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Dr_Anderson, Doctor
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 335
Experience:  Psychiatrist
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I really like aderrall. I believe I have ADD and my sister

Customer Question

I really like aderrall. I believe I have ADD and my sister is officially diagnosed with ADHD is prescribed Adderral. She let me use your Rx and I feel that it can really benefit me. Are there other and or maybe better ways to combat my attention deficit disorder? And what should I worry about when experimenting on my own? Also I think Adderall significantly improves my undiagnosed low-grade depression
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr_Anderson replied 5 years ago.
Greetings! Thank you for the questions. Let me answer each in turn:
(1) First off, to find the best treatment, there needs to be a diagnosis! This means it will be necessary for you to be seen by your primary care doctor or someone in mental health who is experienced in evaluation and diagnosis of mental health issues, including ADHD.
Follow me so far?
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Expert:  Dr_Anderson replied 5 years ago.
I see that you are offline right now, so please re-contact me when you are online so we may continue!
Dr. Anderson
Expert:  Dr_Anderson replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for the accept, but I didn't think we were done! :)
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
please don't go. I am new here and would like some help. I am in the process of getting a primary doc, I have to wait until my employer finalizes my insurance benefits. From my own research of ADD I have to fit the 9 point critera. I am kinda skeptical because it all subjective testing. It's not like a MRI or blood test to see objective data. But I believe I fit alll nine critera points.
1. Fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork
2. Has difficulty keeping attention during tasks or play
3.Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly
4.Does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace
5..Has difficulty organizing tasks and activities
6.Avoids or dislikes tasks that require sustained mental effort (such as schoolwork)
7.Often loses toys, assignments, pencils, books, or tools needed for tasks or activities
8. Is easily distracted
9. Is often forgetful in daily activities
So lets pretend I am diagnosed..........
SO my questions then is, one, how bad or dangerous is it for me to self prescribe this med to myself? Secondly, what avenues should I start to researching to combat these difficult symptoms of ADD? Third, how valid is the diagnosis and its process? Since most the characteristic can attributed to any person (especially with this heavily distracted culture, hence the high use of ipod, iphone, Facebook, twittor among all the rest of the twenty-something-people). Lastly, Is there a cheap way I can get treatment without a primary and or without an official diagnosis?
Expert:  Dr_Anderson replied 5 years ago.
Certainly! I figured you hit the accept too early on accident. You are quite right about the diagnosis. For adults, we rely heavily upon self-report - and that can be faked! For kids, we have teacher reports, parent reports, and testing, so it is more objective.
So, presuming you've experienced all these things, and that they have been pervasive (spanning all areas of life, not just one area), problematic, and persistent (from childhood, not just something new in the past few years), it may be safe to say a diagnosis of ADHD/ADD is in order.
Now, for each question:
(1) It's a really bad idea to self-prescribe. The medicines are not benign (they can cause high blood pressure and tachycardia, for example). They can also cause mood swings, uncontrolled impulsivity, all sorts of bad things. Having someone experienced in the meds and what to look for is very important.
(2) Checking into self-help groups and books, such as ADHD Grown Up by Joel Young, can point you in the right direction of behavioral and cognitive techniques you can use to help with your symptoms without medication. Getting connected with a therapist skilled at adult ADD/ADHD is an even more intense way to help, as they can guide you with focused therapy and homework specifically to improve yourself. Medications are still the "gold standard" for a valid diagnosis, though.
(3) The diagnosis itself is very valid, but the diagnosis in the individual is only as valid as the information used to obtain the diagnosis. Thus, the more thorough the process being used by the evaluator, the more confident you'll feel that they "got it right."
(4) Without a primary and diagnosis, the cheapest way to get treatment is through those self-help options listed above. There are a slew of workbooks for ADHD/ADD which can be found at Amazon or through Google. If you try the self-help route but find it does not help, then the more intensive routes (therapist, meds, etc) may be necessary.
Hope this helps!
Dr. Anderson