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Old 12-09-09, 01:35 PM
JinxCat JinxCat is offline
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Exclamation New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Hi, I've been lurking for about two weeks (diagnosed then with ADD) and you all have been pretty helpful to me already (Thank you!) so I'm hoping I could get some advice.

Lifelong sufferer of depression, post partum depression, anxiety.

Started seeing a psychiatrist in August. Said I was a Major Depressive and started me on Wellbutrin. Had signs of ADD but wanted to try the antidepessant first to see if it helped ADD. Did not help with anything (on for about a month). It made me very sick. Lightheaded, dizzy and nauseaous, no matter how we played with dosing ( eat with food, without, half hour after eating, before bed, no caffeine, etc). Prior to that, I was on Prozac 20mg. Didn't work but since it was prescribed by my primary care doctor, she wouldn't increase dose until I saw a psychiatrist. Makes sense.
After about a month and a half I walked into his office and I was just so frustrated. I had become lost (again) getting to his office after I spent 30 minutes looking for my keys (in my purse the whole time) and forgetting a package that had to go to the post office that day (actually due a week ago but finally settled on getting it out that day). This has been lifelong with me. Always had problems in school, no focus, no motivation, foggy head, forgetful.

I told him I couldn't take it anymore. I was tested and diagnosed with ADD (he thought maybe ADD in the beginning but wanted to try other options). I was finally so relieved when I took my Adderall for the first time (prescribed 10mg IR 2x a day).

So here are my issues:
1. Take my first pill at 8, by 12 I am zoned out again and lose clarity, focus, motivation. Take second one at 12, by 4pm same deal, which sucks because imagine helping 4 kids with homework and getting dinner on the table. Not easy when you can't concentrate on anything. I feel so inadequate. I wish I could feel the effects of the Adderall all my waking moments. I would be so much happier (and I know my family would, too).

2. I know I need an antidepressant. I've been depressed since I was a kid and have been treated on and off for 10 years with mainly Prozac (no more than 20mg's, though). What works well with Adderall? Does anyone else have any advice or experience with Zoloft? Was the Prozac too low?

I am also prescribed Xanax (1mg) for anxiety. I very seldom take them (maybe at the most 1x a week).


I should note that I had an informal second opinion. My cousin, who lives in Houston (I live in Chicago) who is a psychiatrist with her own practice has the following diagnosis:
Major depressive disorder, recurrent with post partum exacerbation
ADHD, NOS

She knows our family history and it is heavy with mood disorders, depression and anxiety. (We think our grandmother was bipolar because she exhibited the symptoms very strongly but was never professionaly diagnosed.)

I know she is family (though we aren't very close and was able to see my case objectionably) but what she said agrees with what my current psychiatrist says
now as far as diagnosis.

She recommends Zoloft for depression, continued Adderall (but 40mgs depending on my reaction to it, increased from 10mgs 2x a day to 20mgs 2x a day) and Ativan (because she thinks the short duration of Xanax effects cause pill popping and Ativan is longer acting so you need less of it?).

Does this sound right? I see my psychiatrist this coming week and would like to go in armed with as much knowledge as possible so that I can feel some relief from this sadness I am feeling.

Exeriences with Zoloft?
Increasing Adderall?
Ativan?

Any and all feedback would be so so SO appreciated. I just want to be well. I know these things aren't cured but I know there are success stories out there.
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Old 12-09-09, 02:24 PM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Morning! I know that the beginning of this journey is a difficult one. It is exhausting learning about all of the possible diagnosis' and medications and how they work together or don't work together and what not. I was diagnosed in August, at the age of 37 and have been dealing with the same issues. You are definitely not alone and you have come to a good place on this forum. There are many educated and experienced people here who will share their experiences with you.

I am currently taking 30mg of Adderall XR (extended release). Is it possible for you to get on the extended release? And maybe take an IR in the afternoon? The only concern I would have about doing that is the possibility of insomnia. The half life of Adderall is longer than Ritalin, so Adderall late in the day may not be advisable.

