Many young people have the wrong idea about Adderall. Believing that Adderall is a harmless study aid, college students have been taking the drug whether they have a prescription for it or not. Unsuspectingly, these students often end up with an Adderall addiction or at least a physical dependence on the drug. Because of this, many young people have been entering various facilities for Adderall addiction treatment.
What Is Adderall?
Adderall is a combination drug that contains dextroamphetamine and amphetamine. It is a stimulant that causes the messages that travel from your brain to your body to move in a much faster fashion. Because the drug has this effect, people taking it will be more alert and physically active. In addition to that, amphetamines encourage your brain to release an increased amount of dopamine. Dopamine is responsible for the body’s movements, thinking, and moods, and it causes you to experience good feelings.
What Is Adderall Prescribed for?
Physicians prescribe Adderall for patients they diagnose with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD. Children and adults receive prescriptions for Adderall to help them focus, control their actions, and remain quiet and still like their peers.
Physicians also prescribe Adderall for patients diagnosed with narcolepsy. Narcolepsy causes people to be extremely sleepy during the day, and it makes them fall asleep at inopportune times. Adults and children from the age of 12 and up may receive a prescription for Adderall to treat narcolepsy.
What Is the Proper Dosage?
The proper dosage for the immediate-release tablet is one tablet taken two to three times per day. Each dose should be separated by four to six hours. If the patient is taking the extended-release capsule, he or she must take it upon waking up in the morning.
What Are the Side Effects of Adderall?
The side effects of Adderall include the following:
- Weight loss
- Dry mouth
- Painful menstrual cramps
- Differences in sexual function or sex drive
Adderall can also cause very serious side effects that need immediate treatment. These include the following:
- Difficulties swallowing or breathing
- Skin that peels or blisters
- Wounds on the fingers or toes that don’t have an explanation
- Tingling, burning, numbness or pain in the feet or hands
- Pale or blue toes or fingers
- Blurry vision
- Difficult or slow speech
Along with the many side effects described above, Adderall may also cause the sudden death of children or teenagers. If these children or teenagers have a heart defect, their risk for sudden death goes up even higher. The side effects that cause the most concern are fainting, shortness of breath, and chest pain.
Adderall may also have the effect of slowing down your child’s growth patterns and may cause your child not to gain as much weight.
What Are Some National Statistics for Adderall Abuse?
In 2018, the Monitoring the Future College Students and Young Adults Survey found that more college students misused Adderall than other young adults. In 2018, only 8.1% of non-college young adults were misusing Adderall. During that year, 11.1% of college students misused this substance. The survey also found that more college males were misusing Adderall than college females. In 2018, 14.6% of males misused Adderall, but only 8.8% of college females were doing the same.
Why Do People Abuse Adderall?
The Drug Enforcement Administration classified Adderall under Schedule IIN on the list of Controlled Substances. This means that Adderall has a high potential for abuse. The use of this substance may cause the user to develop a physical or psychological dependence.
Who Abuses Adderall?
The following people commonly abuse Adderall:
People Diagnosed with Eating Disorders
People experiencing eating disorders do many unhealthy things to lose weight. One of those things is taking Adderall because it is known to decrease a person’s appetite. When someone with an eating disorder is also addicted to Adderall, this person requires dual diagnosis treatment at a treatment facility.
People Involved in Athletics
During their practices and performances, athletes may choose to take Adderall to enhance their performances and keep them alert. Because so many athletes were abusing Adderall in 2012, the National Football League suspended more players than in any previous year.
Professionals and Students
Professionals and students are enthusiastic about Adderall because of its ability to keep them awake for longer than normal periods of time. These two groups find this necessary because they are up against increasing pressure to perform at work or school. College students make up the largest group in this demographic.
Adderall Is the “Study Drug”
The number of children diagnosed with ADHD increased over the years. As these children grew up and went to college, they came in contact with other young adults without prescriptions for Adderall and other stimulants. Students without prescriptions became customers of students with prescriptions because they believed that the drug enhanced their abilities to study, and this is how the trend of Adderall misuse began to grow on college campuses. The students without prescriptions wanted to enjoy the stimulating effects of the drug, and they were willing to buy them without a prescription to accomplish their goals.
