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Old 03-29-12, 07:50 AM
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Red face In dire need of assistance regarding my ADD and medication for it. =/

Okay, so I've just been diagnosed with ADD, or ADHD-PI which its called now, and I'll try to
make my story short to get to the point, but knowing myself, I'll probably turn into a wall
of text. Here goes anyway.

Me:
25 y/o female. Skinny (120lbs, 5'8"). On birth control pills (Microgynon), hormone supplement
2mg Estradiol valerate and blood pressure meds to avoid blood clots/stroke. Also taking
magnesium and a ton of vitamin supplements and omega 3.

My peculiar version of ADD:
I've always been very creative and grew up being the "class clown" with witty comments and
weird ideas. While people were doing assignments, I'd be building towers with pencils,
doodling in my scrap book, day-dream, but most oftenly I'd engage in weird non-school related
conversations with fellow class mates. Always been full of insight and very reflected. I can
easily put myself into other people's shoes and understand their opinions. Always liked
drawing and I always got complemented on how good I was, but I never seemed to get satisfied,
myself. Always found something that needed correction. Never had problems with authority at
school, even though I never did my homework assignments etc. I truly felt sorry about it, and
for some reason the teachers sympathized with me and still liked me....spite of me doing crazy
things at times, like me and a friend at elementary school attacked the boys' room by clogging
the half broken urinal and letting it flood over. We also found a fire extinguisher in an old
wv beetle in my moms old barn. Decided to to a gas exercise thing. the kind they do in the
army, so we got into the beetle, closed the doors, rolled up the windows and sprayed away.
Figured out that it made it impossible to breathe in there and tasted horrible. That didnt
stop us from taking the extinguisher at school and attacking the boys' room with it. We
scurried off and never got caught. Oh, and there was this episode where I soaked some students
with the fire hose (they had super soakers), and also intentionally put my science book on
fire during class because they gave us denatured alcohol.


Puberty hit and so did depression, mood swings and lethargy.

I'd isolate myself and spend most my time playing the MMORPG Lineage 2, all the while chatting
on msn, watching a movie/tv-show and chatting on ventrilo. I felt more relaxed doing several
things at once, and I was good at it. =)


My hands have always been shaky. I can remember as far back as preschool, kids asking my why
my hands were shaking. I'd tell them it was because of low blood sugar, which I assumted to be
correct, since I've never really had a normal sense of appetite. If I ate, it was because I
wanted to taste something good. Otherwise, I'd forget to eat.



People would ask me if I'd eaten, and I'd say "yes". They'd ask me when, and I'd start thinking,
realizing that last time I ate was.. yesterday. I'd hear my stomach growl, or I could feel it
was empty, but it didn't really bother me much or affect my mood.



I was pretty lethargic either way, even though my head was constantly filled with the strangest
thoughts, often looping through my head or leading to other thoughts like one train cart is
hooked to another. If my head wasn't busy thinking about weird things (that I'd forget merely
seconds afterwards anyway), there'd be a song playing in my head. Often a catchy chorus.



Time has always been hard for me to wrap my head around. I'd spend hours in the bathroom each
morning, mostly just doing nothing but think about random stuff while doing normal morning-
bathroom-things, but sometimes forgetting to do some of them, or do some of them twice because
I wasnt sure if I'd done it or not.



I'm a perfectionist, and it really is a problem at times. I'm obsessed with symmetry, and when
cleaning something, it'll take me 3 times as long to get something clean because I can't seem
to get it clean enough as there's always a smudge or something that I KNOW will go away if I
keep rubbing on it. My perfectionism also gives me poor self image, as all I see when I look
myself in the mirror, is features that I dislike, and find myself ugly, even though I know I'm
not.



I've always had problems keeping touch with family and friends. I really do care for my friends,
but can't help feeling as if they're getting more out of being social together than I am when I
am with them. As if they find it more "rewarding". I usually have an equally pleasant time just
doing the things I like (most of which are online) all alone, even though I can't help feeling
that everything in my life is "bland" compared to what other people get from doing the same
activites
. Like going for a hike on a sunny afternoon. They'll feel so happy and tell me how
beautiful nature is and how good it feels to be outside and be physically active, yet I feel
nothing. It's been like this for as long as I can remember, though it wasn't as bad during my
childhood.



