ADD / ADHD Community
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Avatar universal


Dear Sir/Madam:
I am 39 years old and three months ago I was diagnosed with ADHD, a disorder that has caused extreme problems for me since childhood and throughout my adult life, which began with my expulsion from kindergarten. I was prescribed a drug called Adderall (30 m.g. RX) after the 10 m.g. and 20 m.g. doses proved completely ineffective. I currently take 1 (one) 30 m.g.RX pill in the morning and it has, quite frankly, changed my life in so many positive ways that I cannot convey the differences to you in words. For the first time I can actually sit down and concentrate on a task without having to get up every five minutes to perform a chorus of jumping-jacks. My problem is this; the pill I currently take begins to lose it's effectiveness around 12 or 1 p.m, as I rise every morning at 6 a.m to begin my day. I am an attorney who works some 14-16 hours per-day, every minute of which requires a great deal of concentration and focus to detail. I don't want to become a drug addict but I need a subsequest dosage (30 m.g.) around noon or 1 p.m. to carry me until that 7 or 8 o'clock whistle, in order for this medication to perform any meaningful role in my treatment. Would that be taking too much Adderall?, or is it justified due to my obviously uncharacteristically severe case of ADHD-(I mean I was really, really hyperactive as both a child and as an adult.) Can one person have an uncharacteristically low level of dopamine production in the brain even for someone with ADHD? Are there any documented cases where an ADHD affected person has required a 2 or 3 (30 m.g.) pill every day in order to bring their disorder under control?
33 Responses
287297 tn?1207309306
I have ADHD also, and I take Ritalin 10mg. I cant say ive used Adderall before but I have a friend who does used the same tablets you do. He used to take two but his psychiatrist changed him to a longer acting stronger drug (I cant remember the name of it)
Just talk to your psychiatrist about it and your situation. You have to remember that each person is different and therefore each dose is different (for every person). This could be the correct dose for you because like you said, you were really hyperactive.
Hope that helps you! good luck with everything!
Avatar universal
Hi JoJo,

I am a 30 yr old female and I take a combo of Adderall XR and regular Adderall Here is my schedule:

6am: 20mg xr

10am: 10mg regular

1pm: 20mg xr AND 10mg regular

4pm: 10mg regular

So, it's by bodyweight 1mg per 1kg of weight: I weigh 70kg, so 70mg is just right for me, I find that it lasts through 8-9pm, then I take 1mg klonopin to help with the "drop off" and to help me fall asleep.

People metabolize the XR so differently, some people it lasts 9-10 hours, for me it last around 5-6hrs...If you think of XR this way you are essentially getting 2 15mg doses 4 hours apart with the 30mg XR.  I tried 2 30mg XR, but I prefer the flexibility of combining the two types of adderall.

Hope this helps !!! Saved my life :)
Avatar universal
I have been taking Effexor XR 37.5mg for Limbic / Overfocused ADD for 2 weeks.  I felt very tired in the first week, so I was prescribed 5mg of Adderall.  Years ago, I took Dexedrine for my ADD and was very irritable and bitchy on it.  My fear is that the Adderall is doing the same thing.  I took it for 2 days and the rest of the week when I did not take it, I was snapping at my students.  I was also impatient with everyone on the street and subway.  Not good!  Is it the rebound effect I have read about because I did not do it everyday.  Should I take it everyday when I need the energy?  Or should I switch to using Wellbutrin instead of Effexor XR+Adderall?  These are the choices that my doctor said work for my type of ADD.  Thanks.
Avatar universal
I can't stand Adderall.. but that's just my reaction I guess.
I experienced a host of unpleasant side effects.the big  one being I started to resemble somone with Bipolar Disorder, and I don't think I have it..
it was great for about 6 months and then I built a tolerance and I refused to keep upping the dose.  
If you can stand the stuff, that's great.. but be on the lookout for wild mood swings..depression, lack of any energy when you aren't on it..
I've been off it for 6 months now and I feel great.. I still have ADD but I am managing it with cognitive therapy.
Avatar universal
Dear Woozy,

In your posting you made reference to cognitive therapy as a means of managing your condition. Although I cannot imagine, at least in my particular case, coping with my ADHD without at least some pharmaceutical intervention (at least at this point), I would nontheless be very interested in learning more about cognitive therapy as an alternative to prescription medication. In the interest of avoiding becoming drug (Adderral) dependant, I am trying to cultivate a management schedule that incorporates both methods of treatment. Can you share any additional information on cognitive therapy Woozy? This is, of course, an open forum and any thoughts or ideas on cognitive therapy would be greatly appreciated. Please also include specifics such as articles and website addresses.
Avatar universal
Dear Psych_Student:

If I may be so bold as to further inquire into your assertion that there is a nexus between body weight and the appropriate mg dosage of Adderall that one should take.

I find this interesting and can only assume from your chosen call-sign that you might be someone that has some particular expertise and training in this area. I must admit, I can't help but wonder If you might be willing to share with me what particular discipline of medicine you are currently studying, whether it be psychology, psychiatry or in some other branch of mental health. At the risk of sounding even more forward, I would also be very interested in knowing at what academic level you currently perform, whether it be undergraduate, graduate or doctoral.

I am only asking not to question your obvious wisdom on this subject, but only as a vehicle for further investigation into what sources you might cite that would support your assertion that there is a
correlation between body weight and appropriate dosage. It just so happens that I agree with you completely and feel that someone, like myself, who stands 6 feet tall and weighs a little more than an average person would probably require a higher dosage of this drug for purely physiological reasons.

