Adderall: College Students' Best Friend-- Or Worst Enemy??

Kristin Jenkins's picture

Attention deficit hyperactive disorder is a neurologically based behavioral disorder that afflicts children and adults alike (1). Characterized by inability to pay attention, hyperactivity, and impulsive actions, attention deficit hyperactive disorder, or ADHD for short, this disorder has become a popular diagnosis for students who claim that they are unable to concentrate or focus on their studies (2). Much research has been done in recent years regarding ADHD, its neurological basis in the brain, and how to treat it effectively (1). Many prescription drugs have been released onto the market that effectively target the levels of certain hormones which in turn enable one to counteract the symptoms of ADHD (3).

However, drugs such as Adderall, which were developed solely for those properly diagnosed with the disorder, are beginning to be used recreationally by those whom admit to not having ADHD, but either find that they perform better with its aid or simply enjoy the high of the prescription drug (4). What does this mean for college students? Is recreational use of this drug dangerous physically? Mentally? Does the use of Adderall by those not diagnosed with pose the threat of an addiction? Is an addiction to a drug that seems to make you more efficient a bad thing?

To begin to answer these questions and more, one must understand a few of the basics of the neurobiology behind the disorder ADHD and the science behind drugs that treat it. Like many neurologically based disorders, scientists are not 100% sure of all of the complicated functions that play a role (1). However, by using state of the art brain imaging techniques, several studies have deduced that brains afflicted with ADHD malfunction in the frontal cortex (1). The frontal cortex is involved with primarily executive functions like reasoning, planning, focusing, and problem solving (1). It is in this part of the brain that dopamine, an important neurotransmitter, has been found to be deficient. Without proper concentrations of dopamine in the frontal cortex, these executive functions suffer (5).

To treat this disorder, prescription drugs like Adderall may be prescribed to patients. Adderall is a cocktail of several active ingredients that include amphetamine salts, an active ingredient in many ADHD medications. These amphetamines are thought to treat ADHD by blocking the reuptake of  dopamine from the neural synapses and increasing the uptake into subsequent neurons. The increased dopamine flow in the frontal cortex then allows the brain to carry on its executive functions as a normal brain would, thus counteracting the effects of ADHD (6). But what happens when a brain whose executive functions work properly is treated with such a powerful stimulant?

The answer to this question lies in the 1 in 5 college students that admit to using this drug and not having ADHD (7). Why? Athletes have steroids, depressives have “happy-pills”, and those who wish to do it all, and do it fast, have Adderall. A person with a perfectly normal, functioning frontal cortex and dopamine levels will experience a heightened sense of motivation, focus, and concentration. Presumably this is the perfect mood to pull all-nighters, read hundreds of pages at a time, and write pages and pages of that final paper (8). “I didn't feel like I was becoming smarter or even like I was thinking more clearly. I just felt more directed, less distracted by rogue thoughts, less day-dreamy (7),” states Joshua Foer, a journalist who, after consulting many doctors, decided to try Adderall for himself. “I felt like I was clearing away underbrush that had been obscuring my true capabilities (7).” Before performing his experiment, Foer discussed his decision with psychiatrists who informed him, to his surprise, that when taken in small doses, irregularly, with or without a prescription, Adderall is most likely harmless (7). Other scientists beg to differ, and it is these accounts that are of particular interest.

The general consensus is that stimulant amphetamines like Adderall do indeed increase performance in those that do and do not have properly diagnosed ADHD. The promise of a better GPA with less effort is promise enough for college students across the board to obtain Adderall by any means necessary. Many students admit to actually seeing doctors and purposefully exaggerating symptoms of ADHD to acquire medication. Others simply pop a generously donated pill from their pals (8). The danger lies in the possibility of dependence and the rarely considered effect of the drug on those that have preexisting medical problems that can deteriorate with prolonged use (8).

Since many students assert that they use Adderall only for studying for large tests and completing important assignments, the risk of dependency is high. “I don’t think I’m addicted…..I just can’t imagine not taking it (8),” says student Susan. Says student Steve: “I attend a major university….I take two pills when I have a ton of work to do….Without Adderall I failed one class….I began to take Adderall again and saw a huge improvement (9).” The long term effects of using Adderall in this manner are relatively unknown, however it is well known that those that use amphetamines in larger doses by snorting or inhaling can very well be diagnosed with addiction. Just one example of an amphetamine of this nature is speed (10).

Other side effects of this drug include being irritable while under the influence (8) and feeling as though one’s creativity has been stifled in the name of creating order out of disorder and doing the one task at hand (7). “These medications allow you to be more structured and more rigid. That's the opposite of the impulsivity of creativity,” says Dr. Heiligenstein of the University of Wisconsin (7). Is this just a small price to pay for an “A?” Can one sacrifice their creativity for a few hours in the name of passing Chemistry?

