Vyvanse Dosage: How to Get the Right Dose

Vyvanse is the newest medicine for ADD or ADHD in the USA. I have written several articles on this blog on Vyvanse, and have had great feedback and comments from readers of this blog. For example – if you want to find out if vyvanse works, visit this post to read many people’s first hand experiences.
One question which many people ask is about the dosing of Vyvanse.
This article will provide you with the answers you need to get the right dosage of Vyvanse.

Research studies compared the dosing of Vyvanse with Adderall XR. What this research showed was the following:

  • Vyvanse 30 mg = Adderall XR 10 mg
  • Vyvanse 50 mg = Adderall XR 20 mg
  • Vyvanse 70 mg = Adderall XR 30 mg

The recommendations for the starting doses of Vyvanse are as follows: Doctors should start Vyvanse at 30 mg, and then gradually increase the dose to 50 mg, and then up to 70 mg if needed. Of course the doctor would monitor response to the medicine (i.e. if there is a great response and ADHD is controlled at 50 mg, then there is no need for 70 mg of Vyvanse). The doctor will also monitor for side effects – i.e. if there are too many side effects at 70 mg, then the dose may need to be dropped to 50 mg of Vyvanse.

The importance of the ‘conversion’ dosing listed above relates to those people who may switch from one stimulant medicine to Vyvanse. Using the information above, you can figure out how to change your dose of Adderall XR to Vyvanse.

When it comes to the available strenghts of Vyvanse, Vyvanse is now available in the US in the following dosage strengths:

  • 20 mg
  • 30 mg
  • 40 mg
  • 50 mg
  • 60 mg
  • 70 mg

In Canada, all of the dosage strenghts are available except for the 70 mg dose. The dosage recommendations above are the general recommendations for dosage. That said, your doctor may start lower, and may take a different approach to your dosing. When Vyvanse was first release, there were fewer strengths of the medicine available – i.e. only 30mg, 50 mg and 70 mg. Now, there are the ‘in between’ doses as well (the 20 mg, 40 mg, 60 mg). This does give doctors more flexibility in adjusting the dose to tailor it to suit you.

If you are switching from Concerta to Vyvanse, then you will need to follow these rough guidelines (and of course, talk to your doctor – who can personalize the information to suit your treatment):

  • Concerta 36 mg = approx. Vyvanse 30 mg
  • Concerta 72 mg = approx. Vyvanse 50 mg

I have to say that the dose changes from Concerta to Vyvanse are based on logic, and not on research.
Here is the logic:

  1. Concerta 36 mg works out to approx. 8 mg of regular ritalin three times daily.
  2. That is approximately 5 mg of regular adderall twice daily.
  3. That works out to approximately Adderall XR 10 mg once daily.
  4. Since Adderall XR 10 mg daily is equal to Vyvanse 30 mg, once can guess that Concerta 36 is equal to approximately Vyvanse 30 mg.

[Click here for a full review of how to calculate concerta doses.]

There are two important points to remember here:

  1. Even though I can suggest what the equal doses are, you may react differently to any one medicine. Only testing, monitoring and talking to your doctor will help to sort out what the right dose is for you.
  2. Please talk to your doctor about your individual care. Even though this blog article may help you to find the right dose of Vyvanse based on a combination of my review of the research and my opinion, your doctor is an expert in your care.

Thank you for reading, and please post any comments or your experiences with the dosing of Vyvanse in the comments below.

Dr. Kenny

(Updated May 2010)

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  1. I was on 300 mg of Wellbutrin when I started taking Tamoxifen and had to discontinue. The doctor has put me on Vyvanse 30 mg, but I’m not seeing any effect. Do I need to go up in dosage or just try a different kind of ADD med?

  2. If you are not feeling any effects from vyvanse ask your doctor to increase your dosage. Im at 40mg and it works well for me. If you already have wellbutrin tolerance 50mg vyvanse is what id try.

  3. I am currently taking a dosage of 60mg of Vyvanse in the morning, and another 60mg of Vyvanse in the afternoon usually around 1-3pm. I was curious as to see what your thoughts were on this. I was prescribed this amount by my psychiatrist. I have been trying to find out information online about unsafe dosage in the long run but have come up empty handed. If you could help me out with this it would be greatly appreciated.

    • Thats pretty high dosage. Do you feel lIke a high performance fighter jet.
      How is your patience with others when you are in this dosage? Do you find that you are more impulsive, spending more money than usual?