Would you agree, then, that weight plays some role in the amount of Adderall you should take; and if so, is this purely opinion or can you find support for this position in acadamia. Now you can see why I query into your level of study, as I sit and wonder if this is what they are teaching our doctors of the future.

I was also very relieved when reading your posting of 10/31, insomuch as I previously viewed myself as isolated in my need for more than the traditional 10 or 20 mg/per day dosage that some people use to control their symptoms, as I initially tried that dosage only to find that it was completely impotant in its remedial effects on my own symptoms. My relief was enhanced by the fact that you are someone who is not only educated, but apparently educated in this particular field.

Please don't feel this an interrogation, but in addition to the above, may I please also ask you the following questions as I rarely meet someone with a case of ADHD that so closely resembles my own: I would never, of course, request any names, numbers or anything that could be used to specifically identify anyone at all!!!

May I inquire as to whether you were prescribed these dosage levels by your doctor, and if so, does he/she specialize in any particular area of menatl health or is he/she a general practitioner, MD?

Do you worry about developing a dependance or addiction at these levels, and if so, what do you do?

Do you take the amounts that you described in your posting of 10/31 every day, and if so, for how long have you been doing so? Will you continue at this level indefinately if it continues to work?

Do you ever take a drug holiday to flush the Adderall out, and if so, for how long and how often?
Do you employ any non-drug related coping skills during this period?

Do people's bodies develop a natural resistance to Adderall over time, or does this occurr only in cases where the drug is being abused? If your body (brain) does begin to adjust and become non-responsive to Adderall, then what?

Please only share that which you are comfortable in so doing, and I apologize in advance if I have offended you with requests for information that you consider of a purely private nature.

I'm just a dumb lawyer and I am only trying to gather as much useful information as I can to assist me in a completely uncharted territory. I would also be more than happy to reciprocate should you have any questions in connection with this or any other matter.

Thank You Psych_Student,

Avatar universal
Please listen to me.... By the way, I can't believe that I’m actually on one of these discussion sites, I was just looking for solutions to my problem, and hope to stop you before you create one for yourself.  
Regardless of the fact that I am anonymous, I want you to listen because I hope to save people from this terrible addiction one day; I hope to save lots of people.  It’s such an unintentional addiction for the people that start taking it , and these people are the naive sweet and innocent, who are made to believe by society that we need to transform our lives to live up to a certain social standards, or ideals.  These are also the people that are being suckered into the addiction by our nation’s ******* government’s lack of drug regulation.  Certain doctor’s have corrupted their ability to utilize their educations in a way to harm people, and people need to take it upon themselves to do what you did .EDUCATE YOURSELF, and ask questions before you believe that people’s claim is ultimately the truth.  With enough information you can determine what’s right for you.  The only reason I am here taking the time out is to inform those that if they are addicted they aren’t alone, and if you’re not, which I’m sure you are if you are on it for more than a month, to get the hell off!!
I am a 23 year old woman.  When I was a child, I was tested over and beyond my intelligence range in comparison to the children my same age bracket, in turn, had a physiological chemical off -balance.  I was diagnosed with OCD, ADHD, ABC, DEF, you name it!!!  I had it.   My mother wasn't for putting me on medications; she was afraid of the damage it would place on my liver.   I was extremely young when I was diagnosed by the way.  Growing up I was an amazing athlete with lots of drive, I played soccer, in addition to always party with my friends.  I was also a great student; I practiced cognitive behavioral therapy, at the University of Pennsylvania, which promoted a Holistic approach of looking at typical disorders that children are labeled with.  The majority of what they did for me focused on correcting problems that coincide physiologically and physically as opposed to taking a pill.
About 2 1/2 years ago, I started taking Adderral XR 10 mg twice a day; I am currently taking 30 mg of Adderral XR 2 times a day. XR stands for Extended Release.   Sometimes, if I have that paper that I have been putting off due tomorrow, I’ll pop an extra.  But recently whether it’s a paper,  late night of drinking, extra computer time, , I’ll take one before bed and 2 the next day, note that is 150 mg in my body on occasion…”Where is my doctor in this picture?” you ask.  Right, the one responsible for monitoring me, making sure that I am ok with the side effects and such, picture this.  
I am currently a Business major, in school still, finishing up in may/June. I have now been prescribed 60 mg of adderral XR a day for the past 2 years. Maybe I’m in denial, or maybe I don’t know, but I have never been addicted to anything in my life, not drugs, not cigarettes, and now I’m stuck on both.  
When I hit college I had just started seeing this new doctor.  He was funny and energetic (probably b/c he was prescribing himself a thing or two) Well, naturally I liked him.  He made me trust him.  He started me off on Straterra , to correct my never dissolving issue of ADHD.  I personally knew nothing would work, except me working on myself. According to everyone else, nothing had worked, as I’m sure he was already aware of, oh yeah, did I mention I didn’t and still don’t have health insurance, and he was charging a college kid almost a hundred dollars a visit, so that he could do “follow ups”,?  **** ups is what he should have called all of those visits.  
Next, came the big BANG!!!!!!!!!!  This was essentially the biggest downfall of my life.  I am emotionally mentally and physically crippled because of this man.    He wound up hooking me into this addiction, made tons of money off of the college girl for himself and the Pharmacy industry of good ol’ America.  I had to work an extra job in college just to pay for all the meds, and in the moment, thought truthfully that I needed it to make me better, but by the time I realized what it was doing to me, I was so sucked in that I didn’t have time to think or worry about what to do to make me better.  “Where is he now”?  You ask?  
He began cancelling apts. To the point that I would have to just show up there, and the drive to his office, is in my hometown, 2 hours away.  I never knew how crazy it was to have to drive all the way to his office to get him, because I never stepped outside of myself, or outside of my box, self centered is what I am, but not in a selfish non giving way, in a way that I worry so much about myself.  This drug has created so many added problems with my disorder and with me that I absolutely cannot move out of bed without it.  You have no idea what withdraw from this drug is like.  I feel like a crack head, and yet I never asked for any of this.  I have never  voluntarily took this to get messed up, because I don’t have an addictive personality, but when a doctor prescribes you meds at 20 years old, you want to believe what he is giving you is legitimate.
This has been a growing issue in everywhere in my life.  I don’t have the same feelings I did before this drug.  I find it really hard to be happy.  I used to always smile, and laugh, my last episodes of this behavior where before this drug came into my life.  I have no interest in sex, boys, and by the way, I am good looking, I can say that, because trust me, it’s not a feeling of satisfaction, in fact, I have boys throw themselves at me, and don’t care, nor want to associate with them.
I think of suicide a lot, I mean at least like twice a day, the only reason I don’t do it is because I think of what it would do to the people I matter to.  I mean the real people like my mom, my family, my friends, just because I can’t feel doesn’t mean they can’t.  
I am crying while writing this letter right now, but that’s the only emotion that I seem to possess anymore, feelings of fear, worry, failure, and my future.  I don’t care about things women my age are doing, I care about how I’m going to make the most money, have the nicest things, but really I have never been that way.  The drug has made me manic, but subconsciously I know that, so I keep myself in check.  If you don’t want Jeckle and Hyde to argue inside of your brain with you as the middle man in, then stay away from this ****.  
I have to end this by telling you that this doctor refused to take anymore appointments from me.  I felt like I was a drug attic whose drug dealer was running away from them.  He would tell the secretaries in the office to say that he wasn’t there.   I would be in bed for days on end waiting for my mother, who by the way was never aware of the severity of my addiction, nor the existence, to go to his office and pickl the prescriptions up for me, because he made me feel like a lunatic.  I knew I needed the prescription but did not have the knowledge, courage, or dignity to go myself and tell him how I felt.  
I am now with another doctor up at school, who just today told me that my doctor sent him a letter stating that I corrupted the prescription and he had to dismiss me as his patient. (Not in fact the truth) This is the news that I received about a half hour ago.  So, I’m sure this is just another issue I need to deal with.  STAY AWAY ANYONE WHO READS THIS….
Avatar universal
Allow me to first start by stating that I have a great deal of empathy for any person who struggles against a drug addiction, as I currently represent several dozen criminal defendants all of whom which can attribute their legal problems to drug and/or alcohol related issues. Remember, with very few exceptions, there are no bad people, only good people in bad situations!

