Well, I think she might re-consider her opinion that you are abusing the medication. It sounds to me like you are simply trying to be functional and feel well (aka, not irritable, distracted, etc.).
One problem might be that you are expecting a "visceral" effect from the medication. You wrote about it "kicking in."
It's probably never going to feel as it did when you first started. That novelty is passed. You will never have that kind of "a-ha" moment again.
You say it is still working to help you focus and complete tasks but that everything seems so tedious. Is there a chance that you are in a tedious job? One that doesn't suit you, on Rx or off?
Perhaps medication might have given you the clarity to actually see that now, and it's time to change jobs?
But let's just say that the job is mostly a good fit for you and the question is back to the medication.
It could be that you do need a higher dose. Some people are fast metabolizers, and they will need two doses of Vyvanse (or Concerta, etc.) throughout the day. One in the morning, and one when they feel the medication is wearing off.
You do NOT want to use the medication as a way to push you into working too-long hours, though.
How about the rest of your habits? For example:
Are you eating protein in the morning? Taking a decent multi-vitamin/mineral? Limiting the caffeine? Getting enough sleep? Exercising?
Even the best Rx won't compensate for a lack of good habits.
You describe the strategy my husband, undiagnosed with ADHD at the time, used to get his PhD. Except he took a thermos of coffee to the deepest, darkest corner of the library.
Just as an aside, people who have bad reactions to stimulants might still benefit from the medication. It might be a question of addressing a more-severe co-existing condition first (e.g. anxiety or other serotonin-related issue), or it might be trying one of the many different options on the market today.
You say you are having an "extremely difficult time concentrating."
Then you say your ADHD is "just not severe enough to be on medication for it."
There seems to be a disparity there.
There are no vitamins or supplements capable of "treating" ADHD.
That said, any brain functions better when it is adequately nourished (vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids). And our bodies -- including our brains -- operate better with sufficient exercise and sleep.
If you are doing all that, and still feel you are having more trouble than most of your classmates, your ADHD might indeed be "severe enough."
Also, if you find it impossible to regulate your diet, sleep, and exercise, that, too can be ADHD-related.
I've never seen such a study, despite following the research closely. Moreover, I've never heard that idea mentioned in the many expert lectures I've attended.
In general, "medication holidays" are not seen as a recommended practice. The idea, simply put, is that the body "likes" homeostatis, routine. And, the more steady one's medication routine, the better.
Plus, ADHD symptoms don't always end when a child leaves the classroom. There are other social considerations with family, for example.
But that's a separate issue than the one you bring up: that taking breaks from medication will result in habituation, requiring higher doses in order to be effective.
Perhaps this has been the physician's observation in some patients.
If your child has never tried another medication, it might be worth trying at least another class of stimulant. It might not cause the same appetite suppression.
It could well be that you have ADHD. The phenomenon you describe above certainly fit.
It's important to rule out other things, though.
For example, have you had these challenges all your life? Or, did something happen, such as a head injury or illness, that created these problems with attention, etc?
Do you happen to be South Indian? A couple of my friends with ADHD here in Silicon Valley who are from South India and vegetarians have B vitamin deficiencies.
Our brains need vitamins and minerals just as the rest of our bodies do. Vitamins and minerals are what enable electrochemical transmissions.
So, before trying medication, you want to rule out injuries and you want to make sure your diet is sound, including protein in the morning.
Let's just say, theoretically, that you do have ADHD and for whatever reason you cannot visit a doctor. Or perhaps your parents do not "believe" in ADHD.
I can tell you, here in Silicon Valley, where I call my adult ADHD group "ADHD Without Borders," we have members from around the world. Many did not know they had ADHD until they came here. Then they bring the word back home. I was on a list a while back. I think it was ADHDIndia on Yahoogroups. and it seems that awareness is picking up there. So, if you continue to look for local resources, you might find help.
To answer your question, ADDWIZE is a methylphenidate (MPH) product. MPH is the same medicine that is in Ritalin and Concerta. The difference is in the delivery system; for example, Concerta is a sustained-release medication that uses a novel osmotic pump that travels through the GI tract.
With any stimulant medication, you want to do two main things.
1. Target your symptoms.
That is, write down in a simple grid your specific ADHD-related challenges, as you've done above.
2. Start at the lowest dose available and slowly increase until side effects outweigh symptoms. Then decrease a bit.
As you slowly increase, every few days, check in every day with your list of target symptoms. Write down, in a column for each day, "Better" or "worse".
You can use a 1-5 system, with 1 being much worse, 2 worse, 3 no change, 4 better and 5 much better.
It's important to track this, and try to use objective measures. For example, try to read a book that might ordinarily give you difficulty. Or try to focus on something for 10 minutes, or whatever is past your usual limit.
If you don't track with objective data, you might not know if the medication is working (sometimes, other people notice but the person with ADHD does not).
There are always variables in anyone's day, so you want to have consistent tracking so you can see the overall trend.
Now, some people who also have anxiety might feel that exacerbated by the stimulant. Some people with ADHD who also have anxiety might need a second medication.
That is a very basic general guideline for beginning stimulant medication.View Thread
Adult ADHD Expert And Author http://www.GinaPera.com
Maybe you can shed a bit more light, because I am confused.
It seems there are several issue here, two of which seem contradictory:
1. You do not feeling the medications are still working or lasting as long as you need them to.
2. You feel you are dependent on the stimulants to function. Without them, you are irritable, don't handle stressful situations well and find yourself exhausting, with simple tasks turning into a hassle and emotions running wild.
3. You are terrified to tell your prescriber that you are running out of medication because you are tripling the dosage on some days.
If you have a hard time when you don't take the medication, that probably means they are working.
Your physician has already suggested that you might not have enough coverage throughout the day. That tells me the physician would probably understand if you explain you took more some days in order to achieve higher functioning.
It would help if I knew what kind of Rx you are taking, and your habits around taking it, if you are still getting good sleep and trying to balance your life. People with ADHD who use the stimulants as "rocket fuel" (especially Adderall) often find they are burning the candle at both ends, and eventually the Rx no longer helps, plus they are irritable, suffering from insomnia, etc.