There is even more to this issue than menacing side effects, however. What is it about academics today that have students popping pills to succeed? And is it fair? Athletes that use steroids are kicked off their sports teams because they are assumed to have an unfair advantage—so isn’t this the same general principle? Many students, especially those that actually suffer from ADHD reply “Yes.” “It’s the kind of medication that can help anyone,” says ADHD afflicted student Josie, “For people with ADD, it just makes them normal, and for people without ADD, it makes them above average. If both me and someone without ADD were both on Adderall, I could never outdo them (8).”

So, as a stressed out college student striving to succeed in school and boost my GPA, I sit here wondering how much faster and more efficiently I could have written this paper had I been taking Adderall. A nagging suspicion tells me that yes, maybe I would have finished before 2 am. Maybe I would have stopping pausing to check my e-mail and Facebook. But my gut tells me that this is the wrong thing to do. Not being afflicted with ADHD, I do not have a good reason to take a pill to succeed other than to counteract my own inability to “get down to business”, as they say. My motivation for writing this paper was to find out whether or not unprescribed use of Adderall was dangerous. It appears that though it is not. The risk of dependency, however, is real, and can be seen in those students that can no longer finish assignments without the help of this drug. My question now is whether or not it is morally correct for college students to continue taking this drug as a stimulant—a question that is up to the reader to decide for his or herself.

Works Cited List

 

1. http://www.adhd.org.nz/neuro1.html

 

2. http://www.nimh.nih.gov/publicat/adhd.cfm

 

3. http://www.adderallxr.com/about_adderallxr/about-works.asp

 

4. http://www.adrugrecall.com/news/adderall-abuse.html

 

5. http://www.med.yale.edu/chldstdy/plomdevelop/genetics/01febgen.htm

 

6. http://www.answers.com/topic/adderall

 

7. http://www.slate.com/id/2118315

 

8. http://www.vpul.upenn.edu/ohe/library/drugs/adderall.htm

 

9. http://www.thecitycollegian.com/artman/publish/article_409.shtml

10. http://amphetamines.com/adderall/classroom.html

Comments

College student biochemist's picture

Oh.. This was what you meant

Oh.. This was what you meant in your other post. I did not write the post your comment in response to.

This is sad though. You cannot compare macro and micro as if they're the same thing. The periodic table is organized base on properties they are the building blocks of everything else. A molecule is what has been built with many elements. A molecule is macro and an atom (element) is micro.

"Oh, one important point I forgot: do some homework you idiot....dextroamphedamine is only half of the ingredients in Adderall. Wikipedia will tell you the rest...go have a look. Some research before comenting is always a good idea. good day yourself."

You sound like an idiot acting like this. First you're lashing out at someone else thinking it was me, and the 'facts' you assert to make him look stupid aren't correct. Dextroamphetamine is 3/4ths of the ingredient in adderall and levoamphetamine is 1/4th the ingredients. The ratio is 3:1 which is explicitly stated on the adderall wikipedia in the very first paragraph. This clearly indicates that you have not even read the first bloody paragraph of the adderall wikipedia page that you've cited more than once in your comments. I also explain that dextr & levo are technical distinctions of enantiomers which as irrelevant - is far as you're concerned they should be treated the as the same thing.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Thank you!

I take adderall but only occasionally to supplement the techniques I've learned to cope with my ADD. Even so, every now and then people will act like I'm lazy or completely dependent. I take the lowest dose and it helps me get through things I otherwise wouldn't be able to. It's not about laziness; I have to work harder than my peers to succeed, which I do. I'm glad to see someone who understands.

Dr. Wooldridge's picture

No.

No.

terra's picture

thinking of takin adderoll

So I'm kinda like the black sheep in my family and I get pressure from them to do better at school I'm currently on my second year of high school and I have problems concentrating in class and I usually forget everything during tests so I was thinking of trying adderoll any advices??

Serendip Visitor's picture

No. Just no. You're in HIGH

No. Just no. You're in HIGH SCHOOL. There's nothing THAT hard about high school. The people she's writing about are in college, where there's way more pressure and much more demanding work. And you're only in your second year. You dont need to be taking any mind altering substance to enhance your performance in school. All you need to do is get your work done and study if you have to.

Not trying to be mean or anything, but everyone in high school is pressured by their family to do well. You gotta graduate. But do it on your own. That way you can get into a good college, and then you'll learn what real pressure is. Good luck in school though. It's more important that you think.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Don't be Condescending...It's not attractive

Calm down it matters where you go to school.I went to a Catholic prep school which was actually at the same level if not harder than college and only God knows how I would have made it without adderall

young gun's picture

adderall

I'm a college stundent who been perscribe addy. 30 mg I need to know is it safe to take them three tymes daily.