I would, however, like to take a moment to comment on several items contained in your posting of 11/20/07 that raise serious concerns regarding the conditions under which you are taking this drug, which I assume is Adderall 30 m.g. XR. I believe that your practices are placing you in extreme and immediate danger.

First of all, you stated that you sometimes take a dose before going to bed; NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!. Adderall is a stimulant that affects your central nervous system, and in fact it is a very, very strong, level 2 classified amphetamine by the Food and Drug Administration, which places it in the same category as cocaine! Highly addictive and regularly abused! Never, ever take this drug before retiring for the evening, and in fact, you should never take any after about 2 or 3 P.M. if you are a day walker. Because you have been using this drug immediately prior to sleep, you have probably not been achieving any quality REM (rapid-eye-movement) sleep, which has rendered you exhausted the following day (REM is the period during the sleep process in which we dream, and scientists believe that it is during this period that we gain our most meaningful rest that rejuvenates our minds and bodies for the following days events.) A person requires a minimum of 6-7 hours of meaningful rest every day in order to be both phsically and mentally healthy.

If you have been walking around physically exhausted while carrying a prescription for a strong stimulant like Adderall, DO THE MATH!!!!!. I would venture to say that you are no longer taking Adderall to control the symptoms of your ADHD, but in fact your using it like people use COFFEE!!!!

You also made reference in your posting that you will take an extra dose of Adderall if you are coming off a long night of drinking or have a paper due, cigarettes and so on.


Obviously, your current physician is expressing genuine concern for you and your problem may not be with the drugs per-se, but may in fact be with the conditions under which you are taking them. Either that, or your original physician was a total quak and failed to advise you as to what this drug is and how it should be used responsibly. Either way, you are where you are now, I will try and substitute my own understanding for that which he may have failed to advise you, keeping in mind that my doctorate degree is in Law, not Medicine.

Adderall should have what they call a paradoxical effect on individuals who have a legitimate case of ADD or ADHD. That is to say, it should calm us down, allow us to focus and concentrate as opposed to stimulating us, as it would in a person taking it who does not have ADD/ADHD. The term "paradoxical" is used to illustrate the ironic nature of the effects. In othe words, it's in fact a stimulant, that in certain people with this disorder, acts as a depressant like valium, for instance. That seems strange right?, hence the term "paradox". There are differing schools of thought as to why this drug has a reverse effect on ADD/ADHD affected people. Most agree that it has something to do with a glitch in the brains neurotransmitters and insufficient dopamine production in the brain. In any event, there it is!

Genuine203, it does not seem to me that you are using this drug to counter these effects, but are instead using it either recreationally, or as a stimulant like cofee or cigarettes.

This is my Adderall schedule, for better or worse it's what works for me:

First of all I do not drink alcohol ever, I mean never in the last three years and never while on this medication in any event. I do not smoke or drink coffee or use any stimulant at all besides Adderall. So here it is:

6-7 A.M.: 1 capsule 30 m.g. RX

1-2 P.M.: 1 capsule 30 m.g. RX

THATS IT!- Note that this is already more than the recommended dose, but my doctor seems to feel that my extraordinary problem with hyperactivity justifies the increase. Also, as I stated I am a very busy attorney and usually work 14-16 hour days, and 1 Dose of RX only lasts, for me, about 8 hours. I need at least 14-16 hours of relief a day.


