Lexapro is a drug used to treat mental health conditions like depression and anxiety. But can Lexapro get you high? Read on to learn more.

Table of Contents

What is Lexapro?

Lexapro is a drug used to treat mental health conditions like depression and anxiety. But can Lexapro get you high? Read on to learn more.

Also known as escitalopram, Lexapro is a drug prescribed to help treat anxiety, depression, and even some symptoms of addiction. It belongs to a class of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), and it works by balancing levels of serotonin in the brain to increase feelings of wellness.1


Contact Profound Treatment to Learn More

Our team is standing by to discuss treatment options with you. Your call is completely confidential and no obligation is required.

Is Lexapro Addictive?

A common question we receive is, “Can Lexapro get you high?” Lexapro is not considered an addictive drug. However, some people may take more than the prescribed dose, or they may take it recreationally without a prescription. In these instances, a physical addiction to the Lexapro high can occur. If the drug is abused in this way, dependence will likely develop. 

A Lexapro addiction is not as common as addiction to other prescribed drugs and narcotics. However, it is possible for an addiction to form, especially if an individual uses it outside of how it was prescribed.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Lexapro Addiction and Abuse?

Signs and symptoms for Lexapro addiction can look different for everyone, but there are some similarities.

Common Indications its time to undergo drug detox for Lexapro Misuse

Some of the most common warning signs of Lexapro abuse include:
  • Taking larger doses of Lexapro than necessary
  • Faking symptoms of depression or anxiety to get Lexapro from a doctor 
  • Seeing multiple doctors to get Lexapro prescriptions 
  • Having severe mood swings
  • Having trouble sleeping at night
  • Appearing high or sedated, especially since Lexapro could produce a calming effect 
  • Pretending to lose prescriptions to get early refills
  • Needing more Lexapro pills to experience the same effects they used to provide
  • Isolating oneself from friends and family
  • Hiding Lexapro use from loved ones 
  • Lack of interest in hobbies and activities they used to enjoy, which is also a symptom of depression

Side Effects of Lexapro

Lexapro side effects can include:
  • Weight Gain: Lexapro boosts serotonin, which is involved in weight regulation. Your appetite may also increase as your anxiety and depression is reduced.2
  • Insomnia: Although Lexapro is supposed to improve sleep, 10% of patients report experiencing insomnia when taking it.3
  • Emotional Numbness: Lexapro and other antidepressants have been known to cause emotional numbness.4
  • Suicidal Thoughts: These thoughts are most prevalent in children, teens, and young adults and are most likely to occur when you start treatment or have a dosage change. 
  • Nausea: Nausea is a common Lexapro side effect, but it usually goes away as your body gets used to the medication.
  • Diarrhea: This is a rarer side effect, but it also usually goes away on its own relatively shortly. 
  • Dry Mouth: Dry mouth typically subsides as your body gets used to the drug. 
  • Somnolence: Lexapro’s calming effects may lead to increased drowsiness. 
  • Headache: Headaches may occur when you first take Lexapro, but they usually go away in the first week. 
  • Backache: Back pain rarely occurs with Lexapro use, but it can happen.
  • Rhinitis: Rhinitis is a swelling of the mucous membrane in the nose that may occur when taking certain antidepressants.

"Am I an Addict?" Quiz

Click here to take the self-assessment.

How Do People Get Addicted To Lexapro?

While Lexapro isn’t typically associated with addiction, misuse can lead to physical dependence. Misuse can involve taking larger doses than prescribed, or using the medication more frequently or longer than intended. Over time, tolerance may develop, meaning larger doses are needed for the same effect. This can turn into physical dependence, where the body requires the drug to function normally.

Lexapro should only be stopped under medical supervision to avoid withdrawal symptoms like dizziness, anxiety, and confusion. Psychological addiction is less common but may occur, especially in those with a history of substance misuse.

If you’re concerned about potential Lexapro addiction, consult a healthcare provider. Treatment typically involves gradually reducing the medication dose to minimize withdrawal symptoms, along with therapy to address the issues leading to medication misuse.

How Does Lexapro Make You Feel?

Lexapro increases the levels of serotonin in the brain. This is a neurotransmitter associated with mood regulation. For many, Lexapro brings about feelings of calm, eases anxiety and depression symptoms, and improves sleep patterns. Some users report increased focus and energy levels.

So, when pondering whether can Lexapro get you high or not, in general, it does help to improve feelings of well-being, reduce worry, and ease depression. However, the way Lexapro makes someone feel differs significantly from person to person and depends on factors such as the dosage, the individual’s physiology, and the specifics of their mental health condition.

It’s important to note that Lexapro doesn’t usually cause immediate changes. The full benefits are often not felt until the medication has been taken consistently for several weeks. Some people may experience side effects such as nausea, dry mouth, insomnia, weight changes, or a feeling of emotional numbness. These are generally temporary and should subside as the body adjusts to the medication. If they persist or are bothersome, consulting with a healthcare provider is important.

Can You Get High on Lexapro?

