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Dr Hallowell On Stimulants, ADHD and Should You be Concerned?

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This video is about stimulant medication, more specifically the general stigma that steers people away from trying them as part of treatment for ADHD. Used properly under medical supervision, stimulant medications are safe and effective, but most people are terrified of them and do not want to even consider trying them. I address this issue in the video.

Hello this is dr. ned halliwell coming to you from my dining room in arlington massachusetts on a sunday afternoon where it is cold and gray and rainy outside but it is warm inside and i’m glad to be with you i hope wherever you are it is sunny outside as well today i would i would like to talk to you once again about stigma only this time i want to zero in on a

Special kind of stigma and it is the stigma that has developed against stimulant medication now as most of you know who follow me at all i am not a big pusher of medication in general i’m a big pusher of connection the human connection what i call the other vitamin c i think we really need to be connecting one within one with another i think that’s the the great need

In our society today is to be connecting with each other and using community positive human contact as the the major force for longevity for a good will for feeling good for you know pretty much everything positive in life for health for happiness for joy for having fun but but there is one condition namely attention deficit disorder for which there is a wonderful

Medication namely stimulant medication methylphenidate or amphetamine which when used properly works really well for various reasons there’s been a tremendous backlash against the use of these medications allen schwartz wrote his book adhd nation in which he documented the ways in which these meds can be abused and indeed they can be abused fact i helped alan with

His book and gave him you know opened myself up to him then in the book he took me to task a bit which i kind of resented but i opened myself up nonetheless and you know at one point i said alan why don’t you tell the positive stories and he said well it’s not really news so i suppose it’s not news but it’s important the positive stories are important the the bad

Stories are important too and they wrote a whole book about them and it’s certainly true of these medications if you don’t use them properly they can be very dangerous sometimes even lethal but that’s one side of the story the other side of the story that never seems to get told is that these medications can be extremely helpful when they’re used properly please

Hear me you have to use them properly responsibly under medical supervision they are controlled substances you must take them carefully under medical supervision but when you do they can be like eyeglasses they can be safe and effective and it just it’s such a shame to see people out of theatre and ignorance not give these medications a try because you know that’s

All you need to do is give them a try they’re in and out of your system the same day if they cause side effects you simply stop them you know people ask me do you do you believe in riddle and my answer is it’s not a religious principle you know i believe in you know helping people and if if riddle and say helps and it causes no side effects then by all means take

It if it doesn’t help or if it causes side effects then by no means you know don’t take it and that’s that’s the point you know use common sense get good medical care don’t demonize these medications the worst should you glorify them they are they are tools used properly they’re very effective and very safe used improperly that are dangerous and that’s the message

If we can hold that middle ground you know i call myself a radical moderate if we can only hold that middle ground then people will be helped and they won’t be harmed it’s when fear and polemicists enter the picture when people start hanging and attacking and demonizing the meds demonizing people start calling people and drug pushers and in the pockets of drug

Companies and all this kind of stuff that it’s just wrong and it hurts people and sends wrong messages you know i’m in the business like most doctors of trying to help people and one tool we have one of many tools we have to help people who have attention deficit disorder is stimulant medication it can be helpful about 80% of the time 20% of the time that doesn’t

Work or it causes side effects and and should not be used 80 percent is a pretty good batting average it’s not 100% but it’s pretty darn good my message is don’t be afraid of them but be respectful of them go to a doctor who knows what he or she is doing go to a doctor who will follow you carefully make a careful diagnosis a complete diagnosis and then give you a

Regular follow-up and if you do that and if you’re lucky enough that the meds are helpful there are a very useful tool that can make a big difference don’t demonize the meds don’t glorify the meds find a doctor who knows what he or she is doing and consider them a possible tool in the treatment of this condition this is dr. ned halliwell she knew a wonderful day

Transcribed from video
Dr Hallowell On Stimulants, ADHD and Should You be Concerned? By Edward Hallowell M.D.