This is rare for me and the following represents my usual schedule:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and sometimes Friday, I will take the 2 doses followed by at least 3-4 days of NO ADDERALL AT ALL!!! If things get busy, this may change but I never go on a stretch for more than 8 or 9 days--- NO WAY!!

Genuine203, please do not do anything to hurt yourself, as I know that the human spirit can carry us through anything. Just think of those who survived the Holocaust, cancer, the loss of a child or soldiers in the Middle East who return home without their arms and legs and worse, their minds.
I am happy to speak with you in person, as I am rumored through my clients as having a way of talking people through difficult times and circumstances. I am often forced to meet with clients in prisons where they face long terms of incarceration, many of whom are suffering from withdrawel and addiction while having to cope with the worst enviornment imaginable.

If you would like to speak please respond in this chat room in the affirmative and I will provide you with some contact information. Good luck and hang in there.


Avatar universal
Hey she told me the same story. Thats pretty spookie. I'm Adderall 10mg but I take 2 a day and sometimes 3. I only take 3 when I have to officiate a basketball game. It helps me focus better and stuff. My concern is, I want to up the prescription. I fear that I may become addicted to it. Jojo read my post titled Adderal Help. I think thats what it is, and tell me what you think.
Avatar universal
Dear Tommy22,

I just finished reading your posting as you requested. It's actually entitled; "I need some help with my Adderall meds."

I would like to begin by sharing with you some personal history with ADHD and Adderall, as I believe that this will be useful in our discussion.

I was not diagnosed with ADHD until the age of 39 and until that time I remained totally untreated. When I began taking Adderall in September of 2007 I was prescribed 10 m.g. XR (1/day). In my own particular case, due to an extreme problem with hyperactivity and acting out, the 10 m.g. dosage almost acted like a placebo, having no meaningful remedial effects whatsoever. In fact, I noticed absolutely no change in my behavior at all, and as a result, my medication was increased to 20 m.g. XR. After taking the 20 m.g. XR (1/day) I began to notice a marked improvement in my ability to concentrate and focus, however, I continued to manifest certain serious problems in the area of hyperactivity (ability to sit still and remain motionless for an extended period). My doctor, reluctantly, increased the dosage to 30 m.g. XR (1/day). The increase to 30 m.g. completely remedied all of the negative symptoms of my disorder. The only remaining problem now was duration!

Last week I met with doctor as we normally do once a month. I explained to him that the 30 m.g. was working perfectly and voiced my concern relative to it's ineffectiveness after around 2 p.m. in the afternoon (I generally rise around 6:00 or 7:00 a.m. and take the first dose at that time-it lasts around 7 or 8 hours, FOR ME!). In response to this concern, he agreed to prescribe 1 additional dose (30 m.g. XR) in the early afternoon in the hopes that this would provide me the relief I would need to complete my workday at around 7:00 or 8:00 p.m.. I have been following this regiment (2 doses of 30 m.g. XR / 7-8 hours apart for about 1 month and it is working perfectly so far (knock on wood.)

Here's the problem Tommy22, I never increased my dosage of Adderall at all after I established what was the correct dosage that worked for me. 10 m.g. XR and 20 m.g. XR never worked for me since day number 1, ever since the first day that I ever tried Adderall. In your particular case, you are now considering whether to increase your dosage, and while I do not mean to suggest that you should not, you may want to consider where this road will eventually lead. Are you concerned about getting involved in a situation where in 5 years from now your popping Adderall pills like tic-tacs.

When reading your post, however, it sounds to me as if you are only considering a somewhat nominal increase to help you throughout the early evening hours, which was exactly my problem in the beginning; and I see no problem in discussing the possibility of an additional dosage with your doctor at your next meeting. I do however, urge you to discuss with your doctor the benefits of taking "drug holidays" to regulate your system and to avoid an addiction issue.

Look Tommy22, your a young guy who has your entire life ahead of you. Your getting your education and probably having alot of fun at school, as I did when I was in college in Newport, RI.

I suggest that you be honest with yourself as I have tried to do with myself in this situation.

This is the position I have taken with respect to Adderall and it's use; and I suggest that you consider the same and discuss it with your doctor: HERE IT IS, NO ********, PLAIN AND SIMPLE:

I take 1 dose of 30 m.g. XR twice a day about 20-23 days out of the month; THATS WHAT WORKED FOR ME IN THE BEGINNING; AND THATS WHAT WILL WORK FOR ME IN THE END!!!!!
WHEN THAT STOPS WORKING-SO DOES THE ADDERALL!!!!!. I would rather discuss different treatment options or, alternatively, live with this disorder, no matter how distasteful that may seem, than turn into an Adderall junky and be controlled by an addiction.

You know what you need Tommy22, and no one else can tell you that, so you must be honest with yourself and your doctor. Just take a look at the posting above written by Psych-Student, who is currently taking a combined total of 70 m.g. per/day-Many people with narcolepsy take 60-80 m.g. per/day because THEY NEED THAT TO FUNCTION AS NORMAL HUMAN BEINGS!!!!! Adderall will provide you with greater focus and concentration and may allow you to referee games with greater accuracy, but it can very quickly become a cure that is worse than the disease.

As a final thought Tommy22, I have found in my life that everything comes down to weights and measures. Balancing the pros against the cons directly affects how we live our lives and forms the basis under which we make the decisions that affect how we live as people, not referees.

