ADHD medication effects on ageing - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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ADHD medication effects on ageing


ADHD and the ageing effect. How bad does the meds effect the ageing process? Anyone with any opinions or can present any facts and evidence I would like to know as this worried me in the long term! Should I be that worried?!

20 Replies

We just like with any medication, there are pros and cons. Technically these medications are “hard on our system”. But is that worth it to function? Only you can answer that question. I’ve read a ton of studies online. So many that I can’t exactly point you in any direction specific besides to say be specific in google and look for information. Basic information usually has sources. So if you google long term effects of adddrall and read an article that says it depletes dopamine over time, then google Adderall and dopamine depletion. Then something may same the overdose of dopamine prevents you from producing dopamine which depletes you dopamine. Since Adderall is a dopamine reputable inhibitor it needs you to have some dopamine to work. Then google how to dopamine works in the brain, then how it’s made, then deficiencies in the adhd brain, and just fall into the hole of information. There’s a lot. It’s complicated and not all the areas have been studied but what they do know is that just becomes you’re taking dopamine doesn’t mean it isn’t effecting all your other neurotransmitters. When it comes to the aging brain, there are a lot of studies out of Japan that look at alternative treatment source for things like Alzheimer's, dementia and Parkinson’s. All of which we have overlapping bio markers for. It doesn’t mean we will get these things but these other conditions have a lot of similarities in our condition because there is a lot discrepancies in the neurotransmitters of the brain. It’s really complicated to be honest. I feel into the rabbit hole of a study in rats yesterday regarding the use of GABA for treating amphetamine substance abuse. Long story short was that long term use of amphetamines (which effects our dopamine system) effected the GABA system as well. Our GABA neurotransmitter system is very much responsible to controlling anxiety and producing calm. GABA has been popular lately in sleep and anxiety studies. It made me wonder if Adderall makes some people’s anxiety worse because of the change in their GABA function.

Long story short, I went started my medication with 3 things in mind. 1. Supplement with the most important vitamins and minerals we tend to already be short it. There’s lots of studies about this in children.

2. Add supplements to help protect my brain from free radicals. Which everyone should do.

3. Support my neurotransmitters.

4. Add nootropic to help with adhd symptoms and age relate brain deterioration.

There’s a million different ways this could go down. I just chose what I thought sounded the best after reading a lot.

I hope this helps

What supplements and vitamins do you take?

I take a

Morning before food

B-complex and an extra b6

Alpha GPC

After breakfast

omega 3(higher EPA)

Vit d


PS (phosphatidyl serine)

When my meds start to wear off for the day



Vit C


Magnesium Taurate

And before bed I drink Natures vitality CALM the calmful sleep formulation. That has

Melatonin (which is actually a powerful antioxidant)

Magnesium glycinate



I also have a 5-HTP which I haven’t started yet but plan to take maybe once a week before bed . But you have to be careful with that one

If you want more information on how much I take and why this order I’m glad to elaborate.

Be interested in knowing why the specific order and particulars

Morning before food

B-complex and B6 (technically P5P) water soluble so take before eating with water. Create energy so take in morning

Alpha GCP 300mg empty stomach to boost effect

NAC 600mg empty stomach to boost effect.

After or with breakfast

Iron 35mg easier on stomach with food

Omega 3 1210mg (850 is EPA)with food because fat soluble

Vitamins D 4000units with food because fat soluble in morning because sunshine vitamin.

PS 100mg with food for stomach

When I feel my medication wearing off I take 500mg L-tyrosine. Helps prevent a crash and helps replenish dopamine. Some people take this with their stimulant for a synergistic effect (it makes stimulants stronger).

After dinner in evening

Vitamins C 500mg helps clear Adderall from system. Can internet with medication if taken during the day

Zinc 15mg evening because it can help with sleep though I take it for adhd reasons.