What Other Substances Are Commonly Mixed with Adderall?
Users often take Adderall with other substances. Some people do this to increase the effects that Adderall causes. Sometimes, Adderall causes insomnia, so users may take drugs that sedate them so that they can fall asleep. Some people also choose to mix Adderall with marijuana, cocaine, or alcohol.
Combining alcohol and Adderall is particularly dangerous because Adderall has the effect of making the user feel more alert. Along with this, Adderall masks the symptoms of intoxication. When this occurs, the user doesn’t feel as if he is drunk, so he may drink so much that he experiences alcohol poisoning.
What Are Treatment Options for Adderall Addiction?
If you believe that your loved one is addicted to Adderall, you may be reading this page because you want to help your loved one get Adderall addiction treatment. If you recognize any of the signs of Adderall abuse, then you will know that you are going in the right direction.
The Signs of Adderall Abuse
The common signs of Adderall abuse include the following:
- Easily angered, nervous or annoyed
- Loss of appetite
- Pain in the upper abdomen
- Difficulties sleeping
The following signs of Adderall abuse are rare:
- Aggressive behavior
- Heart attack
The Symptoms of Adderall Overdose
Several symptoms of overdose may present themselves if your loved one has been snorting or injecting the substance. The following symptoms also occur when someone takes more than the prescribed dose:
- Upset stomach
- Blurry vision
- Irregular or fast heartbeat
- Muscle pain or weakness
- Dark-colored urine
- Uncontrollable shaking of a body part
- Rapid breathing
- Aggressive behavior
Adderall Withdrawal Symptoms
Physicians advise their patients not to suddenly stop taking Adderall because this can trigger Adderall withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal may mean that your loved one has a physical dependence on Adderall but not necessarily an Adderall addiction. Whatever the case may be, your loved one will need to enter into a detoxification program for the purpose of weaning his or her body off of the medication.
You may notice the following Adderall withdrawal symptoms if your loved one is physically dependent on Adderall:
- Continuous bad mood
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Extreme hunger
- Difficulties sleeping
- Thoughts of suicide
- Cravings for Adderall
Because Adderall is so easy to find, your loved one can escalate his or her use of this drug at any time. To avoid this, you must help your loved one get into Adderall addiction treatment. In fact, more young adults have been finding their way into the emergency rooms because of Adderall, but Adderall prescriptions are not increasing. Researchers discovered that young adults increased their use of non-prescribed Adderall by 67%. At the same time, visits to the emergency room because of the substance went up by 156%.
Many young adults are procuring Adderall from students with prescriptions. In addition to that, those with prescriptions are getting refills from more than one physician with the intent of selling these pills to other students. This situation leads some people to believe that Adderall needs to be treated in the same manner as pain medications.
Adderall Addiction Treatment at BRC Healthcare
Because people do not become addicted to Adderall overnight, we address the underlying causes of addiction at BRC Healthcare. When you come to our rehabilitation facility, your Adderall addiction treatment includes several types of therapy. These are individual counseling, group therapy, family counseling, dual diagnosis treatment, psychiatric evaluation, cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy and motivational interviewing.
Adderall addiction treatment begins by reducing your loved one’s dose gradually over time. This allows your loved one’s body to adjust to a smaller dose of the medication. Then, your loved one will eventually stop taking the drug altogether. Your loved one will enter into the therapeutic treatment described above after completing the detox process.
Find Help With BRC Healthcare
Your loved one’s Adderall addiction treatment plan will also include aftercare. This may be a sober living home or an outpatient program. Your loved one will also have the opportunity to participate in 12-step programs and continue with his or her psychotherapy treatment.
If you are concerned about a loved one and his or her Adderall addiction, it may be time to look into Adderall addiction treatment for this person. Contact us today, and a member of our helpful staff will answer all of your questions.