craxypaxient

ADHD meds for someone in substance use recovery and bipolar

13 posts in this topic

Hello. I am a 25 year old woman and I have 5 months clean from an opiate addiction. I have ahdh-pi, bipolar disorder 2, and unspecified anxiety disorder. The bipolar diagnosis is newer, the adhd and anxiety diagnosis is from childhood. I currently take seroquel xr 300 mg, abilify 10 mg, topamax 200 mg and neurontin 100 mg prn. I just had to stop taking strattera because I could feel it making me feel "weird" (I think manic?) after being on it for a week and a half. The nurse practitioner I am seeing said there is nothing else I can take because of my past drug addiction. I used to take vyvanse and it worked well. I never abused it. I have already tried wellbutrin. I work the program of aa religiously, so it's not like I am doing nothing for my recovery. Anyone have any suggestions?

Edit: oh I start school in 2 weeks so I really need to get this resolved sooner rather than later. I also just got a car and have noticed attention issues while driving. These are things I can't ignore.

Edited by craxypaxient

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There is guanfacine (Intuiv) that some people find works well.

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Well you have a similar diagnosis history to me except the bp2 and I added unipolar depression, and I struggle with the same feelings and thoughts....I have also been in recovery from alcoholism for a very long time...21 years...although it is always 1 day at a time.....5 months is not that long... I tried adderall and it had too any ups and downs. Currently on strattera for about 4

months but not sure it's working.

Long story short, I do have one recommendation....less about add and more about general awareness and awakened. I have been on Nuvigil for 3 years or so and it counteracts the sleepiness of the low dose benzo I do take for anxiety. Won't help with concentration per se but can't have attention if you are sleepy / out of it.

Second suggestion is get another psych doc to try stims, be accountable (ie honest) about it with someone in your aa fellowship, and see if that helps. I know lots of people are cross addicted but I have never had a recreational drug issue. But I always will have the mind of an addict so I have to check my thinking with someone......

Good luck...

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You have a complex diagnosis and maybe should see a psychiatrist instead of a NP. NP's are supervised and can be more conservative. In fact, maybe you should think about seeing a specialist in ADHD.

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I have made an appointment with a psychiatrist who hopefully will be able to give some insight into the situation.

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Have you considered seeing an addictionolgist ( a psychiatrist who specializes in addiction)?  Might be worth investigating since they tend to have a dual diagnosis approach. I saw one for years early in my recovery and still ran things by him for a long time after I moved elsewhere. I've found doctors with a dual diagnosis focus incredibly helpful addressing the full spectrum of my issues and recovery.

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The wellbutrin has worked well for me. Not perfect but it still works. 

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I have a long history of substance abuse, along with bipolar, GAD and ADD. I was an IV opiate junkie for about 7 years. I have always been honest about this with my doctors. I am currently taking Ritalin and don't worry at all about it, and was on Xanax for nearly a year and never abused it. I tend to have a different view of addiction and strongly resist the 12-step approach. I've been clean for 7-8 years, though I have smoked weed the whole time. I just can't subscribe to the teetotaler approach and refuse to be of the mindset that because I once had a problem, I will always be an "addict." I'm not going to wring my hands about it every day; I used to have a problem, but now I don't. I feel like that mindset can deprive someone of receiving the medication they need. I say that unless you had a specific problem with stimulants and feel like you couldn't resist abuse, don't sweat it.

Edited by Outlier52
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BTW, I found the book "Rational Recovery" by Jack Trimpe very helpful in my early recovery. It was refreshing to know that I wasn't alone or crazy for not liking 12-step program. AA/NA is not a cookie-cutter solution for everyone, especially if you're like me and can't get on board with the whole "higher power thing." "Powerless "my ass! We are powerFUL if we put our minds to it!

Edited by Outlier52

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Oh honey I'm so glad your getting the new Dr. You are doing  a big balancing act  with all u have and believe me I understand . I am a clinical depressive with anxiety, Adult ADD , and had to remove 60℅of my pancreas which made me Diabetic. I also have Fibromyalgia. I take meds for all of it. I also am clean off meth for 5 years.            They made me do the strattera a long time .It did nothing for me. I switched Dr.s and she gave me a cheek swab for genetic testing and it proved I am meds resistant and that I wasn't just drug seeking . I've been on vyvanse for 2 weeks . You know if ur going somewhere new and they don't have past medical history on u . Id just not mention the speed addiction. I wish I never told the truth about that . It had a huge effect on my disability case.  

You can't really abuse vyvanse from all I've read about it . I never did the AA thing either . Not into the spiritual part or the people part for that matter. My shrink agrees she thinks I might hurt someone if I went .lol

I'm so glad its working for u.I know many people its helped. The truth is the only way to stay clean for me was to completely change my life. Remove toxic people no matter time or history if they have anything to do with that lifestyle they have to go.     Only YOU can keep u clean . Its fucking hard I won't lie but if I can do it anyone can.You just have to really ready to do the work and quit. Congratulations  on ur time sober :-) 

 

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I was addicted to heroin. I tried Strattera three times and Nuvigil twice. After that, I was given Adderall. I've been on Wellbutrin since 2011 but I believe it's done nothing but bad for me. Adderall, as well, has been not helpful, but better than the other ones. Point: It's not a problem. Find a new doctor who will give a shit and have an open mind.

There's two kinds of problem drug users. Addicts, and people who claim to be addicts. People who claim to be addicts are people who "use anything they can get their hands on", and their only real problem is that they are unbelievably stupid, useless garbage. Addicts, people like you an i, OP, are, more or less loyal to our drug of choice. Most tweakers don't like dope. Most people on dope don't like speed. I don't abuse my Adderall but when I had my first tox screen in rehab the doctor was speechless. I was nuts.  This isn't a great way to persuade a pdoc, but it's something to think about.  Like I said, I would find a new doctor. I really would. 

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I'm now 3 years clean. Bipolar 2, General Anxiety, PTSD and good old ADHD.  I was on Wellbutrin for the ADHD for about a year and it was great. And then it just stopped working.

 

Went back in to my NP who is like, one of the best people to talk to ever and is medicated for her own ADHD and told her it wasnt working any more.

My drug(s) of choice were downers. Specifically benzos. My np is fully aware of my recovery. So we bounced a couple ideas around and then she asked if my preference had been downers she just wanted to make sure.  Just started on Adderal. If I have any problems call her or come in. (True too) last summer she put me on lithium and it felt like my brain just splintered so I called her and she switched my med over the phone and faxed the change to my program so I wouldn't have problems.

My NA sponsor is ok with me taking it as long as I dont feel like Im having issues.  At least I dont feel like a squirrel at a rave anymore. Hope everyone else gets to that point too

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