    • I was recently diagnosed with ADHD, and my psychiatrist prescribed me 70 mg right away. When we took it to the pharmacy to have it filled, the pharmacist looked at me and said “You’ve been on this before?” I told him no, it was my first time. He looked concerned and then told me he was going to call my psychiatrist to see if the ’70′ on the script was supposed to be ’20′ (very messy handwriting). Nope. The psychiatrist had prescribed me 70 mg right away. We called and had them reduce it to 50. You’re not the only one who’s having these concerns :/

      And a side note- I only weigh 110, so the high dosage wasn’t given because I’m a large size or anything.

  4. I started taking 20 mg of Vyvanse in May after being diagnosed with ADD (I am 45 yrs young and long suspected I had ADD). I’ve been taking sertraline/zoloft for the past 9 years and decided to test for ADD after my sister, niece and brother in law all reported dramatic positive results of taking vyvanse after testing positive for ADD.

    Since May I have ramped up from 20 to 70 mg while weaning off of sertraline (finally weaned off around the time I started taking 60). Here’s the thing, I do not know how I am supposed to feel. Ramping up on vyvanse while weaning off sertraline (and the withdrawals) made me feel that Vyvanse was working for a short period of time (felt great then it felt like the vyvanse wore off in middle of the day). 60 mg did not do anything and 70 was too much based on the feedback I gave my doctor. Problem is, he now wants me to drop to 50mg. Not sure if this will be the effective dose now that I am completely weaned off sertraline/zoloft. I took 40 mg this past saturday, nothing sunday and then 40 again on Monday to see if I noticed any difference. I felt good on 40 but still don’t know the yardstick to measure how I am supposed to feel. I did not take any vyvanse yesterday and took my last 20 mg this morning to see if it would have any effect. The frustrating part to all this is that I have no clue to which dosage I should stick with. I know that Vyvanse is not a cure all miracle drug but at least with children you can see improvement through their school grades. Any comments or feedback is appreciated.

  5. Another three comments I would like to make are about Diet, Tolerance and impulsivity.

    Diet: I believe is a factor in the release of Vyvanse into our bodies. In the information that I have read I believe that in order for Vyvanse to be effective yoiur protein intake needs to be reasonable. In this believe that rather than starting on a high dose or increasing a dose that you read up on how Vyvanse is released into the blood stream through protein in yoiur diet. Interesting stuff.

    Tolerance: I have also read blogs and it seems to be my experience that after taking it for awhile you may think that it it is not effective when it is actually doing it job.

    Impulsivity: I would like to make a comment here to anyone starting vyvanse for the first time that if you have had poor spending habits and are an impukse spender that you hand yoir charge card over to someone you can trust ubtil yoiu have been on it for awhile. I have foiund with myself that my tenedency to spend money is more on Vyvanse

  6. I have been on 20mg. of Vyvanse for about 3 weeks and it started out working great however, I am having a drop in the afternoon into a mild depression and lack of motivation and energy. Should I ask the Dr. to up my dose, or can I take another around lunch time? Is there something else I can combine with Vyvanse or should I try Adderall (which after research seems to not be a good idea) I’m 5’7 and weight 121 & really do not want to lose weight and so far have not had an issue with this.

    • Hi Lu,

      I realize that everyone is differrent. What I can share with you is my own experience and also that which I believe is common for all of us.

      In answer to your question about your 20 mg dosage for Vyvanse. Hmmm, I’m not a doctor and cannot give you professional advice but I think that it is common knowledge that 20 mg is a little on the light side. There are two issues in upping your dose that I think there are practical condiderations.

      First of all, unless you have a benefit package, Vyvanse is not cheap. Probably 5 dollars every time you take it. So taking it twice a day is going to double your cost. Taking a higher dose in the morning is only going to give you a bigger kick and then still wear off in the afternoon.

      I think also that many of us see Vyvanse as a fixer. Vyvanse is not a fixer in itself. It’s meant to be part of a program where we have the proper support to allow the changes in our patterning and conditioning that have had years of reinforcement.

      If you haven’t done so already I would suggest that you take some time, without being hard on yourself, sit down and have a look what you can practically change.

  7. Hi,
    I was just wanting your expert opinion on how much Vyvanse a 12 yr old child should be on…He has been taking 70 mg for past couple of years and I do not give it to him during the summer…He is about to start school again and I was just wondering in your opinion, whether to start him back on 70mg or maybe start him back on a lower dosage like 30 then go up from there if he needs it…Thanks!

    Also, he gained 20 lbs this summer which is great bc he was skin & bones!