Autumn's picture

If you were really prescribed

If you were really prescribed it, then your doctor told you how many times to take it. Take as many times as they say or less if you can.

That one guy's picture

To good to be true???

First off I never officially was prescribed adderall, but I have some friends who get like 150-200 pills at once and file my some occasionally. I am a sophomore in highschool and my parents are vary strict when it comes to grades and school. I fist took 30mg. of adderall about 3/4 through my freshman year. I was more energized and my heart felt like it was about to burst. The second time I was in school and was able to focus way more, became less talkative, and less tired but not like the first time. I stopped after that for a while and began smoking spice and drinking. I would happily use marijuana if I was in the states, but I currently go to school on a military base in Japan :( . I got caught drinking last year around the last week of school and got yelled at for days on end by my dad. Today was the first day of school and I was trying to get one of my friends to bring spice or alcohol. Instead they brought me 3 20mg pills of adderall. I was a little cautious, then only took two at first. I felt incerdable! I was on time to all my classes, got the position of class leader in my JROTC class and was able to control myself in class. When I got home I made a daily schedule for my chores and down time, worked out, made a work out schedule and did all of my homework for the week. (A biology worksheet and some geometry home work), and ate without a problem. Then I started to get bored a got shakey, like I drank a mobster or two, not that bad. So I did more exercise and started researching spice. NOW THAT SHIT IS BAD FOR YOU! I'm never touching the stuff again. Then I started researching adderall and I found that I have all of the major symptoms; lack of energy, irritability, not paying attention in class, ect. So I though I'd just take a normal dosage every morning( kinda like "self prescribing" it) then I thought, I don't wanna get addicted so when I join the military I do t have withdraws. So I researched adderall addiction and found mixed answers. All of the scientists and cops and doctors said its as addicting as crack of heroin, while the users, mostly college students, said it wasn't addicting at all, you just go back to your old boring, non-attentive self. If that's the true case, I will continue to take it and may talk to my school substance abuse consuler (idk how to spell that) about getting legitimently prescribed adderall and just tell him I've use it a lot and it helps me, with little to no side effects. And I also seem to have many of the symptoms.
Overall, 1) is it safe? 2) is it addicting? And should I continue to use it regularly?
Please, I really need someone other than my friends advice, and soon! Thanks for your time :)
P.S. I wrote this while on adderall, and finished it rather quickly compared to when I'm not on it.(sober?)

Genius's picture

Adderall Commentary

I am a junior in high school. I have always performed well academically. I am in the top three percent of my class and possess no reason to try adderall. I do not even have many of the basic symptoms people have mentioned for taking adderall. HOWEVER, after a semester or a few marking periods, school may become painstaking and dull. There is times during the school year where I simply lack motivation and initiative. During these times, I become less attentive and lose my sense of intellect. (This can be due to pure laziness.) When I heard about adderall and its function, I was intrigued. Most of the reason I was intrigued was because people without ADHD or ADD have decided to take this tablet. Of course, this was mainly due to the effects, such as alertness, extreme focus, attentiveness, an increase on what you retain within your attention span, etc. It sounded like brain candy. I read a lot about the amounts of dosage, the chemistry, and also the benefits and drawbacks. After my research, I decided that it will not be so harmful to try out 20mg. of adderall. I tried a small dosage at first mainly because I wanted to experience the effects without the whole insomnia part. This part plays a role typically when the dosage is high, or it is just dependent on the person (lack of tolerance). Thankfully, wakefulness wasn't even a factor in my experience. So, I took this pill once, in the beginning of a school day, and as I said it was only 20mg. I didn't feel the effects for a good hour. When they came, I noticed I was definitely more focused, more awake, and overall it just put me in a positive mood. On the pill, I felt as if I wanted to learn and pay attention to my surroundings.
Now, I cannot discuss the addiction portion regarding adderall because I took it once and really did not enable myself to be mentally or physically reliable on the pill. What I will say is that it works and can certainly help those (without ADHD or ADD) who daydream, lack motivation, and have a hard time focusing. Adderall is considered to be a best friend to many college students. It is a study/testing enhancing pellet. I recommend.

Serendip Visitor's picture

watch out for cops

congratulations, you're on your way to using drugs.. You should work on being so arrogant though..it's a real turnoff to girls, friends, teachers, pretty much everyone except other arrogant asshats

Autumn's picture

To answer your questions: 1)

To answer your questions: 1) It's safe so long as you dont over use it. If you end up getting a prescription, take only your normal dose. If you dont, I'd recommend only using it 3 times a week MAX. 2) It is addicting if not used right. If you use it only when you really have a lot to do, you'll be fine. If you take it regularly, and increase how much you take, you'll get addicted. An ex of mine got addicted, and actually had withdrawals. So it is a possibility.

