram, belongs to the class of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It inhibits the reuptake of serotonin from the synaptic cleft and increases its availability in your brain. 

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter (a chemical) released by our brain which is responsible for modulating mood, cognition, reward, learning, memory, and various other psychological processes.

Now, a drug, once inside your body, does not only act on a single kind of receptors. It acts on other mediators as well, which is the root cause of producing unwanted side effects. 

Antidepressants often stimulate other receptors and mediators, including histamine and acetylcholine, which sometimes lead to unpleasant side effects such as dry mouth, blurry vision, weight gain, and tiredness.

How to avoid lexapro induced fatigue? 

There’s no certain way to avoid lexapro induced side effects. Medications react differently in different individuals and it’s even hard to predict what kinds of side effects it will end up producing. However, you can adjust the timing at which you take your medication. 

If lexapro causes fatigue during the day, try taking it at night. This way you will have sufficient energy levels during the day and at night, you can simply fall asleep after taking your med and avoid facing lexapro induced fatigue. 

What to avoid when you’re fatigued? 

It’s best to avoid certain activities when you lack physical and mental energy. These include:

Driving 

Do not drive when you’re fatigued. Driving requires your full physical and mental alertness and it’s in your best interest to avoid it when you’re tired and have low energy levels. If there’s somewhere you need to be, just ask a friend to drop you or book a ride. 

Driving without full mental alertness can cause accidents. It not only puts you in danger, but others around you as well. Make sure you stay out of trouble. 

Operating machinery 

If you’re an employee in some factory where you are supposed to operate heavy machinery, don’t! Your fatigue might cause an accident and can make you or others around you severely injured. 

Drinking alcohol or taking any sedative

Make sure you’re not taking any other medication that might be contributing to your tiredness. Do not drink alcohol, or you’ll end up dulling your senses even more. Alcohol itself is responsible for causing fatigue and drowsiness. It clouds your mind and messes up with your mental alertness. 

5 ways to get rid of lexapro induced fatigue faster

There are a few things you can do to counteract lexapro fatigue. You can increase your energy levels, mood and mental alertness by the following remedies:

Avoid sedentary lifestyle and stay active

Sedentary lifestyle can surely contribute to your fatigue and staying active is the best way to fight against it. Make sure you workout at least 3 to 4 times a week. Exercise releases happy chemicals in your brain. It not only makes you feel good, but also spikes your energy levels. 

Morning workout is considered most efficient in increasing your energy levels and mental alertness throughout the day. Go for a walk or do 10 minutes of high intensity interval training (HITT). 

It not only helps you to overcome fatigue caused by lexapro, but it also helps you counteract other side effects that you might have. Some of the best exercises to enhance your physical and mental energy levels include:

  • Yoga
  • Pilates
  • Tai Chi
  • Resistance strength training

Have a good night’s sleep 

When you start taking your med at night/bedtime, make sure that it’s the last thing you do. Do not engage in any other activity after that. Just lie down and drift off to sleep. 

Centers for disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suggests following tips to make your sleep quality better than it is now. These include:

  • Try to go to bed at the same time every day, working days as well as weekends. 
  • Make sure your bedroom is always quiet, dark, relaxing, and at a comfortable temperature to help you relax and make your sleep quality better.
  • Do not use electronic devices or gadgets before going to bed. They reduce your sleep quality. Make sure you remove such devices from your room or switch them off.
  • Avoid large meals, caffeine, and alcohol before bedtime. They will only ruin your sleep quality.
  • Stay active. Exercise can help relax your muscles and make your sleep quality better.

Go for a high protein breakfast 

Proteins are the building blocks of your body. It’s necessary to incorporate them in your diet. You can try making scrambled eggs for breakfast. Other protein rich options include:

  • Lentils
  • Quinoa 
  • Nut
  • Fish
  • Chickpeas 
  • Green peas
  • Cottage cheese 
  • Tofu
  • Almond
  • Poultry
  • Beef
  • Soy protein 
  • Chia seeds
  • Milk 
  • Legumes 
  • Beans
  • Peanuts

Limit alcohol and caffeine 

Caffeine can affect your sleep by keeping you awake for a longer period of time and can compromise your alertness the next day. The Food and Drug Authority (FDA) recommends no more than 400 milligrams (about four or five cups of coffee) per day. 