    • My 14 year old son is also in 70mg of Vyvanse for the past three years, 110 lbs and skinny. We have taken summer breaks also. My experience has been, when his appetite comes back, his focus at school drops. I’m wondering if I have to settle for less focus, how much Vyvanse can someone be on?

  8. My “phsyciatrist” aka-drg pusher, told me after meeting me for 10 min. that I had a.d.d. I went there for treatment for my bi-polar. He instantly prescribed 70 mg vyvance. I had never heen diagnosed with add before. The second time I went, he said why not take 2! Haha. Now my insurance topped out at paying 5grand for the crap. So he prescribed 30 mg. generic adderall. I can’t get you to bed and all I want to do is cry! This bas***** has turned me into a DRUG ADDICT! I trusted him and now I’m ruined and my family basically has no prescrption cverage. You don’t have to have a “Addictive Personality” to become addicted. Shire pharmacuticals should be taking me out to lunch! Beware!!!

    • I agree with this im on 70 mg vyvanse twice a day. 6 am and 12pm right after judge mathis. im only 129 pounds, average build and im very productive. i can accomplish all my task . but i cant really do anything with out it. vyvanse is like vagisil for your brain. WHen you wake up your brain is dry so you take vyvanse allthough you may not need it. sometimes your Virginia gets dry so you use vagisil. so look at it that way hope that helps

      • I agree. The efficacy of Vyvanse is predicated on the release of enzymes produced in the duodenum directed the medication to a course of gradual, steady absorption. I had a gastric bypass fifteen years ago. They remove/restrict duodenum and its “byproduct.” I wonder if there is an agent that may be contained in say grapefruit (Red) juice that provokes or mimics the enzymes to create the conditions for Vyvanse’ full potency and proper duration.

        I just started taking Wellbutrin (immediate release– 75 mg) and pray that its mild stimulant properties may work in concert with the Vyvanse.

        Pray for me. Lol

        • Gerard -

          (TLDR: 5’3″, female, 145 lbs, currently taking 30 mg Vyvanse and 300 mg Wellbutrin XR, both between 7-7:30 a.m. Wellbutrin has worked very well, does mildly add to stimulant effect. Vyvanse worked very well initially, but starting to feel I need a higher dose after 1 month. Regardless, ADD symptoms have been at least 60% improved, with loss of appetite and some insomnia (if I don’t get much physical activity) being only side effects.

          I have been on a combination of bupropion (Wellbutrin) and Vyvanse since ~3/2015. I started on 100 mg of the bupropion SR 12-hour (once daily, then increased to twice daily after 1 week) and 20 mg Vyvanse. I asked to start on very low dose of the Vyvanse, since I have been sensitive to stimulants in the past.
          I was told by my doc that initially the combo might make me feel a little jittery (like too much caffeine) but that would wear off after ~1 week, and that the bupropion could add some extra stimulation. Both were true – taking the 2nd dose of bupropion at noon was causing insomnia, I was up and moving around until 4 or 5 a.m. I figured probably not due to Vvanse, since I didn’t take it on weekends and same effect. In 4/2015 she switched me to the long-acting, bupropion XR 24-hour, starting at 150 mg. I tolerated this much better, and my dose was increased to 300 mg (2 x 150 mg) bupropion in 6/2015. At that point I felt like the 20 mg Vyvanse was no longer effective, so my dose was increased to 30 mg at the same time.
          I would say that the combination has been fine – no major adverse side effects, and decent relief of symptoms. Biggest side effect I’ve noted has been loss of appetite, and honestly I’ve used this to my advantage in order to lose ~15 lbs since starting, but I was mildly overweight so I wouldn’t say this was unhealthy. The 30 mg Vyvanse was working VERY well initially, but I already feel like I’m growing accustomed to it, since I have periods of sluggishness during the day and I can tell there has been a change since it was previously making it a bit difficult to get to sleep (nothing like the bupropion SR 12-hour though), and now I’m getting sleepy around 8-9 p.m. I would say the greatest change I’ve seen has been with depression, possibly a combined effect of the bupropion and struggling less with my ADD/feeling more productive and less absent-minded? Before I started using it I had gotten used to years of suicidal ideation; now my life outlook is far more positive and I only have these thoughts once every few months. Even though the Vyvanse is starting to feel less effective, I still feel like my ADD symptoms have been at least 60% relieved, which is huge for me.

          Just a side note: The bupropion was rx’d for moderate anxiety rather than depression, though I have always suffered from depression, and just didn’t tell my doctor (I didn’t want SSRIs) – buprop is not a standard anxiety med, but I also requested not being put on benzos (due to personal history of abusing them).

