View Full Version : Question: Dopamine and Serotonin?


Melodrama
12-06-16, 10:24 PM
Hello,

I was diagnosed with ADD (Not ADHD) this summer. I am currently depressed and have been all year essentially. I am recieiving anti depressants tomorrow, and because I have extreme Anxiety I wanted to come on here and have some one explain some things to me.

Both my psychiatrist and therapist believe I have a "chemical imbalance." I was given a stimulant known as Evekeo (similar to Adderal) first because my psychatrist wanted to treat my ADD before my depression to see if I would be less anxious about school on the stimulant. It failed to effect me, in fact it increased my Anxiety.

My question is: Do I have a Dopamine or a Serotonin deffiency? What drug is right for me? I heard some where, and I could be wrong, if you have both a seratonin and dopamine deffiency, by taking a serotonin anti depressant the dopamine deffiency only gets worse, is this true? That is why I want to be sure.

Background:
Male, Age 16, introverted, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, constantly thinking, constantly worrying, constantly over analyzing and over complicating everything, very low self esteem, no self confidence, feels inferior to others, family history of alcohol abuse anxiety and PTSD, bullied physically and verbally in middle school, girlfriend moved to another state in 8th grade, I find it very hard to move on, easily guilty and ashamed, social anxiety, avoids engaging social interaction due to fear of rejection or feeling inferior, easily effected by others, sensitive both emotionally and physically, I did not like having my picture taken at age 3, looses friends easily, hates body image and hair, insecure, perfectionist.

Thanks for the help.

sarahsweets
12-07-16, 06:05 AM
My question is: Do I have a Dopamine or a Serotonin deffiency? What drug is right for me? I heard some where, and I could be wrong, if you have both a seratonin and dopamine deffiency, by taking a serotonin anti depressant the dopamine deffiency only gets worse, is this true? That is why I want to be sure.
There isnt really good way to tell if you have a dopamine or seratonin issue. Its sort of a bit of a crap shoot. The best way is to be willing to try different medications and communicate about whether they are helping or not.

Fuzzy12
12-07-16, 06:29 AM
Impossible to day especially over the Internet. In general dopamine is assumed to be implicated in adhd and serotonin in depression but it isn't that simple and it's not necessarily either or.

Anti depressants did nothing for my adhd symptoms but stimulants helped my depression.

I also got very bad anxiety when I started dexamphetamine (sort of similar to adderall) but it got better after a few months and then actually helped me with anxiety.

C15H25N3O
12-07-16, 10:41 AM
Background:
Male, Age 16, introverted, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, constantly thinking, constantly worrying, constantly over analyzing and over complicating everything, very low self esteem, no self confidence, feels inferior to others, family history of alcohol abuse anxiety and PTSD, bullied physically and verbally in middle school, girlfriend moved to another state in 8th grade, I find it very hard to move on, easily guilty and ashamed, social anxiety, avoids engaging social interaction due to fear of rejection or feeling inferior, easily effected by others, sensitive both emotionally and physically, I did not like having my picture taken at age 3, looses friends easily, hates body image and hair, insecure, perfectionist.

This is one of the best and most honest introductions I have ever seen in this forums and speaks for an outstanding
high intelligence almost at age 16. First I think you are inbetween the spectrum of not visible but mental hyperactive
ADD that sometimes can switch to visible or talkative ADHD when you are excited. This specturm is overlapping 75%
with autism and makes you a lot different than classic ADHD. Mind all diagnoses are just classifications for better treatment
but not labels. I am a self-teached creative professional and quite similar to your self-description but nearly 30 years older
and I got diagnosed 3 years ago. ;-)

Second you must develop good strategies of compensation to stand up for yourself and protect yourself meaning to work on
your social behaviour which a good but rare therapist for behaviour in ADD and ASD can support a lot maybe better than meds.
You must try out yourself and succeeding is a key to fight anxiety step by step. Thinking cannot switched off except you go dumb.
Worrying can be reduced by self-confidence which needs success but is part of your thinking and personality. Over-analyzing can
be compensated by training and focussing on tasks you like and you are good at. All remain problems you have to learn to compensate
step by step and meds can help but you also could live without meds when your sel-compensation works but meds are needed where
it does not work. I am sure you dont need meds while doing things you love.

Now it comes to meds. Generally low dosed amphetamines can have a mood-lifting and self-esteem-lifting and self-confidence-lifting
effects which is different to full-throttle stimulation that also can slow down for focussing tasks or kick your *** to start tasks.