In addition, caffeine’s half-life can range from 2-12 hours, so try to avoid drinking coffee or any other caffeinated beverage within six hours of bedtime. 

Stay hydrated 

Drink plenty of water. Water clears out toxins from your body. Try making a detox water by adding your favourite fruits in it. You can add lemon, cucumber, kiwi, oranges, berries, ginger etc, to make drinking water less boring. 

This will not only add taste, but also makes your water nutritious and full of antioxidants. 

When to call your doctor 

Inform your healthcare provider as soon as you can if you experience the following symptoms:

  • Extreme fatigue 
  • Blackouts
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness 
  • Hypersomnia 
  • Weakness 
  • Inability to move or walk
  • Delirium or confusion 
  • Inability to maintain balance
  • Hallucination 

Lexapro induced side effects usually begin to subside within 2 to 3 weeks of treatment, but some serious side effects persist. In such cases, it is very important to seek medical help. 

Conclusion 

In this blog post, we have discussed lexapro induced fatigue. We have also discussed how this side effect is commonly reported in the majority of the population taking lexapro for the first few weeks of treatment. 

Antidepressants are not easy to begin with. They need time to start producing its effects and your body needs time to adjust to it, after which your side effects begin to subside. 

We have also discussed some ways to help relieve your fatigue and boost your energy levels. Just make sure you’re at the right dose of lexapro. 

FAQs: does lexapro fatigue go away

How long does fatigue last with Lexapro?

Lexapro induced fatigue begins to subside within 2 to 3 weeks of treatment. Make sure you properly take your med and give your body enough time to adjust to it. It is not recommended to stop your treatment halfway. 

How can I stop Lexapro fatigue?

  • Avoid a sedentary lifestyle and stay active. Make sure you workout at least 3 to 4 times a week. Exercise releases happy chemicals in your brain. It not only makes you feel good, but also spikes your energy levels. 
  • Make sure you have a proper sleep pattern. Not getting enough sleep can make your fatigue even worse. 
  • Go for a high protein breakfast. Proteins are the building blocks of your body. It’s necessary to incorporate them in your diet.
  • Drink plenty of water. Water clears out toxins from your body. 
  • Avoid excessive caffeine and alcohol. 

How long does it take to adjust to Lexapro?

The time taken to adjust to lexapro varies from person to person. Some people start adjusting to the med within 5 to 6 weeks, while others can take upto 14 weeks. 

What are the most common side effects of lexapro? 

Common side effects of Lexapro include:

  • Insomnia 
  • Constipation or diarrhoea
  • Sexual issues
  • Loss of appetite or anorexia
  • Vertigo 
  • Decreased salivation or dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Anxiety 
  • Infections caused by decreased immunity
  • Nausea
  • Shaking
  • Weakness
  • Sleepiness and fatigue

Is it better to take Lexapro in the morning or at night?

The ideal time of lexapro should be recommended by your healthcare provider, according to your side effects and the kind of lifestyle you have. 

  • If it causes insomnia, morning is preferred.
  • If it causes drowsiness, night time is preferred.
  • If it causes nausea, night time is preferred.
  • If it causes urinary problems, morning is preferred.
  • If it causes loss of libido, morning is preferred.

Can lexapro cause serious side effects?

Some serious and rare side effects include:

  • Angle-closure glaucoma causes symptoms like eye pain, vision changes, or swelling or redness in your eyes.
  • It can cause low sodium levels which can result in psychological symptoms like confusion, agitation, inability to understand surroundings, memory loss etc.
  • It could cause low sodium levels which can result in psychological symptoms like confusion, agitation, inability to understand surroundings, memory loss etc.
  • It can cause elongation of QT interval, causing increased heartbeat or arrhythmia
  • Teeth grinding
  • It may also put you at an increased risk for dangerous bleeding, especially when taken with medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), warfarin (an anticoagulant medication), or other anticoagulants. 

References

https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/116610
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