  9. My daughter – now 12yrs old – was diagnosed ADHD in May 2010 (she was going on 10). Her pediatrician put her on Vyvance 30mg and up until a few weeks ago it was working fine. Lately she is not working up to her potential in school (7th grade), she is lacking motivation and dedication to her classwork and her homework. When she is assigned HW she puts it off until she forgets about it, and when she does complete an assignment she forgets to turn it in —> so she ends up getting graded as if it wasn’t done. She is not thrilled about ever having to read a book (for any of her subjects), her FCAT scores last year were unacceptable, she doesn’t particularly care for math, and I am debating if it is time to ask her pediatrician to up the dosage from 30mg to 40mg daily.

    • Michelle, while I haven’t personally experienced it, several of the teachers who work with our son told me that when they reach puberty, expect changes in behavior that may require a change in dosage or in some cases a change in the ADHD drug. If you haven’t already, speak with your pediatrician about the changes you’re experiencing.

    • Wow!! A 7th-Grader doesn’t particularly like school work? A rare and profound case indeed… Perhaps you need to take a step back and view your situation analytically: 1. NO CHILD” ENJOYS” Homework! 2. Putting assignments off is called ‘Procrastination’ (most teens have that trait. Hell, lots of ADULTS can be that way…) 3. You seriously want to increase your daughter’s (Potent) medication because she’s going through puberty?!?
      I’m sorry, but YOU need an evaluation, not your child. What’s more important: Her wellbeing and happiness or turning her into a zombie because she’s growing up?
      (*I truly don’t mean to be harsh, but this doping of NORMAL KIDS is absolutely insane!)

      • I had to reply as your comment seems so judgmental. I can 100% relate to this parent and their experience is very similar to mine. I can tell when my child, who cannot function like a typical kid, needs to have a dosage increase. They cannot complete anything (including homework), follow simple directions or engage in a normal evening routine. Parents do not want to give their children drugs, but some of us have to because their symptoms leave them unable to function normally without them. You may want to consider that someone’s experience may be different than your own. This website is a place where people post personal matters and it does not bode well to pass such severe judgement on a site like this where people are searching for answers to serious problems.

      • Its one thing for a child to hate school, but when you have a child that has always done well at school, and likes school suddenly start failing YES it can be because the dosage needs changed. I am fighting this with my daughter’s doctors. she is failing and they are not caring, switching her doctor and hoping that helps.

        • My daughter is a perfectionist and has always done well and school and add was never on my radar for her because of her grades. I thought she was depressed. Then I was diagnosised with add and I took both my girls to be assessed. I was just double checking with my 15 year old . He started her on Zoloft and the changed was amazing . But seemed extremely hyper and clingy ( which is strange for a teenager) . She started talking a mile a minute and seemed to have more social problems at school. So the doctor treated her for add. Vyvanse . Then she was more focused but angry. The doctor then put her in a lower dose of Zoloft and 40 mls of vyvanse and that did it. She has stopped having to text me while she was at school and is happy and much less angry and impulsive . If your daughter is depressed and on vyvanse maybe she hates school and her grades are dropping because she feels sad or angry, agitated . I just thought I would give you my experience . Who knows , everyone is so different .

      • Sorry Joanna but you are WRONG WRONG WRONG. It is abundantly clear that you have had no direct or personal experience of a child with ADD/ADHD – because if you did you would never post such stereotypical inanities. Ill-informed opinions are dangerous. It’s time that people such as yourself dealt with what IS – not what YOU think it should be.

        I mistakenly listened to people like you years ago when my son struggled in school. Luckily I came to my senses and that same son will receive his PhD in chemistry next week – no thanks to p pole like you.

        • I agree. Even now , people and doctors don’t know everything there is to know about Add/ADHD . When my son was diagnosised and put in meds I struggled with parents and anyone really who looked down on me for treating my son. ” he is just being a boy” . At lot of times his anxiety about being looked or getting in trouble kept his behaviour a bay. But the poor guy would let loose once he was a home and comfortable . He hated himself for the impulsive things he did and said . He annoyed his sisters so much that it he truly thought they hated him. But these are the things no one see or understands.
          I did my share of blaming myself . Thinking maybe I didn’t set enough limits or somehow was the cause of his behaviour ( which I’m sure I am responsible for some ) and listened to others perspectives I didn’t take him to get assessed.
          I put him in sports and active things almost every night , thinking he just needed to be more active to feel tired for bed , less aggressive and hyper . This actually resulted in an increase in energy and less sleep, sometimes so hyper and out of control I had to restrain him and we both hated every minute of it and felt horrible for some time after.
          I decided to trust my gut and the difference is amazing . Socially he has more friends , and his ability to focus at school is much better . He’s not the best student but he is more productive in meds. And all I really care about is he has friends and feels good about himself . It always come down to trusting your gut. I didn’t realize there where so many people with such a negative and uneducated mind set. They won’t change but I won’t let my kids suffer because of it anymore .

