ADHD–Lacking benefit from modern ideas/tips

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    • #51740

      I am sometimes benefited by VyVanse with ADHD, but also feel that it makes it difficult when I have caffeine in conjunction. I pee very often (more than you want to know) and have hyperlocomotion. I am hyperactive ADHD and not really inattentive. My doc let me try this medicine maybe 4-5 months ago. It’s decent for my ADHD symptomatology at 70 mg, but I also notice there’s a lot of things that help/don’t help. I am very educated on these matters and am looking for a whole lot of advice outside of medical treatment options. I am 21 yrs. old and have went the majority of my life thus far without ADHD meds. I want to learn more about what I can do to help myself handle ADHD as medicine is helpful, but maybe not enough for me (at least me personally). I am really quite “bored” with everything and jack-loading myself up on stimulants used to seem “cool” but now I could honestly care less as I don’t even bat an eye when I think of stimulants any more. I am just wanting to better my life by aiding concentration and everything I’ve ever read from high protein diets/lower carb diets/yoga, exercise/ meditation, relaxation, herbal/homeopathics, avoiding excess caffeine/alcohol and whatever else just bore me to tears. I am ready for someone to give me insight on what THEY think I can do to HELP THIS HELL I feel I have to go through as I think the majority of what people preach don’t do much, if at all for my ADHD. Are there new medications being developed for ADHD? What sorts of ideas are bouncing around peoples’ minds these days about new ways to help those suffering with ADHD/ADD?

    • #51743

      Not a matter of preaching for me. I can’t afford treatment, so meds are not an option for me. I can tell you what works for me, but I can’t promise it will work for you. Years ago, a connection was made between natural environments and ADD, to the point where some people began referring to ADD as NDD — Nature Deficit Disorder. A lot of kids with ADHD perform much better in school, focus better and are less “hyperactive” when they’re taught outdoors.

      I find this is the best thing for me too. Indoors, I’m either restless or or a zombie, constantly stressed and frantic. Unfocused, disorganized. You know — ADD! In natural environments I’m calm, focused, organised, energized in a good way. I often stay out into the wee hours of the morning, patrolling rural highways for rattlesnake rescues, and then have to be up by 7 to make it to work on time. I’ll get physically exhausted, but at the same time, I’m more more relaxed and focused during the day, and just feel better in general than when I haven’t been out in the desert all night.

      I have no idea whether this (the outdoors, not the rattleys) would help you or not, but it’s an easy thing to try for a time. Makes a HUGE difference for me.

    • #51762

      What helped me most is a high protein/low carb diet, sunshine + exercise (can be just walking), regular sleep hours and anti-inflammatory herbal supplements. Too boring? 🙂

      Ok, let’s try again. I have a family member who is primarily hyperactive and not really inattentive, and it’s a different beast than primarily inattentive me. He notices everything but cannot look at a single thing for long, is impulsive and impatient, has a tendency to gravitate to the next “fun” thing without long term planning, initiates projects easily but has trouble with finishing details, and needs constant physical and psychological stimulation. Other family members with a high inattentive component tend to get overstimulated easily, are significantly less impulsive but more stubborn and cautious (even anxious), and seem to be derailed less by the next “fun” thing but have more trouble initiating projects. Experts feel that ADHD is an umbrella diagnostic, and I personally believe that totally different mechanisms underlie the inattentive and hyperactive components.

      The good news is that most experts focus on the inattentive components because they are more trouble. (May be hard to believe, but a total lapse of attention can be infinitely more dangerous than a roving one. It’s not only that you don’t know where you are and what you are doing, but your brain loses track of what your body is doing also. A roving attention allows you to react to stimuli very fast.) Also, a lot of advice on how to set up the environment is given for easily overstimulated people, and is likely to drive an understimulated person catatonic. Here is what helped, in my experience: a stimulating environment filled with meaningful items/projects (visual stimulation), music (auditory stimulation) and people, physical exercise that raises the heart rate, and also anything with skin contact (martial arts, swimming, sex etc.), a higher protein/lower carb diet (sorry, there is no escaping the fact that insulin spikes harm brain functioning in everybody), no alcohol (sorry again, but alcohol is a depressant and your body needs more stimulation not less — feel free to load up on caffeine!), and a reliance on an electronic calendar that you can see a month at a glance (everything goes there, and prevents the worst derailments). If looking into the future for long term goals is too excruciating, the “small steps” technique can work wonders — see Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results by Stephen Guise ( It is written in a sectional, concise format that would make it easier for you to go through.

    • #52122

      Sorry about the blank screen my I pad is acting up. I hope some of what i did to get through this blessing will help. I was successful career wise and a flop at relationships….so use these with discretion

      Being physically and mentally challenged was a definite help. At your age I took on a second job ( taxi Driver) that kept me going 16 hours a day. My main job involved administration and accounting and computer functions for
      An Insurance Company Head office which challenged me mentally and the second involved meeting, greeting, locating addresses in a large city before garmin and Gps and of course driving. Weekends, some sports,football and hockey, swimming often and a lot of home maintenance landscaping, snow shovelling, and yard maintenance. Mine not my parents…the
      Second job funded that. I have always enjoyed coffee and chocolate and even in those days I sang in a chorus once or twice a week….great source of natural dopamine. The rest of my diet was basic meat, potatoes, fruits, veggies and cereal Soft drinks and the only way besides coffee that i ingested milk was in the cereal.. I did smoke at this time but was almost always quiting,3 months, 5 years, 10 years, and then succesfully at age 39
      Before this i had spent 4 years in the Army (airborne) which gave me many of the tools necessary to avoid most of the blowups, and other characteristcs of the condition. Again being outside in nature was definitely a plus. My holiudays were always spent renting a lake cottage somewhere and the feeling of calmness afterwrds was euphoric.