Magnesium taurate 80mg

Before sleep

Natures vitality CALM calmful sleep. The amount I take has about:

1.5 mg melatonin

20mg L-theanine

35 mg GABA and

80mg magnesium glycinate

Hope that helps

I just joined this forum today, and am so glad I did. Your supplement regime is very similar to mine. I've got some additional things because I'm treating menopause-related hormone imbalances, as well as some cardiovascular inflammation. If you don't mind, can I get your opinion on a few things?

-I take phosphatidyl serine at night to help with sleep/cortisol issues, as well as 5-htp, and a supplement called Cortisol Manager, which contains ashwaganda and l-theanine. Does your daytime PS not make you sleepy?

-I take my L-Tyrosine in the morning with my 30mg Vyvanse. But, I'm having trouble crashing when meds wear off in afternoon/evening, and feeling tired, grumpy, sugar cravings, etc. I haven't heard of L-Tyrosine to help smooth the comedown. Does it not amp you up? I'd be really interested in trying it for that.

-I've also been meaning to try Vitamin C to help with comedown. Do you see a clear effect?

Thanks very much!

No the PS doesn’t make me drowsy at all! The opposite. I found it really added to my day time medication. But I only take a small dose of 100mg. I’m looking at long term management so I don’t feel the need to take large doses.

For the L-tyrosine, it boosts the effects of medication when taken during the day. When taken before bed, it helps replenish depleted dopamine from the day and does not pump you up. The opposite. Just like dopamine medication helps us relax, so does the tyrosine. It can cause waking in neuro-typical brains, which we don’t have :) I 100% can tell when I haven’t taken my L-tyrosine when my medication starts to wear off! It really does keep me from getting cranky and irritated. But I don’t find it helps with the tired feeling when the meds wear off. It doesn’t create a boost at the end of the medication. Just a softer landing. But noticeable. I take 500mg. I will say though that the cravings at night have gone away for me now the longer I was on the medication. Almost like it builds up in your system a bit.

I don’t feel like the vit C does anything specific. I don’t feel a difference when I take it. But I take it because it helps your body clear you of remaining medication at the end of the day. It’s also an antioxidant which is good to help protect our brains from the medication.

Hope that helps

Thanks very much. I appreciate the discussion!

Right now I take magnesium every other day (not sure if daily is too much or not), NAC ~daily, vit d daily, multivitamin ~daily, and melatonin ~daily (need to buy more). I take these with generic Claritin and my lexapro before bed. In the morning, I only take my adderrall (I just switched from vyvanse to adderrall this past week). I wasn’t sure if any of these supplements or vitamins would affect the effectiveness of my stimulant or not. Do you think taking these at night is okay or should I move any of these up in the day? I also have vit B but haven’t been taking them. Will add them into my rotation going forward.

And when I say ~daily, sometimes I’m too tired to take all of them or I forget to take them every night. I’m also curious about the GABA because I’ve read about it in relation to alcohol use but not stimulant usage. Have you noticed a difference in your ADHD symptoms since beginning this vitamin/supplement routine?

As far as if I’ve noticed a difference, not especially because I started the vitamin routine and Adderall at the same time. So everything was different! I did for the NAC on my list. I don’t take antidepressants or Claritin so I speak confidently about them being mixed with any of these items. The alpha gpc and PS support the brain in a whole with the fluidity of neurotransmitters. So that should be fine for you. L-tyrosine has mixed ideas online as to whether or not it’s safe. I advised my nephew not to take that one until he was off his Zoloft just to be on the safe side. If I were you I would do some research on the NAC with the SSRI. I’m not sure about it but the mixed ideas about L-tyrosine make me wonder about the NAC because they both effect dopamine levels. But again. I’m no expert. The normal vitamins and minerals are fine with the SSRI and Claritin as far as I know. For magnesium, the important part of to get one with good bio availability. Since I use it for sleep I lean towards the magnesium glycinate and magnesium taurate. They’re fine to take every night and really help with relaxation and sleep just don’t take a high dose. I take less than 200mg.

