View Full Version : One month on Vyvanse, very mixed experience


genericname1
03-23-17, 10:23 AM
I was prescribed Vyvanse for the first time early this month. I had been diagnosed with ADHD when I was a child, but my parents would not allow me to take medication at that time. My school life had always been difficult and hard to manage, and my difficulties in school caused me to have a poor self-image/depression and even the simplest tasks would cause me great anxiety.

Fast-forward to this month, after so many years of struggling without medication--by sheer luck and a relatively high IQ--I finally took the step to seriously address my issues since there is no longer anyone around that can prevent me from getting treatment (I am 26 now, btw). I began a regiment of 50 mg dose of Vyvanse daily that will be re-evaluated in another month's time. This is an abnormal dose to be starting on from what I was told, but after a long discussion about my particular situation, it was decided that I would start at the mid-level dosage instead of transitioning from a lower dose.

This month has been very busy for me in regards to change. I really feel like a completely different person. In many ways I am better than I ever have been. I feel confident, focused, and content. I used to be a serial multitasker, and this would often lead to me shuffling through so many tasks and spreading my focus so thin that I would rarely accomplish very much of anything at all. However with Vyvanse it was almost an instant change in how I handled things. At first, I had a bit too much focus (as well as a euphoria that has thankfully gone away) that, rather than allowing me to simply focus on one task at a time, actually caused me to become hyper-focused and locked into almost anything. This passed after a little under a week, and taking Vyvanse now doesn't quite have the the same effect that it did initially--in fact, there have actually been a few concerning effects.

I currently still feel more confident, focused, and content than I ever have been. But there are several negative things I have started experiencing as time has gone on. One thing that has been happening is my vision and eyes have been acting strange. A couple hours into my dose, my eyes feel like they would if I had been up for an entire night. I really don't know how to describe it otherwise, it helps to blink and try and make tears, but I don't know if it is cause for concern or can be mitigated somehow.

I've also had trouble eating, but that was to be expected. I try to force myself to eat when I can, but I've found certain meals at certain times have caused my dose to be less effective and it shortens my coverage. My diet is very clean as far as what I eat, I don't smoke or drink alcohol or eat junk food or drink soda. But I am eating significantly less than I ever have in my life without even noticing it physically. I wonder if this may be having an affect on the effectiveness of my medication as well (other than the natural tolerance that develops).

Another thing that is happening is I feel like it is hard to initiate speech. It is so much easier for me to carry on a conversation, and I don't have even close to as much trouble ordering my thoughts and remaining coherent as I did before--in fact, I have no trouble at all whatsoever in this regard which is amazing. The problem is that I feel like I have to do a "mic check" of my voice at various points in time. It is very hard to describe this, because this has actually only started in the last 2 days. It isn't that I can't talk, it is just it feels like starting to talk is much more laboured than it once was (even before Vyvanse), but when I do start talking at any length this feeling goes away.

And lastly, I don't know if this a negative or not, but I feel extremely content. Not particularly happy, not particularly sad, just very baseline mood-wise. Before Vyvanse, I was rarely "just content", but when I was happy I was happy, and when I was sad I was sad. I experienced these emotions normally at appropriate times for appropriate durations, but now I don't really notice either that much. I don't know if this has to do with dopamine levels, my diet, etc.

I just have this generally apathetic perspective on things happening around me, which feels a bit contradictory because I am much more aware of things that I was not. For example, in the past I would barge into other peoples' conversations rudely, talk too much without considering the people around me, and never thought to ask questions or show concern for what others had to say. I was terrible listener, and even worse at saying anything that was interesting to anyone other than myself. Now I notice these things, and I make an effort to be more empathetic. So as I said, it seem contradictory that I generally feel apathetic towards most things, but when it comes socialising and how I behave in the workplace it is much more empathetic.

I know I said a lot about the negatives, but I felt it was more important to get that out than anything else. I think I am going to continue my Vyvanse on the current dose through next month, and then explain all this to my doctor during our next appointment. My life is so much better in many ways thanks to Vyvanse and how it helps keep my life from getting out of control.

It's effectiveness is sometimes variant, and I think the coverage has consistently shrunk; it has caused some strange behaviour regarding my sight and eyes; it has affected my diet/appetite negatively; it has been strangely affecting how I use my normal speaking voice; and it has caused me to feel much more apathetic generally with much diminished happy/sad moods.