The thing about family and friends, is that I do care about them, but I forget to keep in touch
with them, and while they feel it's been too long since we've spoken, it doesn't really feel
that way to me. When socializing with friends, I tend to talk the least, yet listen in most of
the times and perhaps toss in a witty comment here and there, though I wish I had the spark to
be as verbally active as my friends.



I ALWAYS procrastinate. I never seem to finish anything. I could get an awesome idea, but never
finish acting it out, or usually even start at all.

The simplest thing such as doing the dishes or making dinner makes me mentally exhausted before
even beginning.
My appartment usually looks like a mess, and it doesnt really bother me as much
as it should. It only bothers me when I get visitors, because I'm embarrassed. I tend to summon
my superpowers and do a 5minute supercleanup just before they arrive to spare myself the shame.


I'm extremely sensitive to criticism, and might tear up with even the slightest little comment.
I am in complete lack of authority, and will always let someone else lead. I tend to stay away
from responsibility
as best I can
. Important papers always get lost, forgotten or crushed at
the bottom of my purse/backpack, or I misplace them. I've also always been supersensitive to
touch
(in a good way)
. Stroking and massaging is heaven to me, and certain places in my neck
will send waves of very pleasurable tingles down my spine and throughout the rest of my body.
(Yes, it's better than sex.) Which leads me to my libido, which is quite low. Always had
problems with it being a lot lower than everyone else's. I can never seem to bother doing
things that don't seem interesting, as in reading school related stuff as my mind wanders and I
don't realize it before I've read an entire page
that my mind has been elsewhere and it's as if
I haven't even read the page at all.
This can happen several times in a row while trying to read
the same page.



Same thing might happen when I go to the bathroom. Instead of brushing my teeth, I'll find
myself making funny faces in the mirror, comparing the tiles on the floor or counting the
strands on my toothbrush.



Oh! And another thing... This is a big one. Over the past recent years, I've (possibly due to
my poor self image) gotten huge issues with social anxiety, and frequently, it's been giving me
panic attacks to near the point of fainting unless I sit down and put my head between my legs.
For this, I was prescribed different things that I oddly reacted abnormally on.



Sobril (oxazepam. benzo):
Some minor calming effects the first two times, but after that they seemed to stop working. At
one time though, I took three of them combined with alcohol, and I got a good feeling inside
that was very relaxing. It only lasted for 30 minutes, and after that I seemed to have become
immune to it. So then, my doctor perscribed me -



Stesolid (diazepam. benzo. same as valium):
Couldn't really feel much, but the first couple of times it would make me sleepy, and did keep
my anxiety attacks away. Only days after, though, they stopped working and I had to keep upping
the dosage to keep the anxiety attacks away. When I didn't feel any effect anymore from them
after doing 25mg at a time, I stopped taking them as I'd gotten immune. On a side note, though,
my friend who has ADHD gave me strattera so I'd be able to make my doctors appointment in time.
While on strattera (atomoxetine), I tried taking half a stesolid which is 2.5mg, and it felt
amazing.
I'd lie down on my bed, and I felt as if I was just floating away. I have no idea why
it worked so well while on strattera. Since I wasn't able to get strattera on my own, and since
Stesolid didn't work anymore without it, my doctor prescribed me -



Xanor (alprazolam. same as Xanax):
This felt very calming the first time at 1mg (though no pleasurable tingly floaty sensation
what so ever). Second time, I didn't feel all that much. Third time, I didn't feel anything
regardless of how much I'd take, though it DOES still help a lot against general anxiety (the
side effects of upcoming medication which makes my stomach feel as if its filled with ants).



