Adderall Addiction – Smart Drugs Not the Smart Choice
Adderall is appropriately prescribed for people suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD) and attention deficit disorder(ADD). Adderall contains the stimulant amphetamine which helps those with ADHD concentrate and focus. While many who take the drug function better, others do not like how the medication makes them feel. Adderall is a Schedule II class drug because of its potential for abuse and stimulant addiction.
The 2006-2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health recently released a report on college students and Adderall use. The survey found that 6.4 percent of full-time college students used Adderall for nonmedical purposes. Of that group, 89.5 percent reported binge drinking or heavy alcohol consumption.
Other Drug Use
For those full-time college students who used Adderall for non-medical purposes, the survey also found them:
- 8 times more like to have used prescription tranquilizers for non-medical purposes than those who were not full-time college students
- 5 times more likely to have used prescription pain relievers for non-medical purposes than those who were not full-time college students
- 3 times more likely to have used marijuana than those who were not full-time college students
- times more likely to have used cocaine than those who were not full-time college students
A 2005 University of Maryland study found that Adderall use by students for non-medical purposes is steadily increasing. Some administrators believe that the figures are a result of intense pressure and stress experienced by students. This may explain the rise in the misuse of these types of drugs, known as “smart drugs”.
College students are visiting physicians and Health Services at schools and claim to be having trouble focusing, etc. The ease with which the prescription is written is probably due to the confusion around diagnosing ADD and ADHD.
Many students do not believe there is a risk in using such medications for non-medical purposes. They do not realize that these smart drugs are addictive, and can cause heart problems, insomnia, sexual dysfunction, depression, and headaches.
“Substance abuse is the number one public health problem for U.S. colleges and universities because it represents the leading cause of preventable death and injury among collegians ages 18–25 years”
Studies indicate, and student self-reporting support that the casualness with which Adderall is obtained and then freely given away or sold per pill during exam weeks is disturbing. Sadly, this use begins as all non-medical use begins, casually without thought of the addictive potential often leading to admission to a drug rehab facility for addiction treatment. But, these drugs are powerful and addictive and the side effects can be devastating. The attitude by doctors and patients about the minimal impact of these smart drugs adds to the dangers and the propensity for abuse.
Many teens and young adults believe that if a drug is prescribed by a doctor it is safe. Data of other drug and alcohol use for college students who also use Adderall is a clear warning sign of the seriousness of the problem.
Three findings, in particular, have important implications. First, non-medical prescription stimulant users typically have lower grade point averages than non-users…Second, non-medical prescription stimulant users are more likely than other students to be heavy drinkers and users of other illicit drugs… Third, academic enhancement is not the only motivation for nonmedical prescription stimulant use; many students use these drugs non-medically to enhance their experience of partying and getting high on other substances.
It should be remembered that giving someone medication not prescribed to them or selling medication like Adderall is a serious crime.