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ADD during pregnancy
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ADD during pregnancy

I had been on Adderall (adderrall) for about two years when I found out I was pregnant (about 5 months ago) I immediately quit taking the medication at that time. I am now 25 weeks pregnant and finding my symptoms to be getting worse and worse daily--has anyone else dealt with ADD during pregnancy and if so how did you cope? I am beginning to feel a little like i am losing my mind and and like i might run out of my job screaming at any moment.
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Avatar_m_tn
First off - congrats on your pregnancy.  Having gone through 2 with my wife, I know how exciting and difficult it can be.  Not to mention what it must be like to have ADHD.

Anyway - I am being forward, but does your OB know about your medication?  And that you stopped?  I would start there.  It is never advisable to just stop taking medications on your own.  Of course I can understand your concern about medications during pregnancy, but always start with your medical doctors and work from there.

Gotta run - my little one is fussing.

All the best,

Rory
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello,

I am a new mom of a little boy (6 months old next week) and I have been taking adderall (adderrall) and been treated for ADD since the third grade.  I am now 22 and my husband is also ADD. My pregnancy was so hard and I couldn't work, even when I tried just to get out of the house and work in the office doing an easier load I felt so impatient every second.  I don't know what all you are experiencing, but I know that my pregnancy was ten times harder because of my ADD. The sleepy headaches and the emotional part (stress, lack of motivation, severe mood swings, etc.) are what stand out to me the most.  I was miserable!!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hey,

I have sort of an interesting situation.  I have taken dexedrine since I was in the 7th grade.  We were not planning a pregnancy.  In fact, we were working really hard to not get pregnant, because I was going to start chiropractic school, which is a four program.  It would have cost lost of $$$ and a pregnancy midway through would have not been good.  I was on a birth control that made my period go away and my husband and I were using condoms bc. the birth control was very time sensitive (had to take within an hour of the day that you took it before).  

So I made till week 11 without knowing that I was pregnant.  That is one week away from being done with the first trimester.  Then I went off medication cold turkey and it was HELL.  Absolute HELL.  I could not do anything.  My house was a disaster, work was impossible, my self-esteem horrible.  I will say that I was really snuggly though.  The hormones were pretty good, so there were times that I did feel okay about myself.  I gained 50 lbs.  I didn't even feel like myself.  I felt like I had forgotten who I was.  

After my daughter was born, it was good to not be on any medication at first because I could sleep when the baby slept and, being on meds falling asleep in the middle of the day is pretty hard.  However, it would have been nice to be able to think.  After about six weeks I called the ped. nurse and she said that it was okay for me to take the meds while I was breastfeeding everything was great for the three weeks I took it.  Then I got to thinking about it and asked my friend that was a pharmacist and he said that it was not a good idea, so I stopped.  I did not notice a change in her at all.  It seemed that it did not effect her.  

I only breast feed for six months and sometimes I would cheat and take my meds but not every day.  I would try to pump and dump.

I use to stay awake and wonder if I ruined my baby by being on medication that first trimester.  She is 3 now and she is totally fine.  It is a little early to see if she has a disorder like ADD, but she is very smart.  She is already starting to read.  

When we started trying for our second child, I went off meds right from the get go and had a miscarriage after 11 weeks.  I got pregnant again but had a tubal pregnancy.

We are going to start trying again soon and I recently came across an article on this website http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/910.html    I have decided that I am not going to take the medication everyday, but if I have company coming and I have to get the house together I might take half a dose.  My mental health is important too.  No meds is so hard and I get really depressed when I can't think or do anything because my mind won't work.  Also I have a little girl that needs attention and she needs a mom that wants to get out and do stuff.  Doctors will aways err on the side of caution and will tell that you that no drugs is the best option but doctors also understand that no drugs is not the only option.  

Here is another website that gives some more info on the issue http://www.ncgiadd.org/pdf/Medications.pdf

The drug itself is considered a class C drug.  Which means they don't really know what the effects are.  I know that it is said that in lab rats that their are adverse effects on the fetus, but the dose that they give to lab rats is much higher then the dose for person.


Back in the day pregnant women use to drink and smoke and look the children of that generation turned out fine.  I am in no way advocating this but 9 months plus the time spent nursing is along time to not even feel like yourself.  