Strattera (30 or so mg, I think):
It really calmed me down and removed my constant feeling of "having to do something else
constantly"
. I could sit down and watch tv and actually relax. It also kept my mood swings
stabilized, however it really did give me some spine and without tearing up over nothing when
people got in my face, I'd get equally angry and stubborn back. Authority! Yay!, though I often
felt kind of sedated mentally. Slightly zombiefied, even though I felt perfectly fine mood wise.
It didn't give me any sort of "spark" to get things done or anything like that, but it did help
against my social anxiety and inner feeling if restlessness (that I didn't even realize I had
until I started trying out adhd-meds
). My apathy and laziness was still there, and I'd talk
even less socially, as the thought of it didnt really cross my mind. Oh, and my pupils were
more dilated while on strattera
.



Caffeine!:
Tried my first cup of coffee at work at the age of 23, and I never really had any belief in
that stuff
, but to my amazement, after 10-20 minutes, I was wide awake, talking extremely fast,
very energetic and my social anxiety was gone. I'd sit behind the register (grocery store)
drumming high speed beats with my fingers, feeling very sped up. Thus I became a coffee addict
for a while. I increasingly increased the dosage though, thinking it couldnt possibly be
dangerous, because come on.. it's coffee.. I'd get one of those instant thingies, and blend it
super strong. Id do the same when partying, though I stopped after waking up one morning after
a long night of partying (no drugs what so ever) and woke up to a miniature psychosis. I thought
my legs weren't attached to my body, but where just lying at the end of the bed, and that my
arm was a giant wall I was lying next to. Also, when thinking about a friend of mine who is an
amphetamine addict, it felt as if we were so far apart, it felt as if I was somewhere right
above and in the middle of the pacific ocean, and he was far, far, far, far away. After 3 hours,
I managed to get up, and did checked my coffee can and read up online. turns out Id taken a lot
more than what's recommended for a normal human being. Also, coffee would release tonnes of
endorphines in my brain when listening to drum 'n bass. Especially liquid
drum 'n bass. I would
nt be able to stop myself from dancing to it with a big smile across my face.



Amphetamine (obtained illegally):
This was actually the first thing I tried, and when I did, it was at an after-party while I was
at a stage in my life where I just didn't care anymore. People told me I'd be more chatty and
awake, but to everyone's surprise, it didn't work that way on me. It was the most comfortable
feeling ever
. I've had problems describing it, but the calmness I felt inside was amazing. It
was as if I'd lived my entire life on stormy seas, and within seconds, the ocean went
completely silent
. Not a single wave. Or, as if I've had bad eyesight my entire life, thinking
it was normal, just to get utterly shocked when trying glasses for the first time, or as if my
head was a radio stuck on static at high volume all this time, and all of a sudden, someone
turned the volume all the way down
. I didn't know what to make of it, so I tried some more of
the stuff, and I felt even calmer. My social anxiety completely vanished, so did my depression,
I could participate actively in discussions, I could place my emotions and opinions almost right
away just by thinking about them (usually, I'd be full of insecurity and never really know what
I thought of things or felt
, the last being a huge problem in relationships). Someone wanted to
take a picture of me, which I usually avoid because when they'd show me the picture, I'd get
depressed and it'd ruin the party for me. This time, however, I gambled on it, and took a glance.
To my surprise, I didnt look that bad at all. I "floated" off into the bathroom to look myself
in the mirror, and I was amazed. I didn't look hidious. I actually felt I looked rather good. I
took 3 more rounds of it at that after-party, before going home because my friend wanted to. I
however, wanted to stay because I'd never felt so comfortable socially in my entire life before.
When we got back at my house, I noticed I was hallucinating a bit. After we went to bed, I'd
look at my hand, and it'd be full of small black spots. I'd look away, and they'd be gone. I'd
look at my hand again, and within two seconds they'd appear again. I'd look at a picture hanging
on my bedroom wall, and it looked as if the crowd of people in it were moving about, talking etc.
though I heard nothing. Then I fell sound asleep. My friend got slighly envious because she
wanted to see it too, but was glad she didnt because she'd freak out.