But it has also improved my ability to manage and actually complete tasks; it has made me a better listener and much more sociable and empathetic to others; it has removed a lot of anxiety/depression from my life that were created by how my disorder has impacted me; and it has helped me renew focus on important things in my life that I was neglecting;

Overall it is still much better to have than not I believe, but I still am concerned about a few of the negative aspects. I am not sure if I am looking for advice, or if I just wanted to provide my experience on it, probably both.

sarahsweets
03-24-17, 02:12 AM
One thing that has been happening is my vision and eyes have been acting strange. A couple hours into my dose, my eyes feel like they would if I had been up for an entire night. I really don't know how to describe it otherwise, it helps to blink and try and make tears, but I don't know if it is cause for concern or can be mitigated somehow.

All amphetamines can dehydrate you and in many cases this is noticeable in the eyes with dry eyes, feeling like there is something in the eye or blurry vision. The way to see if thats your issue is to drink more water and try some OTC dry eye lubricating drops. They help my eyes.

I've also had trouble eating, but that was to be expected. I try to force myself to eat when I can, but I've found certain meals at certain times have caused my dose to be less effective and it shortens my coverage. My diet is very clean as far as what I eat, I don't smoke or drink alcohol or eat junk food or drink soda. But I am eating significantly less than I ever have in my life without even noticing it physically. I wonder if this may be having an affect on the effectiveness of my medication as well (other than the natural tolerance that develops).


It sounds like a good idea for a pros and cons list. Draw a line down the middle of a piece of paper and write the good things on one side and the bad things on the other. Then count them up, and see which ones are ones you can manage and ones that have to change and ones that are good and ones that are deal breakers. This may sound like a simpleton's way of looking at things but it has really worked for me in the past. Then once you have all that isolated you can decide what to talk to the doctor about. People who do well on vyvanse do awesome, and some people need another type of amphetamine or stimulant.

Kunga Dorji
03-24-17, 03:30 AM
I was prescribed Vyvanse for the first time early this month. I had been diagnosed with ADHD when I was a child, but my parents would not allow me to take medication at that time. My school life had always been difficult and hard to manage, and my difficulties in school caused me to have a poor self-image/depression and even the simplest tasks would cause me great anxiety.

Fast-forward to this month, after so many years of struggling without medication--by sheer luck and a relatively high IQ--I finally took the step to seriously address my issues since there is no longer anyone around that can prevent me from getting treatment (I am 26 now, btw). I began a regiment of 50 mg dose of Vyvanse daily that will be re-evaluated in another month's time. This is an abnormal dose to be starting on from what I was told, but after a long discussion about my particular situation, it was decided that I would start at the mid-level dosage instead of transitioning from a lower dose.

This month has been very busy for me in regards to change. I really feel like a completely different person. In many ways I am better than I ever have been. I feel confident, focused, and content. I used to be a serial multitasker, and this would often lead to me shuffling through so many tasks and spreading my focus so thin that I would rarely accomplish very much of anything at all. However with Vyvanse it was almost an instant change in how I handled things. At first, I had a bit too much focus (as well as a euphoria that has thankfully gone away) that, rather than allowing me to simply focus on one task at a time, actually caused me to become hyper-focused and locked into almost anything. This passed after a little under a week, and taking Vyvanse now doesn't quite have the the same effect that it did initially--in fact, there have actually been a few concerning effects.

I currently still feel more confident, focused, and content than I ever have been. But there are several negative things I have started experiencing as time has gone on. One thing that has been happening is my vision and eyes have been acting strange. A couple hours into my dose, my eyes feel like they would if I had been up for an entire night. I really don't know how to describe it otherwise, it helps to blink and try and make tears, but I don't know if it is cause for concern or can be mitigated somehow.

I've also had trouble eating, but that was to be expected. I try to force myself to eat when I can, but I've found certain meals at certain times have caused my dose to be less effective and it shortens my coverage. My diet is very clean as far as what I eat, I don't smoke or drink alcohol or eat junk food or drink soda. But I am eating significantly less than I ever have in my life without even noticing it physically. I wonder if this may be having an affect on the effectiveness of my medication as well (other than the natural tolerance that develops).

