Over prescribing of ADD and ADHD stimulant medications, especially in adults, is a rapidly exploding issue. Inappropriate use is common at many universities and high pressure jobs. However, there remains a considerable number of patients who have legitimate need and should be cared for within the healthcare community.
Addressing a patient’s need for stimulant medications requires a careful and thoughtful approach. For many disorders, Trinity uses our multifaceted approach to therapy which so often improves, reverses, or even cures the common maladies of modern humankind. We address the three main pillars of health that are required for any person to be remain healthy: good nutrition, good exercise, and good sleep.
Nutritionally, studies have demonstrated that a lower carbohydrate dietary plan improves ADD/ADHD symptoms over other dietary interventions. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil (or actually eating more fish) is one of the few supplements that improves ADD/ADHD symptoms. Vigorous aerobic activity consistently demonstrates improved symptom control especially if challenging tasks are performed within the 90 minute golden window following exercise. Finally, sleep is a critical element to good focus and concentration. Disorders such as sleep apnea, excessive screen time, as well as burning the candle at both ends severely limits the brain’s ability to concentrate for weeks and months on end.
Trinity has adopted the widely published guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Practice concerning the prescribing of stimulant medications These guidelines include such things as the following:
-Stimulants will only be prescribed after an appropriate history and physical is performed which supports the diagnosis
-Secondary causes for the symptoms including poor nutrition, poor exercise, and poor sleep have been fully addressed
-Follow up is required in person on a monthly basis until stable then every three months thereafter
-Medication changes are done in person only
-Regular use of Tennessee’s Controlled Substance Monitoring Database
-Refills are done on time. They are not filled early, after hours, or for long term supplies.
-Urine drug screens are required at random intervals to confirm the use of the prescribed medication as well as the absence of inappropriate chemicals.
-Long term prescribing of medications is not guaranteed and referral to a mental health specialist will be made if the situation warrants.
We feel that with our approach and the use of these guidelines we will continue to provide high quality care for individuals in need and limit the inappropriate use of these medications.