I have ADHD and was told that taking medications would be frowned on

  1. 0
    Hello,
    Let me first say thank you so very much for this forum, its invaluable and I greatly appreciate it. I am a 39 year old pre nursing student and was diagnosed with ADHD ( finally!) by a doctor just over a year ago. With encouragement,medication and a plan I feel amazing and in control. I have also talked with her at length about career goals ( being in business for a very long time) and we both circled back to helping me realize my dream of being in health care- nursing is still achievable and to go for it. Specifically it was suggested that possibly OR or ER nursing- but I am open to anything and everything when the times comes.

    To circle to my current question- my medical dr has me on adderall and its like a light bulb moment, I cannot explain the weight off my shoulders, the clarity and I hate to use this word - focus- it has helped me achieve ( a long with other hard work regarding working on my ADHD management).

    Today: someone who used to be a nurse in the military, suggested that I will not be allowed to start nursing school ( accepted?) because of taking adderall and that ADHD and nursing do not mix well.

    A medical doctor has scribed me this medication under a long year of coming to this diagnoses. It is not something that was done lightly. However, I am not a total dunce, I have another bachelors degree AND a masters degree ( non science) under my belt pre ADHD diagnosis.

    I feel a bit deflated and wanted to get anyone else who has an opinion on ADHD + nursing? My doctor is also married to a ER doctor who is chief of staff locally, she "knows" her doctor and healthcare personalities so I trust her.. She hasn't mentioned this would be a hindrance and instead has taught me to use and work with the ADHD. Frankly, I enjoy being a controlled ADHD gal It can be quite handy in some situations ( hyper focus).

    I don't see her for sometime but I feel so deflated today, mixed with equal parts embarrassment ( it was obvious this neighbor doesn't believe in ADHD possibly). and Just reaching out, not even sure what I am asking for here, but I wanted to see if anyone has started a nursing career as a ADHD person and has anything positive to share.

    Most kind regards

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  2. 0
    You know, I think everyone has an opinion. I was just accepted into nursing school, and we were not even asked to list any medications we are on. Yes, we had to either have a physical done at school, or submit a copy from our own doctor. My school accepted a well woman's visit from my gyno. Yes, we did have to take a drug test, but I think they may check for certain drugs in your system. I don't think that anyone can expect a nurse or anyone in healthcare to not need to take some sort of medications, and if this is what helps you, then good for you. Now I am just guessing, but I imagine there are plenty of nurses whom might need anti-depressants (not that this is your case!), etc. just like the rest of the population. I think that if this is what helps you focus, learn, and take care of your patients, then you should totally take it. It doesn't make you a threat to anyone, so I don't understand the reasoning that the nurse you spoke to had, if your ADHD is being managed that is. good luck!
    Last edit by allycat77 on Mar 19, '13 : Reason: typos
  3. 1
    I'm in the nursing program right now..yes we are randomly drug screened, and if anything comes back you have to prove it with a script #... I don't think it's going to be a problem for you as long as you are aware of the time and commitments that will be invested....frankly, it's nobody else's business. ADHD shouldn't have the stigma attached to it anymore..it isn't a disability, it's just another way of learning....my son has struggled for years in school with "passive ADD" most teachers write him off as lazy. Fortunately for us his principal understands the issue and knows that he is incredibly smart. He just needs another approach that will hold his attention... I say go for it!
    allycat77 likes this.
  4. 1
    I went to school with and now work with a woman with ADHD. She was diagnosed after she started nursing school. I don't know what meds she is on but she is a good nurse and her diagnosis doesn't seem to be of any hindrance.Our employer has no knowledge of her ADHD. Don't let it stop you if this what you want to do. Good luck.
    allycat77 likes this.
  5. 0
    thanks all, its not like I take the medication without a script or to give me energy, In fact, it makes me sleepy as heck most times. thanks again.
    Last edit by allboymom on Mar 19, '13 : Reason: typo
  6. 0
    Thanks to HIPAA, you have a right to have you medical diagnoses and medications kept private, if you so wish.

    Your clinical sites and programs may require drug screens, but your program should only know if you take something without a prescription, which is obviously illegal and grounds for dismissal.

    Even if your program does know you're on adderall, they shouldn't find out on an admissions application unless you write it in an essay or something weird like that.
  7. 0
    Quote from allboymom
    Hello,
    Let me first say thank you so very much for this forum, its invaluable and I greatly appreciate it. I am a 39 year old pre nursing student and was diagnosed with ADHD ( finally!) by a doctor just over a year ago. With encouragement,medication and a plan I feel amazing and in control. I have also talked with her at length about career goals ( being in business for a very long time) and we both circled back to helping me realize my dream of being in health care- nursing is still achievable and to go for it. Specifically it was suggested that possibly OR or ER nursing- but I am open to anything and everything when the times comes.

    To circle to my current question- my medical dr has me on adderall and its like a light bulb moment, I cannot explain the weight off my shoulders, the clarity and I hate to use this word - focus- it has helped me achieve ( a long with other hard work regarding working on my ADHD management).

    Today: someone who used to be a nurse in the military, suggested that I will not be allowed to start nursing school ( accepted?) because of taking adderall and that ADHD and nursing do not mix well.

    A medical doctor has scribed me this medication under a long year of coming to this diagnoses. It is not something that was done lightly. However, I am not a total dunce, I have another bachelors degree AND a masters degree ( non science) under my belt pre ADHD diagnosis.

    I feel a bit deflated and wanted to get anyone else who has an opinion on ADHD + nursing? My doctor is also married to a ER doctor who is chief of staff locally, she "knows" her doctor and healthcare personalities so I trust her.. She hasn't mentioned this would be a hindrance and instead has taught me to use and work with the ADHD. Frankly, I enjoy being a controlled ADHD gal It can be quite handy in some situations ( hyper focus).

    I don't see her for sometime but I feel so deflated today, mixed with equal parts embarrassment ( it was obvious this neighbor doesn't believe in ADHD possibly). and Just reaching out, not even sure what I am asking for here, but I wanted to see if anyone has started a nursing career as a ADHD person and has anything positive to share.

    Most kind regards
    Don't sweat it! Probably half of your nursing class will be on it anyways, if it such a bad drug why give it to children? The military doesn't frown on it and your nursing school is not going to drug test you.
  8. 0
    If you have a script then when you take your drug screen the company who processes them will call you for proof of the rx. Other than that you don't need to divulge this information to anyone if you choose not too. My drug screen that the school received just said negative. No mention of prescription meds as they are only looking for illicit ones

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com


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