I believe you have a very good psychiatrist and therapist as they recognize your disorder or better different functioning as a
"neuro-chemical imbalance" which is very empathic and progressive. Now it is about to find out your neuro-chemical deficites.
They wanna try out different pills and if there is a pill that makes you feel uncomfortable stop them and call them for advice.
Never believe a pill that makes you feel bad will make you feel good after two months if there was not a positive effect in the
beginning of intakes.

I believe your anxiety is increased due to evekeos levoamphetamine which increases your blood pressure and heart rate due to
its effect releasing adrenaline which is also a stimulant that can increase attention, motivation and more if you can enjoy adrenaline.
Otherwise it will end in overstimulation which is overlapping with anxiety. Thats why I believe you should be prescribed another
amphetamine with less or without levoamphetamine but containing dextroamphetamine.

Evekeo is 50/50 D/L-amphetamine.
Adderall is 75/25 mixed AMP salts/L-AMP.
Dexedrine is 100-Dextroamphetamine.
Vyvanse is a weak and slow releasing pro-drug of Dextroamphetamine.

Generally I believe you are the kind of guy with a lot of discrepancies who should be careful with anti-depressants as they can
change neuro-chemics a lot – to the good and to the bad – why you first should try out different amphetamines at stimulation
dosages and low dosages. Your very good self-reflection you approved in your introduction will help you. I also believe you are
not the guy who benefits from permanent increasing dosages but of course I still could be wrong.

When Evekeo increases your anxiety you should ask for Vyvanse next and compare both meds. If Vyvanse is not motivating
enough you could switch to adderall. If Vyvanse still means too much anxiety reduce the dosage. If you switch to adderall and it
means still too much overstimulation/anxiety switch to dexderine. Sure, all this trying out the different amphetamines takes a lot of
time, maybe a half a year or faster. Depending on your psychiatrist and therapists impressions and your good self-reflection it is easier
to find out if you need another med and what your neuro-chemics need. Mind amphetamines work immediately and are tolerated
by your body and brain faster than anti-depressants and build up a better self-experience how to handle meds and how to discuss
their effects with your supporters. Trying out these four classes of amphetamines has the potential to have a closer look at your
neuro-chemics because they affect different synapses and it is not only about dopamine, norephedrine and serotonine.
There are still also other transmitters included.

A lack of serotonine can also be supported by serotonines/melatonines pro-drug tryptophan. Serotonine is converted naturally
by darkness to melatonine that makes you sleep and sleep well. How is your sleep? Are you grumpy in the mornings?

Mind all our perceptions are different and in my perception a lack of dopamine makes me feel what I feel as depressant why I would
never look at serotonine alone, but serotonine in connection to melatonine while all transmitters including glutamate, NMDA, AMPA,
cortisol, GABA, adrenaline, ... must be in balance.

This post is no advice but only a personal opinion.

Best wishes!

aeon
12-07-16, 12:36 PM
Evekeo is racemic amphetamine sulfate, so it is not surprising it would negatively affect preexisting anxiety due to the levo-rotary load stimulating the PNS.

Get a trial of Dexedrine, which is 100% dextroamphetamine sulfate, with a strong CNS focus of effect, and less PNS stimulation than Evekeo, Adderall, etc.


Cheers,
Ian

Melodrama
12-09-16, 12:20 AM
This is one of the best and most honest introductions I have ever seen in this forums and speaks for an outstanding
high intelligence almost at age 16. First I think you are inbetween the spectrum of not visible but mental hyperactive
ADD that sometimes can switch to visible or talkative ADHD when you are excited. This specturm is overlapping 75%
with autism and makes you a lot different than classic ADHD. Mind all diagnoses are just classifications for better treatment
but not labels. I am a self-teached creative professional and quite similar to your self-description but nearly 30 years older
and I got diagnosed 3 years ago. ;-)

Second you must develop good strategies of compensation to stand up for yourself and protect yourself meaning to work on
your social behaviour which a good but rare therapist for behaviour in ADD and ASD can support a lot maybe better than meds.
You must try out yourself and succeeding is a key to fight anxiety step by step. Thinking cannot switched off except you go dumb.
Worrying can be reduced by self-confidence which needs success but is part of your thinking and personality. Over-analyzing can
be compensated by training and focussing on tasks you like and you are good at. All remain problems you have to learn to compensate
step by step and meds can help but you also could live without meds when your sel-compensation works but meds are needed where
it does not work. I am sure you dont need meds while doing things you love.