How does increasing your drug use (and make no mistake about it-taking Adderall is serious drug use) balance off against the benefits of being a better referee in some basketball game that will be meaningless to you next year. I do not say this to insult you Tommy22, but you have to make a serious decision and weigh the pros and cons when making this decision, after all you are talking about a game, not a job, not time with your children or a serious relationship. A game in fact, that you are not even competing in directly.

I hope this helps.   Jo-Jo437

Avatar universal
The side effects that genuine2003 described is very similiar to what I see ijn my wife. We have been married for 12 years and completely drug free for 15. Our drug of choice was speed and I could see the change in her as soon as she started taking it. The difference is though she is in denial and believes that the adderall drup has done her good and awaken her to reality. We use to be happy and had a healthy sex life. She nows says that the adderall has opened her eyes to the see the real me and how evil I am. She is very paranoid and believes that she is getting electic shocks so she unpluggs everything in the house. She also believes I have tapped her computer and tracked her car to control her just to mention a few examples. Our lives have been turned upside down. She does not let me talk to her psychiatrist. She is also on vicodine and muscle relaxers for degenerated disks, and xanax to deal with the crisis's in her life. She know longer lets me get close to her and has increasingly become mean. She is ready to walk out on our marriage and family. I wish I could just let the doctors know that the prescribed drugs especially the adderall has ruined a life and family.
Avatar universal
I cannot imagine any circumstances under which a responsible physician would prescribe Adderall, Vicodine, Xanax and muscle relaxants, simultaneously, to a recovering drug addict.

Although you may not have access to your wife's psychiatrist, there is absolutely nothing preventing you from seeking a second opinion from another physician armed with the information as to what your wife is currently taking.

Most states also have legal procedures under which a family member or friend can petition a court to have an individual involuntarily committed to a mental health facility for evaluation and treatment. Usually you must be able to show that they are either a danger to themselves or to others and this is often a difficult standard to meet. Nevertheless, if she is currently abusing drugs and has a history of drug abuse, you may convince a judge to at least detox her for a period of time but again, if she has these drugs prescribed legally, you may need another qualified physician to go to court and back your play, so to speak. Good Luck!

Avatar universal
Yes but it's true. In fact, you are becoming a drug addict already. And if you don't be careful, you will have to depend on more and more increased dosages of the medication in time. (that also depends on your condition, but it eventually gets worse with the medication if not used in moderation and with strict application of CONTROL!) I also have ADHD condition, and you might want to read me if you haven't paid attention to the college student girl above nicknamed 'genuine'..

Now I will give you some technical information read me well here:

Adderall, along with other similar medications that affect your central nervous system, are stimulants that create addiction. Adderall consists of dextroamphetamine and levoamphetamine salts. Here's a little background on ADHD. Chemically, deficits in dopamine levels are indicated in the condition of ADHD, and current practice of medicine commonly employs the use of central nervous system stimulants such as amphetamines for the treatment.

However, nothing is actually treated. First, here's how dopamine works: Dopamine is commonly associated with feelings of pleasure, motivation, drive, energy, mood, attention, and learning. Dopamine disorders can apparently cause shifts and decline in neurocognitive functions, especially in memory, attention and problem solving. It can also affect self esteem, ability to functionally prioritize needs and follow action, and even cause depression.

Amphetamines bind themselves act similar to dopamine and bind themselves to dopamine transporters, and release high concentrations of dopamine from nerve endings in the system, and keep them available in usage for long periods by blocking dopamine receptors. After the drug wears out, dopamine levels are depleted, hence the "crash" and the following "down".

Each consumption of amphetamines 'stimulates' and reinforces this cycle of dopamine release in increased concentrations, which provides pleasure and increases confidence, motivation, desire, attention, focus, alertness, etc. and regular users of such stimulants become dependent on such stimulation to be able to perform at such levels, as dopamin levels become depleted and non-stimulated without the presence of such stimulants.

This is how medicinal amphetamines as well as the street drug methamphetamine works. Upon using these stimulants, one finds himself/herself easily performing at high levels with high confidence, with increased ability of imporvisation, with more motivation and intent, and more endurance as the feeling of tiredness fades away and one can stay up long and keep working.

The addiction to nervous system stimulants, such as amphetamines, methamphetamine (speed) and even cocaine set deep in time through such viscious cycle, rendering one feeling incapable to perform nowhere near the same capacity without such stimulation anymore. without any further stimulation, dopamine levels in the system drop, which brings feelings of depression, lack of interest and attention, fatigue, lack of confidence, motivation and desire, and even energy, which explains the depression users indicate during withdrawals.. And most people start taking even more doses of the drug during these withdrawals to be able to cope with things again, as the feeling is really ******.

That's how people get hooked on the very dangerous street drug crystal meth, which is methamphetamine in crystallized form. Very powerful.

I don't want to be boring, you can find all this information as well as more in depth detailed information on the net yourself. And I'm also speaking from personal experience as I'm also a patient precribed to use adderall, which I'm limiting myself to parttime usage at the moment. I have also used methamphetamines in the past for a short time, and saw how it affects and how it changed many people's lives dramatically. I was only lucky I resisted and been subject to painful withdrawals willingly, which are very same with adderall and other stimulant medications.

Today, I use adderall very irregularly, and coming from my past experiences, I always observe breaks in usage.. For example, my doctor normally is going to give me a 60 day supply of adderall, but i ask for 30 day supply. I only use it when I really need it, and believe me, once you start taking again, you feel like you need it again the next morning if not later in the same day.. Everyone who uses adderall here knows this.

Point is: you are becoming a drug addict. Know that, and accept that.

