I would honestly be surprised if you're in college and have never heard anything about a specific prescription drug that allows students to focus and study for hours on end. It is the drug that is infamous on university campuses, one that people believe is harmless and safe.
Do you know what drug I'm talking about yet?
You guessed it, Adderall.
Adderall is known to be abused by young adults and college students. It is known to be easily accessible across campuses. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that 20-30% of college students use Adderall on a regular basis.
So, what exactly is Adderall and why should students stay away from it?
What is Adderall?
Originally prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, ADHD, Adderall is the combination of two stimulant drugs--amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. The drug was designed to help people with ADHD control their activity and increase their attention spans. Amphetamines, which aren't as strong or fast-acting as methamphetamines, are addictive and harmful. They speed up and heighten the body's processes and mental alertness. However, since it is approved by pharmaceutical companies, many people believe that Adderall is safe to use.
How is Adderall being used?
College is all about balance right? Balancing parties with midterms, balancing friends and alone time and more, balancing studying and sleeping and more. Trying to make all these puzzle pieces fit can be quite grueling and cause students to turn to Adderall for help. Young adults today no longer turn to coffee for help staying awake -- they look to the Adderall stimulant. I have witnessed friends turn into robots when studying on Adderall. I have seen people put off studying for the entire quarter only to pop an Adderall and lock themselves in a library for 8 hours straight. Students now believe that this pill is the key to being able to party as much as they want and still maintain good grades in college.
More and more students are now also using Adderall when they attend parties and events. Similar to MDMA, Adderall gives users a sense of euphoria and happiness. It allows them to become more social, more open, and more "fun". Once again, people take Adderall thinking that it is safer since it is regulated. However, much like other supplements, Adderall has its side effects.
The side effects of Adderall
There are various side effects of Adderall. Many users have no idea what those are and how they can affect their bodies. The minor side effects of Adderall include anxiety and transient depression. The drug could also bring heart palpitations, increase your blood pressure, seizures, strokes, and more. The most dangerous thing is overdosing. When one overdoses on Adderall, they can go into cardiac or pulmonary arrest, die, or sustain permanent mental effects or defects. If you aren't taken to the hospital immediately, it could result in lifelong detriments or death.
Young adults should stay away from Adderall because of how addicting it can be. After using it, people often go into withdrawal and lose their appetites. They also experience mood swings, blurred vision and more. Once users experience the high from Adderall, it isn't unlikely that they'll want to look for new highs to feel and try. Many people argue that Adderall is a gateway drug due to this reason.
Breaking the law
The possession, sale, and use of Adderall when it is not prescribed to you is against the law. It is a drug crime that could bring serious consequences. Getting arrested could severely hurt your future. Having a drug charge on your record could affect your college acceptances, future job offers, and more. It reflects poorly on your character and could close the door on many opportunities.