Now it comes to meds. Generally low dosed amphetamines can have a mood-lifting and self-esteem-lifting and self-confidence-lifting
effects which is different to full-throttle stimulation that also can slow down for focussing tasks or kick your *** to start tasks.

I believe you have a very good psychiatrist and therapist as they recognize your disorder or better different functioning as a
"neuro-chemical imbalance" which is very empathic and progressive. Now it is about to find out your neuro-chemical deficites.
They wanna try out different pills and if there is a pill that makes you feel uncomfortable stop them and call them for advice.
Never believe a pill that makes you feel bad will make you feel good after two months if there was not a positive effect in the
beginning of intakes.

I believe your anxiety is increased due to evekeos levoamphetamine which increases your blood pressure and heart rate due to
its effect releasing adrenaline which is also a stimulant that can increase attention, motivation and more if you can enjoy adrenaline.
Otherwise it will end in overstimulation which is overlapping with anxiety. Thats why I believe you should be prescribed another
amphetamine with less or without levoamphetamine but containing dextroamphetamine.

Evekeo is 50/50 D/L-amphetamine.
Adderall is 75/25 mixed AMP salts/L-AMP.
Dexedrine is 100-Dextroamphetamine.
Vyvanse is a weak and slow releasing pro-drug of Dextroamphetamine.

Generally I believe you are the kind of guy with a lot of discrepancies who should be careful with anti-depressants as they can
change neuro-chemics a lot to the good and to the bad why you first should try out different amphetamines at stimulation
dosages and low dosages. Your very good self-reflection you approved in your introduction will help you. I also believe you are
not the guy who benefits from permanent increasing dosages but of course I still could be wrong.

When Evekeo increases your anxiety you should ask for Vyvanse next and compare both meds. If Vyvanse is not motivating
enough you could switch to adderall. If Vyvanse still means too much anxiety reduce the dosage. If you switch to adderall and it
means still too much overstimulation/anxiety switch to dexderine. Sure, all this trying out the different amphetamines takes a lot of
time, maybe a half a year or faster. Depending on your psychiatrist and therapists impressions and your good self-reflection it is easier
to find out if you need another med and what your neuro-chemics need. Mind amphetamines work immediately and are tolerated
by your body and brain faster than anti-depressants and build up a better self-experience how to handle meds and how to discuss
their effects with your supporters. Trying out these four classes of amphetamines has the potential to have a closer look at your
neuro-chemics because they affect different synapses and it is not only about dopamine, norephedrine and serotonine.
There are still also other transmitters included.

A lack of serotonine can also be supported by serotonines/melatonines pro-drug tryptophan. Serotonine is converted naturally
by darkness to melatonine that makes you sleep and sleep well. How is your sleep? Are you grumpy in the mornings?

Mind all our perceptions are different and in my perception a lack of dopamine makes me feel what I feel as depressant why I would
never look at serotonine alone, but serotonine in connection to melatonine while all transmitters including glutamate, NMDA, AMPA,
cortisol, GABA, adrenaline, ... must be in balance.

This post is no advice but only a personal opinion.

Best wishes!

This was an amazing reply and great help to me... For now my psychiatrist has perscribed me Prozac for starters. She will consider vyvanse down the road. Thank you so much.

ToneTone
12-25-16, 11:38 PM
Your psychiatrist used the word "chemical imbalance," but really that's a vast oversimplication, if not inaccuracy ... Frankly, the brain and medical community don't know what causes depression and the old "serotonin" shortage theory has been rejected ...

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2012/01/23/145525853/when-it-comes-to-depression-serotonin-isnt-the-whole-story

Most likely the cause of depression is a multiplicity of issues ... and the same goes true for why the antidepressants work. Basically the medical community is only guessing about why they work. I take Wellbutrin XL and love it. I think it has improved my life enormously, and from what I can tell, researchers have little idea why it really works for people like me.

But antidepressants do work for a lot of people, and basically you're left to the trial-and-error method. Just try one med, see how it goes, report the results ... adjust, try again ... report results. That's pretty much all we can do.

And heads-up. The official diagnosis is ADHD, whether you are more on the attention side or the hyperactive side ... and more and more, those subcategories are being thrown away. "ADD" is basically a defunct term, though it survies informally. People who have attention issues and hyperactive issues share a ton of problems in common.

Good luck.

Tone

sarahsweets
12-27-16, 06:47 AM
Your psychiatrist used the word "chemical imbalance," but really that's a vast oversimplication, if not inaccuracy ... Frankly, the brain and medical community don't know what causes depression and the old "serotonin" shortage theory has been rejected ...