  10. No, Seriously, I was taking 70 mg. (seventy mg.!) B.I.D. twice a day. That is 140 mg. a day. Yes it is expensive, I know. No wonder I was stressed out when I wrote that. Wouldn’t anyone be going 140 to 0? I have been off that for 2 weeks now. Today is the first day without any a.d.d. medicine, and quess what? I feel great! Thanks for letting me blow off some steam. All I’m saying now is while a good medication, it is very expensive, and it won’t go generic till 2024? Thanks!

  11. I’ve been on Vyvanse for 3 months. Started on 10mg of Ritalin & was a little more organized but the effects wore off before the month was out & I didn’t see any other improvement. Than my Dr switched me to Vyvanse 20mg, & has increased dosage up by 10 mg each month since. I am on 40 mg now, but still not seeing the effects. I am still not able to stay focused, & not motivated or organized at all. Should Vyvanse help with motivation & organization? Also not having much energy through the day, I thought since this was a stimulant I would feel more energized while on it. Just wondering if I am expecting too much, or if my dosage isn’t strong enough, or if Vyvanse is even right for me.

    • I am wondering if you were misdiagnosed. .sounds more like a case of depression…I’m an intake coordinator and often see individuals diagnosed with adhd when they really have depression and anxiety, and sometimes even bipolar disorder. Not saying that this is the case with you, but it just got me thinking..best of luck

    • You “have a patient”? You’re a doctor and asking someone on an online blog for an “expert” opinion? (And can’t use punctuation, either, btw). I sure hope not.

      • Also cannot spell adderall…… He must’ have obtained his doctorate online…..

        LOL – I can use punctuation. The dots were meant to make my point. Kind of like crickets. <- Just had to say that :)

  12. My child has been on stimulants for ten years for ADHD. Adderall from 4 to 8, switched to Vyvanse and uptitrated to as high as 70, then backed down to 50, then to 60 when it was available. Recently had an acute depressive episode… Every quirk associated with ADHD combined with Asperger’s syndrome (OCD, hyper focusing) was extremely exacerbated and he began a downward spiral to major depression. Stopped Vyvanse, switched from Sertraline to Prozac, continued guanfacine and added Reperidone at bedtime. I have a completely new, happy, healthy, eating, sleeping, engaging teenager! Better than I’ve seen him in three years, at least! Don’t hesitate to try a stimulant vacation if you have been on it for many years!

  13. I was on 120 mg of Vyvanse for 4 years and it worked very well for me until the last few months. I am now taking Concerta which doesn’t seem to be doing anything. I am taking 54 mg of Concerta right now. What dose could I take that would be as effective as the Vyvanse?

  14. I’m recovering from an eating disorder and have begun taking Vyvanse to help with the impulsivity of binges and racing thoughts regarding food and exercise. I’ve been prescribed 30 mg of Vyvanse daily, which I have been on for a few weeks now. I feel good, but notice the racing thoughts returning in the evenings and am suspicious that this dosage is not high enough. My doctor suggested taking the 30 mg twice daily, but I have not done so yet in fear of running out of the medication too quickly. Has anyone been prescribed the medication twice daily? If so, are your prescriptions filled with a larger quantity of pills? Also, does anyone know if the price for 60 mg vs. more 30 mgs per month differ? My insurance unfortunately does not cover the medication.

    • Christina, I’m wondering if you may benefit from either taking the first dose later in the morning or if not, then maybe a lower afternoon dose might work out for you.

      For example, take your normal 30, then around 5 or 6 take a smaller 20, or split one of your 30s into two half doses to use over two days?

      I’m not a doctor and don’t know what the actual effects would be, just trying to be helpful with the financial side of if.

  15. My 8 year old son was on Vyvanse 30, but then brought down to 20 mg cause he was not gaining any weight. We recently went gluten free for him and it has made a ton of difference in his behavior. Barely any mood swings or tantrums anymore. Has anyone else experienced this? For those at the end of their ropes…its worth a try. I was thinking about trying to bring him down to 10 mg but looks like 20 is the lowest.

