Among drug addictions, Adderall addiction is an outlier. People don’t typically abuse Adderall to relax or get high. People use Adderall to stimulate concentration and enhance productivity. For this reason, those most likely to abuse Adderall do not match usual “druggie” stereotypes.
Adderall is typically prescribed to children who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). It is often abused by college students looking to maintain high GPAs, young professionals putting in 80-hour work weeks, and people looking to quickly lose weight.
When used to get high, Adderall can produce worsening cognitive skills, memory loss, insomnia followed by exhaustion, and other effects.
However, Adderall resembles other drugs in that it is dangerous, addictive, and possibly lethal. Quitting Adderall after a period of abuse or addiction can be challenging, but, with professional help in an Adderall addiction rehab, full recovery is possible.
Adderall is the brand name of the drug amphetamine-dextroamphetamine. It is intended to increase focus and attention spans. Adderall has been shown to be effective for kids with attention and focus problems. It is also often prescribed to people who suffer from narcolepsy, a sleep disorder characterized by excessive sleepiness.
Adderall works by boosting the brain’s serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine levels. These chemicals regulate the brain’s motivation and reward pathways. With increased use of Adderall, the brain’s reward pathways get rewired. This rewiring makes the need for more Adderall more frequent and more deeply felt. Like other medications, including Concerta, Focalin, Vyvanse, and Ritalin, Adderall has a high potential for addiction.
Prescriptions for Adderall spiked in the early 2000s, increasing fivefold from 2002 to 2012 alone. Like the opioid epidemic, this increase in prescriptions being written has led to an increase in abuse of the drug nationwide.
Studies have suggested that six percent of full-time college students aged 18 to 22 nationwide have reported using Adderall for nonmedical reasons over the past year.
Meanwhile, studies show that even as Adderall prescriptions have leveled off, cases of hospital emergency room visits, as a result of Adderall abuse, have continued to rise.
Adderall comes in pill form, though two ways that people abuse it are by crushing up the pills and snorting them or dissolving the pills in water and injecting them via syringe. Both methods provide a quicker, more intense “high” but are dangerous, amplifying the side effects and heightening the risk of overdose.
Side Effects of Adderall
Chemically speaking, Adderall is a stimulant containing amphetamine. Its side effects are not much different from those of other amphetamines. These side effects include:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Increased blood pressure
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Sexual dysfunction
- Agitation and Anxiety
- Blurred Vision
- Dry Mouth
- Hair loss
If you notice any of these signs, our Adderall addiction rehab can help you. Call us today.
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Adderall Withdrawal and its Symptoms
When it comes to the withdrawal from Adderall, there are a number of different factors that determine how serious these symptoms are going to be. These include:
- How long did the user take the medication? Did the Adderall use continue for years, or has the user been taking the medication for just a few months? Long-term users likely have a greater dependence and tolerance to the drug for everyday functioning. The longer the person continues to use, the more difficult Adderall withdrawal is going to be.
- Is the person a recreational user or have they been using regularly throughout the day? Non-addicted people will ingest only a therapeutic dose of Adderall, but some continue to ingest the drug throughout the day to ensure that feeling. It is going to be more difficult to withdraw from the medication for those who take it with greater frequency and abuse the drug.
- What subtype of Adderall is it? There are two different types of Adderall currently available: IR (immediate release) and XR (extended release). IR works faster but for a shorter period while XR takes longer to become effective but works longer. The IR versions taken ‘as needed’ are thought to be less debilitating. The primary reason is that there are intervals that the user is not actively ingesting the drug.
- Tolerance. Like other drugs in the amphetamine class, it is easy to build a tolerance to Adderall. In the first few days or weeks of use, the user feels euphoric. However, if the user continues to use, he or she will be increasing the dosage in order to recreate that feeling.
Addiction to Adderall does not usually happen if the user is using it as directed by his or her doctor. Using Adderall as directed could make a person dependent on Adderall, but he or she only become addicted when a psychological need develops. With a psychological need, a person is willing to seek out the drug despite any negative life consequences.
With chronic use and addiction, Adderall withdrawal results in its own set of symptoms. These withdrawal symptoms are not difficult to spot, once one knows what to look for.
- Suicidal thoughts
As this list shows, many of the withdrawal symptoms are emotion-based. This is due to the fact that the brain’s natural production of dopamine has been interrupted by the use of Adderall, causing sometimes dangerously low moods. Taking too much Adderall can end in overdose and death. Symptoms of overdose include severe excitability, irregular heartbeat, fever, kidney failure, and brain hemorrhage.
Get Sober at Our Adderall Addiction Rehab
Withdrawing from Adderall produces a range of uncomfortable physical and emotional symptoms. Exhaustion, cravings to use Adderall, increased appetite, intense anxiety, and changes in mood are common. The worse the addiction, the worse the withdrawal.
The good news is that getting help at an Adderall addiction rehab can make recovery easier.
At our Southern Florida rehab facility, we provide our clients with a comprehensive and holistic path to sobriety in our Adderall addiction rehab center. Patients benefit from medically managed detox, the latest in successful, proven, cutting-edge addiction treatments, and the design for living taught by the 12 Steps.
Patients will also learn how and why their substance abuse became a problem and practice techniques to manage cravings and avoid the triggers that often precede drug abuse.
We have helped many people beat Adderall addiction with our Adderall addiction rehab. We can help you, too, even if you have tried rehab before. Don’t let another day pass while you’re caught in the trap of substance abuse. You don’t have to let an addiction to Adderall define your choices. You can beat chemical dependency and you can start right now.
Call 12 Keys Rehab today for a free and confidential consultation. Find your path to freedom!