I'm sure people are going to really let me have it for admitting this and my plans for the future.  But people have an opinion about everything.  The last time I was pregnant my mom and my husband wanted me to quit bar tending because I was around second hand smoke.  I mean come on... I said, "You guys are crazy if you think that I can find and learn some new kind of office job with out my meds.  Oh, and also find an employer that wants to hire women that is about to go on maternity leave in six months."  
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Avatar_f_tn
I hope you know if you take these drugs while you are having a baby and after words that what you really are taken is just like speed. would you go and get speed and take it while you where going to have your baby or breast feeding? I would hope not.

The side effects of these drugs can cause really bad side effects like.

stroke
seizures
sudden death
heart problems.

instead of taken these very bad drugs you should ask your doctor if you can take Vitamin B6 and Omega -3-6-9 and Vitamin C and Vitamin B12. These are very good for the brain and dont have all the bad side effects. My son takes then along with a Childrens Multivitamin every day.And my son takes them and have seem to help him some.
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Avatar_n_tn
Clearly dollyn is more into creating fear and being judgmental than helping others.  I get so frustrated when I read these types of comments.  I can only assume dollyn has not suffered from ADD.  I too take the same vitamins and it is NOT a substitute for ADD medication.  For anyone who truly suffers from ADD or ADHD you should consult with your physician.  I appreciate the people who have given their experiences above and the reasons they made their choices.  I am now 6 weeks pregnant and having a very hard time without my medication.  I am trying to stay off of all medication during my pregnancy but cannot suggest it is right for everyone.  I have suffered from ADD for years and found the only relief was medication.  For each woman your choice will be your choice and do not allow people to describe these medications as illegal drugs.  No healthy minded mother would put illegal drugs in their system whilw pregnant and this is NOT the same as speed.

  
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Avatar_f_tn
dollyn - From your response it is clear that you do not personally suffer from ADD.  My doctor refused to prescribe my medicine when he found out I was pregnant with my first.  You have no idea what its like to be able to function perfectly one day and then not at all the next. So dollyn - keep your comments to yourself, we're not interested in hearing what you have to say.
Clou23 - all the best to you.  My husband and I just started trying for Baby #2 and we have agreed, with my obgyn, that I will remain on my meds in some capacity.  I have faith that under the care of my doctor and with the support of my family we will all make it through my next pregnancy okay.  I just can't imagine going through another pregnancy feeling so "unlike myself", depressed and scatter-brained.
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Avatar_f_tn
I need some guidance. I have been on Dexedrine and now vyvanse since I was 12 yrs old. My husband and I are trying to conceive. I ovulated last week , so I decided okay I'm not taking my vyvanse anymore. So I went to work on Monday without my med( I'm a physician assistant and have a very busy schedule). I didn't get anything done the whole day. I was completely useless. I seriously don't know how I'm going to function for 9 months.
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Avatar_m_tn
    That's a really good question - and one that I think you are going to need medical advice on.  I would think a psychiatrist might be the best bet.  
    Fairly sure that being on the meds while breast feeding would not be a good idea - until then?  You might also try google for information on pregnancy and vyvanse,  but try and find medical advice.  If I get the time, I'll look at some of my sources.  Best wishes!
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Avatar_f_tn
I do know what it is like to not be able to do things. But I will not take drugs to help me. I talk to friends and family to help me get threw things.

I have seen what these drugs have donw to people.And how people have been pushed to take drugs to help them because not all Doctors want to do there jobs.

My Son has LGS but was told first that he was  ADD and then adhd .The drugs they gave him sure didn't help him.And we didn't find out until two years latter that he was haveing Seizures and those drugs can cause Seizures .

A lot of Parents that I have talked to the Doctors have tried to say there child has ADD or ADHD and Even some are told Bipolar. But they don't it is call caused by Seizures.

I have a friend who was just told she has add and I told her that the Doctors have know idea what they are talking about. That they need to look at everything that is and has been going on in her life.She has a very sick little boy.

As a parent with a child who is very sick and we don't know how long he has to live .I will advocate for him and others .And I pray every day for every person who is sick and for those who have been told that they have add and adhd . My faith is the one thing that has helped me . Not takeing drugs to help me get threw this . I have told the Doctors I need to be able to take care of my children and not be druged up .

I pray this baby will be ok and not have any bad side effects from the drugs. Also stopping cold turkey could harm the baby and mother. That is why the Doctors should have told her how to go off of them if they were a good Doctor.

