Have you or a loved one been diagnosed with ADHD? If so, chances are you’ve heard about Vyvanse or are currently taking the stimulant. Vyvanse is one of the most popularly prescribed medications for helping to improve focus and concentration while also minimizing other ADHD symptoms.
If your doctor has recently prescribe you Vyvanse, here are 8 things you'll want to know.
1. It Can be Expensive
One of the biggest drawbacks of Vyvanse is that it can be quite expensive. Unlike other ADHD medications, there's no generic form of Vyvanse. Some insurance companies don't cover the drug which means you may be on the hook for the entire cost out of pocket. Despite these drawbacks, there are ways to reduce the cost of Vyvanse. For example, you can compare pharmacy prices online to find which local retailer offers the lowest price.
Other ways to save money include:
- Using manufacturer’s coupons
- Ordering through an online pharmacy
- Asking your doctor for a longer dosage
If Vyvanse is the medication that works best in treating your ADHD symptoms, be sure to keep these money-saving methods in mind.
2. There Are Side Effects
Vyvanse is made up of 100% d-amphetamine and is released into the bloodstream via digestion. As with any medication, there are side effects to be aware of. Common side effects include weight loss, loss of appetite, skin rash, irritability, dry mouth, and sleep problems.
The most severe side effect is potential heart issues including rapid, uneven, or pounding heartbeats. The drug can also cause sudden death in people who have pre-existing heart issues. Before taking any stimulant drugs, be sure to discuss all of your health conditions with your doctor.
3. It Lasts All Day
Vyvanse is so commonly prescribed to treat ADHD symptoms because unlike other drugs, it only has to be taken once a day. Other ADHD prescriptions have to be taken throughout the day and must follow a strict schedule. With Vyvanse, patients only have to take the pill once and it lasts up to 14 hours!
If you take Vyvanse in the morning, be aware that at night, it will start to wear off. This may mean that you need to take another medication like Dexedrine to stabilize your d-amphetamine levels.
Another benefit of Vyvanse is that the drug is available in capsule and chewable form. This makes it suitable for patients of all ages, including children.
4. Risks in Children
Stimulants like Vyvanse have an increased risk of slowing growth in children. If you child has been prescribed Vyvanse, be sure to stay on top of routine physicals and check-ups with your pediatrician to ensure that your child is meeting growth milestones.
Most children who take stimulants catch up in one to two years.
5. Pregnant? Talk to Your Doctor
Vyvanse, like other amphetamines, can be risky for pregnant women. The drug causes a higher risk of low birth weight as well as premature birth. If you've recently given birth and are breastfeeding, you shouldn't take Vyvanse as your child may experience side effects of the drug such as increased blood pressure and heart rate.
6. Risk of Dependence
Since Vyvanse is an amphetamine, there is a risk of dependence. The drug is a federally controlled substance and should only be taken under the monitoring of a doctor. Misuse of Vyvanse can be dangerous to your health. People who become dependent on the drug often seek the euphoric feeling that Vyvanse causes when taken in large doses. High dosages of the medication can also greatly improved alertness and concentration.
7. You May Experience Vyvanse Crash
If you've just recently been diagnosed Vyvanse, your doctor will prescribe you the lowest dosage possible. This helps to minimize side effects that occur as your body adjusts to the medication. Starting with the lowest dosage will also help to identify which dosage is most effective for you.
As the day goes on, you're likely to experience a Vyvanse crash. This occurs when the effects of the medicine starts to wear off. Symptoms of the crash include fatigue, anxiety, and irritability. You may also experience some ADHD symptoms.
8. Drug Interactions
There are certain drugs that shouldn't be taken with Vyvanse. Be sure to tell your doctor about any other prescription drugs you're taking as well as any over-the-counter, vitamins, herbs, and dietary supplements.
Studies have found the Vyvanse should not be taken with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). If you take MAOIs, you should wait at least 14 days before taking Vyvanse. The stimulant may also negatively interact with Brontril, Didrex, Adipex-P, Matulane, and Eldepryl.
Understanding your prescription drugs can make taking them much easier. If you’ve been prescribed Vyvanse, be sure to keep these 8 facts in mind.