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Children and ADD or ADHD & "other"


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  • Moderator Emeritus

This phenomenon of prescribing drugs and its potential consequences is long, long from being over.


The number of kids on medication for ADD or ADHD is amazingly common and , if anything, is becoming more frequent.


Strattera and Adderall being the most commonly prescribed from what I can tell.


One day I will be able to post my personal incidental, observations and experiences about this. But for now just wanted to throw it out there for discussion. And I'm curious...... what are the long term effects of being on this particular class of drugs? Are there studies out there that are just coming to the surface regarding it?


It is frightening to think of the guilt a parent might feel if they have been lied to and are "poisoning" their own child without knowing it.


I will just listen here.

Fall 1995 xanax, zoloft. switched to Serzone

1996- spring 2003serzone/ xanax/ lightbox.

b]Fall 2003- Fall 2004? Lexapro 10 mg. Light box /4 mg. xanax.[/b]

2004 - Fall of 2009 10 mg Lex, 150 mg Wellbutrin XL % 4 mg xanax

November 2009- Sept. 2011 10 mg lex., 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax [/b

Sept.2012- July 2012 20 mg Lex 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax

My mantra " go slow & with the flow "

3/2/13.. Began equal dosing 5 Xs /day xanax, while simultaneously incorporating a 2.5 % drop ( from 3.5 mg/day to 3.4 mg/day)

4/6/13 dropped from 300 mg. Wellbutrin XL to 150 mg. Difficult but DONE! Down to 3.3 mg xanax/ day / 6/10/13 3 mg xanax/day; 7/15/2013 2.88mg xanax/day.

10/ 1/2013...... 2.5 mg xanax… ( switched to tablets again) WOO HOO!!!!!! Holding here… cont. with Lexapro.

1/ 2/2014.. tapered to 18mg ( by weight) of a 26 mg ( by weight) pill of 20 mg tab. lexapro. goal is 13mg (by weight OR 10 mg by ingredient content) and STOPPED. Feeling very down with unbalanced, unpredictable WD symptoms.

1/2/2014- ??? Taking a brain-healing break from tapering anything after actively tapering something for 1.5 years. So… daily doses as of 2/2/2014: 18 mg by weight Lex, 150 mg Well. XL, 2.5 mg xanax, down from 26 mg by weight Lex., 300 mg well. XL, 4 mg xanax in August, 2012. I'll take it. :) 5/8/14 started equivalent dose liquid./ tabs. 5/13/14 1.5 % cut.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Dr. Peter Breggin has written extensively about ADD drugs and how they work and what they do.


There's a chapter on these drugs in Anatomy of an Epidemic (Robert Whitaker) and they're discussed on the Mad In America blog as well, I believe.


But I've found Breggin's references to be the most extensive and authoritative and that's where I would start. He seems to really know these drugs inside and out, both from familiarity with the research and from personal experience with many patients. When you learn more about them it's chilling.


But then I tend to get quite emotional about ANY psych drugs being given to children. It's unbelievable to me, given how much we know about the chemistry of the brain, about neuroplasticity, and about the vulnerability of the brain to harm from ANY drugs given during development. The same people who would never consider giving a child cocaine or marijuana because it might hurt their brains don't think twice about giving them incredibly potent antipsychotics that have much stronger effects than any "recreational" drug known to man.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.


Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 


I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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there is a lot of info out there regarding the use of these drugs in children. A psychologist pointed out that in his observation, many of these kids on these drugs would end up bipolar later on.


There is a documentary about children and drugs you can watch on youtube called "the medicated child" or something like this, and shows the life of these poor kids on powerful drugs like antipsychotics. One of the doctors who "treats" these children is Dr. Chang and he is doing something very controversial of not criminal; he is medicating children with bipolar (antipsychotics) meds before they are labeled bipolar. Yes thats right. Its almost like starting chemo before cancer. He claims that ADHD symptoms in a child are early signs of bipolar and so he believes in treating them before its gets worse or whatever. Its almost like he thinks these drugs are fixing something. What an idiot.


You can see in the film these kids eating sweets, junk food, etc. Do you think that these doctors ever thought to do a lifestyle change, including eliminating junk food, and seeing if the ADHD symptoms get better? What about trying supplments or looking for root causes like heavy metals? Nope. Just drug them up.

Various SSRIs/SNRIs 7- 1/2 years

Went Cold Turkey from Celexa 2011, Stayed Off

Psych Drug Free and Loving Life (over 6 years and counting)


How I Stay Well: Diet, exercise, meditation, supplements, etc

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I get so emotional about this, too, to the point I've had to distance from a few friends whose teenagers are on "cocktails" for combative type behavior. I dont know if they took stimulants for ADHD at younger age, but I noticed that trend starting almost 20 years ago - ADHD kids becoming bipolar teens and adults.


On a tangent, I have a few friends whose daughters have had multiple concussions while playing socceer, diagnosed with encephalopathy, and they're destroyed because the kids (and parents) are upset that their sport life may be interrupted. That renders me speechless. I wasnt a jock, but can't imagine how a sport could rank higher than a kid's future neuropsychiatric health. Boggles my mind.

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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