PsychologyMental Health

10 Misconceptions About Treating ADHD With Medication

There is a common misconception that taking medications such as Adderall, Dexedrine or any other ADHD medication is more harmful than it is helpful.

While prescription drug abuse is a very serious problem, there is a positive side to these medications that people tend to overlook because they can’t see past their own biases. The positive side to these medications is that these medications have helped millions of people live healthier and happier lives.

That said, below you will find myths about ADHD medication dispelled.

1. Medication is a performance enhancer or gives you an upper hand.

Medication levels the playing field, it doesn’t give a person who is diagnosed with ADHD an upper hand, instead it allows them the ability to function like a normal human being.

2. Medication makes your life problem free.

Medication doesn’t mean that your life will be problem free and perfect. It gives you clarity to deal with the things that life throws your way. It also helps control ADHD symptoms such as impulsiveness and emotional regulation.

3. Medication takes away your creativity or makes you a ”zombie”.

Medication gives you the ability to fine-tune your focus and point it in the right direction. It doesn’t limit your creativity or change who you are as a person. In my own personal experiences, my creativity has still been able to thrive while on ADHD medication.

In November 2018, I released my first book, Your Mental Health and You which outlines how you can manage mental health stigmas on a day to day basis.

4. Natural is better.

The average cost of researching and developing a drug is roughly around five billion dollars. Moreover, as FDA approval is a lengthy process it can take between five to ten years before a drug is approved for the marketplace.

In stark contrast, supplementary products are not regulated and may not be effective, as they don’t have to provide successful data-driven results before they become available to the public.

5. Medication makes you into a drug addict.

Addiction is a nuanced and complex topic that I studied at university. As someone who has dealt with it and overcame addiction in my own life, I don’t want to demean anyone who has struggled with addiction and neither should you.

Additionally, there is a significant difference between taking medication for a valid medical condition and abusing a substance which both need to be properly treated.

6. I don’t need to worry about therapy because I take meds.

Therapy helps you to recognize your issues and face your triggers or traumatic events head-on. Therapy also provides an outlet for self-expression.

Moreover, it allows you to process and understand your issues in a nonjudgmental environment.

7. Doctors and psychiatrists push medication so a prescription is easily accessible.

People assume getting a prescription for ADHD medication is as easy as walking into a convenience store and purchasing a bag of chips but this is not the case.

It takes an ample amount of testing over the course of several months before being able to acquire a prescription for an ADHD drug.

While there are doctors out there who push medication, there is a considerable amount more of doctors that don’t prescribe medication unless it’s for a valid medical condition

This is why it is presumptive to generalize that every doctor or therapist shares the same approach when it comes to prescribing medication.

8. The “back in my day” line.

This is definitely one of my favorites to argue against. Throughout the course of human history at a certain point in time, nearly every medical or psychological condition wasn’t considered one.

This is due to the limited knowledge and research that wasn’t available regarding ADHD and other mental health issues in the past; not because these medical conditions didn’t exist.

9. ADHD is overdiagnosed.

Tell me, because cancer is diagnosed more now than it was a century ago does that mean it is over diagnosed? No, it means that we recognize the symptoms more effectively now due to how has medicine has advanced over the years.

Similarly, ADHD resources have expanded immensely in recent decades, which allows for the condition to be properly diagnosed. Additionally, people are more comfortable seeking help, as society is working hard to chip away stigmas surrounding mental health.

10. ADHD medication is the same for everyone.

Medication for ADHD is something that I am incredibly grateful for, as it has helped me in more ways than I can count.

However, it’s important to keep in mind what medication may be effective for you, may not be as effective for someone else.

This is why if you have any questions or concerns regarding your medication you should run them by your pharmacist or doctor. TC mark

Related

About the author
Author of Your Mental Health and You Follow Sandy on Instagram or read more articles from Sandy on Thought Catalog.

Learn more about Thought Catalog and our writers on our about page.