To put it simply, it's best to take only when you have a lot to accomplish in little time. You'll likely find that you'll get even more done than you had to in the first place, making the rest of the week easier. But please, do not take it regularly. That's how addictions happen.

Oh, you'll also notice that when you're coming down off of it, you'll be irritable and sometimes even depressed. Dont try to drink monster or coffee to gain the energy back, it's really bad for your heart to mix those with a stimulant. When coming down, just go to sleep and you'll wake up fine. Try to plan it out so it wears off at bedtime, or else you'll be stuck in a bad mood and feeling like crap.

Now that I've given you advice, I feel like I can give you my opinion: You're only in high school, man. You dont even need that stuff. College kids take it for a reason. Do you know what it's like to have to write several 10 page papers the night before 3 big tests? To have the stress of living off ramen noodles and never having time for anything because when you're not in school your working to pay for school? Never getting enough sleep because there's homework every day for every single class? It's tough, man. Those people need some help. You, on the other hand, dont have to pay rent nor pull several all nighters a week in order to maintain a grade.

Not trying to be a dick, just throwing it out there. And most college students only use it when they have an overwhelming amount of work. So, if you must take it, do so only when you feel like you dont have enough time to accomplish everything you need to.

And for the record, there's no such thing as "self-prescribing" anything. That's just called taking drugs. Call it what it is.

That one guy's picture

Thanks, and I got what your

Thanks, and I got what your saying, I experienced the bad come down today at lunch because I took it earlier than before. It sucks! And I get that high school is not very challenging but my step dad is the step dad from hell so I'm trying to be way more on top of my grades this year. Thanks a lot for the advice, and opinion, all my friends were telling me it can't be worse than spice so I should be good, but I know addiction I no joke! So ill most likely tone it down and use it once or twice a week, if I NEED it. Thanks again! :)

Haygood's picture

Adderall

I got prescribed adderall (20mg) two days ago for twice a day. I've taken the XR before (10mg several times, not at once, 15mg a few times, and 40mg once) and was amazed at how much my motivation to do everything increased. From doing chores, running errands, studying a subject I was interested in but was never in the class for; it was unreal and I had to be on it. I was good at school in my early elementary years.
As I got older everything started to get more difficult. Where I am now and looking back on my middle school, high school, and first two years of college (currently a junior but a semester or two behind) I wish I would have gotten tested sooner. I have moderate to severe ADHD and this has affected me all my life and I would be way ahead of where I am today if I would gotten it fixed earlier. Very fortunate there is drug like this out there to reverse the effects.
The first day i got it prescribed to me, I took it right away. I walked back to my dorm, which was in complete choas: trash EVERYWHERE, cloths all over the place, smelt bad, everything you could think of. I took it and about 20 minutes later I started to clean up everything; my side and my roommates side. It was epic. My dorm is now spotless (for two whole days which is a record) and I had so much energy and motivation that I even emptied all of my drawers, packed everything in my room up from TV, to xbox, to cloths, to books, to random dorm appliances, etc, and put them in boxes and ready to move out for the semester..and we still have over a week left. I usually do the packing the day of moving day, but now I was able to do it instantly and there is nothing like a clean, spotless room before exam week.
The second day I took it, I woke up at 7 for my class at * (havent been to this class since the last test a little over a month ago) and was actually awake, alert, and taking notes for it. My friends noticed a huge difference in me, I guess because I wasn't asleep and not zombie'd out for once. After class I was running errands left and right, from meeting with teachers, to getting copies of keys made that were supposed to be made 3 months ago (no joke) to even going to my next class and taking notes. It was unreal. It wore off around 2 or 3 and I had work at 5. I went in to work early to eat before I started and took the adderall right after..apparently the affects of adderall are little to not effective at all after or right before a meal, due to the lack of absorption of the medicine. Work was tough on me after waking up at 7 and going all day with no nap for once..I had no motivation and was exhausted. I know better now to take it first, then wait and force myself to eat (lesson learned). I couldn't be more thankful that my parents gave in and finally let me get tested to take adderall (and right on time for finals)!

....oh, and I'm typing this on adderall...in the library...since I finished my paper...off to work now!

BKaye's picture

unsure please help

I have someone very close to me that has been using adhd drugs to help with college the thing is this person has never been diagnosed with neither adhd nor add and i am not sure but after reading your comment i think this person very well may have one or the other. She has always had a very messy room and her car looks like she lives out of it. She is intelligent and has a wonderful personality but I fear that taking this drug just off and on is causing her to have horrible mood swings. How does one have a person that is 19 years old tested for add or adhd? She also like you would nap during the day and wants to sleep late every chance. I am concerned and scared that she will come to harm by obtaining this without an RX and want to know if this drug is harmful. I have had people tell me that a person using this drug off and on is no different than "smoking from a glass pipe" is how they put it!!! Please I need advice and help in knowing what to do. I want this person to finish college and have a better life than what I have had as I always had a problem with staying in college and staying focused and never finished and my life has been a struggle!!!