  16. Hi, I’m a 58 year old mail my weight is 240 I’m 6’1. I was latterly going what seamed 1000mph babbling at a rate that no one could understand me, I would be asked by family members and my fiancé to SLOW DOWN..I couldn’t my mind would go from one thing to another constantly. I was on 80ml a day, two 40ml pills in the morning. So this wasn’t working, I was on this dose for months, then I decided to up my dose my self on a weekend I couldn’t get ahold of my doctor, I took a extra dose, another 40ml……much to my surprise, I was the calmest ever. My fiancé ask me what was wrong or what did I do, cause she has NEVER had a conversation with me that I was so calm didn’t studier or rant at all day I kept telling her how I had never felt this way, at peace not racing was having a normal conversation, and like I said….FEELING NORMAL…for the first time it was GREAT!!! Now I now it was a high dose, but there has to be a happy medium here, my doctor said the 80ml is the highest, well if so why was I doing so well, being under control, not twitching my leg, rubbing my hands, pacing back and forth like a caged animal. Come on people, give me some answers, I enjoy being normal….HELP….what’s going on, I would like an opinion ASAP to give to my doctor, cause I sure do like being in control and feeling NORMAL .it is real..
    Finally at peace…DAVE!

  17. Your conversion factor is wrong.

    Adderall XR 10 mg = Vyvance 30 mg
    rthen the rest of your estimates are wrong

    Then AdderallXR 20 mg = Vyvance 60 mg
    and Adderall XR 30 mg = Vuvance 90 mg

    If Vyvance is one third the strength of Adderall XR hence the 10 mg to 30 mg
    then your ratio proportion for figuring out the rest of the conversions would be multiplying the Adderall mg by 3

  18. I was recently prescribed vyvanse 30mg for 3 weeks. The first day i took it i felt a little dizzy but not to a point where i wasn’t able to drive,walk..etc..

    Today is my 2nd day of vyvanse, today i felt a little more focused and attentive…
    i’m not experiencing any side effects yet just thirsty alot and dry mouth… but i carry water all the time and keep myself replenished consistently..

    I did however notice that during the afternoon (12) it seems to wear off but then comes back and its full force. has that happened to anyone else?? i’m able to communicate more commonly and pay attention its only been 2 days so i’m waiting a week to see what happens.

    can anyone let me know if they have experienced the same symptoms?..

    should i ask my doctor to prescribe me 40mg? I have my next appointment in 3 week.

  19. I took 11 50mg vyvanse today. I hardly felt it. I took antacid to help boost it even. People write they feel like they are dying on this. it has been 12 hours… what’s up with me? I do have a tolerance to adderall, but over 500mg? Will I be OK? I have been calm and focused, not much euphoria… Idk.. Anyone got any clue what’s up?

  20. My doctor is switching me from concerta to vyvanse. I was on 72 mg concerta with no effect and no side effects. He is switching me by dropping 36 mg of concerta and adding 20 mg of vyvanse. After 2 weeks, stop concerta and start 40 mg of vyvanse. Have anyone ever heard of a concerta vyvanse mix transition before?

  21. Question about dose adjustments for all of you:

    (BTW, I am a 5’3″, 145 lb female in mid-20′s, diagnosed with ADD at age 11)

    I started 20 mg Vyvanse in 3/2015, then increased to 30 mg in 6/2015 – I wanted to start at a very low dose since I’m sensitive to stimulants and I was over-medicated at a young age. I’m now starting to feel like I’ve adjusted to the 30 mg, and might need a dose increase. Based on some people that are on as much as 70 mg twice daily, this seems pretty tame, but here are my fears:

    – I feel like I can’t live without the Vyvanse now. I usually don’t take it on weekends since I like to sleep in and don’t want to be up all night, but I feel like a total unproductive couch potato, and I can’t imagine getting through a work day without it. I have accidentally taken it right when I got to work a few times, and I nearly fell asleep before it kicked in.

    – I don’t know how much of my ADD symptoms really CAN be relieved by medication, if I have struggled with these issues for my whole life. I wonder if some of these (particularly disorganization/living in chaos, forgetfulness, extreme procrastination and avoidance) are learned behaviors I am chasing an “ideal” that will never be fixed without extensive therapy.

    – I didn’t tell my doctor any of the following, but when I was 16 I fell in with some bad kids at HS, and experimented with cocaine for a few months (doing it maybe 2x per week at first, then once every 1.5 weeks). I know it has permanently altered my brain chemistry, even if it was for a short period. In college my roommates and I would occasionally abuse stimulants (like many kids these days) in order to get through homework, even to the point of being up all night for multiple days the week prior to a final exam. I’m worried that my sense of needing a higher dose is not just for relief of ADD symptoms but is a subconscious addictive mentality. I like the “up” feeling I get when I take it, but then again, I only take it as prescribed, skip most weekends, and specifically requested starting at a very low dose and increasing very gradually.