The next day, I couldnt help but wonder if it might have been the booze in the mix making me
react that way to amphetamine. so at the next after party, I'd sobered up before getting there,
and I tried it again. Same effect. It felt amazing. I felt mentally healthy. I felt normal and
fully functional
. I felt like other people do.


Concerta (metylphenidate in time released capsules. 36 and 54mg):
After figuring out I most likely had some form of ADHD, a friend of mine got me some Concertas,
and I tried 36mg at first. At the beginning, I felt a lof ot the positive effects I'd gotten
from amphetamine, but with certain side effects. It didn't really calm me, but I could attend
conversations
, but it didnt aid my concentration very much, and I felt as if my mind was seeing
the world through some sorf of filter
. At times, my nail biting would be so bad, my fingers
would bleed. That's when I started splitting the concertas into smaller parts, measuring each
piece at about 5ish mg, which theoretically would be like taking a 5mg ritalin pill. This worked
well, as the nail biting was a lot less frequent, I could enjoy social activities and do simple
house hold things
that used to be near impossible for me. I enjoyed things a lot more, and I
could see the possibilites life had to offer, instead of just the hinderances. After being on it
for a month, gradually going up to 10ish mg, I ran out, and my depression, ad/hd symptoms and
social anxiety came back worse than ever. Maybe because I'd felt how nice things were being
mentally healthy
, and now I was back stuck with the same old feelings of emptiness and
pointlessness where everything just felt bland. Back to procrastinating and anxiety attacks at
work. Went up to 54mg, which I took whole at first, but it turned me into a zombie. I lost a
lot of my personality, but I functioned just fine at work. Second time I took one, though, I
didnt really feel that zombie like, but I still felt kinda empty and boring inside. Didn't like
it at all, so I started chopping them up as well, into 10-12ish mg pieces which did wonders.
Couldnt really drink alcohol on a full capsule because itd give me antsy stomach and just take
my party mood away. With it chooped up into minor pieces though, I could drink, have self esteem,
get things done, have a good time socially and work without problems. No depression, and just
some minor social anxiety because it didn't rly improve my self image. No nail biting, and very,
very rarely any ants. If I felt any, I'd just check the time and realize it'd been almost 4
hours since I took it, so it was just the coming down effect. Biggest thing I noticed though,
was that after 4-5 hours without food, I'd actually get a bit grumpy, and HUNGRY! It felt weird,
but people told me it was normal. (felt this hunger when on amphetamine as well)

Again, I ran out of meds and went back to being my good old emotional train wreck self.



This was when I went on to get diagnosed. Meanwhile, though, I started w/-



Wellbutrin (bupropion. Zydan(sp?):
150mg at first, and it really did give me a ton of energy and helped my with my social anxiety
and depression. It REALLY turned my ADD into ADHD, though. I'd be extremely chatty and my
thoughts were all scattered. Shaky hands etc. But! Music sounded soooo much better, and certain
up beat songs would fill my brain with endorphines.

Partying on it was AWESOME! Though I'd go kinda crazy and not always remember everything. Also,
after partying, I'd be depressed for an entire week as if the medication just... didnt work.
After a while, though. I started getting some side effects, such as ants in my stomach, jaw
clenching/bruxism, nail biting and occasional muscle spasms
. So I quit.



Got my hands on some concertas again which I immediately cut up. Was awesome the first two weeks,
then I had to start upping the dosage a bit for the effect to be maintained. BUT then psychologist
and psychiatrist decided I had ADD, I immediately had to stop using the concerta, instead they
gave me -