Dustin's picture

First-hand experience

Addressing the second half of your comment first, I'm assuming you're either a parent or older relative of the person in question. Most of these "symptoms" you're talking don't really have anything to do with ADHD. Most teenagers are like this. People between the ages of 16 and 25 are biologically wired to operate at later hours of the day (the general term would be a night owl, but rather than it being a choice, it's actually caused by the way our bodies operate) Having your sleep schedule pre-chosen for you based on people who are active earlier in the day messes with your mind. That's one of the reasons for the mood swings and the problems with attention. This also causes sleep deprivation, since she's probably staying up until early in the morning, and then only getting a few hours of sleep before she has to wake up for classes or work. The naps in the afternoon are to make up for the sleep she's not getting during the night. (Also not a symptom of ADHD. ADHD is just a problem with attention, but to a larger degree than what she probably had. If she does have ADHD, she'll talk fast, jump between topics a lot, and cut-off mid-sentence frequently) And the problems with being messy are also associated with being a teenager; there are just more pressing matters to us then keeping everything tidy. As long as we know where things are, a room or car is clean to us. As for the mood swings, there are a few factors playing into that. Part of it is the aforementioned lack of sleep, which everyone knows will cause people to be "grumpy". Then there's also the fact that she's a teenager; the body goes through a lot of chemical changes starting at puberty and going up until at least age 23. A lot of it can be attributed to this fact. And then the most obvious factor is being a girl, hormones go way out of balance during the menstrual cycle, which also will produce mood swings. All of these factors happening at once, and mood swings are to be expected.

That being said, depending on the medication she's using, (I'll only be talking about the effects of Adderall, if she's taking ridalin or something else I have no idea) then the moodiness isn't being caused by it. Adderall produces a greater amount of concentration, which basically allows you to get more things done. It makes you think faster, and also allows you to process that information quickly. For me, I'll jump between multiple projects at the same time, because you begin to see connections you normally don't. It also gives you a huge boost in motivation, because you feel like you can do everything, and you see what needs to get done.

The people telling you it's basically the same as smoking crack I'm assuming are also people around your same age. The reason they say this is because one of the ingredients is a methamphetamine, which is all you need to hear to assume they're the same thing. They're not though. Muffins with poppy seeds also have ingredients closely related to opium, yet you won't see someone that just ate a muffin running around high as a kite. I'll write the explanation of that in the next few lines, but feel free to skip that part if it already makes sense. It gets a little technical, so forgive me.

~~~
The reason the ingredient in Adderall is related to methamphetamine is not because they both have the same effects. When grouping things together scientifically, it's done differently than when you're comparing a book and a notepad and saying they're similar because they are both made of paper. Basically, the two chemicals are built in a similar way, and they both effect the same part of the brain, but they do so in different ways. Meth increases the amount of dopamine to a certain part of the brain, giving people a "happy feeling". With Adderall, it effects the same part of the brain, but with the opposite effect. It decreases the amount of dopamine to the brain, so that you aren't distracted by everything.
~~~

Personally I've been taking Adderall for a few months now, without a prescription. (I don't have ADHD, so technically speaking I don't need it to function normally.) For me, it increases motivation to do things quite a bit. Instead of being distracted by things I'd rather be doing (surfing the web, checking your facebook, skipping your homework to go hang out with friends) I can see why I should be doing my homework, or going to school, and then I do that. It also speeds up the brain, which makes it easier to learn and easier to complete your work.
That being said, there are side effects. (I take it pretty regularly; if she's taking it only occasionally then she either won't have these, or they will be very, very mild. I didn't have any of them until at least a month of taking it almost every day)
There is a very high risk for addiction, but not in the way you normally think when you hear the word "addiction". It's not so much the feeling that you need to have it, but rather you know how much more you could get done if you take it. If she is taking Adderall (whether prescribed or not) then talk about it. With small doses this isn't a problem, but the more regularly you take it, the more likely it is to become dependent.
The other main side effect you'll notice is a lack of appetite. Adderall typically lasts 3 - 5 hours, and during this time your mind is racing through many, many thoughts. It's not that you don't eat, it's just that you don't feel hungry, and you don't think about it. After it wares off though you'll notice a large increase in appetite (with the brain operating at those levels, it takes a lot of energy. If you're not eating, then it's burning through your reserves) What I advise it to have her eat a decent amount of food at least an hour or so before she plans on taking it, even if she's not hungry. If she does that, then you won't notice any side effects from taking it.

