Home › Welcome to the ADDitude Forums › For Adults › Symptoms, Diagnosis & Beyond › Why does Hydrocodone Help my ADHD, and Adderall XR does not? › Reply To: Why does Hydrocodone Help my ADHD, and Adderall XR does not?
This is just a personal observation I’ve made, but it seems like opiates have that effect of increasing motivation and focus on virtually everyone, whether they have ADD or not. I got a severe ear infection one time and was prescribed Vicodin for it, and it sure had that effect on me (I do have ADD by the way) and I even went to the library to study, which is definitely not normal for me as I am not the best student. As Barzilla mentioned, the dopamine release caused by the hydrocodone explains the boost in motivation and focus. The problem with opiates is that they are very addictive and can’t be used long-term without developing a physical dependency on them, at which point they lose most of their efficacy due to tolerance.
Did you say you’re also taking medication for anxiety? What kind of meds? I have both ADD and generalized anxiety disorder and had the same experience with Adderall before I started taking an antidepressant to treat my anxiety (Lexapro in my case). It would cause me to become overstimulated just like you describe, with my mind jumping all over the place, really bad anxiety, and no motivation to do anything because I was so hypersensitive to everything–all I’d want to do is go into my room, turn down the lights, and watch TV to shut out the outside world. I was getting the Adderall from just a normal family doctor to save money, but when I started having issues I decided to see an actual psychiatrist that knows much more about medications and stuff. Well, first thing he did was prescribe me Lexapro, temporarily taking me off of the Adderall to allow my body to adjust to the antidepressant. After a couple of months when I got used to the Lexapro and found a good dosage, my psychiatrist put me back on the Adderall and wow, it was like taking a different medication. It no longer made me anxious or overstimulated, as if the Lexapro was acting like a buffer and keeping my brain chemistry in check, and it gave me lots of motivation and focus like it’s supposed to. I’d still feel quite anxious at the end of each day when the Adderall would wear off, but not nearly as bad as before. I’ve now switched to Vyvanse, which is basically a purified version of Adderall XR that has a slower, smoother release. As a result, it doesn’t have as bad of a comedown/crash and I only experience mild anxiety now when it starts to wear off.
I’d be wary of Kratom. It hasn’t been studied very much at all, it appears to be addictive and some people have reported becoming dependent on it and having withdrawal symptoms when stopping, and it isn’t regulated by the FDA so it’s impossible to know exactly what you’re getting. I wouldn’t use it personally, but if you decide to, please be very careful and monitor yourself for any signs that you may be becoming addicted, such as tolerance.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by wthrman. Reason: Accidentally included the OP's post in my reply