ADHD Medication Fear and Confusion Podcast with Rick Green of Totally ADD

you're listening to the ADHD support talk radio podcast ADHD support talk radio is sponsored by EDD classes comm sign up now for free webinar at wwhd classes comm and this is your co-host Tara McGillicuddy welcome Rick green mdhd support talk radio in just a moment Rick and I are going to be having a conversation about ADHD medication it's gonna be a great discussion there's so much to talk about so with that welcome Rick you know a bit about yourself and how they get in touch with you after today's show oh well first of all thanks for having me on a pleasure to be here yeah so I'll give you a quick outline of the quick backstory the elevator version I was a telegram as an agreement physics ended up working at a science center then ended up entering show business full time as a comedian became a writer producer director did a number of educational series as well as having much comedy involved in them and then in 2008 did a documentary about adult ADHD I guess about eight or nine years after I had been diagnosed as an adult and it took off ran on PBS it's still running on some stations on PBS the sequel ABB and mastering it ran on PBS so a beedi and loving it and a DD and mastering it took off and we created a website initially just to kind of have a little public a publicity platform for the program and it blossomed and we have a million visitors a year unique visitors although all of our visitors are kind of unique and all kinds of stuff there I mean a hundred fifteen short videos on every aspect and what I love about it is there's now I think 76 or 78 experts on there you know so most of the top names if we've been able to be at a conference where they're there we've been able to interview them so really it's been an amazing journey and what started out as kind of a one-off project has become a full-time occupation and it's quite exciting in the website address is so the website is totally ad decom which was I thought was pretty ambitious for us when we just assumed it was just going to be a kind of an addition or a backup for the the program because we had been warned when we were making a DD and loving it the doctors were telling us you realize this is going to have a lot of people recognizing themselves they're gonna want help and the resources are just not there there's a shortage of expertise so the website was hopefully to fill some of that in because after shooting 26 hours of video we and putting together one hour we had a lot of great stuff left over yeah definitely a great resource the website the the videos the PBS documentary you mean people have been raving about it so if you haven't heard of her Queen and haven't been to his website definitely check it out so with that we can get started talking about our topic which is ADHD medication which is such a huge controversial overwhelming talk at topic but when you're affected by EDD or ADHD even if people are choosing not to treat their ADHD with medication it's still a huge topic that everyone discusses so yes absolutely and I and I think it's it's so huge because a lot of the people who are choosing not to it's not really a choice that's been decided before they've heard anything and I was like I was in that camp I have to say there was just no way when I first got diagnosed that I was gonna take medication I didn't drink I didn't smoke I hadn't done drugs as a teenager I mean at all like I was you know the one in a thousand teenagers who doesn't do anything and so the idea of taking medication just was not on the horizon for me and then I got educated so and you just recently finished a huge undertaking huge project project in doing a video series on medication I mean DHD so let's talk a bit about that absolutely well you know we've done videos on everything well not everything but a lot of different aspects I think there's 18 videos on there covering everything from sleep and tools and strategies and emotional sensitivity and all of these different topics but the one that we hadn't really addressed was medication and yet almost every one that we had spoken to who was a doctor or a registered nurse practitioner or whatever had talked about medication often at length so it was something that we had certainly talked about but it was not a topic we'd approach just because they say its controversial we didn't want to come across as Pro medication because even our documentary abd and loving it when it ran on PBS the first time they had real problems with it there because we basically said 70 to 80 percent of people who try medication find it works and they said well you can't say that and we said well it's true and they went is it they were nobody knew and so it wasn't until Chad and adda and other advocacy groups said no this is the best documentary ever it was the first time Chad or adda had endorsed an ADHD program because it offered a really balanced view it wasn't sensationalizing and so on but you know I'm not a doctor and I know everybody is unique and it's individual and so on and so on and then with all the different comorbidities that we can have depression anxiety and threats and Asperger's and all the other things that run along it's a complex subject and it was almost like this can of worms I was afraid of we started I didn't know where it would end and then of course it turned into five full videos and Wow somebody called it somebody called it 99 short movies or 99 short films about ADHD medication and that's kind of what it is it's just all these little you don't pick a topic there's a little chapter on that anywhere from three to five minutes and with two