Many people, specifically children, are diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) each year. In many cases, the condition can be treated and managed with the use of medications. However, when these powerful drugs are not used properly, there is a risk of abuse and addiction. People who take medication for ADHD, like Adderall, can easily become physically dependent on the medication. Dependence on a drug can quickly lead to abuse and ultimately, addiction.
What is Adderall?
The medication that is most commonly prescribed for ADHD is the stimulant Adderall, which is a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. The drug increases the ability to concentrate, to pay attention, and to control behavior by balancing the amounts of certain natural substances in the brain. Adderall is also sometimes used to treat the sleep disorder narcolepsy. Patients who have this sleep disorder take Adderall to help them stay awake during the day.
While Adderall is proven to be an effective treatment for ADHD and narcolepsy and many people experience a significant improvement to their lives because of it, the medication is often abused.
Signs and Symptoms of Adderall Abuse and Addiction
When someone takes Adderall in ways other than prescribed, they are at risk of becoming addicted. People who are addicted typically exhibit some physical and psychological signs and symptoms including:
Physical Signs of Adderall Addiction
- Stomach problems including nausea, diarrhea, or constipation
- Headaches, sometimes severe
- Dry mouth
- Problems with vision
- Trembling or shaking hands or feet
- Inability to sit still or stop moving
- Changes in appetite
- Weight loss
Psychological Signs of Adderall Addiction
- Angry or aggressive outbursts and behavior
- Anxiety or nervousness
- Feeling restless
- More secrecy than normal
- Excessive and rapid talking
- Sleep problems
- Unusually excitable
If you recognize some of these signs and symptoms in you or someone you love, it’s important that you don’t ignore them. It may mean that a physical dependence to Adderall has crossed the line to addiction. The sooner you seek help for yourself or your loved one, the better the chances are for a full and long-lasting recovery from addiction.
Effects of Adderall Addiction
The continued abuse of Adderall can cause serious side effects, both physical and otherwise.
Physical Effects of Adderall Addiction
- Heart problems
- Excessive tiredness
- Irritability or anger
- Problems sleeping
- Excessive weight loss
- Symptoms of withdrawal when dose is decreased or stopped abruptly
- Damage to nasal cavity (if snorted)
Other Significant Effects
- Abuse of or addiction to other substances
- Legal or financial problems
- Damaged relationships with friends and family
- Issues at work or school
Withdrawal Symptoms of Adderall Addiction
The symptoms of withdrawal from Adderall include the following:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Mood changes
- Irritability, agitation, and depression
- Extreme fatigue
- Stomach problems including nausea, cramping, and vomiting
- Feeling of being hungover or drunk
While these withdrawal symptoms can affect anyone who stops taking Adderall, they are most commonly experienced by people who have been taking the drug in ways other than prescribed.
Treatment for Adderall Addiction
Recovery from Adderall addiction is possible with the proper treatment. If you feel that you or a loved one is addicted to Adderall, it’s time to consider seeking help. At a drug addiction treatment facility, you will receive the medical care you need to detox from the drug and then, if recommended, you will continue on to inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment. There, you will learn coping skills, receive therapy, and become knowledgeable about addiction, triggers, and relapse prevention. You will also receive the support you need from peers and addiction professionals.
So, if you are ready to seek help for an Adderall addiction and to begin your recovery, My Time Recovery can help. We have a caring and supportive staff to make your treatment as comfortable as possible as your journey towards recovery begins.