And finally, if you want to get her tested, it's a lot easier than you think. Give your doctor a call and talk to him about setting up a test for ADHD. Most insurance plans will cover a large amount of the prescription cost, and a lot of plans will even cover the test. Also it's not something to feel embarrassed or anxious about; more and more people are being tested every year. More than likely, your doctor has dealt with dozens of other people asking about getting tested in just the last month.

If you have any questions or concerns, or I didn't explain something well enough, then feel free to send me an email (or reply to this comment I suppose, the answer will be sent to my email) I'll do my best to clear things up if I can.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Depends on the person

As an ex-heroin junkie/out of control loser who has now been clean just shy of ten years and is working on a Master's degree, I was prescribed 20 mg Adderall twice a day DESPITE my history of drug abuse and addiction. Thinking this prescription was ill-advised, I sought the opinion of another doctor who happens to be a renowned Manhattan psychiatrist and a friend of a family member. After a four hour consultation and two more visits, he concurred with the first doctor that he believed a signifigant contributing underlying cause of my past of "self-medicating" was undiagnosed major depression and ADD that he believes I've had since childhood, even though I have attended an accellerated curriculum "Gifted and Talented" school since the third grade up until dropping out of high school at age 16. According to these two doctors, I have a sub-type of ADD (supposedly, I have ADD - NOT AD'H'D - there is no componant of hyperactivity in my case) referred to as "hyperfocus" - this means that I have the characteristic impulse-control issues, except I tend to focus very intensely on ONE thing which disables me from sharing focus with other necessary tasks and topics. While I'm hugely skeptical of the DSM and was very resistant to accepting any diagnosis besides the glaringly obvious addiction, I cannot argue that this HYPERFOCUS theory fits me like a glove. For example, in the past I have been able to excel wildly in ONE course of maybe five taken in a semester, because I had no problem devoting all my thinking and attention to that one course load. But to do this I had to tune out every other assignment or subject. In other words, I lack the ability to multitask.
While I am a rare case of a former addict who is now terrified of drugs (instead of having cravings, I actually have no desire at all to use any drugs because of a very strange but welcome phenomenon: the thought of taking any drug, even opiates - my drug of choice - causes me to get physically ill and experience severe panic attacks complete with the inability to breathe, feeling on suffocating or having a heart attack, angina, etc.), I am in somewhat of a predicament. Despite the consistent advice of THREE psychiatrists, that last two of which were consulted in hopes that they would disagree with the former, I do not take my Adderall, because I genuinely HATE the racy,"high-on-cocaine" feeling it gives me. But I acknowledge that they facilitate intense concentration and academic success. I wish I could convince myself to take the prescription - but Im too fearful of the side effects.

Serendip Visitor's picture

There are safer things

Lately, I've been trying yerba mate, which has caffeine, but doesn't give me the jangly feeling of multiple cups of coffee. It's also actually supposed to have vitamins and minerals. Other kinds of tea work pretty well, too. I generally buy organic, to avoid possible contaminants.

As a sweetener, I use xylitol, stevia, and sometimes honey or molasses.

A lot safer and healthier than commercial energy drinks or pharmaceuticals.

Getting enough sleep is important, too, and most people (especially students) are sleep deprived. But at least college students usually have the chance to take naps.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Try it again!

I understand your hesitation, but I feel like you didn't take it long enough for it to actually get in your system and work. You have to give it two or three days before that racy feeling you described will go away. Everyone experiences this, you just have to give it time. I also feel that you are embarrassed by having ADHD (we call it that even if you aren't hyperactive). Don't be. You should be relieved that you can easily solve your problems with just a pill, others aren't as lucky. So give it a good month and if you don't like it, you can always look into getting other medication like Vyvanse or the non-stimulant Strattera. If you feel like meds are not for you, you can always look into shelling out $100 per visit on a psychologist to find other ways to cope.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Afraid of what might happen to me

Please read this. I hope someone can provide some well thought out advice without being preachy. I'd like some objective insight.

I first tried adderall for the first time a month ago. I have since gone on maybe 4 binges of three 30mg orange pills. Unfortunately, as a college student they don't make me focus better (or at least I haven't tried too) but find that it makes me sociable to the point where I can call friends I rarely speak to or haven't spoke to in awhile and talk for hours. I truly feel good and feel that it helps my social life, enhances my job prospects (interviews, etc.) and improves my overall social interactions.

However I know that the feeling may very well be turning to an addiction for me. I've dabbled with anti-anxieties, prescription pain killers, alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, and even DMT (short duration psychedelic) and have all been able to stop using them when I had too, even at the expense of my pleasure. I have never gone through any physical withdrawal and as a result was never afraid of it. I just knew if I spaced out my drug use, I would never fall prey to addiction. I now understand this is only partially true as addiction reaches beyond the physical.