to three or four experts now I know you and I talked about this before that I stayed away from the topic of medication just for a lot of the reasons you do and I want to focus more on strategies with EU DD classes calm but basically every teleseminar I do whether it's on time management procrastination we always get questions about medication you definitely need it so what finally got you to say okay I'm going to do this video even if it's controversial overwhelming whatever else well it's interesting because the biggest reason that people came to our website with the quite since we're all but not all but like the most popular search or topic was ADHD medication we have forums that have I think 3,700 different topics in there and the number that are involved on medication and on each of the medications and all of the entries people still want to know and once you've done the research yourself it does it's easy to forget that it's ok now I know and I can make a really informed decision and I can try it and see if it works and if it does great and if it doesn't so on but it's hard to remember how scary that subject was when I throw my mind back to it I realize there's all these people you know you've heard the statistic that perhaps you know as little as 15 20 percent of adults who qualifies ADHD or even where they have it so there's a lot of people there undiagnosed who may suspect or wonder but are frightened to find out and with medication I think that's the other thing is everyone's frightened because all they've heard are these scary statistics and so I wanted to take all that out and just say here's the deal what are the facts what is it like and it started out I was gonna make something called the 15 biggest questions about ADHD medication and it became the 25 and then it was I we got to talk about this and listen and eventually as I say 99 chapters on ADHD medication it just kept expanding and as we went back over all the interviews I just kept finding more and more and more great quotes and stuff that I'd forgotten that some of the experts had talked about was like oh that's a whole thing you know we haven't even thought about addressing and it just as I say it just got bigger and bigger and sorting it out was kind of fun well is there anything that stands out to you right now that you found surprising when it came to doing this project and when it comes to medication well you know I kind of knew the range of ADHD experiences that everybody is different different but it was also the range of reactions that people had to medication so the video has I know thirty experts in it but we then went out and interviewed here's the thing we got all of these experts and I sat there listening to it and I said there's something missing even though it's solid information I realized it lacks the humanity or I want to hear people through it's not like I didn't trust the experts but it's one thing for someone to say you know that a child struggled in school it's another to hear someone describing their own child or their own childhood it's so moving so I contacted a couple of the local support groups even though I already had more footage than I can use and 18 people came out and just shared their stories they it was the most amazing experience they just sat down one after another and off we went and so their stories and their range of experience was really shocking to me because my experience was I tried it it worked and uh when I need it I take it when I don't I stop taking it and you know maybe I have like headache for a day some days I don't and you know it's not you know all of the the things that I was worried about that it would be addictive no it's not that my favorite was one of the quotes from Laurie duper who said it takes her on average six weeks for clients to regularly remember to take their medication they said that's not a sign of addiction and I thought about that not yeah there's nobody who's who's a smoker or a coffee drinker who gets to 3:00 in the afternoon and goes you know you say I've had five cigarettes by now if I had any today your body tells you you know so now that said there's what was also interesting I thought was that learning about the difference between addicted and dependent and you can become dependent on that feeling and some people when they stop they have a day where they're they're kind of feel lousy or at the end of the day they feel a little what they call rebound rather grumpier than they would have been without it and so on but then they're high functioning through the day and I think the one thing that I don't know if anyone actually said this and maybe someone did but it was the fact that nobody is forcing millions of people to use these medications they are doing it of their own free will because it works not and nobody wants to that was the other thing you know I I got that you know it's just another thing to remember and there's always I think for anyone on medication there's always this feeling of it feels a bit like I'm cheating or do I really need this or whatever that's true with a lot of disorders I mean I've know people with bipolar who've had at some point God I think I'm flying now and stopped and then had to realize for their chagrin no they're fine because they were taking the medication it's different with ADHD medication you know it isn't that necessarily that when you stop well see there again the range of experience a couple to people who shared their stories when they stopped it was dramatically different in fact a lot of them when they would stop for whatever reason they noticed the difference very quickly well almost I think it's not quite five but