We have to advocate for our self and not always trust what Doctors have to say. You wouldn't belive some of the things I have heard of Doctors doing these day's. Do your own home work and learn. And if the Doctors don't want to do what you want then it is time for a new one. They work for us .

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Avatar_m_tn
i would get great pleasure in pointing all the grammatical and spelling errors in your post because it shows how intellegent you aren't.  The sad thing is that you think you know what you are talking about and i am here to tell you that your ignorance in this subject is far from bliss.  I feel for your son and your friend because you have no idea how diabilitating ADD/ADHD can be.

Ever see the movie UP? the dog with ADD that sees the squirrel and takes off running after it mid sentance?  That is VERY accurate.

Like any other misunderstood mental disorder it is hard for those who don't have it to even comprehend what it is like day to day.  

But lets for a second compare it to diabetes, because it is very similar.  When a diabetic's blood sugar is too high or too low it causes their responses to either slow down or speed up... same with ADD/ADHD. most of us our brain tries to process all the things we need to get done all at once like we are about to do them right then, instead of one task at a time. We go from task to task not fully completing any of them.  So when our dishes are half done, laundry is half done, yard is half done, garage is half done, grocery list is half done, bills are half done, ect. we stop look around at all this half done stuff and feel like we got nothing accomplished, because we didn't.  Then we feel lazy, frustrated, and often depressed because of ignorant friends and family like you.

Yes there are "tricks" that we teach ourselves to get though it.  But i promise you NOT ONE PERSON on here WANTS to take a pill everyday so that they can function! Just like a diabetic doesn't want to take shots everyday.  However we have to, so that we can be productive and healthy.

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Avatar_f_tn
I'm so glad to have found this! My doctor called yesterday to let me know that I'm about 6 weeks pregnant. I currently take 5 mg of Adderall (adderrall) XR every day plus a few cups of either green or oolong tea.

I work in an office job where they are steadily increasing my workload and it's already very difficult for me to not, I don't know, google "ADD during pregnancy" all day instead of work. I have stacks of half finished work and Memento-esque post-its to remind me of everything. I don't think that I plan to come back to this position after I have the baby but I love having the income for now.

I'm worried that cutting out both the Adderall (adderrall) and the caffeine will basically halt my shoestring work motivation entirely. I'm Adderall (adderrall) and caffeine free today and it's just stupid even though I'm on a microdose and only drink tea.

I'm really glad to see that some people are comfortable taking their pills once and a while when they really need it. For the rest of the days I might just have to do the "tricks." Talk radio or podcasts keep my brain entertained when my work is dull. I'll have to ban myself from non-work related internet, establish clear daily goals (when I remember), and create a system of rewards for uninterrupted work. I read that you can have up to 150 mgs of caffeine per day and it would be fine. Tea has about 40 mg per 8 oz so I might just have one cup per day. Moderation may have to be the key.

I'll kick myself if my kid ends up with ADD, but hell, at least s/he'll have a mother who has all of these tricks to share who will never accuse him or her of being lazy, stupid or crazy. I won't pressure him or her into unresearched medication or accuse him or her of being a street drug addict.

Good luck with everything!
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Avatar_f_tn
Side note: How is anyone getting anything done with these huge boobs? I think I wasted half my day yesterday just looking down at them. ADD is harder during pregnancy.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am 7 weeks pregnant.  I have been off my ADHD meds for a little over a week and I am already losing it.  I am depressed, scattered, and forgetful.  When I am home I don't want to do anything, nothing holds my attention or makes me happy.  Worse than all of that, my migraines have returned.

