View Full Version : Concerta


Roundmouth
02-16-16, 05:48 AM
Prologue: Got my diagnosis at the end of september 2015 and was told that there was a risk I'd might have until november before meeting a doctor and have medications prescribed. One or two month sounded like a long time but I decided to be brave. Four months after diagnosis I still hadn't heard from them and called them. They promised me to look at it... A few days later I got a letter: 23/3 I was welcome. FFFFFFFFFFFF. I collapsed and called them like a full-scale Drama Queen, said that I can't handle life and I can't be drunk for six weeks. This is about the first time in my life I've experienced feeling mentally bad. Well, we may have a time later this week.

The doctor seemed hesistant to prescribing CS now that I seemed to be close to deep depression, but in the end I got 30 x 18 mg Concerta. Taking them is a bit painful though... 18 is a very low dose (for reasons, I know), so I get more or less no effect at all. My mood is changed to the better for some four or five hours, but then it wears out and problems come back. I also experience some muscular relaxation, but only for a few hours. At work the medication wears out when I would actually need it, so I tried taking it around 12 instead of in the morning.

So at this dose I feel there are more problems than benefits. I actually tried 36 yesterday and had some of the effect I've been hoping for. But this means I can't take anything today, otherwise I'll run out of pills to early. Until the dose is increased, I'll probably take 36 when I work and nothing on my free days.

sarahsweets
02-16-16, 06:47 AM
A few days later I got a letter: 23/3 I was welcome. FFFFFFFFFFFF. I collapsed and called them like a full-scale Drama Queen, said that I can't handle life and I can't be drunk for six weeks. This is about the first time in my life I've experienced feeling mentally bad. Well, we may have a time later this week.
I dont know what 23/3means. Why do you feel like your other option is drinking? I feel like I am missing something.

So at this dose I feel there are more problems than benefits. I actually tried 36 yesterday and had some of the effect I've been hoping for. But this means I can't take anything today, otherwise I'll run out of pills to early. Until the dose is increased, I'll probably take 36 when I work and nothing on my free days.
You should not alter your dose on your own, especially if you are experiencing bad side effects. I know its tempting to handle it yourself but in the end you arent the doctor and it could be considered misuse.
Have you considered another type of medication, perhaps from the amphetamine class of drugs. Some people dont do well on methylphenidate type drugs.`

Roundmouth
02-16-16, 08:31 AM
23/3 is the 23:d of March. I had no bad side effects, the bad thing was medicine wearing out. The doctor won't know anything about exactly how I use the medication, as long as the thirty pills lasts for thirty days.

In this part of the world amphetamine isn't prescribed unless three different other medications have failed. Yes I asked for amphetamine. However, the problem now mainly is too low dose.

Roundmouth
03-24-16, 07:41 AM
So now finally it seems like I'm getting somewhere.

After five days on 18 mg I called the doctor and told him I had no effect at all. He actually thought it was a bit to early but he agreed to raising to 36. 36 also was too low, it made me tired at work and went out of my system too fast. Slow and tired until 13:00, then normal symptoms returned and at 17:00 I became hyperactive, more than usually. So I did save the medication for situations where it was really necessary, then I added another 18 when the first one left my system.

After three weeks on 36 it was time for a higher dose. On 54 I actually noticed some difference that could be evaluated. The doctor's idea was that 54 mg per day should be enough for the next two months or something, but effect wearing out was still a problem. After only two weaks I called again and got 18 for the afternoon.

My overall impression so far is positive. Already on the starting dose I noticed calmness and better sleep as long as the effect lasted. 36 was a bit more of everything and the peaks even made activity a slight bit easier. But I drowned between the peaks and when the effect started wearing out. At 54 I feel somewhat medicated, especially at the tops of the effect. I'm more aware of my heartbeat but blood pressure seems to be fine. However, if it makes it easier activating myself, I can live with that feeling. I still don't notice any improvement on my ability to focus. A few times I've experienced that I can actually listen to a person speaking. Maybe a higher dose would make an improvement, but I don't feel that I could handle more effect than this right now.

More than anything it's probably a pedagogic process. Nothing will come free, I need to learn how to use the effect of the drug. My executive functioning is so poor that I've never actually used it at all... I've always found other ways. Like impulsivity compensating for ordinary starting function; over-focus when I can't concentrate in a normal way; hyper-activity to save myself from drowning.

I'll give it a year or so to evaluate the effects. Find out if it's at least more positive than negative. If not, I'll need to figure out some other way of handling things.

