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nyan_sandwich comments on How well defined is ADHD? - Less Wrong Discussion

8 Post author: jsalvatier 15 November 2012 11:34PM

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Comment author: [deleted] 16 November 2012 01:53:08AM 7 points [-]

I was diagnosed with ADHD as a child.

I know very little of physchology, but the behavioural differences between (young) me and other people were noticably significant to anyone in the room. The medication (ritalin) they prescribed had a strong regulatory effect that made me more "normal". I stopped taking it in high school.

I am now sentient enough to reflect on my internal experience, and recently I took my chldhood ritalin dose. The effect is quite noticable; when I took it, I was able to focus for hours on one thing without getting distracted, which I can never otherwise do. I've heard that non-ADHD people do not have such an effect from ritalin. If they did, ritalin would be a major improvement to most people's lives.

Alas I have not found the conscientiousness to actually talk to a doctor and get back on ritalin.

anecdotes for you...

Comment author: ewang 16 November 2012 01:58:53AM 2 points [-]

I've heard another anecdote from someone with ADHD that ritalin helps you focus at the cost of YOUR SOUL.

Comment author: [deleted] 16 November 2012 04:44:15PM 7 points [-]

I've heard such things. I noticed a possible drop in creativity.

As jsalvatier said, nice to have the option. Sometimes I need to get shit done, not have a "soul".

If it was a permanant choice that would be different.

Comment author: jsalvatier 16 November 2012 06:36:49AM 7 points [-]

Nice to have the option, though.

Comment author: Kindly 16 November 2012 04:38:25AM 1 point [-]

Dun dun dun.

Comment author: DaFranker 16 November 2012 03:38:49PM 0 points [-]

Eh, if it gives the effects described in the grandparent on a consistent basis and I happen to have ADHD, I would gladly trade off the very low expected cost of my soul (since I have a very low P on it existing in the first place) for the large increase in mental superpowers.

Comment author: BlazeOrangeDeer 18 November 2012 08:26:04AM 2 points [-]

Remember that the "soul" you are giving up isn't really the Cartesian dualist version. It matches better to certain emotional or social states that many people prefer to experience.

Comment author: jsalvatier 27 November 2012 12:29:25AM *  1 point [-]

Two papers may be of interest:

  • Both ADHD diagnosis and no ADHD diagnosis people get increased focus with low doses of stimulants (link).
  • The correlation between ADHD diagnosis and low-conscientiousness is high.
Comment author: falenas108 16 November 2012 05:06:07AM 0 points [-]

I was "prescribed" with ADD as a child and given ritalin, but I'm not sure if I actually had it. As a data point, it allowed me to focus on whatever my teacher said with almost no effort.

As a more general point, some kids in college take ritalin to help them in classes. This would indicate that it does cause that behavior in a significant portion of the population.

Comment author: wedrifid 16 November 2012 06:32:15AM 4 points [-]

I was "prescribed" with ADD as a child and given ritalin

I think you may have been "diagnosed" with ADD and "prescribed" ritalin.

Comment author: falenas108 16 November 2012 02:33:58PM 0 points [-]

Whoops, yeah.