Adderall Abuse and Addiction
Your doctor has prescribed you this medication that works wonders for your productivity and concentration levels. Heck, you even lose some weight while you’re taking it. So what could be wrong with taking Adderall?
People struggle with this rationale for Adderall abuse because it is legal and prescribed by a physician. Even when taking this medication as recommended, long-term use can easily lead to Adderall dependence, negative side effects, and a strong addiction that may seem impossible to break.
What are the Adderall Effects People are so Drawn to?
Confidence. Euphoria. Weight loss. There are a number of reasons why people take and enjoy the effects of Adderall. Because of these benefits, oftentimes people who abuse Adderall are ones who are looking to boost performance, both mentally and physically.
However, taking Adderall without a prescription, in a greater amount than prescribed, longer than prescribed, or more frequently than prescribed – are all forms of Adderall abuse. Another common type of Adderall abuse is when users crush and snort the Adderall tablets to produce a more intense and immediate effect.
Adderall Dependence and Tolerance
As with nearly all drugs, alcohol, or medication, tolerance to Adderall develops over time. The body grows more tolerant to this stimulant, which requires the user to constantly increase the dose to achieve the same Adderall effects.
On top of this struggle, if the user cannot afford to buy more of the medication or if they run out of their monthly supply early, they can easily succumb to a deep depression. Not to mention, it often causes people to turn to crime to support the insatiable hunger for the Adderall high.
What is Adderall and How Does it Work?
Adderall is a stimulant medication that is prescribed for the treatment of narcolepsy, adult attention deficit disorder (ADD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Adderall is actually the brand name of this medicine that is, in fact, a combination of dextroamphetamine and amphetamine – both of which are central nervous system stimulants.
Adderall abuse takes place for a variety of purposes, including:
- Weight loss
- Staying awake
- Performance athletically
- To experience a high
- Euphoric effects
Who Becomes Adderall Dependent?
Most people associate Adderall abuse with adolescents in college or high school, but stimulants such as Adderall are also popular with older people. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, most people with who sought treatment for Adderall addiction report that they starting taking Adderall around age 23.
Some common demographics of people who became addicted to Adderall include:
- Students and professionals: Adderall is quite effective at sharpening focus, sustaining attention, and staying awake for extended periods of time. These
- Adderall effects make this stimulant tempting for people that face work or school deadlines and demands.
- Athletes: The performance-enhancing effects of Adderall draw athletes who want to counter fatigue and improve in competition and practice.
- People with eating disorders: People with eating disorders are particularly drawn to this stimulant due to its ability to significantly suppress appetite.
Adderall Side Effects, Withdrawal, and Signs of Overdose
Even when taken over a short span of time, abuse of Adderall can easily lead to an intense addiction that may be hard to break. In addition to the stressors and effects of chemical dependency, Adderall abuse can lead to serious health problems, which includes the possibility of lethal overdose.
Even when taken as prescribed, Adderall can cause a host of side effects that range from mild to severe, and include:
- Blurred vision
- Dry mouth
- Loss of interest in sex
- Increase heart rate
- Heart palpitations
Signs of Adderall overdose may include:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Chest pain
- Fast Breathing
- Uncontrollable shaking
Substances Taken in Combination with Adderall
People who take Adderall in combination with other drugs do so for a variety of reasons. Enhancing the effects of Adderall is done by combining it with other stimulants such as cocaine or methamphetamine. Oftentimes, people take a benzodiazepine, opioid, or other “downer” to calm the effects of Adderall or to help them sleep. Regardless of the reason for mixing Adderall with other drugs, it’s highly dangerous and increases the likelihood of overdose.
The majority of people seen in emergency departments (EDs) for problems with stimulants, such as Adderall, had other substances in their system. The three most common substances found used in combination with Adderall were:
Adderall Abuse and Addiction Statistics According to the American Journal of Psychiatry Based on Results from the 2015 and 2016 National Surveys on Drug Use and Health
- Five million adults had misused prescription stimulants and 0.4 million had stimulant use disorders.
- The motivation that was most commonly reported (56.3 percent) for misusing stimulants, such as Adderall, was for to improve alertness or concentration.
- Misused prescription stimulants were usually (56.9 percent) obtained from relatives and friends.
You Can Overcome Adderall Addiction… for Good
Prolonged abuse of Adderall strengthens the addiction which can make it more difficult to quit. Adderall withdrawal symptoms that ensue after ceasing the medication make it harder to successfully quit without medical intervention.
You don’t have to face the struggle alone. Our south Florida rehab treatment center combines safe medical detox with subsequent therapy. Reach out to us today to take the steps to change your life forever.