Can you get high off Lexapro? In a sense, yes. The term “high” is often used to describe the euphoria or intense pleasure experienced from drugs like opioids or certain illicit substances. Lexapro, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), doesn’t typically produce these sensations. However, in some rare cases, users may report feeling euphoric or unusually energetic, especially when starting the medication or taking it in higher doses than prescribed.

This doesn’t represent the therapeutic effect of the drug, which is aimed at easing symptoms of depression and anxiety over time. Rather, these feelings might indicate an over-activation of the serotonin system in the brain, which could lead to a potentially fatal condition known as serotonin syndrome.

It’s crucial to understand that using Lexapro to seek a “high,” or taking more than the prescribed dose, is considered misuse of the medication. This can increase the risk of side effects, dependency, and potential overdose. Always discuss any changes in medication regimen with a healthcare provider, and seek immediate medical help if you’re experiencing symptoms from misuse, such as agitation, hallucinations, or rapid heartbeat.

What Happens If You Snort Lexapro?

Snorting Lexapro, or any medication not intended for such use, is highly dangerous and strongly discouraged. This method of administration is not medically approved and can result in harmful effects.

Lexapro is designed to be absorbed slowly into the bloodstream through the digestive system, a process that snorting bypasses. This can cause the drug to enter the bloodstream too quickly and at high concentrations, leading to a high risk of severe side effects such as serotonin syndrome, a potentially deadly condition that occurs when there’s too much serotonin in the brain.

Serotonin syndrome symptoms range from mild to severe, including agitation, hallucinations, rapid heartbeat, fever, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, and potentially even seizures.

Snorting Lexapro can also damage nasal passages and the respiratory system, leading to chronic problems such as nosebleeds, loss of smell, difficulty breathing, and an increased risk of lung infections. Furthermore, it significantly increases the risk of overdose. For these reasons, our response to the question, can you get high off of Lexapro the answer is yes – but abusing or snorting the drug can lead to life-threatening results.


While Lexapro is not typically associated with a “high” in the way that substances like opioids or benzodiazepines might be, some people report a feeling of euphoria or increased energy, particularly when starting the medication or taking it in high doses.

Once again, it’s important to note that these feelings do not represent the intended therapeutic effect of the drug, which is to alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression over a prolonged period. Instead, these sensations may represent an over-activation of the brain’s serotonin system, potentially leading to serotonin syndrome, which can be dangerous.

Using Lexapro to seek a “high” or taking more than the prescribed dose is a misuse of the medication, and it can increase the risk of side effects, dependency, and potential overdose.  Any changes in how you take your medication should always be discussed with your healthcare provider first.

Anyone who feels high from Lexapro, especially if they’re taking it without a prescription or in higher doses than prescribed, should seek medical help immediately. The misuse of prescription medication can lead to serious health risks and potential legal consequences.

Lexapro Withdrawal Symptoms

When you stop taking Lexapro, you may experience certain withdrawal signs. These will be detailed below.

Lexapro Withdrawal During Detox California

Symptoms include:
  • Vivid or Disturbing Dreams: Detoxing from Lexapro can cause your blood sugar to drop at night, so you are likely to have nightmares. 
  • Excessive Sweating: Detox can cause our body temperature to either raise or drop. Sweating helps regulate body temperature and is a common side effect of detoxing. 
  • Vomiting: Vomiting is a sign that your body is working to rid itself of toxins. 
  • Tremors: Tremors occur because the body gets hyperactive when the depressant is no longer in its system. 
  • Irritability/Agitation: When Lexapro leaves the system, the body does not know how to self-regulate emotions, so irritability and agitation may occur. 
  • Confusion: It is common for people to get confused during withdrawal. 
  • Dizziness: Lexapro may lead to dehydration, causing you to become dizzy during the detox process. 
  • Irregular Heartbeat: Detoxing can affect heart rate and may lead to heart issues.
  • Depression and Anxiety: Lexapro works to control depression and anxiety. It’s likely these emotions will come back strong as the drug leaves your system. 
  • Electric Shock: This feeling can be present in the legs, arms, and brain. When Lexapro leaves the body, it can cause feelings of physical shock in various parts of the body. 

Get Detox and Addiction Treatment in California for Lexapro Addiction

Can Lexapro Get You High

Profound Treatment get you the help you or your loved one may need if you’re struggling with a Lexapro addiction. We offer residential inpatient drug rehab, where patients will check into our residential facility, undergo therapy and receive daily medical care. Detoxing from drugs can be dangerous, which is why it’s safest to do so at a medical facility like Profound.

We also offer sober living facilities, which have temporary housing, therapy, and job skill training. Community 12-Step program groups are where patients may undergo 12-step group therapy at any point in the recovery process. This is a group therapy that focuses on 12 steps of the recovery process. We also provide aftercare, which is where patients will continue to receive support to ensure they maintain sobriety and help to prevent any potential future relapses. You will also learn certain skills and coping techniques to help if you are ever in a difficult situation in the future.

Lexapro addiction is not easy to deal with, but a Profound Treatment will get you the help you need. Call us to find out how we can assist you in moving on to enjoying the health and happiness you deserve.

"Am I a High-Functioning Alcoholic" Quiz