Reply To: Adderall and Moodiness?


Hi, Saratops. I, too, am a 29-year-old-male who has dealt with ADD/ADHD most of my life. I was only diagnosed and prescribed medication about a year and a half ago though, so my experiences may differ from those of your SO. I know that my girlfriend has told me she can see a substantial change in my mood and social/physical/emotional capabilities when off my meds, but the changes appear to be just the opposite of your SO. If I forego taking my medication first thing in the AM I feel lethargic, anxious, overwhelmed, temperamental, obstinate, and a range of other adjectives not conducive to healthy relationships, lol. I’m prescribed Vyvanse, which is a little different than Adderall, but I have taken Adderall in the past and it can make me mercurial, just as you’ve described your SO. There are other factors that contribute to this which you may want to consider observing in your SO and perhaps trying to tamper with the available variables. These factors include:

*What other projects he has going on at work, at home, or elsewhere (And/or what else he might have on his mind) – We often shift our focus from priorities to not-so-priorities and back and beyond at intervals that can sometimes even drive ourselves nuts. If he doesn’t already have a pen/pencil and a notepad in his daily carry inventory (along with wallet, keys, phone, etc.), ask him if he’d be up for trying it out. Many people prefer using their phone to record important dates, chores, and other bits of info, but – for me, at least – writing them down in a way that forces me to make the effort to use my hands and brain to create a memo which is tactile, in a medium that doesn’t serve any other purpose than to serve as a reminder (maybe a doodle pad, too), and doesn’t require navigating though other potentially distracting apps, is very helpful. The medication is to help us pay attention and stay focused, but if that attention and focus has already been allocated elsewhere it feels intrusive and overwhelming when we’re approached with outside communication. That’s where the moodiness comes in, I think. It’s like our thoughts are people crowding around us trying to tell us something all at the same time, and when another “person” is added to the bunch it can be anxiety inducing. Writing things down helps me “purge the excrement,” to wit, it’s a great way to store the ideas in a place they can be easily referred to without taking up space in our already superfluously cluttered brains.

*His diet – Many ADD/ADHD medications, including adderall and vyvanse, are also used to suppress appetite in people who are overweight. This “symptom,” lack of appetite, affects us just the same. I have forgotten to eat on several occasions because my mind is always running like a combustion engine and the meds I take to cope with that make seeking victuals less important. Whether we’re hungry or not, our bodies are still required to be nourished, and when that doesn’t happen we can become “hangry.” I have to force myself to eat on most days because I know my mind and body will suffer (and I’ll become an angsty ball snarkiness) if I don’t, but the desire to eat or not eat is often an inhibitor unless I plan ahead.

*His sleep schedule – Again, the prescription drugs we take can obscure our circadian rhythm and prevent us from getting a restful nights sleep. As with most folks, lack of rest can make us fussy.

All this considered, it could be that during his vacation time he was able to rest his mind and his body to the extent that meds were not needed to maintain daily obligations outside the workplace. Additionally, the lack of pressure from daily workplace toils helped to allow focus on requisite household chores. Hope this helps!