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2012/01/23/145525853/when-it-comes-to-depression-serotonin-isnt-the-whole-story


Off topic for a minute...this was very interesting but my computer crashed midway through so question- while the serotonin being low has been relatively proven to not be the cause of depression, is the theory of it being a chemical imbalance still a thing? I ask because Its always made me feel better to acknowledge that my bipolar was chemical in origin.

ToneTone
12-27-16, 10:30 PM
Sarah,

I think I went too far ... it's the specific "serotonin" shortage theory that has lost favor among researchers. Definitely there is SOME chemical/biological component to depression and to bipolar. But the researchers aren't sure what that is precisely. And they've looked at people with low serotonin levels and apparently those folks don't suffer high rates of depression.

So there is definitely genetics, brain chemistry and biology involved in depression and in bipolar--but no one chemical brain factor ... and there is probably interaction with real stresses that trigger the onset of depression and bipolar ...

Depression definitely runs in my family and I don't think that's just the culture of our family. It's definitely biological/chemical ....that's my operating assumption ... But nothing as specific as a shortage of one chemical.

Should have been more precise with my language. I too have experienced relief feeling that depression had a biological and genetic component. And I still see the biology of it ... but the medical and research community are guessing on exactly how the biology works or doesn't work in depression and in bipolar.

Theories on the Cause of Depression:

5 New Theories on the Cause of DepressionI grew up thinking depression was as simple as one little transmitter getting lost somewhere on his way from one neuron to the other, much like I do when I venture farther than five miles from home. It’s an easy explanation — a chemical imbalance in the brain — one that pharmaceutical companies have adopted to craft creative commercials like the Zoloft egg not chasing the butterfly.

But depression is so much more complex than that. Here are a few other plausible causes of depression that have surfaced from recent studies:

1. Faulty brain wiring.

When experts scanned the brains of depressed people, they discovered that the frontal lobes of the brain, the part associated with higher cognitive processes, displayed lower activity levels than those in nondepressed patients.

Other brain imaging reveals breakdown in normal patterns of emotional processing that impedes the ability of depressed patients to suppress negative emotional states. High levels of activity in the amygdala part of the brain, the fear center, persisted despite cognitive efforts to retrain the thoughts.

Depression, then, involves a problem in the wiring pattern in the brain: not a single brain activity pattern, but by a brain activity pattern that is unique to each person.

2. Brain atrophy.

Depression can be associated with the loss of volume in parts of the brain, namely the hippocampus, which belongs to the limbic system (the emotional center of the brain), and is important in the consolidation of information from short-term memory to long-term memory. The more severe the depression, the greater the loss of brain volume.

The atrophy affects the brain’s frontal lobes, as well, especially the prefrontal cortex, which regulates the emotional centers of the brain. Finally, depression appears to inhibit the birth of new brain cells, or neurogenesis. For this reason, Peter Kramer, M.D. believes that depression is the “most devastating disease known to mankind.”

3. Hormonal imbalances.

The endocrine system may also play a role in depression. Some studies have indicated a default in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, the region that manages the body’s response to stress. When a person is in distress, the hypothalamus produces corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) and other substances that stimulate the pituitary gland to release stress hormones that send a flight-or-fight response. Chronic activation of the HPA can contribute to depression.

4. Genetics.

There are many genetic variations than can increase a person’s vulnerability to depression and other mood disorders, although some of these variations have yet to be identified. Scientists have identified a gene that may be linked to bipolar disorder, and experts have also found a common genetic mutation associated with a person developing clinical depression when faced with traumatic events in his or her life. A study on twins showed that if one twin developed depression, the other twin also suffered from depression in 46 percent of identical twins, compared with 20 percent of fraternal twins.

5. Brain inflammation.

In his bestseller, Grain Brain, renowned neurologist David Perlmutter, M.D. explains that the cornerstone of all degenerative conditions — including depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder — is inflammation, and the most prominent stimulators of inflammation in our diet are gluten and sugar. We get into trouble because we can’t feel the inflammation in our brain like we can in other parts of the body, so we rarely link a kind of food we eat with our mood. Perlmutter points out that study after study demonstrates that people who suffer from mood disorders also tend to be gluten-sensitive and vice versa: depression is found in as many as 52 percent of gluten-sensitive individuals

Causes of bipolar disorder:
The cause of bipolar disorder is not entirely known. Genetic, neurochemical and environmental factors probably interact at many different levels to play a role in the onset and progression of bipolar disorder. The current thinking is that this is a predominantly neurobiological disorder that occurs in a specific part of the brain and is due to a malfunction of certain brain chemicals (that occur both in the brain and the body). Three specific brain chemicals have been implicated — serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline. As a neurobiological disorder, it may lie dormant and be activated spontaneously or it may be triggered by stressors in life.

