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I was diagnosed with ADHD when I was 12, put on concerta. I wasn't really fidgedy, I just started puberty very early and around that time I started being bored with everything and not being focused. I've been on and off concerta, focalin, and focalin xr for years, but after a year of not being able to be prescribed scheduled substances, I got put back on focalin in June. I just have an addictive tendency and always go overboard with it, considering I've been dealing with a meth addiction.

 

Does anyone have any tips on how I can control myself, or tell myself when to call it quits?

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IMO, I'm not sure if you (or, rather, someone with your history of stimulant abuse to the extent you've reported) would be able to "control" themselves with that medication, unless you have extremely stringent monitoring (like getting dispensed only a few pills at a time-- not sure if that's possible insurance wise.... or keeping them in a locked box and giving a very trusted relative/friend the key that they let you access only certain times a day).  But either way, I'm concerned that taking the med will trigger urges to abuse stimulants, either that particular one or, god forbid, urges to relapse on the meth.

 

I'm also wondering how you got put back on focalin considering you were "not able to be prescribed it" or scheduled substances for several years?  Did your doctors feel you were ready/recovered enough in your addiction to give it a try, or were you less than forthcoming about your history.

 

My suggestion, which is probably not what you want to hear, is to first and foremost be upfront with your treatment team (pdoc-- hopefully you have a therapist/counselor too) about what you have been doing with the focalin.  Be prepared for the fact that they may not be willing to prescribe that medication but should be willing to work with you around other ways to treat the ADHD or whatever other symptoms you have.  However, they may keep you on the medication or another stimulant medication but with stipulations/further monitoring.  Even though you might not be caught now, doctors do have ways of finding out if patient's are abusing their meds (particularly controlled substances), and it's much better for your treatment if they find out from you rather than on your own.

 

My other suggestion is to stop snorting the Focalin and take it orally as it's meant to be.  (I read that info on your blog).  Intra-nasal use crosses the blood brain barrier more quickly (which is why people like to snort things in the first place), which means more immediate gratification.  Substances and modes of use that have more rapid onset tend to be more "rewarding" and, hence, more addictive.

 

Finally, not sure if you have ever been treated for substance abuse (IP, IOP), but I highly recommend that you at least start working with a counselor/therapist with experience in substance abuse.  Even if the ultimate decision is for you to remain on stimulants, I think that will be very hard with your self-described "addictive tendencies" and this would help you identify why you feel the need to abuse stimulants in the first place as well as alternate coping skills to address those need.

 

Hope this helps.  If not, then take what you can from it, and leave the rest.  I'm glad to hear that you are concerned enough about it to at least start asking for support here.  You have to start somewhere.  Best of luck.

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