Only way you can limit yourself is to try to find an alternative. I try to limit my days of the week that require high focus and high performance to a maximum of 4. I forget about the medicine other than those days. My 30 day supply lasts about 2 months. I accepted the fact that I don't have to be so fired up everyday of the week. And yes I feel down at times and so on. For that, I take lots of Vitamin B, specifically B6, which is supposed to help elevate mood. Try to eat orderly and nutriently. Remember that while performing/living on such stimulants, you are also physically pushing your system on a high level of performance, working long hours, eating less because of loss of appetite, and resting less because of loss of sleap and sometimes loss of REM sleep. It's like driving your car at 100 miles an hour at all times, and not providing basic maintenance like topping off its fluids, changing oil and filling gas.

Anyway, keep in mind all these I have said and others have said, because it's only a matter of time to find yourself consuming double and triple amounts of syntethic chemicals to be able to cope.

Also please don't think I'm trying to act so strong and independent. Like I said, I'm also using the medication, and trying to limit the dose and frequency as well as the amount I use strictly to days heavy with business related traffic only, as like I said I know how it can easily get out of control before you even know it. I'm also researching alternative methods to medication, such as supplements, but currently I don't have much facts in hand.

Good luck.
Avatar universal
Adderall used everyday will cause dependence for EVERYONE..not just people who don't have ADD.. it doesn't matter if you drink or not, of course drinking will make it much worse. It amuses me to read these exhaustingly long posts on of all things, the ADHD site, I wonder how many of you are on your stimulant at the time of posting. I used to write marathon posts while on Adderall, now I write a little bit and leave it a that. A friend commented to me that people on Adderall not only talk a lot, write a lot, they assume everything they have to say is terribly interesting. I used to be guilty of this myself..I have to say I can't read posts that go on for miles.. but I do skim through them trying to pick up the salient points. I do agree some people can be helped by this drug in the short term if they take it responsibly.. I tentatively think this might be ok. For the most part, I think Adderall is poison..the side effects are god awful..you can only really get away with taking it when you are younger and resilient to essentially doing a  very mild form of coke every day. You will build up a dependence, though taking drug holidays might work, during those holidays you will feel like **** though because you are essentially in forced withdrawal. Yes, withdrawal. EVERYONE becomes dependent on Adderall..like it or not. I don't care how severe your ADD is. It will also change your personality while you are on it..it boosts up dopamine quite a bit along with norepinephrine..so you feel artificially ok and may not be as sensitve and caring as you normally would be..I think there's a husband posting on here who has complained about this. ADDERALL is POISON.. Okay..just for some clarification, I'm married to someone with ADD..he's on Adderall..when he takes drug holidays he is pleasant, loving..attentive (after first week of being in withdrawal)..when he's on it, he's agitated, filled with anxiety, but can hyper focus..he's also a jerk to me and has no interest in sex..and it's not as if he's being downright nasty, he's just cross with me. He's an extreme case..and actually when I first met him, he had only been on it for a year..he was much cheerful on it then..I even took Adderall for a while, (see my prior post if interested)..but now 3 years post Adderal therapy he's a total mess.
Most people have addictive tendencies..but can rein them in..this stuff is prescribed to help you but's it's addictive and harmful in the long run..
i hope through the years this stuff ends up banned..or maybe re-formulated so it's not so desctructive..I don't know..I smell a Brave New World in our midst..ha-ha, I bet everyone is tired of that old cliche..
yikes, I typed a long post..and I'm not even on Adderall!! whew..
Avatar universal
Wow, I was browsing through your posts..you seem quite worked up about all of this. You've been on the stuff for 3 months?? And I disagree that people with ADHD feel calmer on Adderall by the way. Everyone feels calmer on Adderall initially, everyone)It's like cocaine..the initial dopamine rush is calming..it only gets bad when you keep doing more and more, then the anxiety and nervousness kick in. I've read that info too though and it's just total ****, sorry..Where is the physiology behind that nonsense? Oh, ADHD brains are screwed up and they will respond differently to a stimulant? Why are college students buying it illegally to help them study then..or even just for fun? Because it's calming to everyone and it helps everyone focus.
3 months is not enough time to be on this drug and evaluate it properly..
to: martinishaken--I just read your post, lol..It seems we agree on a lot of this stuff..except I'm a bit more bitter..ha-ha
Avatar universal
Perhaps you are correct in your overall assessment as I only take Adderall about four or five days out of ten. I also write long posts when taking the drug and tend to be somewhat wordy. I don't like Adderall either, to be perfectly honest. The thing is, every once in a while it is nice to take a vacation from my extreme hyperactivity. I mean, what are people to do when they have no other options? Do you mean to suggest that we just simply live with this disorder and do nothing at all?  
Avatar universal
I'm curious as to how your extreme hyperactivity manifests itsself? And how did you manage to make it through lawschool with extremely bad ADHD?
I guess if you want to treat your symptoms with a more natural approach, there are several things you can do.
1. Exercise, esp running or some other form of cardiovascular activity:exercise boosts dopamine levels also as well as other feel-good chemicals. It has to be a routine, at least 2x a week.
2.This is a good one..eliminate as much processed food as possible from your diet. You don't have to be militant but shy away from overly salty, processed food and also avoid sugary foods, like cakes, candy and the like.
3.This one is a bit controversial because while it's taking a "medicine" of sorts neither of these therapies are widely advocated by the medical community. Try L-Tyrosine, an over the counter supplement that has some research and support to indicate it has an affect on ADHD symptoms.If I were you, I would research L-Tyrosine on the internet
4.Yoga and meditation..even a few minutes a day or week can really benefit you.
5. Don't drink coffee past noon, and be sure to drink at least 32 oz water a day assuming you drink other beverages. I do drink tea in the evening though! I love tea with milk and sugar..that's a vice but oh well!
since you take drug holidays, you could implement these during those stretches of time. and see if it  makes any difference.

