quit-once

Does Nicotine Drive the Speed Train?

   7 members have voted

  1. 1. Where does nicotine belong in the speed train?

  2. 2. Did (do) you use nicotine while also using adderall?

    • Yes
    • No
      0
    • I quit nicotine and adderall about the same time
  3. 3. What was (is) your favorite form of nicotine?

    • Cigarettes
    • Cigars or other smoke
      0
    • Chew
      0
    • Electronic cigarettes
      0
    • Other

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8 posts in this topic

I recently read an article that suggested nicotine was actually THE gateway drug for stimulant abuse. I had always believed that the drug use came first and nicotine use followed as a result of lower inhibitions, impulsive behavior and poor judgement. Does anybody have an opinion on this topic based on their own experiences?

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Interesting! I don't smoke but my husband does. That's one thing I know he will go to his grave doing. He has no desire to quit and no amount of begging or cancer talks will ever make him quit. And my daughter won an anti-tobacco poster contest one time and was embarrassed because her daddy had to stay outside so he could smoke. He doesnt smoke in the house which is good and can go long periods of time without smoking. He overcame a cocaine habit in his early twenties and quit alcohol cold turkey for six months just to prove he could, but has always said to never ever try to convince him to stop smoking. It doesn't bother me any more, but it does my children because we've had a family member die of cancer. Maybe I'll ask him the poll questions and see what his answers are.

Where is the article you read?

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Quit-Once,

I obsessed over this one. As you know from my other post, I was a heavy smoker when I was abusing adderall. I actually filled pages and pages in my journals, talking about the vicious cycle I lived every day of smoking, popping pills, smoking, popping pills to higher and higher levels every day.

I couldn't take adderall without 'chasing' it with a cigarette. Then 'chasing' the cigarette with another adderall pill. And then repeating the cycle over and over. Doing this every day for many, many years.

Here was my routine: The adderall would give me intense cravings for cigarettes. Then when I smoked the cigarette, it would diminish the effects of the adderall. So to compensate, I would take more adderall, then again start to intensely crave more cigarettes, smoke one or two cigarettes, feel a dimished adderall high, and then take more adderall to get my adderall buzz going again...and i'd just repeat the cycle over and over until by the end of the day I was overanxious, and delusional from so much adderall in my system.

I read some books and here's what I discovered about the cigarette/adderall connection. Cigarettes work similarly to adderall in that they increase the level of dopamine (the feel good 'chemical') in your brain. From what I understood, the cigarettes sort of worked to enhance the effects of the adderall. Kind of like 'social smokers' who smoke only when they drink. The cigarettes somehow enhance the effect of the alcohol in some way, making it more pleasurable for some people.

Similarly, I think cigarettes enhance the effects of adderall in the brain, in the way it acts on our dopamine receptors. That's why the two will often get abused together.

I definitely built an association with adderall and cigarettes. I couldn't take one without the other. I tried many times to take adderall without nicotine, but I found it impossible. once I stopped adderall, no more urge for nicotine either.

After a year of not smoking, my lungs feel so much better. I can breathe better, and I am much more in shape. Being free from cigarettes has been a great postive from quitting adderall. Years ago, I remember I used to constantly google "adderall and smoking cigarettes" searching for answers about this. Eventually, I just gave up. And simply accepted it as it was.

...hold on a sec... I just googled "adderall and cigarettes" again and found something I definitely, definitely agree with.

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Can_you_smoke_cigarettes_while_on_Adderall_XR

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Thanks, InRecovery - that is exactly the information I was looking for. I don't know WHY I had to know that except it was one of those nagging unanswered questions left over from the time in my life when I was using.

I successfully quit smoking for about six months while I was taking addie, but I finally gave in to the stress and it was a really tough six months of quitting smoking. Oddly enough, I still crave a cigarette once in a while so I have to stay strong. I feel like my chances of relapsing with smoking are much greater than relapsing to adderall, and I am trying to build a connection between them like the slippry slope arguement so I don't even consider that first cigarette. And I never crave adderall - and really haven't craved it since I quit. I even enjoy hanging out with friends who are high on adderall while smoking their cigs. The bottom line is that I am happy to be free from both of those addictions and want to stay free at all costs.

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I tried what seemed like hundreds of times to quit smoking while on adderall. I can't even tell you how much $$ I wasted on nicotine patches that never worked. There is definitely a connection between the two. As Mike put it on one of his postings..."adderall and cigarettes are delicious together"

By the way, I just wanted to update: I am still suffering daily withdrawal symptoms from no adderall!!!! I don't like to call them cravings, because I don't crave adderall in any way. I hate adderall too much to ever, ever want to take it again. So I am not craving adderall. But my mind still gets into these 'states' where it starts feeling discomfort from drug withdrawal - and itches for relief from that discomfort.

