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  #1  
Old 05-14-18, 05:25 PM
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maryjanewatson maryjanewatson is offline
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Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

Hello all! Hoping I can get some incite here.

I’ve suspected I’ve had ADHD for a long time, but it wasn’t until last year I got diagnosed. I had anxiety about seeking meds because my brother said they are basically meth and can do damage to your heart, but things are so bad at work with my inattention that I decided to seek meds finally.

I have read a lot about the meds making a night and day difference in people right away, but I’m not feeling it. In fact, I just feel the physical effects, but I just feel my anxiety getting worse. The other day my anxiety got so bad, and a few hours after taking my second dose, I got really tired and depressed. They prescribed me generic Adderall. Starting on half doses twice a day.

My mom thinks I don’t have ADHD because I don’t get tired when I drink coffee, and she says that people with ADHD typically get more tired with caffeine. Is that true?

I’ve struggled so long with not being able to focus on things, even when I really really want to, and my therapist and doctor seem to think I’m ADHD as well, but maybe I’m not if things aren’t working for me… 🙁

For context, I’m 30, and I’ve had problems with focus most my life, but it really started to affect my life half way through my first year of high school. My mom used to joke that I had it bc I could never sit still and often would do things with my hands without realizing (mess with/tear up paper, and stuff like that), but we didn’t have the money to actually diagnose something like that. It really started to affect me as a teen when I went from a nearly straight A student in jr high with moderate effort to “C’s get degrees” in high school with a ton of effort. I just couldn’t focus in class or get my homework done because of lack of focus.

I used to pull all nighters all the time in college, but it was never me being extra studious. It was literally just getting basic stuff done. Assignments or readings that would take most people around an hour would take me several hours — some times days if the class was particularly rough, or I had zero interest in it. I just could never focus on anything for more than 5 minutes.

I always just chocked it up to lack of will power, but even for fun things I really want to focus on, like studying languages or doing crafts, I just can’t. It really sucks!

I was really hoping this diagnosis would be a life changer, but so far, I feel worse 🙁
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Old 05-14-18, 07:33 PM
LyrinMeow LyrinMeow is offline
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

How many mg is your adderall pill?
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Old 05-14-18, 09:52 PM
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

The pills are 20mg each, so last week I was doing 10mg per dose. The nurse that called to check on things told me to up it to a full pill per dose this week.
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Old 05-14-18, 10:19 PM
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

I'd give it a bit of time.

When I started my meds I noticed the effects right away. I started on Ritalin. Mine calmed me down quite a bit. But I didn't have the fatigue as bad as it was. It helps my anxiety somehow and I have pretty sever anxiety. Not sure how that works.

But everyone is a different. YMMV. Depression and anxiety can also come with concentration problems.

Give the meds a little bit longer and then see your doctor to go over how you were or were not affected and come up with a plan from there.
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Old 05-15-18, 04:49 AM
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjanewatson View Post
I’ve suspected I’ve had ADHD for a long time, but it wasn’t until last year I got diagnosed. I had anxiety about seeking meds because my brother said they are basically meth and can do damage to your heart, but things are so bad at work with my inattention that I decided to seek meds finally.
I am glad you didnt listen to your brother because he is soooo wrong. These meds are not like meth or "legal speed" its wrong to say so.
Quote:
My mom thinks I don’t have ADHD because I don’t get tired when I drink coffee, and she says that people with ADHD typically get more tired with caffeine. Is that true?
No. someone's response so caffeine or stimulants is not indicative of whether or not they have adhd. Some people just are immune to coffee and stuff like that. Some people have issues with the way meds work for them. It has nothing to do with whether or not they have adhd.

Quote:
I’ve struggled so long with not being able to focus on things, even
I was really hoping this diagnosis would be a life changer, but so far, I feel worse 🙁
The diagnosis is a life changer and meds can be as well. You havent been on them long enough to determine that. I would make notes about how your meds make you feel on a daily basis and make an appt asap with the doctor and talk to him/her about it.
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Old 06-15-18, 01:42 PM
ImaADHDGuy ImaADHDGuy is online now
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

It's been a month, I see. But I thought I'd offer my advice anyway. If you're not here, at least others might benefit.

Sounds like you know it already, but don't listen to your Mother or Brother. There are more ignorant beliefs about ADHD and stimulant medication than any other subject I can think of. If it's not a subject a person has spent hours of academic study and practice in (or personal experience), then ignore them. I could debunk these beliefs, but that's probably better for another thread.

Finding the right medication at the right dose can take some time. I will offer some advice based on my experience trying to get my meds right (which is almost there but not quite after nearly 6 months).

1) Adderall can be picky around diet (acidic foods before or right after taking it can diminish effects, so can vitamin C, for example). Do some reading on diet and Adderall, including supplements that help or hinder. Doctors tend not to advise in this area, which is a shame.

2) Other stimulants, like caffeine and nicotine, can exaggerate side effects. Avoid them, at least at first, if you use either.

3) XR (extended release) works better for some, while IR (instant release) can work better for others. Some even use a combo of both.

4) Until you find the right dose, taken at the right times, it can feel like it'll never work well.

5) Once you have meds in good shape, you still have to do intentional work to break old habits and create new, effective ones.

6) Bonus note: not all generics are the same. I had to have "Brand Name Only" designated because the generic I was often getting only brought side effects and depression. Not to mention my pharmacy was inconsistent in which generics it used, and switching generics can be very disruptive to the therapeutic progress. Unfortunately, this can be a battle with your insurance company or your pharmacy, but it's worth the effort.
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Old Yesterday, 12:12 AM
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Re: Diagnosed last year, just started meds last week…but not working…

Thanks everyone for your insights!

Update, I had my follow up appointment, and my doc and I decided to stop adderall. She's decided to start me on an anxiety med for the time being to see how that affects my work. I'm waiting a bit to start it bc I've read you should wait 14 days to start a new prescription to avoid possible bad reactions from mixing meds. I'll be starting it not next week, but the week after

I'll keep ya'll updated

Last edited by maryjanewatson; Yesterday at 12:28 AM..
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