yeah that's a lot it's fine four hours at least in it's five different videos we sort of broke it up by into five separate topics which is interesting and what are the topics yo the first one is very simple it's the first video really as what is you know what it is and that it's the title is a tea I think it's called medication as a tool and that's what it is you know you're talking about tools and strategies this is a tool or strategy and it when it works it is an incredibly effective tool what I like about it is that when it works it supports all of my other tools of remembering to do my yoga of remembering to do some mindfulness of remembering to check my clock and all remembering to all the things that I need to do and then the second one really dealt with the cost of not taking medication and that was actually I think the most frightening episode I don't know people are going to be comfortable watching it but when you start looking at the rate of untreated undiagnosed and untreated ADHD one of the statistics I mean seven times the rate of multiple car accidents where you're at fault so this is something you yeah I mean two-and-a-half times the rate of STDs four times the rate of unplanned pregnancies there it goes on and on and on and on that the impulsivity and all of the rest of it so this you know as dr. Halliwell says in the video and a couple of other people say undiagnosed and untreated this can destroy your life diagnosed and treated you can soar but you have to know what's going on so in some ways it's not just this video series I think leisure with a sense of I need to know about medication and I need to ongoingly be learning about ADHD in my own particular brand and I think that's a particular blend I guess you would say of symptoms so that was the second one was about not taking it and then the third is just how they work you know how often you take them when you take them and so on and then the fourth one which I suspect people watch first is about the safety and side effects and the risks and so on and very interesting because of those 18 people only one had a bad reaction and it was only at the end of the interview that she sort of let slip that she was also taking medication for bipolar and so it wasn't really the problem with ADHD medication it was this interaction and we also interviewed a woman Shana who is in there and she takes medication for her bipolar and she said I have all kinds of problems with that medication but the ADHD medication is fabulous I love it and so on so but it does get into some of the side effects and issues and so on and then the last video which I love as well is really about what's the role of medication because the term I think I used in at the beginning of the phrase is that it can level the playing field but there's the playing field you got to go out and play and you've got to play to win so it can really allow you to focus but as one person said it doesn't tell you what to focus on and he said it's not it doesn't give you wisdom necessarily and what was interesting is a couple of people one fella whose fiance passed away he ended up focused on her losing her and her death and so he had to go off the medication because it had him he was not able to help him focus but when I'm focusing on what he should have been focusing on any stopped medication for a while Wow so I'd say just about everything in the news like I've been involved in the ADHD community for close to two decades now medication has always been a huge topic but I've never really had a resource that I felt great to recommend that you know there were some medication resources but not one that covers everything and also the fact that it's a video and not a book I have to say is great because people who are brand-new to ADHD or may not be on the medication a lot of people struggle with reading so it's going to be easier more accessible for people to have that video option menu on that thank you yeah and they I have to say just it was so interesting it took you know was supposed to take three months or two months to put it together it took us six because it was just so much to sift through and reorganize and things one subject led into another and so on but what I loved to is that the final product is these experts who are all independent and there's no Pharma money behind it it's just us and we're hoping it sells enough that we can you know that it pays for itself because it was a huge investment of our time and we're not funded by advertising or by sponsors or buy by pharmaceutical money it really is just the sales of stuff in the shop so yeah I you know what I did something you said there that really start me I've been around this a long time and I had so many questions at the beginning and I think what I did was I made the video that answered every possible question I had at the beginning every fear every doubt every concern and then what I also found what there were all these other concerns that I had never even you know that had not crossed my mind and so that's what makes it especially valuable because no matter what you've heard you probably haven't heard about all 99 topics or however many it we address in there and so on so that's that I think is is another reason why it's powerful but I mean whether someone biases or not I I think the biggest thing about medication is you've got a view it as a tool that's what it is and when it works it works and when it doesn't for most people when it doesn't work it what it does is it doesn't work there's there's no difference so they feel a little bad or whatever it's my fear of course was that I was going to be on an acid trip or turn into an addict