While you might think that taking Adderall is helping you, that’s not always the case. Sure, you might be able to study longer for that mid-term or drive through the night without having to stop, but at what cost?
Physical and psychological symptoms of Adderall use and abuse can begin to show up quickly after use. That’s because Adderall triggers the release of dopamine and other neurotransmitters that signals to the brain that it likes it and wants more. While Adderall can be viewed as therapeutic for those who need it since it slows the brain down, for those who take it recreationally, it is essentially like being on speed.
Prolonged use of Adderall, especially in high doses, can cause significant changes to the brain, even brain damage. That’s because over time, Adderall can actually change how your brain produces neurotransmitters like serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. The more often Adderall is taken, the more ingrained these changes become. As a result, the brain will build a tolerance which results in more and more of the drug needing to be taken to achieve the desired results.
Below are some of the short term and long term effects that taking Adderall can have on your mind and body.
- Being more talkative than normal
- Feeling more social
- Increased concentration and a desire to work
- Thinking about things more than usual
- The illusion of wellness
- Stomach issues
- Decreased energy
- Significant weight loss
- Significant emotional changes
- Heart issues
- Heart attack
What Are the Symptoms of Adderall Withdrawal?
Like most addictions, stopping the use of Adderall once you have become addicted to it can be difficult. The signs and symptoms of withdrawal can be harsh enough so that they prevent the user from wanting to go through with stopping just so they can avoid these symptoms. The withdrawal will also be more dangerous the more addicted you have become to your substance of choice.
Symptoms of Adderall withdrawal include:
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Difficulty Sleeping
- Suicidal Thoughts
Teens and Adderall Abuse
Adderall abuse and addiction are far more prevalent in teens and young adults than in any other age group. Part of the reason for this is that it can help them study longer and focus better when it comes to school and getting good grades. Another reason is because of the ease with which teens and young adults can get Adderall.
Teens and young adults are prescribed Adderall at a significantly higher rate than any other age group. As a result, it’s easy for teens and young adults to get their hands on it because either they have a prescription or know at least one person who does.
According to studies, around 2.5 million teens and young adults reported misusing prescription amphetamine products like Adderall. Not only that, but those who took Adderall recreationally were three times as likely to use marijuana, five times more likely to misuse prescription painkillers, and eight times more likely to use cocaine.