The GABA will knock you on your butt at night. It’s amazing. I wouldn’t take the 5-HTP because of your SSRI. Vit D, I personally feel should be taken in the morning with food. Food because it’s fat soluble and in the morning because I feel like our bodies expect vit d during day time hours and I don’t want to confuse it by having a sunshine boost with my body should be shifting to night and productions melatonin. But I’ve never researched this. Multivitamins are great! You shouldn’t take them with calcium because it could inhibit the iron in it. If I were you I would definitely add the b-complex and B6. These are critical for us.

Before I was diagnosed I would have moments of taking supplements and always noticed some small improvements but definitely since I had undiagnosed adhd, nothing ever stuck because I was still unwell. But through my years moments of taking b-complex or iron or vit d have always had positive effects.

To help take my vitamins I order a pill organizer. It’s prefect! It comes in a case. When you open the case it has 7 days of cases that are removable. Each day has 3 compartments (morning, afternoon, evening). It’s perfect! Since the days are removable from the case, you can take each day with you in your purse without carrying the whole week of pills. It’s very convenient.

What about visual ageing?

Did you vision become more of a problem after starting medication? Some medications can effect your eyes. Vision problems are also prevalent in adhd. There was a study in.... I think Isreal?... it looked at the connection between eye sight and adhd and found that vision tests can be a strong diagnostic tool for adhd. I don’t know if that ever translated into current methods but I do find it interesting that vision has implications with adhd because we have a host of vision issues in my family. I have “weak eye muscles” whatever that meant but 20/20 vision. My mother, the same, that turned into far sightedness as she got older. She also has adhd. One of my sisters wears glasses. She’s also had adhd. We have a lot of sensory issues in our family and one of hers has always been vistibular. She get vertigo, which is linked to vistibular. She recently went to a balance clinic to get it invested and it was linked to one of her eyes! And how it wonders! Which was touched on in the Israel study. Once I researched sensory issue with adhd, cause we all have them, and realized one was vistibular we connected that my sister has had vistibular symptoms since birth! Everyone in my family, me, 2 sisters, mom and one nephew, blurr our eyes when we’re not paying attention or something is boring. We kind of cross them a little. Which blurrs the vision and it’s always when we should be paying attention but can’t or we’re board and aren’t fully engaged. We all do it A LOT! We just figured all these things out by the way. So, when I first started stimulants but was on a low dose. I WAS AWFUL! It helped me relax enough not to force attention but didn’t help me pay attention and I ended up spend weeks crossing my eyes. It was awful! Once my medication was increased, it went away. But returns the second my meds start to wear off.

Also, there are eye problems that can mimic adhd symptoms.

Basically, if you’re having a problem with your eyes you should be sure to get a proper full assessment and inform the dr that you have adhd and see if they know of some of the implications.

Back to your original question of eye aging, well that certainly can still happen. I personally have not looked into it but my grandmother had macular degeneration which is hereditary and serious! I fo know there are lots of supplements on the market for aging eyes. You could always call your eye dr and ask for a recommendation. They probably have a few ideas off hand or even sell some in their office. But as I mentioned with myself, if adhd management is the problem with your eye sight and your vision is perfect, you may not have an aging eye issue. It could be an adhd issue.

Just some ideas to explore.

Hope that helps.

Sorry I meant ‘visually’ ageing faster - skin, hair etc

Hahahaha! Ok! Well that’s a whole different story!

I started an anti aging routine successfully for the first time when I was in my early thirties. Unfortunately when I had the baby 2 years ago, that all went out the window! Maybe now that I’m medicated I can get back on track :)

So years ago I chose a morning derma AHA, followed by a vitamin C serum and then a moisturizer. Evening I did a retinol serum and moisturizer. I must say, even just those years of taking care of my skin made a difference. My little sister looks a little older than me now. They say not to use these items around the eyes but I would still get a little close so I was addressing where crows feet would eventually appear. And always remember to treat your neck as well.

Hope that helps.

