Adderall withdrawal symptoms?

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    • #80484

      Our 7 year old son has been on Adderall XR for a year and a half. Over the past few months he has become extremely irritable, angry and aggressive. We took him off of the Adderall XR a couple of days ago because my husband and I thought it was causing the aggression. The first day he was off of the medication, he was great. The second and third day has been terrible! Are there any side effects from coming off of Adderall XR? I feel like I’m living in my own personal hell. Please help!

    • #80537
      Penny Williams

      While I’ve read over and over that there isn’t withdrawal from stopping stimulant medications, I have seen some individuals say they had withdrawal.

      What I think is more accurate is that your child is struggling to adjust to the differences in how his brain is working. On medication, his focus was better, he was probably able to follow instructions more often and not get into trouble as much. Now he doesn’t have that help, so he has to get used to his brain working differently and has to adjust to not having that help with symptoms. That can be very frustrating, which can lead to lashing out.

      Now, let’s talk about the medication. There are two types of stimulants: amphetamine (Adderall, Vyvanse, Evekeo…) and methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta, Quillivant…). Almost everyone does well on one type or the other, but not both. That means your son could try a methylphenidate and have a much better experience. Here’s everything you need to know about ADHD medication:

      A Patient’s Primer on the Stimulant Medications Used to Treat ADHD

      My son was aggressive and vile on amphetamines. He does well on a methylphenidate. He’s a naturally sweet and kind kid so the sudden aggression with an amphetamine was a clear signal it wasn’t the right medication.

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Author & Trainer on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

    • #80546

      Penny…thank you so much for your response and the link that you provided. We are going to a new psychiatrist this week and that’s exactly what I will request, the methylphenidate medication instead of the amphetamine. Hopefully the switch will be what we need. Thank you again!

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