Viagra ( Sildenafil )
Cialis is a treatment for erectile dysfunction in men. It comes in 4 different doses which are taken in different ways and under different circumstances. The dose of Cialis refers to how much of the active ingredient ‘tadalafil’ is in them.
Last reviewed: 18/10/2019 by Dr Simran Deo
What are the doses of Cialis?
You can get Cialis in four different doses:
2.5mg: small white pills with ‘2.5mg’ written on them
5mg: small light orange pills with ‘5mg’ written on them
10mg: large light orange pills with ‘10mg’ written on them
20mg: large dark orange pills with ‘20mg’ written on them
The lower doses (2.5mg and 5mg) are usually prescribed for ‘daily’ use, and the higher two doses (10mg and 20mg) can be taken as required or ‘on demand’. This means you take them at least 30mins before you plan to have sex, instead of the same time every day.
The dose is the amount of the active drug ingredient ‘tadalafil’ inside each tablet. 5mg is the standard dose for Cialis Daily, and 10mg is the standard dose for on demand Cialis.
About Cialis 10mg
If you have sex on up to 3 different days a week, and you’ve never tried Cialis before, this is usually the first dose of Cialis that’s recommended. It’s known as the ‘standard dose’:
10mg Cialis is taken as you need it (on demand), at least half an hour before sex
It can last for up to 36 hours
This dosage works for most people who try it and has a lower risk of Cialis side effects than the higher on demand dose, 20mg
This dose comes in pack sizes of 4, 8, 12, 16, and 28 tablets from Superdrug Online Doctor
About Cialis 20mg
If 10mg doesn’t work the dose can be doubled to the ‘maximum daily dose’ in the UK of 20mg. This dose is normally only recommended if you tried the 10mg dose and you didn’t see the effect you wanted, and you also didn’t get any side effects.
Like 10mg Cialis, 20mg Cialis is taken as you need it (on demand), at least half an hour before sex
It also lasts for the same amount of time, up to 36 hours
This dose can work for some people who didn’t see enough of an effect from 10mg, but it is also more likely to cause side effects
This dose also comes in pack sizes of 4, 8, 12, 16, and 28 tablets from Superdrug Online Doctor
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About Cialis Daily 2.5mg and 5mg
If you have sex on more than 3 different days in a week, taking a daily dose of Cialis might be a good idea. This comes in 2 doses like Cialis on demand, but the higher dose of 5mg is the standard one.
5mg is taken once a day at the same time
As long as you take every dose, you should always see the effects
If 5mg works fine for you but you get side effects, then you can switch to 2.5mg, which works the same way but has a lower risk of side effects
Both doses come in pack sizes of 28 tablets from Superdrug Online Doctor
Are there higher doses, like 40mg or 60mg?
Higher doses are only available for erectile dysfunction in the US. In the UK the max limit is a 20mg dose for treating erectile dysfunction.
Higher doses of Cialis have a much higher risk of side effects, because blood pressure is affected and the amount of Cialis in your body can build up over time. Because of this, higher doses of Cialis are not available in the UK for erectile dysfunction and there doesn’t seem to be any plans to bring out higher doses in future.
40mg of tadalafil is used in some situations to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension, but only under specialist supervision because of the risks.
How often can you take a dose of Cialis?
All doses can be taken up to once a day. You should never take more than 1 Cialis tablet every 24 hours.
Think about switching to Cialis Daily if:
- You find you are taking the higher on-demand doses (10mg or 20mg) on more than 3 different days in a week.
- You are ‘topping up’ after 24 hours. The on-demand doses (10mg and 20mg) work for up to 36 hours, so if the doses overlap this can lead to higher amounts in the bloodstream which may lead to more side effects.
- You find the effects of Cialis wear off before 24 hours are up and you want to have sex again.
How often can I take Cialis?
If you’ve never tried Cialis before and you have sex up to 3 different days a week, you could start with 10mg on demand.
If you’ve never tried Cialis before and you have sex on more than 3 different days a week, you could start with 5mg daily.
If you’ve tried 10mg and you haven’t seen the effect you wanted, and you didn’t have side effects, you could try 20mg
If you’ve tried 5mg and you saw the effect you wanted, but you also got side effects, you could try 2.5mg
Cialis isn’t right for everyone. If you have certain medical conditions or you’re taking certain medications then you might not be able to try any dose of Cialis. Also, if your erection problems are only occasional, and don’t happen at least half the time you have sex, then Cialis treatment might not be right for you either.
What if my current dose isn’t working?
If you’re on 2.5mg or 10mg and you haven’t had any problems with side effects, then the dose can be increased to see if that has a better effect. You will need to discuss this with your doctor before making any changes though.
If you’re on a daily dose of 5mg then a higher on demand dosage might be worth trying, after first discussing with your doctor.
If 20mg of Cialis doesn’t work for you, you may have to try a different medication. Or, you could try combining Cialis with some other treatments like lifestyle changes, counselling, penis pumps, or therapy. You should never combine Cialis with any other erectile dysfunction medication, or take more than the recommended daily dosage.
How do Cialis doses compare with Viagra ones?
Cialis and Viagra have different active ingredients in them that make them work. So, the doses of Cialis and Viagra are not related and you can’t compare the number of mg to figure out which might be more effective (e.g. 20mg of Viagra wouldn’t be the same as 20mg of Cialis).
Viagra is only available in three on demand doses with no daily dose available. Usually you begin at the middle dose of 50mg then you move up if you don’t see the effects you want, or down if you get side effects, like Cialis.
There are only two on demand Cialis products available, so you can only begin on the lowest and get moved up if you don’t see the effect you want and don’t get side effects. This should only be done after checking with a doctor first.