Is anyone trying any different techniques to combat this mess.  This is just the beginning and I am so worried.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been on Adderral XR 30 mg 1 time daily for 4 yrs and I stopped it when I became pregnant and the effects were HORRIBLE.....My Dr. and I decided I would benefit better with It then without it. Adderral is a class C drug and HASNT been proven unsafe during pregnancy. It is your's and your OBGYN'S decision. Im so far doing much, much better on it. I can atleast function again. My OBGYN did reccomend I try to wait until my 2nd trimester, however, I couldn't, therefore, I am back on it and have been since I was 7 weeks and I am now 12 weeks. Best of luck to ALL!
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Avatar_f_tn
u guess u just got on here to scaret the crap out of mothers and dont have it yourself cuz u have no idea what its like with horomone when u r already suffering from a mental illness
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Avatar_m_tn
  I am now 8 months pregnant. My pregnancy was planned so I went off my adderall (adderrall) prior to getting pregnant. My assumption was that the first few months would be difficult and that I would adjust to functioning without my ADD medication. Granted I knew I would not be up to my normal standards, but that I would get used to being without it. Well that is not really how it has gone. There is no getting around it, in truth it has been difficult (as many of you know). I had to cut my work hours way down there was just no way I could meet the demands of my job. Also the weight gain has been excessive. But I have found that excepting that I can not accomplish what I could before and telling myself “it's okay you can't”  has helped me a good deal. I just take it easy, setting small goals for what I need to get done in a day (keep in mind that I have a five and eight year old so small goals is relative lol), writing everything down on a calendar on my fridge (and I mean every little thing I need to remember), and not being hard on myself. I found if I focus on how different I am off my medication it just makes everything worse. I am looking forward to getting back on my medication after the baby is born, but I have been able to cope. I did want to mention when I read that some women were taking their medication some days when they really need it, I know I really need my medication most days especially if I am working. I know for me, that mentality of taking it some days, would have ended up being more days then not. I don't mean to knock the idea, and there may very well be women who could really only take it once in a while. I just want people to consider all angles before making their choice.
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Avatar_m_tn
reading these comments have honestly made me feel better. i'm 25 and have ADHD. I also recently found out that I'm pregnant. Obviously my doctor told me to stop taking my meds and it has been hell. Its good to know i am not the only one. Sometimes i think its all in my head, but its not. The way people judge others who take medication for it is surprising, honestly. you really have to suffer from it to know what its like.
My next doctors appointment is the 15th and I have to tell her i need something.. She mentioned trying something else, but it pisses me off really that she would want me to try anti depressants when they never worked in the past. its like she judges me for taking Adderall (adderrall). I have gotten that vibe from a lot of people. My doctor even said "for whatever reason your taking Adderall (adderrall)" say huh? ANYWAY any suggestions on how to talk with her on this subject?
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Avatar_m_tn
    Its a tough subject because most everything I have seen in print recommends staying off the meds during pregnancy.   I can supply lots of links explaining ADHD, but you would think she would be aware of this.
    Anyway, I am including a very good conclusion from an article on Medications while pregnant.  Hope it helps.

       Conclusion
As with any medication regime, the pros and cons of treatment should be thoroughly
discussed by the prescribing physicians with their patients before embarking on a course
of treatment. In cases where the patient is or may become pregnant, the health risk to the
developing fetus must also be taken into consideration.
Many women with AD/HD, report that pregnancy with its high estrogen levels and
increased sense of well being is a time when they feel and function at their best even
without medication. Stimulant medication may not be needed during this time and the
continued use of antidepressants may also need to be discussed.
For other women, who may still need medication to function, a frank discussion within
their family and with their therapist is recommended. If they chose to forgo medications
during pregnancy, taking extra steps to ensure that they continue to function well will
need to be part of their plan for a healthy pregnancy. Pregnant women with AD/HD
should take extra measures to insure that their lives run smoothly during this time.
Increasing structure, taking more time for herself, and reducing stress whenever possible
should all be given a high priority. Hiring babysitters for younger children, and having
someone come in to clean or to do the laundry may help keep things organized and
running smoothly. Working with a coach or a therapist to keep you focused on your goals
may also be an important step to consider.
After the baby comes, help will also be
needed. Scheduling extra help while nursing
or deciding not to nurse the baby so that you
can get back on your medication regimes are
both options you should discuss with your
therapist and the baby’s pediatrician.
Remember, a calm, together mom may be
more important to your baby and the rest of
the family than breastfeeding this new infant.
It is hoped that the information contained in this article will assist women in their
discussions with their physicians, and that they will be better able to make informed
decisions about the benefits to themselves and their families when pursuing a course of
treatment for their AD/HD symptoms. It, however, should never be considered a
substitute for medical advice. The decision to use medication during pregnancy may have
serious consequences and should be made only in consultation with your treating
physician, who can offer advice based on knowledge of a woman's unique history and
current health and circumstances.
Adapted and reprinted with permission from "Medication Use during Pregnancy: A Concern for Women with AD/HD" by David W.
Goodman, MD and Patricia O. Quinn, MD in Understanding Women with AD/HD, Kathleen Nadeau, Ph.D. and Patricia Quinn, MD
(Eds.) copyright 2002, Advantage Books.
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