Interaction between Anxiety, Depression and ADD Medications

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    • #79541

      Hi, this is my first post on the forum. ADDitude has been a real eye opener for me; reading the articles and posts have been like looking into the mirror and seeing myself for the first time. I am a 46 year old woman and in addition to chronic physical illnesses (that are exacerbated by stress) I have suffered from anxiety, depression, extreme, disorganization and OCD tendencies in one form or another for as long as I can remember.

      Without a better way to express the way I experience life I have always compared myself to a “blown” stereo speaker- everything I’ve tried to process distorted and aggravating. Fortunately, I have found a doctor and a counselor who are really listening to me and I hope to have an actual diagnosis soon which is a great relief. But my primary caregiver said something on my last visit that concerns me.

      I’ve been taking Wellbutrin for about 15 years now and a couple years ago I was told by a physician that it may not be the best thing for me to take because of my anxiety. Many years after taking the Wellbutrin a counselor that I was seeing for a short amount of time mentioned that I “may have Bi-bipolar tendencies” which honestly terrified me especially since she didn’t seem to want to invest any effort to helping me find a proper diagnosis one way or the other. So I remained on the Wellbutrin, which apparently makes the anxious highs of bipolar worse, because I didn’t know what else to do.

      My current physician is willing to work with my counselor to figure out a better antidepressant for me to go on but she’s concerned that if I am diagnosed with ADD I will not be able to take the medication that I need to deal with it without worsening my current anxiety. It’s a real Catch-22 since my ADD symptoms contribute greatly to both the anxiety and depression. My question is, if I am diagnosed with bipolar AND ADD is there any hope that I can take medication to manage the ADD? I’m not one who likes to take medication when I don’t have to but I’m certainly willing to try if it will give me quality of life and some sense of control. Thanks in advance for any construction advice you can offer.

    • #79694
      Penny Williams

      Yes, Wellbutrin, as well as any stimulant, carries the possibility of increasing anxiety. I know a few people who take Wellbutrin with Buspar, an anxiety medication. There are many people that take a stimulant for ADHD and then add an antidepressant to address anxiety or depression.

      If you can see an ADHD specialist for medication/treatment management, that would be much more ideal than your general physician. GP’s just don’t have the same level of knowledge and experience with medications used to treat ADHD, anxiety, depression, bipolar, etc.

      10 Things Your Doctor May Not Have Told You About ADHD Medications

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

    • #79915

      Comorbidity is utter hell at times, I know from personal experiences. Treating OCD and ADHD is no different. It’s all just constant monitoring. You have to micromanage it all and treat the present conditions with what you feel helps. There’s never a medicine or combo of meds that will ever keep everything in check in all scenarios throughout life. Finding a balance even when that balance is inherently impossible to find is the only answer. Keep at it and just tinker with things with your doctor if you have to and find something you can manage and live with is all anyone can really do. Be vocal and tell your doctor about things and really communicate before trying supplements or you’ll turn out like me haha. I was always way too secretive doing things and then I just finally got committed to always telling my doctor before I ingested anything or applied anything to my body. Ask pharmacists about med questions, do active research (just don’t drive yourself mad here as it’s easy to go bonkers with research and concerns) and if all else fails, just take some steps back and try to give yourself time and space. Do not rush these things if you don’t have to, be patient with your body and mind and realize that while there is never a perfect harmony of medical treatment and mental well-being that if you don’t quit and do your very best at treatment and compliance with your doctor whilst leaving a clean life (diet, exercise, etc.) you will be the best off you can be. Communication is very important and it will go a long ways trust me!

      • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by NumbAllDay.
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