Effects of Concerta

I've recently started taking Concerta to try and help with my ADD.  I was wondering what some of the effects people have had.  I don't seem to have a great effect on my true mental ability, just seem to be hyped up, but not in a caffeinated way.  That, and I believe I've noticed that it tends to make me feel more emotional.  I can find myself allowing thoughts to well up and almost push me to crying (for the record, I'm the kind of person who all but never cries).  It's really odd.  I was wondering if anyone else had had this effect?  Honestly, I'm pretty close to stopping using it and trying something else, but I don't want to become a pill-jumper.  I HATE taking meds at all, but I know/understand that it can help me.  

My husband took the XR form

My husband took the XR form of Concerta and he has 'spurts' /rushes throughout the day of the meds that made him physically feel horrible. I am unclear as to whether or not it helped him with his focus and concentration..staying on task, etc. I know that he stopped texting me almost completely (while at work) and claimed that he was finally able to focus on things and his mind didn't wander all day long like before.

As for emotional changes...it made him have a VERY short fuse, be very paranoid ("stop looking at me like I'm stupid!"), and very hostile. Our daughter belching at the table sent him off the deep end one day...he was so ugly to her about it. I could physically see him gritting his teeth and trying to control his anger over things that were completely and utterly irrelevant and wouldn't have mattered to him otherwise.

Vyvanse was his 2nd try...and it didn't give him the spurts, was more evenly released, but made him the same hostile person as the other. He stopped it and won't take anything else now.

Crying...

My husband did not cry when his father died. (Undiagnosed and unmedicated). While he was on Vyvanse, our cat got run over and he cried like a baby. A couple of years later, we had to have another cat put down and he cried so much he couldn't even bury her. It's not like he cries at sad movies or anything. He thought it was good that he could cry about things that were genuinely sad. Definitely more in touch with his emotions.

Been Taking Concerta for over a year

Hi.  I'm a thirty year-old male new to this website, and I've been taking Concerta for a little bit over a year, and I have come to realize is that I don't notice the difference, but others around me do.  I know because I ask my coworkers at work, and my non-ADHD partner and non-ADHD roommate both comment about the differences before and after being on Concerta.

I started Concerta after taking Ritalin (generic) for several months.  I was responding well and my doctor started me on 54mg Concerta with the option to take one or two Ritalin 10 mg towards the end of the day if I needed a boost (and I usually do).  The first day I took Concerta was a Friday.  I work overnights and decided to take it a few hours before I went to work in case I had a reaction to the medication.  (I learned this the hard way: I had a bad reaction to Strattera the first time I took it.)  It was like I took the pill from Limitless.  I had so much energy, and it seemed like there was nothing I could not do.  That was good that night because my manager that night was all alone (when we normal have two to three levels of management on any given night) to run our store; I used to be a manager a few years ago, and I really respected the guy, so I stepped up and helped him run the store that night.  But, after time, I noticed that the pill didn't seem to have as much of a noticeable effect on me.

At the beginning of this year, my company changed their prescription plan, and after the first of the year, I needed preauthorization.  I don't remember reading anything about preauthoization when I renewed my coverage, and since Concerta and Ritalin are the first two drugs I have ever taken regularly, I did not realize this would even be an issue.  There was issues with the paperwork, and I did not have Concerta for over two weeks since I refill my prescriptions at the last minute.  I am also a student, and thankfully I only needed two classes to graduate this last May.  My concentration started to slip worse than usual, and I began to feel really fatigued.  I tried to make my Ritalin last and began rationing down my dosages in case I would run out.  I began using caffeine to supplement and boost my concentration and energy.  When I took my Concerta again after not having it in my system for two weeks, I felt as if I had never taken it before: I felt I had the energy to take on the world.

As for being emotional, I think I am a little bit more temperamental than I used to be.  But I am not sure if it is the medication or the fact that I work overnights full-time, go to school full-time (except last summer and my last undergraduate semester), had a part-time job last year on campus, and my partner, who's twenty years older than me, is starting to have major health issues.  So I am not sure if it is medication, stress, or a combination of both.  But then again, I am not a crier either, and that opening scene from the latest Star Trek movie makes me cry every time (and I try to hide it b/c I'm not a crier).

Honestly, the worst effect I've had from the Concerta is that I am more prone to heat-related illness.  Our A/C went out last summer, and I almost had to go to the ER. (Thankfully, my partner is an ex-paramedic and was able to help me cool down correctly and get my electrolytes balanced.)  Also, last summer, I took a really hot shower, and I about passed out after I got out.  And then a week-and-a-half ago, I about passed out at work because I was getting overheated (so I started carrying a water bottle in receiving to help keep me cool).

One other tip: I find that the Concerta works well with caffeine (though I really try to limit the caffeine to just the Excedrin I take for my aches and pains), and I find it often works better if I have it before I eat.  But because I have such a chaotic schedule, I also find that sometimes it just compensates for my lack of sleep and doesn't work so well.  But when I am on vacation and sleep regularly, I find there are days I don't even need the extra 10-20 mg of Ritalin or even a caffeine boost.  This has me very excited, since I am leaving my overnight job in a few weeks to go to graduate school.  I am hoping that the Concerta will be all I need, with an occasional boost of Ritalin on more stressful or more distracting days.

I know this is a lot of information.  I hope it helps.  If you have anymore questions, please ask. 

(And don't hate taking the meds.  I would prefer just behavioral therapy myself.  I went 29 years of my life undiagnosed and have been mostly successful in my life by my standards.  I'm not sure how I did it, but it was my choice to seek treatment, and I do not regret it.  I regard the meds as a tool to use in conjunction with making even more changes in my life to help me and my strained relationship with my partner.)