Another medication question

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  ADHDmomma 1 week, 1 day ago.

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  • #51318


    I’m 37 and was diagnosed with ADHD about a year ago. My doctor (at the recommendation of my counselor/therapist) started me on a very low dose of Adderall (5 mg), which I’ve since upped to 10 mg, extended release. So how do I know if the meds are really working for me or not? I’m not really sure how I should feel but I don’t really feel like they’re helping me all that much. It makes me very jittery and helps me focus a bit, but doesn’t really clear my mind like I feel that it should. I still feel pretty scattered most days when I take it. Also my doctor, who is family practice and a DO, is not really all that supportive of my diagnosis and need for help in the first place. I struggle with anxiety too, either because of or on top of, the ADHD. I’ve taken anti-anxiety meds in the past (after I had my babies) but did not like how they made me feel in the long run.

  • #51336


    Hi BHLFK

    What do your friends and family think about your new medication? My wife is always my go-to person to help me track changes (or a lack there of) when I try new treatments or change existing ones. Sometimes I don’t notice a big change right away myself, but someone else in my life (at work or at home) does. If possible ask someone who knows you well if they think your medication is helping or ask them to keep tabs on your ADHD for a week and report what they find.

    Also: Have your thought about ditching your doctor? Each time I’ve had to change doctors or therapists, (due to a move or job change) I’ve had to shop around. Usually it takes me 3, 4, 5 tries to find a match that clicks. Find a doctor who shows aptitude AND respect – ADHD people, like everyone else, deserve both.

    Hope that helps! Good luck!

  • #51356


    I too was diagnosed around your age with ADHD. It was an eye opening diagnosis that explained why I was so overwhelmed as a stay at home mom raising three children. Over the years, one by one they were all diagnosed with ADD and ADHD (which explained why we all overwhelmed each other!) When I was first diagnosed, I started Adderall 5 mg XR and it took the edge off of my anxiety in trying to take care of young children while working from home and managing my household. I noticed right away that I still got the same amount of things done in a day, but with less anxiety. I also had fewer blow ups with my frustration level.

    As the years went on, it didn’t work as good and I found myself “self medicating” with caffeine again. A year ago, I went to a new doctor and was prescribed Adderall 15 mg XR. This dose works much better for me.

    ADHD medications can be tricky. If it’s too much or too little it won’t work. It is also VERY important that you cut back on your caffeine intake around the time you take the meds. Caffeine is a stimulant which is the same as the Adderall. So if you are still drinking caffeine while taking the meds, you are in essence overdosing yourself. This will cause you to feel either tired/foggy or jittery. I drink iced tea in the morning, then take my Adderall about an hour later. I won’t drink caffeine again until the late afternoon when the Adderall is wearing off. I also take a short acting Adderall in the afternoon to get me through the rest of the evening.

    When you take the Adderall, you should feel less anxiety/overwhelmed as you go through the day. Your thoughts should be more “organized” and you shouldn’t be as distracted to do other things that don’t need to get done in the moment. It doesn’t necessarily help me to be more “focused” but it cuts out the distractions that pull me from the task at hand. It’s easier to complete one task at a time without noticing something else that can wait until I’m done. Regardless, if you have a task that you don’t like doing, the medication will not make you suddenly want to do it! Us ADHD gals can focus on what we really want and like to do, that’s not the problem. It’s looking past all the other things in our homes that scream for our attention!

    Don’t give up on the medication yet, it can greatly improve your life. It’s like wearing glasses for your brain if you can find the right dosage. Remember to cut back the caffeine (tea, coffee, chocolate, sodas)! Getting help for your ADD/ADHD is the best thing you can do for yourself and your family.

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 1 day ago by  theAteam.
    • This reply was modified 1 week, 1 day ago by  ADHDmomma.
  • #51369


    Here’s a good primer on ADHD medications for adults with ADHD — it will help you know what to expect from medication:

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

    And here’s advice on how to recognize when ADHD medication is working:

    How Does ADHD Medication Work? With Lots of Monitoring

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

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