I do all of the above, but also I take 5 htp, but that is for depression mainly and PMS.. I also take .25 mgs of melatonin to help me sleep more soundly, so about a quarter of a 1 mg tablet.

I went through withdrawal coming off Adderall for about 5 months. I thought it only lasted 4 days but I realized I was craving it for about 5 months because of bad fatigue and depression.
I feel a million times better today though. I was on 20 mgs at my highest dose.  

I also realize I have ADD, the inattentive sort, but I do fit the profile. I just don't want the drugs..at least not the stimulants and not Strattera or Wellbutrin either.
I'm worried you are on such a high dose so early on, but I'm guessing you have really, really bad ADHD..I am surprised you were able to do so well in school.. what were the motivations that caused you to seek out treatment?

Avatar universal
I thank you for your most considerate suggestions on alternative forms of dealing with this disorder. I will certainly try some, if not all, of your suggestions in my approach. You may also be interested to know that this very afternoon I made arrangements to begin cognitive therapy and will discuss with my therapist the possibility of manageing this disorder without the use of any drugs at all, although I fear that this may not be possible in my particular case entirely, I can certainly minimize the use as much as possible.

Oh by the way, In Re your question regarding law school. Law, on the doctorate level, is not taught the same way that undergraduate or more conventional disciplines are taught. In law school they use a teaching technique called the "Socratic Method" to teach students how to become critical thinkers and problem solvers. It derives it's name from "Socrates" who had one of our greatest and most critical problem solving minds, historically.

Although I found that the more base level courses such as contracts, torts, property, civil and criminal procedure very difficult to manage with this disorder, you must understand that law school motivates a student to achieve at the risk of constant elimination. Let me try to explain: Everyone has heard the story of the first year student, who while sitting in his seat on the first day of class, is instructed by the professor to look to his left, and then to his right, only then to be informed that after the first year of study that one of those people would be eliminated due to academic underachievment. This story is not an urban legend, it's absolutely true in law school.

Law students are graded on whats called a curve, which means, in order for one person to pass, another must fail. You cannot have a curve with someone on the top, unless there is someone on the bottom, otherwise, there is no curve! GET IT! We are not graded on how well we understand the information or subject matter, we are graded on how much better one student can do against another.

I was able to control the ADHD under these conditions, quite frankly, because I was scared to death. Let me put it to you this way as you are a person who also has ADHD: Do you think that you would suffer the symptoms of your ADHD while going over a cliff in a car, or while being chased by a lion? In severe stress situations, the symptoms become somewhat secondary to survival.

Finally, I saught treatment after I quit drinking almost three years ago. Apparently I was abusing alcohol in lieu of any legitimate means of controling the hyperactivity.

Listen, I lived with ADHD for 39 years and If I have to, I'll live with it again. Maybe the Adderall can last just long enough to get me through cognitive therapy and then I can use that to manage this sucker!

Avatar universal
PS: The extreme hyperactivity manifested itself as inability to sit still for more than 10-15 minutes, ringing of hands, constant motion, and a complete scatter brain unable to focus on one task for more than 30 minutes, to name a few.
Avatar universal
Hello? Listen, you all need to chill.  Adderall is a dopamine agonist.  It helps with the process of releasing dopamine by neurons in your brain.  Specifically, the dopaminergic or (reward) pathway.  Ok, in easy to understand terms, by taking adderall you raise the pleasurable effects of accomplishing your goals.  If you let your goal become getting a pill of Adderall, you end up all psyched-out like genuine203, Because that's a meaning-less life. Sorry genuine203, it's not the adderall, it's you, yes, I understand what you're feeling, and adderall does change you, but I can't go into full detail about that...  You must use the drug to create goals (addictions) and then feel the rush of the reward, which is enhanced by elevated levels of dopamine.  Now, listen closely, each time you accomplish your goal and get the reward, your brain strengthens the connection on a neural level.  Like if we sliced my brain apart, we'd see neurons growing towards each other to create a new connection, the more I stimulate that connection (by doing an activity I see as my goal)  the stronger the neurons grow and spread and connect in many areas of the brain, your neurons function better, by releasing more dopamine and becoming more sensitive or capable of receiving it.  Now on a real world level, you start creating habits, which creates growth and progress, dreams, interests, drive, the ability to make friends by sharing interests... Etc... Etc...and you're actually making something of yourself, someone to be proud of... And ya, you will gradually decrease your dose as you become active and you've restarted all kinds of chemical processes in your brain. start small, sleep when you need, and grow forward.  And honestly, it's just adderall... ; )
To those who never tried it, avoid it, unless you must it for have ADD or ADHD, cuz you'll risk throwing yourself out of balance, have nasty side effects, possibly die
189897 tn?1441130118
   Hey, welcome to the site!   I don't know where you dug up these old posts, but they were really interesting to read.  They must have come up just before I started posting here.   I like your explanation of what it does to people without ADHD/ADD.   It is a good way to put down what is happening.  Probably the only thing you left out is that it can be horribly addicting.
    I have seem posts on this site where people got the prescription from docs and from their reaction to the drug, was fairly sure that they were misdiagnosed.  It is a problem and seems to happen more with adults than with kids.  Of course, the new guidelines out for kids should help that problem even more.  
   Anyway, interesting post!
Avatar universal
well I have been reading all of these posts and its amazing about the high doses   I recently had to find a different dr because Mine was discharged from his practice...    he has been giving me 40mg 3x per day...  and I have severe jaw clenching and now I am trying to work with my new dr on lowering the dose...   so currently i am taking 30mg at 7am,   20mg at 11am and  10mg at 3pm   it has my focus so screwed up....   I sometimes find I am in car driving and dont even realize I went right by the roads I need.   It *****    Damn Dr for putting me on this crap so high like that...  
189897 tn?1441130118
   Sounds like he deserved to be discharged.  What kind of a doc was he?
Avatar universal
he was a psychiatrist in a mental health practice.  I believe he had been doing this with several patients...    Im doing ok but dang the jaw clenching is the worst symptom and the fact that if I dont take it I just cannot focus I think they are going to add some other type of med to help but I just wish I could stop taking everything.
Avatar universal