Ritalin (metylphenidate. 10mg pills):
I thought they'd have the same effect as the cut up 10-12ish mg pieces of concerta would, but to
my surprise, it didnt.. at all.. I started out with 5mg. No effect. Then went up to 10mg, which
had a VERY small effect.
practically all it did was keep my depression away and make me bite my
nails again. Went up to 15mg, and the nail biting got a tad better, but now the ants were back,
with their entire colony
it seemed. Also, jaw clenching. The effects on my add was better, though,
but not nearly as good as on the cut up concertas (which didnt rly have side effects), So I went
up to 20mg, which DID have a moderate effect on my add/adhd-symptoms, but wow.. the ants.. and
the jaw.. and the nails
.. a good pesticide was the xanax I still had lying around though (1mg at
a time). it didn't take away the side effects completely, but kinda put them back at where they
were at 10mg. My psychiatrist does NOT want me taking Xanax, even though I get no "buzz" from it
what so ever
and it just helps keeping the ants at bay. But here I am. For now, I'm stuck with
20mg ritalin and 1mg xanax
, and I can KIND OF get things done... though I have occasional social
anxiety, a couple of ants, cold sweats and all that with my ADD still being kinda strong. I
also get no desire to eat while on ritalin or strattera, though I have no problems eating. I
just don't get hungry. On cut up concerta, I'd STARVE 15mins after taking my first dose in the
morning.




Next meeting, though, I'll tell her I can use concerta but I'll have to split them up into pieces
(which she wont like). If she won't let me do that, I'll try to convince her into getting me onto
racemic-amphetamine(Adderall?), or dextro-amphetamine (dexedrine?).



Here's what I'm wondering:

Does anyone here recognize themself in my kind of ADD, or ADHD (since I could do crazy stuff at
times. especially when drunk. Like for instance running around with a blanket as a cape claiming
to be batman.) ?



I seem kinda... "special" with my ADD/ADHD-thingy.



If so, what kind of AD/HD is it? =S



If you do recognize yourself in this post, what medication would you recommend me going for? and
dosage? Levo-amphetamine? or d-amphetamine? or something else? A combination of substances?



Btw, only time I experienced total bliss on benzodiazepines was when I was on strattera.



I also struggle with perfectionism and that things need to be symmetrical and propotional. I can
EASILY tell if a movie is being run in the wrong aspect ration and it'll bug the bejeezus outta
me. I'm very creative, and with the right mindset, I can sit all night reading about something
incredibly interesting because sometimes I just need to know WHY things are they way there are.

Kinda made me a sci fi fan, because I'm kinda fascinated by where technology might take us next.
=P



Okay, I think I'm done. Sorry it got waaaay too long.

A thought has crossed my mind though.. Comparing how world is to me on and off adhd-meds, I kinda
get the feeling that when I'm off them, I don't see the consequences of things. Like doing the
things I should do in life. I KNOW I should do them, but... it feels as if they kinda don't matter
that much. It's as if life is a puzzle, and I can't make out the big picture and how the pieces
make it up. I just see each individual piece
. ...if that made any sense.. lol. When I'm on meds,
though, I can see better how the pieces fit and how they make up a picture at the end.
(metaphore, yes.)



Oh, and yes, I failed high school, but according to mensa, I've got an IQ of 135, so it wasn't
because of lack of intelligence. I just.. couldn't keep up, and pretended to be lazy. Figured
people considering me lazy would be better than having them think I'm "dumb".



Okay, NOW I'm done. So please, if anyone can help me with any of this. If you recognize yourself,
and have any advice, please share them with me...

Ritalin just isnt working properly for me now, and I don't know what would, but if your version
is similar to mine, then MAYBE your remedy will work for me as well. I'm clueless. I've tried
googling for hours upon hours without any decent results. I know the best and most effective thing
is what I tried at first (amphetamine, the street kind), no side effects and completely removed
all my comorbidities, but it did have a sedative effect on me, and I don't want to go around all
sedated. Maybe it was just because I took too much.. I'm not sure. I just want to have a normal
life and be able to function and enjoy life as much as my friends do, I want to be as normal as
them, and by god, I tried so hard for so many years without success, before figuring out I've got
AD/HD.



I'll try to clean this "essay" of a post up now, and highlight the important parts making it
easier to navigate through, hoping you'll take your time reading it. It'd mean a lot to mean.