There is another section of this forum that deals with depression and other co-existing conditions and that may be a good place to look for information. http://www.addforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=51

I also take Xanex, as needed, for anxiety. I find that it is very helpful when I am very anxious and need to get something done, like studying (which I'm not doing right now). It's ok to take it.

I have not taken any medications in combination with the Adderall for Depression, but, like with anything else in this subject, it comes down to trial and error and knowing that every person responds differently to various medications.

I think it would be advisable to share your family history with your doc. If your cousin is more knowledgeable on the subject, and since she is a professional, you could have her send him a letter with the appropriate information. That may be helpful for you doc.

Good luck. Keep us posted.
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Old 12-10-09, 02:34 PM
JinxCat JinxCat is offline
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Thank you for your response.

I am wary of taking the XR because I can't really control when it kicks in. I already have trouble sleeping in general so don't really want something that could keep me up. So far the IR doesn't affect my sleep so I would like to stick to that.

I don't mind the Xanax, actually but the doctor did say he doesn't want me to take it to often becAuse it is habit forming. Honestly, sometimes I go months without filling a prescription because one bottle could last me months. I just noticed that when I take a Xanax, I am not as sharp which defeats the point of the Adderall.
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Old 12-13-09, 02:52 PM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Hi, ok you sound a lot like me. Right now I take 50mg ir, 2 in the morning, 2 around lunch time and 1 around 4-5, also cause of depression I take 10mg celexa at night, i have only been on that for about 4 weeks and it seems like it helps me some. Also I take 10-20mg of valium as needed, normally after kids are in bed so I can settle down and not worry about any evening crashes. So far it seems to be working for me. Let me know how everything goes for you.
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Old 12-14-09, 02:32 AM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Would definitely want info with wellbutrin since it seems to do wonders for my a few people I know.

I too am on AdderallXR30mg and 10mgir and take .5xanax for anxiety.

Prozac I was a zombie, and am getting off my mood stableizers because I never get excited..but nothing ever bothers me.. I feel like an old man and I'm 21 in college!

Wellbutrin, Lexapro, zoloft?! I have a xanax addiction and has left me depressed so I want something that can get me out of bed
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Old 12-14-09, 02:40 AM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Ativan is great as far as long-acting benzo's go. It really has less recreational value than meds like Xanax or Valium, so I would assume less risk of dependence, at least anectdotally.
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Old 12-14-09, 02:53 PM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

I tried Wellbutrin but it made me headachy and nauseous. Maybe I was taking it wrong? I love how so many people said it worked well for them. I don't know why it had such a bad effect on me. I would have loved to have stuck it out.
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Old 12-14-09, 02:58 PM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Quote:
Originally Posted by trishcan View Post
Ativan is great as far as long-acting benzo's go. It really has less recreational value than meds like Xanax or Valium, so I would assume less risk of dependence, at least anectdotally.
Are the effects the same as Xanax though as far as sleepiness?
I took a .50 yesterday around 7pm because I had such a stressful day and I was so irritable. (I was still irritable but sleepy.) I got my kids up for school, sent them on their way and laid back down. I didn't wake up until 12:30 today. I hate that I sleep so much when I take a Xanax. Wondering if Ativan has the same effect?
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Old 12-14-09, 04:39 PM
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Re: New here. Question re: Adderall/Anti-depressant/Xanax

Quote:
Originally Posted by JinxCat View Post
Are the effects the same as Xanax though as far as sleepiness?
I took a .50 yesterday around 7pm because I had such a stressful day and I was so irritable. (I was still irritable but sleepy.) I got my kids up for school, sent them on their way and laid back down. I didn't wake up until 12:30 today. I hate that I sleep so much when I take a Xanax. Wondering if Ativan has the same effect?
I haven't taken Xanax, but Ativan does make me groggy unless I take immediately prior to a full-blown panic attack-in that case, it brings me down to "normal." I haven't been in the habit of taking it any other time, and just deal with general anxiety as best I can without meds.
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