to me you know selling my possessions which aren't worth much anyway and so on and it was just you know when it worked how did I put I said to I said to my wife it's like having the best cup of coffee in the world and I don't get the tremble in my hand and all the other things I used to get from having six cans of Cola because you know if we're not finding strategies and tools that work and medication is such an effective one but again it's not everything that last one really deals with the role of medication that Seth's video medication levels the playing field but you need a really a holistic approach of many different strategies that to work but yeah getting that getting that the medication works for you finding the right one transform it when it works and if it doesn't again you know somebody said a person after person I said to them at the end of each interview what would you tell someone who was considering medication or what would you have said to yourself if you could go back four years eight years whatever once and they said I'd say try it you don't like it don't take it basically you know you had 18 people saying that even the woman who said you know who had a terrible reaction to it and could hardly spell her name and for a week was just out of it and then stopped but she said you know do the research first which is of course what the videos are for you know what's great listening to you talk about a story behind it is you produce this video because you have a passion for helping people and it comes from your heart yes you know you're selling it and making some money off of it but you're doing this because you really want to help people and you're saying okay this is where I was I was frustrated I don't want people to go through that yeah I know it's a it's funny because we aren't really making money we aren't even self-sustaining yet after six years so we're trying to figure that one out it's you know because so many people well first of all the internet who wants to pay for anything is it a challenge for us and it did we didn't start out as a website that was gonna be self-sustaining it was supposed to be background information behind the scenes there's some bonus footage from this documentary and it's now 115 episodes a shop forums blogs webinars you know a whole section of tools and downloadables and quizzes and you name it and it's I think why we're successful I would assume why were successes because there's this range of doctors but it's also as you pointed out video is so powerful and I'm a comedian so it's not ponderous it is it's a lot of fun yeah and it should be you know and you know yes this video is a small investment ish people want to purchase it but I look beautiful what you're offering marketers could be selling this for like multiple times of what you're the cost is and it's definitely worth it I'd say well if you know I don't know what it costs you for an hour a half-hour of doctors time here you get $30 30 experts you get four and a half hours of it and you can go back if you forgot something and people with ADHD we tend to forget things what was that again you've got this permanent resource and what I like about it is a if you've got people around you who are upset that you're allowing your kid to take medication or whatever it is you know where you're dealing with your siblings were going you don't need that you're fine and so on you can you've got ammunition here because I find that's the biggest thing that throws people off of their progress is well my brother said my mother's the teacher said that principal said and that and it's we're so sensitive to that we're so easily thrown off our game and that's that is a huge problem and we are actually toward the end of today show this really yeah people you know get in contact with you and I'm assuming this video is available on the website yup so you go to totally ad decom and there's a little menu on the left and one of them is the shop and if you go in there and the the video set is called ADHD medication straight answers to big questions and it's you download it and I've forgotten the price it varies sometimes it's on sale but you know as I say it's you could sell this for a thousand dollars and people would get value out of it and say that we're more than worth it and I it's under $50 I forgot what it is now I think might be forty or less and it's so yeah it's it's there it's in the shop at totally ad decom and and and what I would love to hear from people is you know the difference it made for you because that really helps other people who are struggling I'm a big fan of of giving positive reviews to things that are helpful because well you know what it's like if the Hollywood spend a half a billion dollars promoting a movie you may or may not go but if your best friend says I gotta go you'll love it you go yeah so people with ADHD are very honest and they'll tell you the jump so if you're getting positive feedback it's definitely because it was helpful so yeah I want to thank you so much Lick lien for being again thank you you support talking radio and I this was great I'm definitely gonna have you back again and thank you everyone for taking the time to listen if you were listening to us on iTunes or stitcher be sure to stop by our website at EDC support talk comm thanks again I'm gonna ask you as my listeners a favor if you found ADHD support talk radio helpful please subscribe to it on iTunes as a podcast and leave us a positive review this will help more people find the show which in turn will help more people lead happier and productive lives thanks so much

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