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  #1  
Old 12-14-08, 01:04 AM
mikeosia mikeosia is offline
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Question Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain works??

I am on adderall XR 5mg but i take more... about 10 mg XR to experiment i will try higher doses and different meds as well,

I need to know if taking these dangerous drugs will effect my brain permanently, as i am 17 years old, i believe my brain is fully developed structurally and my chemistry is set for life. is this true?

Is their any way that overdose of any type of ADHD stimulant medication can permanently affect my brain both in good and bad ways...

Thanks for any help
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Old 12-14-08, 01:17 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

You're only 17, so your brain isn't fully developed. It's not until about 25 that it stops developing. Over the coming years, you should find desire for risk will diminish, and your ability to assess it improve.

Stimulant medication for used in the treatment of ADD has been around since the 60s if I recall correctly; if you stick to the dosage as directed then you'll be fine.

As for overdosing: if you abuse the medication, then you'll basically fry your brain and do long lasting damage. I don't recommend you abuse your medication.
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Old 12-14-08, 01:20 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

The short answer is :

No

tc

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(Robert)
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Old 12-14-08, 07:10 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

There is no end point for your brain. A lot of things are developed by 25, but nothing is ever concrete. Your plastic brain will continue going through changes for the rest of your life.

Don't worry about stimulants affecting you negatively and permanently. They simply aren't dangerous in medicinal doses.
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Old 12-14-08, 07:24 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

The official answer is that the ADHD stimulants are regarded as safe in the prescribed dosages. Unofficially, I think it depends on the individual. If I don't take adderall after having taken it for a few days, I really feel like crap, and am mentally foggy. It seems logical that my brain is adapting to the altered chemistry to try and revert back to default function. Whether long-term treatment for me will cause irreversible changes is unknown. There are anecdotal reports of people taking ritalin/adderall and it having a detrimental impact on brain function seemingly permanently or semi-permanently after stopping treatment. Just search the forum.

An overdose of medication can be neurotoxic. If you are wanting to use meds recreationally, just remember that there is a good reason these are controlled substances. They can have an extremely powerful impact on neurochemistry which can rapidly lead to addiction. I would advise to stick to the more legal routes of induced euphoria, e.g., alcohol.
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Old 12-15-08, 10:09 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Nope

Now if you've been taking stimulants for a prolonged period, stopping cold turkey can give you some wierd mental effects. The same goes with antidepressants. Your brain adapts to the different environment the medication produces and thus relies on that 'medicated' environment. Taking it away suddenly can sometimes put your brain in a state of shock. Anyone taking an antidepressant for a while then skips dosing or stops (Effexor XR is notorious for this) you will know what I mean.
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Old 12-15-08, 10:35 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

That is really a very good question.

If you take it as directed then it absorbs to slowly to cause any problems and thus the answer is "no" there is little or no chance of damage.

If you snort or mainline then the answer is "quite likely"

BTW, we know, as others have stated, that the frontal part of the brain continues to develop until somewhere around the age 30. There are some indications that the process continues longer perhaps to age 45 or so. Limited research on this however.

Anyway, do what you need to do to handle the effects of ADHD and don't spent too much time worrying too much about the medications permanently effecting your brain because they really don't.

Good luck.

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Old 12-16-08, 03:50 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Quote:
Originally Posted by blueroo View Post
There is no end point for your brain. A lot of things are developed by 25, but nothing is ever concrete. Your plastic brain will continue going through changes for the rest of your life.

Don't worry about stimulants affecting you negatively and permanently. They simply aren't dangerous in medicinal doses.
do you know what the safe dosages are for Ritalin and Adderall?
im having trouble finding them.
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Old 12-16-08, 04:47 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

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Originally Posted by mikeosia View Post
do you know what the safe dosages are for Ritalin and Adderall?
im having trouble finding them.
Your doctor, pharmacist, or the PI sheet for the aforementioned drugs should tell you the maximum therapeutic dose is.

Off the top of my head, the maximum recommended dose for Ritalin is 60mg per day.
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Old 12-17-08, 04:41 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Always take the "maximum recommended/FDA approved doses" with a grain of salt (here in the US). FDA approval only requires that the medication shows hard proof/data up to 8 weeks and 50% improvement in symptoms or 30-40% improvement when compared with placebo. All the prescibing information that comes with medications is the same stuff in the PDR (physicians desk reference).

A true specialist in ADD should easily be able to know what the safe limits are for the medications he/she prescribes despite what the PDR says.
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Old 12-17-08, 06:01 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Im not an expert but Ive been prescribed up to 120mgs methylphen. in the past
right now 80mg brand name ritalin is right for me
Im wondering how will your md be able to find whats right for you if you keep dosing improperly
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Old 12-18-08, 03:44 AM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Abusing it yes, your brain is damaged normal doses, I'd like to see that disproven.
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Old 05-14-13, 03:51 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

What is considered abusing the drug? If I have never taken more than my prescribed dose, my brain should be fine correct? I keep reading studies about the long term alteration of the brain from Adderall usage. It has me worried, however, I think I may be looking too hard into this. I was a 2.5 yr user taking it only 2-3x weekly. Will my brain recover from this usage? I have been off for 4 months now.
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Old 05-14-13, 04:36 PM
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Re: Does Stimulant medication like adderall permanently change the way the brain work

Quote:
Originally Posted by gigem2012 View Post
I keep reading studies about the long term alteration of the brain from Adderall usage. It has me worried, however, I think I may be looking too hard into this.
You've already answered your own question. You are looking for someone to tell you a clear cut answer. Several studies have been done, none with conclusive evidence about negative (unreversable) neurochemical changes at a theraputic dose. There was even a thread about this very subject posted right above this one, with several good research studies and articles.
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