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Old 01-11-11, 07:46 PM
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Amphetamines and working memory decline

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/168318.php

This report, of course, is of concern. Of course, this doesn't necessarily apply to doses of amphetamines that are prescribed for ADD. But it's entirely possible that working memory CAN decrease through amphetamine-use, despite reports from people who say that they're still fine after years on Adderall.

While that's true, the truth is that working memory does decline in adults after age 20. And most people don't even notice this decline in working memory until the decline is already very significant. So the only thing these "I've taken Adderall for 10 years and I'm fine" anecdotes really say is that amphetamines won't ruin your life if taken under prescribed doses. That's it.

Now, of course, there are other studies that show that amphetamines prescribed for *human* children *do* ultimately increase working memory and brain cell growth (that's because people with ADD are deprived in many ways, and medication helps with that) - these studies are referenced in the review article "Potential adverse effects of amphetamine treatment
on brain and behavior: a review" (2009). BUT - it's entirely possible that many of them would probably have done better with methylphenidate or armodafinil/modafinil than with amphetamines (of course, subpopulations might have done better under adderall, but as a general rule, it would be VERY difficult to find these subpopulations, much less do research on what distinguishes them from others).
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Old 01-12-11, 01:38 AM
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Re: Amphetamines and working memory decline

Thanks to your post, we must really be careful in giving medications to our children. I was able to read an article that tackles about children who are suffering from emotional distress. Military families with kids are subjecting their children to a great deal of anxiety when deployment time comes. As outlined by Army Times, this meltdown of the family unit has caused the number of psychiatric drugs like Clonidine prescribed by doctors to children each year to skyrocket. This can mirror the number of active-duty servicemen and women who are on psychiatric meds. With so many individuals using psychiatric the costs of the prescription are sure to rise leaving numerous to seek out payday loans to get them.

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Old 01-12-11, 01:47 PM
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Re: Amphetamines and working memory decline

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simfish View Post
that working memory CAN decrease through amphetamine-use
If you try a forum search for threads with 'working memory' in the title -
you'll find a number like this
http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=27734
which suggests that ADDers have working memory deficits.

I've read this type of observation so frequently
Quote:
Is poor short term memory an ADD trait?
- that I'd suggest it's an ADD thing (rather than a stimulant thing).

~*~

If I were to try and hazard a guess as to why this is happening.

This won't seem like a convincing argument - but what I'm finding is that I'm defaulting to 'knowing' information which I can derive (work out) - through following connections -
- that I can't remember isolated events.

An attempt to explain this idea from another angle.

I learn how to work out 'things'.
I can't simply learn a protocol without making it make sense.

Working memory is populated by disconnected events.

Also - and as a side issue - I find that I'm often away with the fairies (adopting the wide open attention span of ADD)
- and so I often miss (don't notice) the sorts of events which people generally pop into working memory.

I have a vague sensation of distaste when I think about bulk dumping some information into working memory - it feels counter-productive.

Alternatively - perhaps its to be expected that an individual with a more deeply associative structure of mind (the ADDer) - would have problems in real-time - since it takes us longer (it is more difficult for us to fix) 'ideas'.
That 'ideas' require more context for storage in the ADD than nonADD mind ?

~*~

Which of these ideas do I feel is most pertinent ?

I can feel my mind throwing an extreme (negative) reaction when I consider rote learning information (akin to working memory) in the absence of understanding.
Reflective thought leading to understanding and long term storage/memory (associative connection formation) is (in marked contrast) strongly desired.

The need (ADDer) is to understand.

~btw~ might stimulant medication accelerate the natural ADD tendency of decrease in working memory ?

Maybe.

The point I'm trying to get across is that working memory deficits appear to be a part of AD(H)D
- though not to fear
- that short term memory is (in ADHD) supplanted by something better.

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Old 01-14-11, 04:11 AM
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Re: Amphetamines and working memory decline

Quote:
Alternatively - perhaps its to be expected that an individual with a more deeply associative structure of mind (the ADDer) - would have problems in real-time - since it takes us longer (it is more difficult for us to fix) 'ideas'.
That 'ideas' require more context for storage in the ADD than nonADD mind ?
Hm, that's very interesting. I agree with you there. We seem to have all sorts of "creative" strategies to compensate for our handicaps in working memory.

And associative memory is one of those major things. Personally, I try to post everything online under the same screenname. That way, I can just google some of my past associations in case I ever forget one part of them

Quote:
learn how to work out 'things'.
I can't simply learn a protocol without making it make sense.

Working memory is populated by disconnected events.
Ah yes, that's definitely true about working memory and disconnected events. And yeah, I have to learn how to work out things too. I can't just read things. Oftentimes what happens is that I can't learn anything at all from lectures and tutorials.
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