ADHD / Adult ADHD / Coping Strategies / Medications

ADHD: Medication Timing

I take two medications that happen to provide a lot of benefit for me as an ADHD-er, but the benefit I receive from them is maximized by good timing.

For example…my relationship with the world is very shaky in the morning. If I take my medication right when my alarm goes off, in 20 minutes, I can open my eyes and don’t even have to work to shake off the hate. If I wait until after I get out of bed…I have to work a lot harder to get up, and then to figure out what to do next. Peeing is always easy to prioritize but after that, I have to think really hard. And not get pissed off while I’m doing it. And that takes work.

At night, I am a natural night owl and the hyperactivity of my thinking will drive me into the wee hours as I simply work, or simply can’t stop myself from pursuing an exciting idea, or researching something. This compounds the morning problems, of course. So at night I take nortriptyline. It prevents my migraine issues, it’s mellows me out a little, and…it helps you feel a little sleepier so it’s a perfect pre-bedtime medication.

Unfortunately I sometimes forget to take it say an hour before bed (because that would involve remembering, of course). Tonight, I forgot. I’m going to go take it now…and hate myself in the morning…

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4 thoughts on “ADHD: Medication Timing

    • Honestly, if I could just change my whole world and somehow make it work for me to only work at night, I would, because it’s a lot of awkward effort for me to make myself conform to the usual U.S. schedule. It’s never worked for me and it’s always a struggle. Even when I maintained a really regular bed routine and schedule my body didn’t feel good doing it and my brain certainly didn’t. If I’m ready to sleep without medication intervening, before 1am, it’s a dead giveaway that I’m ill. With a teenager his body may still be figuring itself out…will be interesting to see where he ends up: In the camp of the day people or the night people 🙂

  1. I’m exactly the same!
    I can be awake for 24 hours straight but it gets to 10pm and I just get a big wake up spurt and can go again until the early hours of the morning.
    Likewise it doesn’t matter how many hours I sleep, I’ll still struggle with the mornings.
    I’ve definately found medication helps just in the same way you’ve described, as well as light (put my bed right next to the window and it makes getting up and kick starting my brain much easier).

  2. Oooh, that’s right, light too. When my alarm goes off in the morning I reach over and open the curtain to let light in. Also just moved my bed closer to the window to make that easier!

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