Consider how ADHD meds affect the body---You can look that up.--It ages you faster--There are good choices in your replies, but I believe you need to know what your vitamin levels are or your just treating will Nili. Be smart, read your answers and then do your own leg work , we are all different. Just because it works for one doesn't mean it will work for you. In other words you need to investigate yourself, like a lot of us did. Amen has a lot of information and it has various test you can take,Free, You can take a lot of supplements, but if you don't know what you are low on, you could spend a lot of money that just goes down the drain. Dr. Bredesen has two good books on Alzheimers . Th End of Alzheimers. The first program to prevent and reverse cognitive decline. He has had amazing results with his program.. You think ou don't have Alzheimers, OK, but there is a good chance you will especially if you don't take care of your brain!

I think it’s important to point out that correlation doesn’t mean causation here. Adhd medication doesn’t necessarily cause the brain to age faster. Adhd could be the cause.

I found it odd when I first realized I had adhd, at 40, and started trying to learn as much as I could because:

First, side effects to Adderall. Yeah. I’ve had almost all of them! Without taking Adderall. Long term effects of adderall, also had most of them.... without ever taking Adderall. Symptoms of dementia, CHECK! Especially the last 2 years while I was in a state of “menopause” while breastfeeding. I don’t have dementia, still never took Adderall. Some studies show an increased risk of dementia with Adderall use. Others show increased risk in people with adhd symptoms (but no formal diagnoses or treatment ever taken). So what came first? The chicken or the egg? They don’t know that. Taking Adderall doesn’t necessarily make you more susceptible to brain deterioration. It could be the imbalance we have from adhd, even without treatment.

Also, your last line. “You think ou don't have Alzheimers, OK, but there is a good chance you will especially if you don't take care of your brain!”

That’s not a fair statement. None of us have a good chance of getting dementia. We have a higher risk than the average public but we don’t have a good chance.

That said, that’s exactly why this was a good question. We all should be mindful of brain health. There is plenty of things we can do to help that. Exercise, eat well, stay active and social and engaged in life and learning, don’t smoke, avoid substance abuse..... oh yeah!!! Except all that stuff can be supper hard for a lot of us without medication. That’s the vicious cycle!!! That’s what’s hard for science to pinpoint. Which is the lesser evil? Which came first? The chicken or the egg? The one thing researchers tend to agree on is that correlation does not imply causation.

Also, with vitamins and supplements, the is so much a blood test can’t tell you. For example, magnesium. Blood tests measure 1% of the magnesium in your body. The other 99% needs further diagnostic investigation and it still won’t give you the whole picture. What they do know is that 80% of the population needs more magnesium. Mostly due to over farming. Vitamins and minerals that the population used to receive from some foods, don’t contain the those levels anymore because the soil has been depleted. When it comes to our brains, there’s so much that can’t be tested quantifiably. B-vitamins are water soluble and highly recommend for adhd. So taking a supplement doesn’t hurt you. Your body will take what it needs and excrete the rest. Omega 3 fatty acids are extremely well researchers supplements in adhd children and are part of a first line treatments for them. We benefit from more than the average recommended dose for the neuro-typical population. So for Omega 3, more is better for us (within reason of course, there’s more info online). So it’s important to note, that our brains work differently than the majority population. Though adhd is one of the most well researched conditions a person can have, there’s still a lot we don’t know. It can also be really hard to know where to start. If the book you read had some good tips I know I’d love to hear them. But buy a book and reading it is something that I know, unfortunately, I won’t be able to do. At least not at this point in my life 🤣

OK I see what you mean.. Checking your glyphosate level is also good to see where you stand. Why do you say ADHD is well research?

OMG I just looked into glyphosate and that’s terrifying! Also, not surprising at all! I tell my husband all the time that we don’t know the 1/2 of what most of these chemicals do to us. He struggled with this concept for a while because it’s expensive and I’m very into buying organic food (especially produce), “free” personal products, not using antibiotics, that kind of new age type stuff. And he just sees a price tag. Hahahaha. But once the baby came he gave up arguing about it! I win :) But I had no idea it can show up in a blood test. Does your body eventually clear it or do the toxic levels stay forever?

I say adhd is well researched because it is.

According to the American Medical Association, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is “one of the best-researched disorders in medicine, and the overall data on its validity are far more compelling than for most mental disorders and even for many medical conditions”

Unfortunately, there’s still so much we don’t know.

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