I do feel that this is my favorite drug/medication. I label it as such because it does help me... but I wonder at what cost. I have terrible anxiety daily, and am depressed, this is not a self diagnosis - I was diagnosed with depression as a child and throughout my early adulthood, when I stopped seeing a therapist (no longer had too as I made my own decision). I know very little about this drug, and my mother did not allow them to prescribe it to me when I was a child, she felt I was to young. I am not sure if I have ADD or not, but taking a 30mg tab makes me feel wonderful, but much like cocaine, I later crash and feel miserable.

Will I become physically addicted, and if so, how much will it take? I've heard stories of people taking it for days on end. Are they officially addicts? What if they don't return to it for a week, will they suffer physical withdrawal? Is addiction to adderral strictly mental?

Please don't sugarcoat anything for me, give it to me like it is - whether it means you all think I need to seek professional help, or if it means admitting that adderral is not that dangerous of a drug (by comparison at least). I just want the cold hard truth, I am not afraid to admit that I may be addicted (mentally) but the word addiction seems to be ill-defined. But I do intend to stop using, or at least reserve a few pills for when I know I absolutely need it for my use. That in and of itself sounds like addict talk, I know, but I also know that as someone who was around other meds that I enjoyed I had the will power to NOT indulge in those meds, and know I can summon the will power to do the same.

Well that's all I guess this was more of a confession than a question but all comments are appreciated :)

Dustin's picture

same boat

The problem I think you're having is that you're taking such a high dose. 30mg is a crazy amount if you don't have ADHD.
Personally I've been taking it for around 3 months regularly. (probably about half a year if you count when I only took it every once in a while for a test or a big project) I'm not sure with your dosage, but in my case there's really not withdrawal symptoms (at least not like you'd go through if you were taking heavy drugs)
I'll take 10mg once or twice a day, depending on what I need to do and how long I need to do it for. With that dosage, you won't have the excessive happy feeling associated with a "high". There will also be less chance to become seriously addicted if you stop taking it. When I run out, I'm annoyed, but that's about the extent of it. The only reason I'm annoyed isn't even because I feel a need to take it; rather it's an annoyance that I'm tired. (with 10mg doses, it basically becomes a sleep supplement. lets me function normally on 3 or 4 hours of sleep, rather than feeling dead) If you're actually getting enough sleep, then with a 10mg dose you'll actually see why students take it to help with school, rather than just for fun. (it speeds your mind up and lets lectures and readings sink in, without the euphoria)

So to round this all up, at your dosage, yes, you'll probably feel withdrawals if you just stop. Addiction is also likely. Larger doses are meant to actually treat a problem, so if you don't have that problem then that's where you get the addictions and withdrawals. (It messes with the chemicals in your brain to make you operate at higher levels. If your brain is fine, then it's not supposed to function at that level; forcing it to do so can cause insomnia, headaches, mood swings, aggression, depression, and a number of other things. I'll put emphases on the word "can" though; just because it can cause these issues, it doesn't mean it's going to happen. Feel free to ask if you want me to clarify or explain this better)
At the very least, drop your dosage to a lower amount. As I said, I take it pretty regularly, so I'm not going to say "this is evil, stop it now." It's amazing what it can do. That being said, just be sure not to be overdoing it. Too much at once /can/ cause problems. (Again, stress the word "can". The same way if you're walking down the street, you "can" be hit by a car. Doesn't mean it's guaranteed to happen)

If you have any questions, need me to clarify or explain something, or would just like to talk about this, then feel free to contact me. (Message me or reply, I'm not sure exactly how that works)

And a random tidbit, if you're taking the smaller doses but decide you want that feeling of the higher dose, then drink a small redbull a little while after it kicks in; they mix rather well to give you that general feeling of well-being, as well as the increased focus. Only if you're not sensitive to caffeine though, and a small one. I can't attest to how it will effect anyone else, but it works for me.

Serendip Visitor's picture

I think your ADD-ADHD

Hi, I just read your post and you sound like me in a few ways... I just started adderall a few days ago and see a major improvment.
I think you schould get tested for ADD! I was told I was depressed for years by my docs and to find that most of those feeling come from ADD, I took for ever (years) to go see a mental health doc because, like many, I feel Im not crazy so dont need to go see a doc like that... But I went and to my supprise was told on my testing to see if I have add or adhd that I fall into both. Adderall can be addictive, I have read a lot about it, but if you are purscribed it by a doc and see them regualy then you will be fine, try not to abuse it- I dont know anyone that takes more than 40 mg orange pill in a day, that seems to be the high dose in my area. Make sure you eat well too- your body will fail if you dont mantaine your health, the pills as you know will make you hate food. I hope this helps you out, go get diagnosed, its not dangerous when used under a doc.

jaz's picture

comment

I don't really see why people label themselves "crazy" if they visit a psychologist or psychiatrist. Psychologist are simply therapist who help with issues that you may have. Whether its depression, anxiety, a traumatic event. Whatever it may be they try to find the main issue and work with it to make things better for you. Psychiatrist prescribe medications, if your diagnosed with any disorder that may need it. Basically its a professional you vent to. I personally visited a psychiatrist because I had a difficult time coping with my fathers death. Does that make me crazy? It's simply ignorant people that label it as such.