Thank you all. =)



Best regards,
Kristine.~
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Old 03-29-12, 11:16 AM
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Re: In dire need of assistance regarding my ADD and medication for it. =/

Sorry for making the longest post ever. I tried to not make it all that hard to work your way through,
but considering this is an ADD forum, I should perhaps have tried a it harder. =P
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Old 03-29-12, 01:53 PM
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Re: In dire need of assistance regarding my ADD and medication for it. =/

Couple of thoughts:

Your reaction to amphetamine may or may not be typical or indicative of having ADHD (the calming effect *is* somewhat telling, though).

The way you took the Concerta makes it hard to tell whether you were feeling therapeutic or higher dose effects, as the pill casing itself for the Concerta is the release mechanism, meaning that by cutting the pills, you basically killed the time-release mechanism.

FWIW, Concerta did very weird things to me, and I responded much better to Adderall XR (never tried Dex, but if I go back to meds I think I'd like to try something like it or Vyvanse instead of Adderall with the hopes of the crash being less).
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Old 03-30-12, 04:40 AM
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Re: In dire need of assistance regarding my ADD and medication for it. =/

Quote:
Originally Posted by TygerSan View Post
Couple of thoughts:

Your reaction to amphetamine may or may not be typical or indicative of having ADHD (the calming effect *is* somewhat telling, though).

The way you took the Concerta makes it hard to tell whether you were feeling therapeutic or higher dose effects, as the pill casing itself for the Concerta is the release mechanism, meaning that by cutting the pills, you basically killed the time-release mechanism.

FWIW, Concerta did very weird things to me, and I responded much better to Adderall XR (never tried Dex, but if I go back to meds I think I'd like to try something like it or Vyvanse instead of Adderall with the hopes of the crash being less).
Thank you for responding. =) Yes, as amphetamine had an extremely
calming and good effect on me, I guess I should try to get adderal, or as
it's called here in Norway; "Racemic Amphetamine NAF". It's not XR as far
as I know, so I'd have to fill up again after 3.5-4 hours as with ritalin.
Unfortunately, it's hard to obtain here as they're pretty strict about it.

Luckily, Ive been diagnosed ADD/ADHD-PI (though I personally think I'm
closer to falling into the combo category), and there seems to be plenty
of documentation on how medication from the amphetamine-family works
a lot better than the ones from the metylphenidate-family in my case.

Though, I'm still not sure that's the case considering how weird my ADD
is all over, as described in my first post if it even IS adhd-pi. I feel so
uncertain.

But how close is adderall to the illegal street stuff? is the illegal stuff pure
l-amphetamine, and thats what makes up the difference?

Thank you. =)
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Old 03-30-12, 10:57 AM
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Re: In dire need of assistance regarding my ADD and medication for it. =/

I have no clue how "pure" the street stuff is (actually, given that it's street stuff, probably not very). . .

Racemic Amphetamine is not quite Adderall (which has more d-amphetamine than l-amphetamine; racemic means essentially a 50/50 split of d and l which would make it more similar to Benzedrine, which I'm not sure is actually still produced? )

Anyhow, I am definitely more PI than anything else (and I totally relate to your ADD being somehow weird. . . I'm somewhere between having a learning disability in the domain of executive function and sequencing, and having ADHD-PI, so I know about unusual presentations).

I'm currently not taking any medication, but was medicated for 2 years during graduate school (and not before or since then, but I did have supports in school regarding organization and such). I never really noticed any glaringly positive effects from Concerta, but I *did* notice the side effects. At very low doses (18 mg) it made me so drowsy I needed like 2 cups of coffee to stay awake (and at that point in time I didn't eve drink coffee). And at higher doses, it was even worse; I got weird dissociation (feeling like I was on the outside observing my own behavior) and even once, very briefly, euphoria (music sounded so amazing the hairs on the back of my arms stood up).

Adderall definitely had a more beneficial effect on focusing, etc. but I had a really hard time tearing myself away from things and getting stuck on things. It was great to have when I was researching and doing literature reviews, but I actually ended up writing most of my thesis unmedicated (though I did have the luxury of being able to just sit and write all day without many other distractions; under other circumstances I think I might have stuck with the meds, either at a different dose, or perhaps a slightly different formulation)>
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