How can a brain stimulant be the treatment for ADHD?

My son was just placed on Adderal and it says its a "stimulant". How can a stimulant "calm" his constant intranquility and it also say he might he having problems sleeping. If you are nervous that you can’t focus nor be still and already have difficulty sleeping, why the adderal? I thought I[‘d get an explanation here before calling the doctor. thanks

3 Responses to “How can a brain stimulant be the treatment for ADHD?”

  1. AbsoluteAngelGal Says:

    it’s the weirdest thing ever but it’s true 🙂 i’m ADD and have been all my life and i’ve been on lots of medications for it (from the time i was 5 until i was around 20) and they’ve all been stimulants. people with ADD react very differently than people without ADD to depressants and stimulants. it’s not like you’re giving your son prozac to make him happy or whatever. you’re giving him something to balance out the brain chemicals and so on that he’s lacking.

    this is something that’s not just for childhood medications that people with ADD react oppositely, it’s any type of medication that is a stimulant. i’ve had friends with ADD that have told me of their experiences with even recreational drugs and either they have to take 2x the same amount to feel the same effect as everyone else and they don’t work at all. in the air force, i had a friend who was completely open about his recreational drug use in the past, and had ADD and actually complained about things like heroin, cocaine, amphetimine, and any other drug like that having no effect.

    HOWEVER, the biggest thing that you have to watch out for as a parent of a child that’s recieving ADD schedule 1 medication (or schedule 2, or whatever it is that’s highly controlled) that he’s not giving them away at school or selling them to friends who don’t have ADD and actually use them as recreational stimulants. back when i was in school people would try and get ritalin from me and others through favors, in fact calling it a poor man’s cocaine. make sure you pay close attention and make sure it’s not dissapearing faster than it should be! 🙂

  2. James Says:

    What Adderol did for me and what it is doing for my brother right now, is that it gives you more focus. It is easier to concentrate for a longer period of time. I know it seems like an oxymoron, but giving someone with ADHD Adderol is different then giving someone with out ADHD Adderol. I’m no doctor I just have been on the medication, I can’t tell exactly what it does in the brain.
    As far as the sleeping goes, if my little brother doesn’t take his Adderol XR(25mg’s) right as he wake up in tghe morning, he will never be able to go to sleep. Right now I’m on Vyvanse and it seems to be working a lot better then the Adderol did. I would talk to your doctor about that if the sleep becomes an issue. Hope this helps at all. 🙂

  3. Jef Gazley, LMFT Says:

    People with ADD have what is called a paradoxical effect to medication. A stimulant will still speed up his body and that might cause sleep problems, but because it turns on the prefrontal cortex it usually calms the mind. A tranquilizer might well make him more hyper.

    I would suggest reading Healing ADD the Six Types by Dr. Amen. It will explain the condition completely. The stimulants usually work well for ADD but can cause some side effects. There is a natural supplement that works as well for most people and that is ADD-care. I use it with 85% of my clients with ADD, but used the stimulants for 25 years with good results as well.

    Good luck. Jef