ADD and ADHD is some of the most medicated mental diagnoses. Pharmaceutical medications have the advantage of being monitored by a doctor, but they also have the danger of being prescribed by a doctor. What we mean to say is that even if medication is prescribed, one should take the responsibility of taking medication seriously. While we think taking medication is helpful for many people with Attention Deficit Disorders, these are 5 things to consider before taking ADHD medication.
1. Advice from Your Doctor
First and foremost, we wanted to stress that the experts at Special Strong, while licensed personal trainers with close proximity to ADHD, are not doctors. We think it’s important to talk candidly with your doctor about your or your child’s symptoms before asking for a prescription outright.
Some parents are pressured by teachers to medicate their children. Upon hearing this delivered suggestion, your doctor may reach automatically for the prescription pad. Before accepting, let your doctor know your habits, your routines, your diet and anything else that may be of importance. Your doctor may first decide to make some lifestyle change recommendations.
2. Medication Side Effects
The side effects are the number one reason to take pause before accepting a prescription for ADHD medication. While this medication may help you or your child focus, it can also cause:
- Trouble Sleeping
- Loss of Appetite
- Withdrawal Symptoms (When Dosage Wears Off)
- Bowel Irregularity
The above side effects can vary based on your exact prescription and dosage and may also change when paired with different lifestyle changes. It’s important to have all the information upfront before considering taking any kind of medication.
3. Your Long-Term Goal
Having a goal in mind before taking medication can really put things in perspective. Consider whether or not you want medication to be a long- or a short-term solution for your Attention Deficit Disorder. After trying all the life changes and other holistic alternatives, you may find that you are your best self when you’re taking your ADHD medication. If used as prescribed, medication can help people with ADD and ADHD live perfectly healthy, happy lives.
However, you may use medication as a way to focus you while you embark on your journey toward a healthier, more focused “you.” Having a goal in mind can be helpful when making this big decision.
4. Your Diet
With many New Year’s resolutions to lose weight falling steadily by the wayside, it’s easy to see that a change in diet is one of the toughest personal changes to make. Even if the habit or routine were easy to break, sugar addictions can keep us coming back for more. However, you may consider a change in diet before accepting a prescription for medication.
Check out some of our previous blogs for diet suggestions:
- 4 Foods That Positively Impact Behavior (and 5 Foods to Avoid)
- 6 Vitamins and Minerals That Improve ADD/ADHD
5. Your Exercise Routine
A sedentary lifestyle may be an aggressor for your hyperactivity and part of the reason you have trouble focusing. Before taking medication, consider starting a consistent exercise routine. Exercise improves overall physical health, as well as brain activity, focus, and self-confidence. If you want to explore this option before (or while ) taking medication, sign up with Special Strong to starting seeing a difference today.
Special Strong provides fitness and nutrition for special needs children, adolescents, and adults with autism and other disabilities. Through our online training platform, we also provide special needs fitness certification courses for personal trainers and service providers who want to work autism and other disabilities.