It's like my brain will suddenly start to feel very uncomfortable, and wants relief from that uncomfort. To deal with it, I start to tense up all over my neck to the point where I am shaking - although it isn't noticable to anyone else, just myself. Some days it's worse than others, and lasts longer than others. Some days I just wake up and say 'uh oh' that uncomfortable parts of my brain have flared up and 'today is not going to be a great day'..."Flares up" and "itching for something" are a really good way to describle it.

From what I read, I think I am still dealing with the mental attachment I formed to the drug. The psychological component of the addiction. It's like the brain has trouble forgetting what it was like to be on the drug -- even even 15 months later.

Occassionally, like maybe four or five times, I've woken up in the middle of the night tossing and turning because of the discomfort.

Sometimes, and most recently, it can even feel painful.

A common theme is that it always gets worse when I am feeling anxious, tired or against any kind of pressured situation. These were all situations when I would reach for adderall in the past.

Anyway, other than that, life is getting a lot better now. My list of 'reasons why I hate adderall' has grown infinitely long. I even fell asleep reading my list once, because it was so long, and I couldn't finish getting through it...I read it periodically. It reminds me of all the times adderall 'messed up my mind'...it reminds me of what a crutch it had become in my life...it reminds me of the downward spiral my life took because of my addiction. And the constant worry I felt from constantly lying and deceiving doctors to get pills. It reminds me of the constant fight to stay out of withdrawal from running out.

So even though my mind often feels discomfort without adderall, I will never crave the medication again. i hate it too much.

I am a lot happier with the person I am now. I feel sharper, less withdrawn. I am really a different person now. I'm more aware of whats going on in the world and less focused inwardly all the time on whether I'm feeling good or not. I see the world as it really is and not under the influence of stimulants. My family is thrilled with me -- and relieved altogether. I've been studying for graduate school exams, and have scored higher on these practice exams then I ever did when I was taking adderall to study for them. it says a lot about how much adderall was 'helping' me when studying. I went on vacation and had a great time -- adderall free. I think I'm ready to start working again, or looking for work, at least temporarily, while continuing to pursue the graduate school angle. I am really worried about the unemployment gaps from all the time I was recovering from adderall. The quest to begin looking for work again has filled me with a lot of anxiety and subsequent procrastination. I can see the gaps on my resume where adderall has taken its toll.

But taking this time off was WELL, WELL worth it to me. This past year, has been one of the most important years of my life. I wouldn't reverse a minute of it.

Anyway, I still live with the 'annoying' discomfort od drug withdrawal. Thankfully, it's more 'annoyingly persistant' than 'detrimental' to my life. I look to the day that it will disappear altogether. And I'm thankful for being free from the grips of stimulants.

Anyway, thanks for letting me share.

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This is an interesting thread. I don't smoke, but I did the same 'chasing' behavior with caffeine while on Adderall (Vyvanse), so perhaps it's a similar dopaminergic mechanism. I would take Adderall, chase it with coffee, take more Adderall, then start to feel spacey in the afternoon so drink more coffee or Red Bull and then maybe take another Adderall. It was a vicious cycle. I craved caffeine all the time on Adderall because I always felt that the Adderall wasn't enough - like I always needed some extra boost. Off the drug, I have a cup of coffee in the morning and I don't want any more during the day, even if I'm really tired.

I remember one day, I took a normal amount of Adderall but drank way too much coffee. I was driving home from work and was stopped at a light leading to the freeway. My right leg started shaking uncontrollably and I almost had a panic attack. I thought I was going to have to call 911 because my leg wouldn't stop shaking to control the gas pedal. Eventually I talked myself down (it was a long light) and was able to drive, but I was incredibly shaky throughout the drive home. That was a really scary moment in my mental and physical state. One of the reasons I'm glad to be off Adderall is the anxiety and compromised reaction time I felt while driving. I'm glad I never got into an accident. Anyway, congratulations to you guys for quitting smoking. That's a big accomplishment, and you're saving a lot of money I'm sure. :)

Cassie

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Hey Cassie,

I DID read that caffeine has a very similar effect to cigarettes in that regard.

For one thing, both cigarettes and caffeine are both stimulants. And it make sense for stimulants to augment the rush we get from another stimulant.

From what I understand, just as nicotine boosts dopamine in the pleasure centers in the brain (and wears off in five to ten seconds), caffeine apparently also boosts dopamine levels in the reward pathways in the brain.

That artificial surplus of dopamine between the brain synapses in the pleasure centers of our brain is what the adderall addict is addicted to. It's what gives us that superinflated sense of self confidence and makes us feel good among other things.

And then it gets harder and harder to get off the drug because we start to feel so bad when we stop.

That is how I understand it, at least!

By the way, for anyone more interested in why we get addicted to adderall...I wrote about what I found here

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Hey neversaynever, I dug up this post from last year for you. It has some interesting comments if your scroll up through it.

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