    – If I do increase my dose, how long before my body adjusts to that too? I haven’t even been taking it for a year, and I don’t want to max out on it and hit a dead end where even the highest dose doesn’t work for me.

    Can anyone relate to any of these concerns? If so, please advise. Thanks :}

    • You have no idea how much i relate to your post.. aside from the college part (i didnt go), everything in your post could have been written by me!

      I wish I could answer your questions, but being in the same boat, I’ve no solid answers either.. i can only offer my own experience.

      I was diagnosed as a teen, but my parents refused to medicate me, even though I performed terribly in school as a result (hence the no college part referenced above), but when i became an adult and finally got a “real job” with insurance, i immediately talked to my dr about getting on something. She recommended Vyvanse.

      I started on the 30mg, slowly climbing to the highest dose of 70mg, and I have been on it for 2yrs now. I honestly believe that i have developed a tolerance to it over this time. When i first started and each time the dosage was increased, my husband and I both noticed a difference, but after i reached the top, its slowly been declining in efficacy.

      Now since i went so long without any meds, i did learn the skills/tricks to making life with add easier. Im not saying im particularly GOOD at these tricks, but i know them and do implement them in my daily life, even on meds… but it only gets you so far with ADD. Some ppl just need the meds.

      Even though I feel that the Vyvanse isnt really fully working anymore, I do still NEED it just to function. Thats my body being addicted to its physical effects. If i dont take it, my brain feels fried and im narcoleptic the entire next day, followed by my regular old thought processes. Im not going to say its not working at all, but not enough to pay $10 per pill (my insurance no longer covers it.)… next month i have a dr appt to discuss other options.

      It just really sucks alot that you take something for so long and when you miss a dose– you get that bitter reminder of the fact that you’ve had to make the choice between being able to THINK clearly, or get your body hooked on amphetamines. An unfair choice really huh?

      • I had to switch up my entire diet. You need to detox first. Then, the vyvanse will work. Also, ask your doctor about switching to adderrall xr for a few months. By switching medications, your tolerance to vyvanse will lower. Make sure you also take 5-10 mg of lexapro (gen.) because you need to balance out your hormones.

        I swear by hot lemon water every morning. I also swear by adding cayenne pepper to your diet. Eat more protein. Take magnesium at night to lower your tolerance. Try Niacin at night as well twice a week. Ditch coffee for a few days. Avoid vitamin c during the day and drink your oj at night. Most foods have high amounts of vitamin c anyways.. You could just be tinkling out your vyvanse without realizing.

        Lubricate your eyes. Drink the balancing pH water available at WaWa and you will notice the difference. Avoid dairy. Eat kale salads every day!!! Upping your vitamin A and vitamin K will lower inflammation.

        To naturally increase dopamine, check out “l-tyrosine.” Gluten free and organic capsules are available at local vitamin shoppe. Fish oil is super important. I prefer salmon oil. If you can’t stand fish, eat some flax seeds and put them in your oatmeal. Skin will be gorgeous too and you will have some serious fiber enhancing properties.. Just a warning. Do this before taking your medicine haha.

        If you workout, workout before taking your medicine. Take your medicine and hop in the shower after that nice workout and let cold water hit you for the last 30 seconds or so if you can handle it. You will get physically and mentally stronger.

        You’ve got this. We all have our concerns about stim tolerance and we can fight it. Let’s make ADD and ADHD something trivial that we can easily control. Remember, it’s all in the good vibes and positive thinking.

