View Full Version : Medication and long term organizational habits


Gamer28
12-17-11, 12:38 AM
Hey all,

I have just started taking Vyvanse to help with my adhd, but after doing some research and reading about peoples experiences with different stimulant medications I have become a little more hesitant about continuing medication long term. I may have positive experiences with it short term and bad long term, I am not sure. So, if it would sound like a good idea to maybe use the time I take the meds as a time to create organizational habits and such that will help me with my symptoms after I am off the medication. I am in college and I am hoping the medication will help me with the up coming semester, especially with the calculus class I got a D in and have to retake. However, like I mentioned I really would not like to be dependent on the medication long term. Has anyone trieda similar approach and used their ability with the meds to concentrate and create good habits that have helped them down the road? If so, what have they been, and how did you do it? Thanks!

StoicNate
12-17-11, 12:49 AM
Most people who have ADHD take meds their whole life. ADHD rarely ever disappears.

You can talk to a lot of members on here who have been on meds for years and haven't had any negative long-term effects.

There's no need to worry about meds unless you have a diagnosed unstable heart condition. You can go to a Cardiologist to make sure your heart is 100% ok.

sarahsweets
12-17-11, 06:18 AM
Gamer :I've I guess I'm confused as to why you would only need meds on a temporary basis. Are your impairments strictly related to school or is it your entire life. Being dependent on meditation is #1 not the same as abuse, addiction, or taking more than prescribed and #2 doesn't automatically fix everything thats ever been difficult for you and #3 is no worse then a diabetic using insulin, a bipolar person taking a mood stabilizer and also the same thing as someone with poor eyesight using glasses. If medication improves your ability to function in every part of your life then it should be taken everyday and even for a lifetime.

Canuck223
12-17-11, 08:34 AM
Medication is only part of treatment. You need to fill that tool box.

If you cope well without meds, but see a need for increased focus temporarily, I can see your point but I might suggest you take a minute to evaluate your strategy.

This train of though suggests to me that you know you could benefit from meds, but are willing to struggle a bit more most of the time to avoid taking them. It's a personal choice, and you are the only person who opinion counts in the matter.

My suggestion is to stick with the meds for a month and make a serious effort to keep your other coping strategies on tap. Review your decision at the end of the month.

tortilaman
01-25-12, 05:13 AM
Hey all,

I have just started taking Vyvanse to help with my adhd, but after doing some research and reading about peoples experiences with different stimulant medications I have become a little more hesitant about continuing medication long term. I may have positive experiences with it short term and bad long term, I am not sure. So, if it would sound like a good idea to maybe use the time I take the meds as a time to create organizational habits and such that will help me with my symptoms after I am off the medication. I am in college and I am hoping the medication will help me with the up coming semester, especially with the calculus class I got a D in and have to retake. However, like I mentioned I really would not like to be dependent on the medication long term. Has anyone trieda similar approach and used their ability with the meds to concentrate and create good habits that have helped them down the road? If so, what have they been, and how did you do it? Thanks!

Most people who have ADHD take meds their whole life. ADHD rarely ever disappears.

You can talk to a lot of members on here who have been on meds for years and haven't had any negative long-term effects.

There's no need to worry about meds unless you have a diagnosed unstable heart condition. You can go to a Cardiologist to make sure your heart is 100% ok.
I think it is important for you to approach this particular topic from the right frame of reference. One of many that I think would be helpful for you is the "chemistry definition" of what ADHD is. Chemically speaking, ADHD is improper brain chemistry, one of the pieces of that is lower dopamine levels. This isn't something that goes away. Your desire to not use medication is a valid one, as some of the stories you find about stimulant medication can be scary.

I'm in the UC Berkeley area, and just the other day, I saw an article in the school newspaper essentially coaching people on how to recreationally use Adderall (while we're in the middle of a shortage). My point is that generally from what I have seen, people who have bad experiences have not taken the time to make sure they are on the right medication, or the right dosage, or just plain aren't actually trying to treat the whole problem, they're just trying to put a band-aid on it, and thus they are using their medication wrong.

As StoicNate said, there are many people here who have been using stimulants for years, and they do just fine with them. My psychiatrist has been specializing in add for 24 years, prescribing stimulants the whole time, he's been seeing people for years and they're still coming.

Also, as Canuck said, medication is only part of the toolbox, the people that you hear stories about weren't using it as a tool, it was their toolbox. As long as you're smart and genuinely trying to improve whatever solution you find will work.

Miss Rose
05-24-12, 04:07 PM
The problem I find is that without medication, I forget to use the organizational strategies. One school example is a weekly planner... I may write everything down, but without meds I'll never get around to doing what's on the list.

Something you might consider if you really don't want to take drugs is finding something else that helps. For me that's exercise - several hours a day and I can manage almost all my symptoms. Obviously it doesn't work for everyone, and it's a much less practical solution in a lot of ways.

speculative
06-05-12, 09:01 AM
However, like I mentioned I really would not like to be dependent on the medication long term. Has anyone trieda similar approach and used their ability with the meds to concentrate and create good habits that have helped them down the road?

Some neurological features of add that could make organization difficult, such as selective input, filtering, and output, won't be cured by good habits. I have had success with neurofeedback in addition to meds, and my counselor has suggested I may be able to lessen my meds through neurofeedback. Mindfulness practices have recently been shown to help somewhat also...