Although no one is quite sure about the exact causes of bipolar disorder, researchers have found these important clues:

Genetic factors in Bipolar Disorder

Because it appears bipolar disorder can run in families, there appears to be at least some kind of genetic factors at play. About half the people with bipolar disorder have a family member with a mood disorder, such as depression.

If one parent has bipolar disorder, there is a 10 to 15 percent greater chance of their child developing this condition. The risk in a child jumps to a 30 to 40 percent chance if both parents have bipolar disorder.

Research conducted on identical twins shows that if one twin is diagnosed with bipolar disorder, it ups the risk between 40 and 70 percent for the other twin to also be diagnosed.

Studies of adopted twins (where a child whose biological parent had the illness and is raised in an adoptive family untouched by the illness) has helped researchers learn more about the genetic causes versus environmental and life events causes.

While all of this data is intriguing, it is not conclusive of bipolar disorder’s genetic roots. More research is needed to better understand the genetic factors at play for this condition.

Neurochemical Factors in Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is primarily a biological disorder that occurs in a specific area of the brain and is due to the dysfunction of certain neurotransmitters, or chemical messengers, in the brain. These chemicals may involve neurotransmitters like norepinephrine, serotonin and probably many others. As a biological disorder, it may lie dormant and be activated on its own or it may be triggered by external factors such as psychological stress and social circumstances.

Environmental Factors in Bipolar Disorder

A life event may trigger a mood episode in a person with a genetic disposition for bipolar disorder.
Even without clear genetic factors, altered health habits, alcohol or drug abuse, or hormonal problems can trigger an episode.
Among those at risk for the illness, bipolar disorder is appearing at increasingly early ages. This apparent increase in earlier occurrences may be due to under-diagnosis of the disorder in the past. This change in the age of onset may be a result of social and environmental factors that are not yet understood.
Although substance abuse is not considered a cause of bipolar disorder, it can worsen the illness by interfering with recovery. Use of alcohol, drugs, or tranquilizers may induce a more severe depressive phase.
What is Medication-triggered Mania?

Medications such as antidepressants can trigger a manic episode in people who are susceptible to bipolar disorder. Therefore, a depressive episode must be treated carefully in those people who have had manic episodes. Because a depressive episode can turn into a manic episode when an antidepressant medication is taken, an anti-manic drug is also recommended to prevent a manic episode. The anti-manic drug creates a “ceiling,” partially protecting the person from antidepressant-induced mania.

Certain other medications can produce a “high” that resembles mania. Appetite suppressants, for example, may trigger increased energy, decreased need for sleep and increased talkativeness. After stopping the medication, however, the person returns to his normal mood.

Substances that can cause a manic-like episode include:

Illicit drugs such as cocaine, “designer drugs” such as Ecstasy and amphetamines.
Excessive doses of certain over-the-counter drugs, including appetite suppressants and cold preparations.
Nonpsychiatric medications, such as medicine for thyroid problems and corticosteroids like prednisone.
Excessive caffeine (moderate amounts of caffeine are fine).
If a person is vulnerable to bipolar disorder, stress, frequent use of stimulants or alcohol, and lack of sleep may prompt onset of the disorder. Certain medications also may set off a depressive or manic episode. If you have a family history of bipolar disorder, notify your physician so as to help avoid the risk of a medication-induced manic episode.

Tone

nuvisys
10-08-17, 03:50 PM
Go to Youtube and search for serotonin/dopamine release. These hormones are secreted by your brain when induced with tones, e.g., 20 hz.

For stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia and addiction, search for CES (Cranial
Electro Stimulation. No need for pills that could make you an addict and may have some effect on your liver, kidneys or pancreas.

It's time to practice e-Theraphy!

sarahsweets
10-09-17, 05:16 AM
I am not clear on your agenda but telling people they dont need meds when you are not a doctor is irresponsibe.

Lunacie
10-09-17, 01:47 PM
Go to Youtube and search for serotonin/dopamine release. These hormones are secreted by your brain when induced with tones, e.g., 20 hz.

For stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia and addiction, search for CES (Cranial
Electro Stimulation. No need for pills that could make you an addict and may have some effect on your liver, kidneys or pancreas.

It's time to practice e-Theraphy!

Youtube?

How about sharing a link to a scientific study on CES and treatment of ADHD?

What are the risks of sending electrical pulses into our brains?