Amphetamines: What You Need to Know

Medication

We would like to share this infographic from The Recovery Village on the history of amphetamines in our country.

As you can see above, amphetamines have had an interesting history in the United States–from being a weight loss tool to the creation of the extremely harmful methamphetamines. Now, amphetamines do have a positive use in the treatment of ADHD in medications such as Adderall and Vyvanse. While these medications do have positive and healthy uses, they also have a high potential for abuse.

These medications stimulate areas of the brain. On patients that have ADD or ADHD, the areas of the brain that are not functioning properly will be stimulated so that the person is able to focus. Without ADD or ADHD, however, the stimulation of the brain causes energy or hyperactivity. For this reason, Adderall has become a popular medication for college students to abuse. It’s also easy for individuals with substance abuse tendencies to abuse the medication even if they are prescribed it for legitimate attention issues.

If you or someone you love is abusing medications like these, the effect can be similar to a meth addiction. It’s essential that you get help and seek treatment for your addiction. It also may be necessary for you to realize that just because a drug is legal and comes with a prescription does not mean that it cannot be dangerous or addictive.

4 Natural Remedies for ADD and ADHD

Natural Remedies

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) are conditions that are often treated by physicians with medications like Adderall, Strattera, and Dexamphetamine. Critics of these medications say that they actually do more harm than good and are being pushed on patients too frequently as a result of big pharmaceutical companies wanting to turn a profit. Physicians are encouraged by these companies to prescribe these medications, and often they can be overprescribed.

So are there any natural alternatives for this disorder? Yes, there are.

1. Avoid foods that contain preservatives and food colorings

Studies have shown that certain preservatives and food colorings may actually lead to an increase in hyperactive behavior. These include sodium benzoate (typically found in salad dressings, fruit juice products, and carbonated drinks); FD&C Yellow No. 5 (found in pickles, yogurt, and cereal); FD&C Yellow No. 6 (found in cereal, candy, and soft drinks); D&C Yellow No. 10 (found in sorbets and juices); FD&C Red No. 40 (found in ice cream, gelatin, and sodas).

2. EEG Biofeedback

Electroencephalographic (EEG) biofeedback is a sort of neurotherapy that actually measures brain waves. A biofeedback specialist will work with you during a session to teach new focus techniques.

3. Supplements

Studies have shown that supplements such as magnesium, zinc, L-carnitive, and vitamin B-6 have all had promising results when it comes to decreasing symptoms of ADD and ADHD. However, you should always consult your physician before you begin any supplements so that he or she can suggest the best supplements for your unique situations.

4. Yoga, tai chi, and meditation

Studies have shown that techniques learned in yoga and tai chi classes or techniques used during meditation have improved many focus issues for a number of individuals. There may be many other benefits associated with beginning a meditation practice or beginning a yoga or tai chi class such as having a more peaceful outlook and being less stressed and anxious.

So before trying a potentially harmful and addictive medication, it may be worth it to give these techniques a try. They have shown to have positive results in many cases.

7 Ways Technology Can Help Your ADD or ADHD

Technology

Technology can be your friend if you want it to be. There are many great mobile apps, computer apps, software, and browser extensions that are incredibly helpful for both children and adults with ADD and ADHD. These apps promote better focus, organization, time management, etc. Have a look at our favorites:

1. Freedom

Freedom blocks you from the internet for a certain block of time. This will prevent you from surfing the web and getting lost down a rabbit hole, which can easily happen to those that have attention issues.

2. RescueTime

If you are looking for ways to better manage your time, it is helpful to know how you are spending it. RescueTime helps you to have more awareness of the ways in which you are spending your time on the computer, which can be extremely helpful. This app can also block certain sites after a certain amount of time. For example, if you only want to spend half an hour on Facebook each day, it will block it after this time.

3. Evernote

This app allows you to capture various information, categorize it with tags, and store it in easy to find “notebooks”. This can help you to stay on track of the files that you are saving to your computer and your phone.

4. Unroll.me

This is a free service that will help you to clean up and organize your e-mail. It will take all o the listservs and newsletters and roll them into one daily digest. And it will unsubscribe you from e-mails you don’t want to receive.

5. 30/30

30/30 is both a to-do list and a timer. This app will remind you how much time you have set for yourself for a certain task and when the time is almost up.

6. Dragon Naturally Speaking

For many individuals with ADD and ADHD, our brains move faster than we can write. For this, voice dictation can be an excellent tool. The best software for voice dictation is Dragon Naturally Speaking.

7. Unstuck

Whenever your ADHD brain gets into a knot, this app will help you to undo it. The app uses cognitive behavioral therapy principles to help you to better identify your thoughts and feelings.

So there you have it. 7 ways technology can be your friend. What are some of your favorite apps or helpful software? Tell us about it in the comments.