ADHD medicines – alway a controversy!
- The medicines – Ritalin, Adderal, Vyanse,Concerta, Daytrana, et al – are miracle workers for some, very helpful to others, somewhat helpful to some, and worthless or even detrimental to some. You will never know until you try it.
2. All children with ADHD deserve a trial of medication. If it doesn’t help, that raises some question about the diagnosis.
3. The medications do not lead to drug abuse. In fact, they reduce the frequency of drug abuse in people with ADHD.
4. The medications do not improve school or test performance in students who do not have ADHD; however, it gives them the impression that they have done better than they really have. Diversion of the stimulants is a real problem, especially in colleges.
5. Especially in children, the medications can sometimes cause problems, particularly with insomnia, reduced appetite, or slow growth. The growth will catch up with time. Other side effects can usually be managed by changing the dose, the timing, or the form of the medication.
6. The New York Times has been on a campaign against ADHD and against the medicines. They seem now to have switched to a campaign against antidepressants, which I believe is equally misinforming. However, the antidepressants are indeed more problematic than the stimulants.
7. As helpful as the medicines can be, I believe that strategies are at least as important. Dr. Goodwin stated that the purpose of the medicines is to help us focus enough to be able to use the strategies.
From the ADDA insider:
There’s a raging debate about medication for ADHD.
Some people are against it.
They feel “we shouldn’t be drugging our kids.” (I’m not sure if they’re fine with drugging our adults with ADHD or not.) I hope no one in their family is ever diagnosed with diabetes!
Others think it’s a “gateway drug” and will lead to addictions. Most ADHDers I know do struggle with their medications! Their biggest struggle is remembering to take them! (Doesn’t sound like much of an addiction to me.)
Some people are for it.
When you get an ADHD diagnosis the first thing we ask about is medication. (I’m speaking from personal experience for myself and for my daughter.) We’re hoping the right medication will “cure” the ADHD! Of course, once we get our medication, we discover “pills don’t teach skills.”
No pill will cure ADHD. (With luck and hard work, most of will become grateful for all the traits that make us unique.)
ADDA is neither for nor against medication for ADHD. We are for consulting your doctor. We are for taking only your prescribed medication. And we are for following professional advice at all times. Medication is not right for everyone. And medication is not the entire solution for anyone.
In today’s Insider, we have two articles dealing with ADHD medications.
In Highway to Hell: Untreated Depression, Anxiety & ADHD Drove Me to Addiction, we share the all-too-common story of James. James struggled with addictions for years, addictions that started when he was self-medicating.
In ADHD Stimulants: Medication Diversion in the Real World, we share a podcast. Jeff Copper of Attention Talk Radio interviews a college student about his arrest. Caught diverting his ADHD medication, he suffered serious consequences.
No matter which side of the debate you fall on, don’t miss today’s articles.
Various Personal Notes O the Day:
I am struggling with procrastination on many fronts, especially on this blog, my autobiography, my other ADHD book, and my book, The Bully. I am concerned about the attack on antidepressants which are very useful medications and fairly effective, especially in moderate or severe depression. There is a lot of distorted misinformation out there. Many of us ADHDers have depression. I should have a lot of free time in May, and hope to catch up. One trap I hope to avoid is expecting too much. I need to get back to fishing regularly.
1. Keep the to do list short and realistic.
2. Focus on one thing at a time and forget about the others. That is one of the purposes of the lists.
3. Try to be careful about the sources of the information you are taking in. But, be skeptical of even reputable sources.
4. Be aware that my views and opinions are simply that. They are based on personal experience and wide reading.