    • #52167

      Because ADHD brains lack dopamine, I did a google search on supplements that increase dopamine (and this was also a result of crazy obsessive research on the brain chemistry of ADHD brains and solutions for us besides the typical diet, exercise stuff). Some examples are Acetyl L Carnitine, Gingko Biloba, and Phosphatidylserine. Now let me tell you about phosphatidylserine, but i’ll tell you what you really want to know first. It really works. Granted, I take adderall when I study and getting other stuff done but phosphatidylserine most definitely enhances the adderall and I can feel it the next day, even before I take adderall. Even though you aren’t taking stimulants, I think it will help you too, although everybody is different. For example, I’ve tried Acetyl l carnitine and I didn’t feel that it gave me the effect I wanted but for some people it worked. I’ve spent (and kind of wasted) so much money experimenting on different supplements and so much time obsessively researching our brains, but maybe if you have insurance or can afford it, talk to a neurologist, something I’m hoping my insurance will cover, because they work with the brain and nervous system. Also, look into how other neurotransmitters besides dopamine may effect you (ex: serotonin). I also orally consume about a teaspoon or two of coconut oil which also helps with my energy levels. Now this one took a while to work for me, maybe because I have chronic fatigue or something, but one day I think about 2-3 months later, I noticed a surge in energy and a kind of sharp clarity. oh yeah, I’ve also been taking fish oil because you have to take it if you take phosphatidylserine. Google phosphat for more info. I hope this helps and is what you’re looking for. I understand your frustration with the suggestions about exercise and meditation, which do really help, but for me those were not enough on their own.


      • #52174

        As years went by my few cups a day became 1.5 to 3 quarts a day. 96 ounces and yes I pee often but it did allow me to focus on those consulting reports i wrote for a living. They paid 250/hr. somewhere in there i quit taking two spoons of sugar and switched to various substitues. Much later i switched to Venlafaxine (Rx)75 mg, decaf, and cut back to 30 ounces a day.. Easy when you retire young.tried Concerta and Amitryptilenne but did not like the affect. Quit after a few months.
        I also increased the dopamine by joining 3 choral groups and singing 5 times a week. Serotonin and Norepinephrine increased from the Venlafaxine. Took 3 or 4 months to have the full effect. Extremely assistive on the emotional level. However quiting it is a perilous journey i am told. I am still on it (5 years)

        Completing complicated tasks is now diificult ( no caffeine) but on things that are really important I slip caffinated cofee beans into the mix for a few days.

        • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by donsense.
        • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by donsense.
      • #66767

        Hi belikewater:
        Can you tell us what dose of phosphatidylserine worked for you?

    • #52261

      We all spend a lot of time surrounded by electrical fields. Electric and magnetic fields, or EMFs, are invisible lines of force created by electric charges. In other words, wherever there is electricity, there are also electromagnetic fields. Wireless devices and wifi are the most present.

      Every electrical outlet generates EMFs (lots of other things too, like microwaves, power lines, radio waves, X-rays, and lots more).
      And every outlet discharges excess through the ground plug, which actually, physically connects to the earth.

      EMFs build up in your body – which wouldn’t be a problem, except we don’t discharge all the electrical build-up. We don’t ground ourselves by touching the earth, as in bare feet on the ground. Our shoes have plastic or rubber soles, we’re indoors, or in a car – in effect, insulated.
      That EMF radiation build-up causes some nasty changes. Inflammation, headaches, muscle tension, hyperactivity. Some research says it can create holes in the blood-brain barrier that protects the brain, allowing more toxins to reach the brain.

      Short answer: go outside and stand on the earth, as often as possible. I’ve been doing it every day for about 8 months – yup, even in winter. I live in BC, so it’s easier. Results? I don’t get headaches any more, or colds or the flu, and I’ve stopped clenching my jaws.

      I’m not a woo,woo, spiritual type either, I’m bipolar and ADHD. I’ve been on meds for more than 20 years, which more or less work. Doing the bare foor thing has calmed me down a lot. When I’m standing on the ground, taking deep breaths, I can literally feel all the tension draining out of me.

      Here’s some references.

      Earthing – RationalWiki

      World Health Organization definition of Electromagnetic fields (EMF)”>EMF Radiation and Health: An Emerging Danger

      EMFs and Human Health – Green Building Advisor

    • #52331

      All my roads lead in this direction. It is where I was when I had a healthy brain function. This video refers specifically to studies using MDMA, which I’ve never tried. But I used to be drawn intuitively to Mushrooms, MDA and LSD without really understanding why. Why one over the other, why only 2 or 3 times a year, but most importantly and perhaps as a revelation, Why did a life long disorder only become problematic long after I abandoned that lifestyle. Also, I never understood why these things provided a different type of experience in me than for my peers.
      It’s the same with Cannabis. I experience it differently than those around me, almost negatively. There is no euphoria, no giggles, no trip. Just a dullness, a slowing of the mind and an inability to do much. Yet I find myself driven from time to time to smoke it, almost in an addictive fashion but without an addiction and never more than a day.
      Well it turns out our bodies actually have something called the Endocannabinoid System And while that explained the craving or drive to get it, it also indicated that there is something else going on that isn’t normal.
      Maybe for you these two links may help you see a new idea, I don’t know. For me I have recognized some important things from my past, that will no doubt prove important again for my future.

    • #66797
      Penny Williams

      There are a lot of alternative treatments for ADHD that help some people. A healthy lifestyle is the biggest.

      There are some supplements to try as well, but you must work with a physician or naturopath on that, because supplements aren’t regulated and there are some side effects and dangerous interactions possible.

      6 Essential (and Often-Overlooked) Supplements for ADHD

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

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