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Re: Amphetamines/Ritalin/Depression Mr.Scott

Posted by Sulpicia on May 22, 2001, at 18:39:41

In reply to Amphetamines/Ritalin/Depression , posted by Mr.Scott on May 22, 2001, at 12:28:58

> Hi--
My situation is slightly different but perhaps of interest.
First, so you understand my perspective: 10 years of sobriety from drugs and alcohol, mainly the latter,
chronic depression, and mild ADD.
I take a tricyclic AD and adderall. Abuse and addiction need not be the same phenomena, so please realize
that my comments are based on personal experience with addiction.
It's very good that you are scared, and this makes it less likely you'll be tempted to abuse adderall.
Lots of people with ADD have substance abuse issues so getting medication is a minefield, but the adults I've
met have done very well -- no reappearance of abuse stuff.
One thing you should consider is that successful treatment of your depression makes it much less likely that
you'll feel the need to return to coke.

As for self-medication, I think your doc is right on target. The wonderful pdoc who
treats my teenager spent several hours asking about her drug abuse: what were her favorites, why,
and what did the various drugs make you feel like. He clearly saw this as self-medication and used
the info to help decide which AD to start with.

I personally feel OK taking adderall for ADD. Addiction hasn't been an issue for me for a long while
and I still maintain contact with recovering people. Tho it's not everyone's choice or need, AA or similar
models can be very helpful, especially for relapse prevention. It's almost educational in a strange way --
you can see the signs of relapse in another person much more readily than in yourself. In time you learn to
understand your own patterns of behavior. What I learned in AA keeps me comfortable about taking adderall.
Short version: I know when I'm in trouble. And I was scared too when adderall was suggested.

If you believe that you have good self-awareness and understanding of what was going on with you when you
abused coke, you're probably in good shape.
You should also commit to absolute honesty with your pdoc: if you need to change a dosage, ask first.
And don't panic if you find that you need an increase or decrease. It happens, sometimes from other meds,
changes in lifestyle or diet, etc. Just tell the pdoc and you'll work it out.

I think the most important thing is to get your depression relieved -- being wretched constantly will get you
into more trouble over time.

If you recognize a problematic response to the adderall, talking to others in the same position is very useful.
I hesitate to suggest a drug counselor because some are very dogmatic in their insistance on no drugs at all....
but perhaps with the right individual this would be an option.

Have you had any responses to adderall that scare you?
I wish you the best.




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