I am glad that the medication is working for you. I was diagnosed young but never treated. I started Adderall about a year ago and it took away the fog that I had been living with for 25 years. It was weird, yet great to feel normal. I understand exactly what you mean.

30 mg of Adderall is an extremely high dosage to take. To take much more on top of that could be fatal. Maybe you should try exercising to boost dopamine levels, or even yoga. I started taking a yoga class and I could not believe how much it woke my brain up and calmed my nerves. For nearly a year, I would clench my jaw daily from taking Adderall. It was rediculous and was damaging my teeth. After two weeks doing yoga, I quit clenching my teeth altogether. I would try other things in combination with the medicine. If hollistic measures do not work, I would consider trying a new medication. There is only so much Adderall you can take until you've reached that limit. Also, anyone working like you do would have ADD symptoms- whether they had it or not.

Avatar universal
Why is it lawyers seem to have some sort of special interest in advice regarding use of adderall and adhd?  I worked with lawyers for over 20 years and know that most attorneys sole interest is involved with making money and have little interest in anything past that.  Being an attorney in no way qualifies you to give out any advice on the subject but you in particular seem to not only think you are qualified to offer advice as though you were a doctor but to also offer your judgment which is merely a personal opinion nothing more. The truth is as well as lawyers, there are some very unprofessional doctors out there who stand as jury and judge as to whether a person who has been diagnosed with adhd should be given legitimate medication for this legitimate diagnosis.  

Patients are at the mercy of these weird doctors and dont need some nutty judgmental lawyers unqualified to offer medical advice using their title to give out unsolicited judgmental advice about something they simply are not qualified to do.  The truth is I believe between the medical community and the legal community the combination is quite LITERALLY LETHAL and if left unchecked WILL very well bring down this nation.

My unsolicted unqualified advice to you is check yourself into a mental hospital untill you can control your urge to give out such dangerous advice.  YOUR'E SICK AND YOUR'E THE ONE WHO NEEDS HELP!
Avatar universal
Just wondering if I should go ahead and try Adderall at all.  I took the tests and feel it may be helpful.  I want to ask for a low dose of IR and XR to see what works better for me.  I am all over the place at work, etc.  I cant prioritized and need to be on my game.  any suggestions?
189897 tn?1441130118
Go for it.  Really can't hurt.  Doc should start you on a very low dose and wait to see how you react.  You might want to start on a weekend.  And a good breakfast also helps.
1699033 tn?1514116733
Sandman...what do you think of the spray we talked about?  Do you think it may be worth a try since jojorenee is an adult and would have a good feel as to whether something works or not?  
189897 tn?1441130118
    Typically, homeopathic remedies like Tranquil do not cause problems and the company does have a 30 day money back guarantee and you would certainly see results by then, so it might be worth trying.
    Is it still working for your boys?
Avatar universal
Your wife's refusal to sign consent to involve you in her treatment only prevents her treatment provider from disclosing information.  It does not prevent you from writing a letter to the treatment provider as a means to express your concerns and inform of her past history related to drug addiction.
Avatar universal
Years ago if I were still on Vyvanse or Adderall I'd have written a never ending entry. Fortunately I weened myself off and won't ramble n an adderall rant. It is simple. I have ADD and have since childhood. I have been on Ritalin, Concerta, Adderall and Vyvanse. All the drugs will help you focus. You will finish and spend time on stuff that you never ever normally would e able to sit through. But if you still want to mess with Adderall...prepare yourself to become tolerant. The first few productive euphoric months will make you wonder how you lived without the stuff. But if you give it a year and try skipping a dose get ready for hell. Get ready to bite peoples heads off and get ready to fall asleep standing up. You will become a slave to this drug. I work in the Advertising industry. I needed to stay creative and focused....... Truth is though after getting off the stuff you will realize you and your ideas are not nearly as brilliant as you thought. And once t Euphoric phase is over you will start to ask yourself...... How in the hell do they keep little innocent children on this crap? Best of luck to my friends with ADD. I guarantee you after 2 years of the crap you will wonder how you became a stranger...to yourself and loved ones around you. I still romanticize about the stuff... But just remind yourself how exhausted it can make you and how fake you become due to being high. You can call it focusing. But you are focusing geeked up. Amen.
Avatar universal
I was prescribed 2 30mg Xr Adderall daily, for 2 years, for my severe ADD and I will say it worked great, but about a year and a half ago I decided to quit cold. I was reading forums like this one, that people had a severe time in withdrawals and that worried me.  I barely felt any withdrawals. Within weeks, the mind cloud returned.  Adderall had a very calming effect on me. I could focus on tasks like I never could before. But, now it takes a lot just for me to write this little post.  I will stare off into space every few minutes.  My family makes fun of me by calling me names like: Star Chief,  space cadet, star gazer, ect....So I made an appointment with my doc the other day and I want to go back on it.  I need focus, my add makes me withdrawn and introverted.  If I need to participate in society, I will need help.
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