Another thing that is happening is I feel like it is hard to initiate speech. It is so much easier for me to carry on a conversation, and I don't have even close to as much trouble ordering my thoughts and remaining coherent as I did before--in fact, I have no trouble at all whatsoever in this regard which is amazing. The problem is that I feel like I have to do a "mic check" of my voice at various points in time. It is very hard to describe this, because this has actually only started in the last 2 days. It isn't that I can't talk, it is just it feels like starting to talk is much more laboured than it once was (even before Vyvanse), but when I do start talking at any length this feeling goes away.

And lastly, I don't know if this a negative or not, but I feel extremely content. Not particularly happy, not particularly sad, just very baseline mood-wise. Before Vyvanse, I was rarely "just content", but when I was happy I was happy, and when I was sad I was sad. I experienced these emotions normally at appropriate times for appropriate durations, but now I don't really notice either that much. I don't know if this has to do with dopamine levels, my diet, etc.

I just have this generally apathetic perspective on things happening around me, which feels a bit contradictory because I am much more aware of things that I was not. For example, in the past I would barge into other peoples' conversations rudely, talk too much without considering the people around me, and never thought to ask questions or show concern for what others had to say. I was terrible listener, and even worse at saying anything that was interesting to anyone other than myself. Now I notice these things, and I make an effort to be more empathetic. So as I said, it seem contradictory that I generally feel apathetic towards most things, but when it comes socialising and how I behave in the workplace it is much more empathetic.

I know I said a lot about the negatives, but I felt it was more important to get that out than anything else. I think I am going to continue my Vyvanse on the current dose through next month, and then explain all this to my doctor during our next appointment. My life is so much better in many ways thanks to Vyvanse and how it helps keep my life from getting out of control.

It's effectiveness is sometimes variant, and I think the coverage has consistently shrunk; it has caused some strange behaviour regarding my sight and eyes; it has affected my diet/appetite negatively; it has been strangely affecting how I use my normal speaking voice; and it has caused me to feel much more apathetic generally with much diminished happy/sad moods.

But it has also improved my ability to manage and actually complete tasks; it has made me a better listener and much more sociable and empathetic to others; it has removed a lot of anxiety/depression from my life that were created by how my disorder has impacted me; and it has helped me renew focus on important things in my life that I was neglecting;

Overall it is still much better to have than not I believe, but I still am concerned about a few of the negative aspects. I am not sure if I am looking for advice, or if I just wanted to provide my experience on it, probably both.


You know you started by listing quite a number of positives.
My own experience is of having been off and on dexamphetamine 3 times now: one cessation was because I had improved and hardly needed it, the other one was because I had a relapse of my Bipolar due to an ill advised change in the mood stabiliser.

However most of the side effects you are talking about re appetite and dry mouth (and probably dry eyes) do settle down over a couple of months.

I found I had to take more care to remember to eat, and to put extra effort in to dental care when I started, but the side effects did settle down.

I am sure that a shift in the way one feels about social situations is normal, and needs adjusting to.

ADHD is a disease of failed inhibition though- and one area that can affect is stress response. With one's brain working better one likely outcome is that the frontal lobes will be better at suppressing the emotional brain (amygdala) as discussed by Russell Barkley.

So maybe the issue with "being apathetic" is more a question of not feeling stressed all the time? ie not feeling that things need fixing all the time? Because that's the way I felt for 45 years before starting treatment.

re the last point- being apathetic/ versus not feeling stressed-- the issue here is that we can all choose to view any change in our lives one way or the other- and the way that happens is so closely tied to the words we use to express/describe the problem/opportunity.

I think that SarahSweets is right about keeping a list of the positives and negatives-- but I would do the positives first and try to write 2 positives for every negative.

PoppnNSailinMan
09-22-17, 06:50 PM
All amphetamines can dehydrate you and in many cases this is noticeable in the eyes with dry eyes, feeling like there is something in the eye or blurry vision. The way to see if thats your issue is to drink more water and try some OTC dry eye lubricating drops. They help my eyes.

I've been on Vyvanse for about 6 weeks now and when I saw my eye doctor recently, he said that my eyes were a little dry and gave me a sample of over the counter lubricating eye drops. I don't know for sure that my eyes being dry was caused by the Vyvanse, but it might be. I haven't had a problem with dry mouth so far.