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  #1  
Old 02-20-09, 03:29 PM
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Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

Hi All,
My week is coming to an end and I would like to know if anyone stops taking their Adderall over the weekend? I am currently on 20 mg of Adderall XR. This past week has been very well established with the new dosage increase.

I am not going to take the med this weekend so my question is this. Starting on Monday when I start taking the 20 mg again will the potency of the medicine be stronger, weaker, or the same since I have not taken it for 2 days?

I was curious about this. I know that taking vacations from the med can help out right? I just wanted to know if the medicine would still be effective when I started taking it again on Monday.

Thank You,

Twinch :-)
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Old 02-20-09, 04:47 PM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

It's probably not going to make a difference short term, just a 2 day break. The half-life of Adderall is like 10-13 hours or something so it won't totally be out of your system for a few days. I think you'd need to return to baseline, that is, a few days with it not in your system, before you'd notice anything.

I've been on it a long time, and a few times have been off it. i was off it like 6 months once, and when I went back on it, I noticed it to be more potent and effective for the first couple days. But then my tolerance, or whatever you want to call it, kicked in, and it went back to how it was.

It's still effective but just not as much of a "punch" as when I first started it.
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Old 02-20-09, 07:46 PM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

I have only been on Adderall XR 20mg for 4 weeks now but I take weekends off and sometimes (like today) I take Friday off if I do not have a busy day at work. It has worked well for me so far. I do seem to get a bit of a bigger kick on Monday but that is Ok because I probably need it to get going for the week. I like the break. Any minor side effects seem to go away quickly when I take days off. Taking weekends off was something that I discussed with both my psychologist who diagnosed me and my doc.

I go to the doc next week and I may ask to try Adderall IR. I feel that it might give me even greater flexibility of when I take meds. For instance, today I might have wanted to take an IR in the morning since I did have a meeting to go to but I was going to take the afternoon off. With the XR, I have to commit to meds for the whole day or not.
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Old 02-20-09, 10:52 PM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

Taking a "vacation" definitely helps, imo.

I think it puts things into perspective a little bit, like if i have a particularly unproductive day or two off of the meds and start again, it helps me go "oh man, i am focused and i am getting tons of stuff done!"

It's probably a good idea just for overall mental health by giving yourself a break from stimulants for a little while every now and then too.

Ultimately it's up to you and your doctor, if he/she thinks its a good idea and you can manage it, why not give it a try? If you don't like it, you don't have to take breaks. Everyone's going to be a little different so what works for me or even may work for everyone else, may not work for you.
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Old 02-20-09, 10:59 PM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

It will help - But as stated, at minimum two days would be needed because of the half life.
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Old 02-21-09, 12:21 AM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

I know for other stimulant medications, such as methylphenidate, drug holidays can be relatively common (some kids take entire summers off, often in an attempt to catch up on growth, which is sometimes temporarily impaired by stimulant medications). The other posters above make a good point about Adderall and its half-life (around 12 hours). Even after a 1-2 day vacation, there still are detectable levels in your system. One thing to watch for is the potential rebound effect. Doesn't seem too serious, but something to be aware of. For example, a study comparing Adderall and methylphenidate and driving performances noted a greater rebound effect with Adderall than with methylphenidate about 17 hours after the last dose of medication was taken.
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Old 02-21-09, 12:32 AM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

Also, FYI, A drug is considered to be "completely eliminated" from the body after 5 half-lives have passed.

The Half-life for both IR and XR is 9-14h. This means at a standard rate, to have "No" amount of adderall in your system, it can take anywhere between 45-70 hrs. or 2-3 days.

So 2 days may clear it from your system, but 3 would be better.
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Old 02-21-09, 02:40 AM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

Actually, I've heard that it takes 10-12 half-lives for a drug to be completely gone. But once it gets past the first half-life, the drug is not providing benefits, however, it is still in the system.

Ritalin's extremely short half-life of 2-4 hours means that every morning you basically start up at baseline. That's why if you go a few days without the effects should be noticeable when you start up again. It's also why, I believe, the crash is so much worse on Ritalin.
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Old 02-21-09, 04:50 AM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

I'm just going off of what my Pharmacology prof. told us.

After 5 half lives, you have only 3.125% of the original amount of the drug left in your system. While 3% is not 0% and there is still some there... it is for all intensive purposes out of your system as far as its ability to cause effects or drug interactions.
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Old 02-21-09, 10:56 AM
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Re: Does taking a vacation from Adderall help?

Yeah, after 5 half-lives the drug level is probably so miniscule as to be undetectable. But it takes 10-12 half-lives for all traces to be gone.

I know that when I've had drug testing for employment, I stopped taking the Adderall for just two days and had the test on the 3rd day. I tested negative for amphetamine. I am sure I still had traces of the drug in me, but the testing does allow for a certain amount to be detected and still be considered a "pass."

I did that because at a drug test before, I tested positive for amphetamine and did have my valid Adderall prescription, but it held up the process while they had to check with my pharmacy and doctor, and it just was a pain. I decided to just avoid that hassle by stopping Adderall for 2 days.
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