  22. I am on 30xr Adderall generic TEVA brand and don’t feel like it does much. Some days are better than others. I am on Wellbutrin 300 extended release, 100 spironolactone, 100mcg Synthroid, and 100mg bid doxicycline. I also take 3 excedrin migraine brand name when I wake up because of migraines most likely due to jaw issues and needing braces. I found taking spironolactone at night seems to help my Adderall work better. Also – I tried Actavis generic Adderall and it made me sleepy. I personally think I need an increase in the Adderall but am afraid to ask my psychiatrist. I told him it doesn’t last that long for me and he suggested vyvanse. I’m afraid to try it. I am very sensitive to fillers it seems but resistant to drugs. Obviously I have some hormonal issues going on – I am a 35-year-old female on way too many drugs. I take Wellbutrin for (brand as the generic made me suicidal) depression and as a bonus it helps me with motivation. I sought help for undiagnosed ADHD a few months ago. The Adderall xr has helped with – mood – SO MUCH BETTER – I was NOT expecting this. I have felt for years my depression was always kind of there no matter what. Wellbutrin is amazing but helps on a scale of 7/10. I attempted to add lexapro years ago but it makes me sleepy. So I deal with the depression and try to combat with a clean vegan gluten free diet and exercise. Which helps everything – skin – headaches – mood – sleep – etc. but still have always felt really down and even suicidal at times. So the Adderall has helped with that for sure. I didn’t know it was used to help with drug resistant depression. It has also helped with sleep. I can sleep at night – and wake up!!! This has been huge. I used to often nap/crash in the middle of the day due to not being able to sleep at night due to my mind racing. I never knew this was an ADHD thing. I thought my mid day crash was due to my thyroid and thought it was something I had to live with. I don’t drink coffee or soda but caffeine does nothing for me. Makes me sleepy if anything. My excedrin sometimes knocks me out I think due to my migraines. Anyway – I will get in the zone with Adderall – but still feel like I need more – honestly I think I need to start with the xr in the morning and an ir boost around 3pm. Or vice versa. Boost in the morning and XR around 3pm. I once took 30xr in the morning and another 30xr in the afternoon and that was awesome. I have never felt jittery or up from Adderall. Just sleepy on the Actavis brand. I am up early today (I used to have to drag myself out of bed at 7am and then feel awful) so I took the 30xr and will take another 30 around 2 or 3pm. I am a single mom and really need to go from 7am to 11pm at night! When I was younger the Wellbutrin helped me a lot more but not as much now and I have always my entire life had trouble sleeping and then getting up in the morning no matter how much I slept.

    So while sleeping and mood have been better – motivation has only slightly increased. I have been better about keeping the house clean – I don’t feel as overwhelmed with it – but wish it would last longer or that I could basically take it twice a day. Afraid to ask though:-( I don’t want him to think I’m an addict or something. I rejected the vyvanse idea because I’m afraid to start out at a low dose – have it not work and then have to try something else. But – I like the idea of taking a brand name drug. I don’t like taking generics when it comes to my mood/depression/add. I am sensitive to fillers and was very close to killing myself when I had to switch to generic Wellbutrin. It was scary. I asked for name brand before trying something else. Worked within two weeks.

    I wish I knew when the right dose was met with Adderall or vyvanse. I realize it isn’t a cure all and my problems won’t just go away. But I feel like I almost need to keep upping. I would rather take too much and have to back off. Then at least I know what too much is like.

    I think I’m going to ask for vyvanse though after everything I am reading.

    For the hater that said we are drugging kids. My son has add and loves school. He hated the social part of it but actually loves school and wants to do well. He gets really down when he can’t keep up or stay motivated even though he tries. He has never been on meds because I didn’t want him on anything but after my diagnosis I realize it’s just hurting him not to at least try something. I am taking him back to his psychiatrist and requesting meds. She has suggested them and we did try strattera (he hated) and citalopram for depression but he wouldn’t take either. I think vyvanse might be really good for him. the other mess he really only tried for maybe a week each so not enough to see a difference.

    Aside from all that – I am afraid if I don’t get the right dose of vyvanse my mood will tank. I will also mention I have binge eating issues that I realize but never sought help for. Adderall has taken that all away too. I am thin – 105 and 5’4 but have only lost three pounds on Adderall. I do somewhat have to force myself to eat. My hypothyroidism probably keeps me from losing too much.

    When I take it with oatmeal and walnuts it works the best not sure why. I have to make myself eat it but it does help. Okay now I am done haha. Longest post ever.

  23. Several questions. Should stimulants like Adderal XR and Vyvanse be taken with food? I have taken the former on empty stomach and find I get a bit jittery. I saw something about eating protein makes for smoother response.

    Second, while painfully waiting for new Adderal prescription to be processed by mail order, I took (2) of my partners Vyvanse 20 MG together today, so would have something on board. Not sure if taking two 20s equals one 40mg capsule since know there is a whole science to how time released capsules are released into bloodstream. I may not be getting the same effect as taking one 40gm. Time released capsules may not work like ibuprofen for instance. You take two Advil and the increase in dose is linear 200 +200 = 400. Anyone have information if taking 2 capsules of Vyvanse at once will safely deliver same effect of taking one 40 gm capsule?

    Is Vyvanse time released, like Adderall XR? Without ER or XR on name, I am not even.sure if extended release.

    Thank you.

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