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Stuck in the Middle Between Adderall and Xanax

Stuck in the Middle Between Adderall and Xanax

No Kidding, Some Days Suck

Work, kids, family, inflation, calendars, and it always seems others are doing better.  Add the mix of aging parents and it’s just overwhelming.  For a mom in her 40s, like myself, it often feels like we’re stretched thin. It’s during these moments of exhaustion and frustration that some of us turn to prescription medications like Adderall for energy and focus during the day and Xanax to ease anxiety and sleep at night. It’s a crazy tug of war with Adderall and Xanax because on the one side, I need my Addys to get through the day but then I’m wired so I need a little Xanax to not stare at the ceiling at night.  

Prescription bottle with Adderall capsules.

Adderall has become an increasingly popular tool in the pursuit of doing more.  These stimulants are often prescribed to treat ADHD but are sometimes used off-label by individuals seeking improved focus, attention, and better grades. 

The temptation to turn to Adderall is understandable, especially for moms who can also benefit from some weight loss.  The drug can provide a temporary boost in energy and concentration, helping us tackle daunting to-do lists.  The joke around here is that half of Palo Alto is on Adderall including many moms.  

And yet we know about the problems of drugs: we can become tolerant to Adderall’s effects, leading to increased doses and potential dependence, making it a slippery slope for those seeking a continuous boost…more and to get the salem boost. And then we get the increased heart rate, restlessness, and even anxiety, which may exacerbate the stress already faced by moms trying to keep up with their daily demands.

Is that a bug on the ceiling? While Adderall helps during the day, it can disrupt sleep patterns, making it difficult for individuals to get a good night’s rest. Yes we can try to take it early in the day and make sure there is a cutoff (like my coffee) but it does linger and then the lack of deep sleep can compound stress and exhaustion.

The Anxiety Dilemma: Xanax and the Tug of War

As the day winds down, the anxiety and stress built up from a busy schedule can become overwhelming, leading some individuals to seek relief through medications like Xanax. So much has been said of Xanax it seems the whole country is on it.

A prescription benzodiazepine is used to treat anxiety disorders and panic attacks. For some, it provides a momentary respite from the chaos of daily life. 

A Simple Easy to Take Pill

However, the use of Xanax to manage anxiety comes with its own set of challenges and risks:: Like Adderall, Xanax carries a risk of dependence and addiction if not used under strict medical supervision.  As the effects of Xanax wear off, individuals may experience rebound anxiety, which can be even more distressing than the original anxiety they were trying to manage.

Balancing Parenting and Caregiving

Adderall and Xanax

Kids on one side and parents on the other.  This dual responsibility can be emotionally and physically draining. The demands of children, who need support, love, patience, and guidance, often coincide with the needs of aging parents, who need a ride to the doctor, medical attention, assistance with daily tasks, and emotional support. I get it, the weight of these responsibilities can be overwhelming and can contribute to the desire for quick fixes like prescription medications.

The Isolation of a Mom Just Trying Her Best

Amidst the complexities of managing family, work, caregiving, and personal well-being, it’s easy for moms to feel isolated in their struggles. The pressure to keep up with the demands of modern life can be overwhelming, and the use of prescription medications is tempting because the stigma doesn’t seem to be there anymore.  We live in a world of pills everywhere. 

It’s crucial to remember that you are not alone in your journey. Many moms are facing similar challenges, trying their best to provide for their families while maintaining their own mental and emotional health. Seeking support from friends, family, or professional counselors can provide a lifeline of understanding and empathy.

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Other Options When You Feel Overprescribed

Mindfulness Meditation for Anxiety:

Young woman sitting on workplace at home office with lights candles, enjoying meditation, relaxing at home. Mental health, self-care, No stress, mindfulness lifestyle, anxiety relief concept.

Numerous studies have highlighted the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation in reducing anxiety and promoting overall well-being. For instance, in a randomized controlled trial published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers found that mindfulness meditation programs significantly reduced anxiety levels in participants 

Exercise for Stress Reduction:

Walking with friends, yoga or even dusting off the Peloton can help.Regular physical activity has been shown to be an excellent natural remedy for stress and anxiety. A meta-analysis published in Health Psychology Review found that exercise interventions were associated with reductions in both state and trait anxiety.

Herbal Supplements for Anxiety:

Several herbal supplements have shown promise in reducing anxiety symptoms. For example, a systematic review and meta-analysis published in the journal Phytotherapy Research found that passionflower supplements had a significant positive effect on anxiety reduction.

Here is a post on Breathe Miami on how kava can help you to uplift and improve your anxiety.

Lifestyle Modifications for Improved Focus:

When it comes to improving focus and productivity, lifestyle modifications can be highly effective. One such modification is optimizing sleep. A study published in Sleep Medicine Reviews found that sleep optimization strategies, including maintaining a regular sleep schedule and creating a comfortable sleep environment, can significantly improve cognitive performance and focus during the day.

Life is not easy but popping a pill is. There are some real tradeoffs and sometimes the harder option has better lasting benefits.  

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