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First Couple Days On Ritalin

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A little background: I was diagnosed with ADHD (inattentive type) when I was 15 but it was suspected I probably had it from the age of 8. At 15 i was perscribed adderall and I took it for a few months. While it did make me feel more focused, I also experienced some of the zombie feeling with it and I stopped taking it. I also have taken several other meds but won't get into that.

I am 27 now and in college and again was having issues with my ADHD so my pdoc perscribed that along with Prozac (for major depression). Well I took the first dose yesterday around 4:30 and I felt really good. I noticed immediately I felt like I could focus on one thing at a time and thoughts seemed clearer. I then started to get extremely sleepy within an hour or two but I believe that was the prozac. I went to bed early and woke up promptly at 6 am and took my first dose. Right now I am being told to take a half of a 10mg twice per day for the first few days and then I am supposed to work up to a full pill twice a day.

Anyway after my first dose today I felt some tightening in my shoulders and I got a pretty bad headache. I haven't taken the prozac yet today because it made me so drowsy yesterday so I plan on taking it before bed tonight. I took the second half at 10:30am and again I got a headache. So I drank some water and got some fresh air. After that it mostly went away but I still have a mild headache with some tension in my neck.

Is this going to go away with time or is this normal???

I did eat a decent sized breakfast after taking it and I drank 1 cup of coffee along with a couple glasses of water.


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My fiancé has been on Ritalin (and every other drug available in the UK) and has had similar issues, plus some. He experienced severe hot flashes, insomnia, depression, mood swings, and a few others. Needless to say, he weighed his options and found that life is actually better without Ritalin. He's now back to dexamphetamine and is only taking it on the days he REALLY needs it. Although it is against his shrink's advice (she wants him taking it every day) the side side effects aren't worth it. But,if you look into other forums a lot of people say the side effects go away after time. A lot of people say they don't. It all depends on how you respond to them. Hope that helps somewhat. Best of luck, TIAB

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This is why it's never a good idea to start two psychiatric medications at the same time, you can't possibly know which medication is responsible for each side effect.

I have been on Ritalin for a few years now ( i'm 25 ) and it's a miracle drug for me, i'm sure I wouldn't have been able to be a straight A student if it's not for Ritalin and I do have adult ADD.

headaches are a very common side effect of Ritalin and hopefully it will go away once your body gets used to the drug, sometimes the headache is caused by sleep deprivation or dehydration which are also results of using Ritalin, in my case the insomnia never really went away but if you take your last dose 5 or 6 hours before you go to bed you will be fine. you are on a VERY small dosage so i wouldn't worry.

Also, Ritalin is often prescribed along with other antidepressants for patients with MDD and I do feel it helps, it doesn't really lift up my mood but when i'm on it I can focus and not fail behind in school and it helps me with the lack of motivation and fatigue caused by depression.

good luck

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Hi forgtmenot... My situation is pretty similar to yours. I was diagnosed with ADHD (inattentive type) as well when I was 7. I took Ritalin then too between ages 7 and 14. When I was 14 I decided I didn't need it anymore and stopped taking it. I'm 29 now and last year just started having problems again in life. Last year started experiencing severe anxiety and had a hard time controlling my thoughts. My anxiety got so severe that I started having panic attacks and getting a bad tingling sensation on my forehead so my doc started me on antidepressants. I've taken a few others too (on trial and error) but so far Lexapro has worked best for me. I've been on LP since November, 10mg and just recently bumped up to 15mg. It's gotten quite a bit better with the LP but I was still having difficulties with negative thoughts, feelings and concentration and for the first time in my life dealing minor depression. After talking with my doc again we started back on Ritalin, 10mg once daily in AM. I just started taking it again after 15 years.

So far, I have had some minor headaches and some aches in my shoulders too but they're far and few between. It does tend to dry me out a bit so I try and keep a liquid with me all the time. I take my Ritalin around 7am before I head off to work. It seems to really do a good job during the day but I notice it wears off around 3-4pm. I tend to feel more calm and relaxed and so far it's helped me to be able to focus better but it's only been a few days starting it. I notice I feel a little sedated on it... but not sedated like it's too heavy, maybe more how i'm supposed to feel, calmer and relaxed but I still haven't quite worked out how to explain how it feels yet. It's not bad but not great... it just is.... but I think it may be helping. In some ways it reminds me of when I was young. The Lexapro does help a bit with the depression and the Ritalin seems to help me not worry about things as much so it seems to help with the depression a little bit too. Sounds like the headaches could be a normal side effect. Mine are really short minor headaches and they don't seem to last long at all.

Anyway, that's my bit. I'm glad to hear though that someone else is going through the same thing I am too.

Feel free to chat me if you have any questions

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  • 4 months later...

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