Roundmouth
04-15-16, 02:22 PM
Next step was increasing the afternoon dose from 18 to 36. The doctor granted me this. He seemed to be very hesistant on this. I really had no specific reason for this, other than higher functioning and better life quality. His opinion is that I should instead find cognitive tools to handle my problems.

54 + 36 is definitly not enough, but I don't believe he'll agree to raise above that. I'll meet the nurse again early in May. By then I've been on this 54 morning dose for eight weeks and had time to stabilize on that level and evaluate. Raising it to 72 shouldn't be such big affair? I still don't get sufficient effect and I don't really have any side effects so far. Well, I have a feeling it will be a very big affair.

aeon
04-15-16, 08:35 PM
I used to be 54mg + 54mg of Concerta.

Worked well, except for the anxiety, so I left it behind.


Cheers,
Ian

Roundmouth
04-26-16, 03:09 AM
I now have an idea and a wish to try a combination of slow dextro-amphetamine and fast racemic methylphenidate. Intuition says it might be the right mix, but the psychos will probably like that idea. That's not how it's usually done and therefore it's a bad idea. I have some idea that no specific drug would be optimal, but that there might be some combination. Though the final solution is probably stimulant plus non-stimulant or maybe two different non-stimulants.

Roundmouth
05-18-16, 05:47 PM
Now I'm actually about to give things up completely... This whole medication thing. This whole idea of trying to make things better - or even slow down the decay.

The foul-speed actually seems to make things worse. I can easily imagine this substance doing wonders for hyperactivity, impulsivity and some emotional issues. But that's not my problem, my problem is lack of cognitive focus. Well, yes, I'm happier and more relaxed, but that's not necessarily a good thing. I may have been unhappy sometimes but I've never been depressed. It's not about a damaged emotional life but lack of function. When I'm unhappy it's for a reason. I do have lust, I do have ambitions, but I can't make myself. And if I do, I always fail.

Methylphenidate makes me passive and apathetic. Satisfied with nothing. Completely unproductive. My natural condition is a complete inability of making plans. Thinking and following up has always left me completely exhausted. However, I've had this streak of impulsivity, and lacking normal motivation and initiative, this has sometimes been the one thing shaking me into action. And if I come that far, I've learnt to mobilize some panic feeling and inner stress, become hyperactive for a while. That way I've sometimes got a few things done. Before even realizing that I didn't have a plan.

Now this drive is all gone. The problem is still there, but the compensation is taken away.

All I can do seems to be cutting down on something to save some energy. But there's not much left. I sacrificed social life many years ago. I sacrificed my only hobby two years ago. I've recently cut down drastically on cleaning my home and caring for my car. The only thing left to drop now is work, then caring for my children.

It's just that cutting down on activity also means less stimulation, which means losing actual functioning that I'm not sure I'll ever get back. I don't want rest and peace - I don't need rest and peace. I need stimulance, engagement, passion. This dope just makes me wither even faster. I just lie down happy with nothing. I don't want that happiness because it doesn't make me happy. I just become even more slow and passive, which in the long run won't be good at all for my emotional life.

Now just getting off this foul-speed isn't completely easy. I've kind of gotten used to it. Comfortably numb. When not taking it, I do have a feeling of getting my life back and some things becoming at least a slight bit easier dealing with, but I also notice worries returning along with irritability. I really feel totally stuck. But still, it has to be done. Summer is near and I want to do things with my children. This also involves driving which I avoid doing with this fog in my mind. And no - smaller doses is not an alternative, then I'm even more slow and distant, I can hardly stay awake.

Roundmouth
05-19-16, 03:55 PM
And then finally!

The problem wasn't the doctor being resistant, but the rest of the crew not contacting him regarding my requests. After three weeks of phone calls and e-mails, I had two conversations with the only nurse with normal executive functioning. She contacted the doctor who then called me. He'd heard I wasn't really comfortable with the methylphenidate and thought it reasonable trying something else.

After five minutes I had a prescription on lisdexamphetamine. Already being on stimulants he saw no reason starting from zero, but on my request he started low. 30 mg in the morning, then 36 mg foul-speed when it starts wearing out.

Now I'm fully aware that this substance will probably not revolutionize my life. For some reason I don't believe that speed will make any great difference - I suspect that a big part of my problem cluster consists of things that won't be helped by stimulants. But I want to try the easy way before starting to explore other possibilities, and maybe at least this one will be a bit better than the first one.