ADHD Symptoms

The ADHD “Rebound” Effect – part 219 Jul

Robert Wilford, Ph.D. and Sarah Ferman, Psy.D., L.M.F.T.

Do you ever get ADHD Rebound Effect? Frustrating?

The rebound effect can seem worse to those who aren’t prepared for it, partly because they don’t understand what’s happening, and partly because they don’t have the necessary knowledge to treat their symptoms with the proper response. It’s even worse when you consider the fact that the effect occurs when the person’s medication is wearing off, since this on its own lessens the patient’s ability to think clearly and organize thoughts. Fortunately, there are some strategies to employ if you’re feeling what you think might be the rebound effect.
For one thing, have some fruit juice handy when you feel the onset of the rebound effect. If you’re feeling bad because of low blood sugar, fructose will work to raise your blood sugar within 15 minutes. If this is not available for whatever reason, a good second option is ice cream or something with some sugar in it to get that blood sugar up quickly. Following a spike in blood sugar, it is helpful to eat something with protein in it, because this will stabilize your blood sugar for a longer period of time at that level. While you’re waiting to recover, it is sometimes a good idea to rest or listen to some soothing music. This strategy will help to calm your mood and make you feel more at ease.
There’s also another little secret ADHD trick that can help you. If you are feeling the rebound effect and you no longer have to take medication that day because it’s late in the evening, try about four ounces of Mountain Dew. It just so happens that Mountain Dew contains the right combination of sugar and caffeine to help overcome agitation or irritability as a result of low blood sugar, dehydration, etc. If you want to eyeball it, pour the Mountain Dew into half of an average-sized coffee cup. That should help relieve your symptoms.
These are good ways to help if you happen to get the rebound effect unexpectedly, but if it’s a consistent occurrence, it’s a good idea to figure out why it keeps happening. Other things to look into are the type of medication you are taking, and your dosage. Sometimes, if you’re not taking enough medication, a higher dose can eliminate the rebound effect.
In other instances, the specific medication you’re taking is to blame, and a different medication will fix the problem and serve as a better fit for you. If your doctor agrees, you might also try a smaller dose of immediate release medication near the end of the first dose’s duration to help smooth over the effects that you get when the medication is wearing off.
It’s not uncommon to have the rebound effect hit very quickly, resulting in unexplained feelings of irritability, impatience, distraction, unclear thinking, frustration, and anger. The important thing to remember is that it’s not your fault, and it’s not necessarily the medication’s fault either. With a methodical approach, you can try to narrow in on what is causing the rebound effect and eliminate it. Hopefully with some of the above suggestions, you will be better equipped to handle the ADHD rebound effect if it should occur, and minimize the incidence of it in the future.
If you missed part one of this article, click here to read
The ADHD “Rebound” Effect – part 1

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Most medical doctors who treat ADD/ADHD do so as part of a larger practice. ADHD Specialists focuses primarily on only treating ADD and related conditions. This intense focus allows us to continually sharpen our clinical skills, attend specialized training, utilize the latest therapies, and build our process to meet the specific needs of our clients.

Often medical, testing and counseling services are all separately owned and located practices. It just does not make sense to have to travel from one location to another to treat the same condition. Besides the issue of time and travel, how cohesive and effective is care being delivered in multiple locations by multiple, unrelated providers who don’t have time to talk to each other?

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