Recreational User's picture

While I am not doctor...

I have had numerous experiences with Adderall myself. Took it several times back in college with very mixed results. Tried some of the 'off brands' as well that were also amphetamine-salt based (Concerta, Vyvanse, etc). At my worst, I ingested 9 60mg XR pills. 480mgs in total. An obscene amount. Luckily I was dating a pharmacist at the time and she was able to help me through it (I got lucky, never take anywhere near that amount)
I also have a very addictive personality in general. If I love something I will obsess over it. For some reason though I have not become addicted to any of the many other drugs that I have tried (similar to your list).
Adderall is definitely my favorite drug. There is no doubt about that. If I knew that it was 100% safe and had no long-term side effects I would take it every day.
With all of that being said I am still not personally worried about addiction. I know that it has the potential to become addictive, but it seems as though you have given it enough though, have enough will power, and are sufficiently self aware that you can avoid this.
Again, I am no expert, but I have been taking it on and off for the past 7 years. I have loved it every single time I have used it. I have considered getting a prescription. I have almost always had at least a small supply available to me since first taking it. I have still not become addicted though. I can, and often do, go months without taking it. Once I do, it is definitely much harder to resist taking it again for the next few days, but I am always able to resist if I don't actually think that I need it.

Sorry about how long and incoherent this response it, I am currently cramming for law school finals and my brain is losing steam.

Hope this helps you in some way. And feel free to ask me any other questions, I wanted to say a lot more but am feeling sleepy and not at all articulate. I will try and check back here tomorrow.

XD's picture

Spontaneity

First off...Great job :) No secrets unveiled; being a spontaneous and decisive leader proves simple. I am Strong. So be you. Peace

Aiyana M-L's picture

HELPS creativity

As an already creative person, I completely disagree with the statement in the article about adderall 'reducing' creativity and impulsivity. I am an artist and every day I have hundreds of ideas but only actually act on about 5% of all the ideas that come to me. I easily forget many of the good ideas that I have because, as any artist knows, the ideas come to me at very inconvenient times, such as when in bed, daydreaming at work, or riding in a car/bus or my bike. If I don't write them down immediately I will forget them because of my slight adhd symptoms, too many thoughts in my head make it very difficult to focus on anything. When I start a project, I usually never finish it. While on adderall, not only can I channel my energy better to do a task efficiently... I have a better memory, am more inclined to write stuff down, and am much more interested in conversations and people's feelings. Some also say that adderall 'decreases emotion' thus taking away the emotional distraction that many people, whom have adhd or not, deal with on a day-to-day basis. While I found that my emotions were less distracting, I became more inclined to ask others how they were feeling (customers and co-workers) and found myself actually caring and wanting to start a conversation with them, rather than just asking how their day was going out of courtesy like I usually do. I also had an itch to be creative or active, was able to help answer customers' questions and they seemed very happy with the help I offered. I am going back to school soon and this time I do NOT want to fail all my classes and lose my money. So I am going to try my best to get diagnosed with adhd so I will be able to focus and prioritize better. PLEASE- to people who abuse this drug to the point where they are endangering their well being- you are ruining it for people who actually use this drug to better their lives. PDOCS are a lot more reluctant to give out prescriptions now and new, less effective drugs are being developed because of adderall's abuse potential :( It is excruciating to try and be a responsible adult for someone who has ADD, especially in this complicated world. This drug helps a lot.

Neeyah's picture

kindred spirits

Everything you said replicates every thing I am and feel. I'm pretty creative too, I get ideas outta the blue too but hardly ever execute any plus I forget too when I don't write them down. Would like to know what strength of Adderall you have been taking and if you ahve upped or 'downed' the dose in recent times. Also. Would taking two 10mg pills be the same as taking one 20mg one? Thank you.

Serendip Visitor's picture

solely for the properly diagnosed

Really? What rock have you been hiding under?

At 57 years old, doing computer programming, very likely have ADD, I was not diagnosed.

Anyone that likes the Adderall buzz, or wants to buy them for under a buck and sell them for 5 to 10 bucks can do so.

They wanted to charge me $2000 for a diagnosis but did not have insurance.

It's Speed. People like to do Speed. If you think the pharmaceutical cos do not understand this, well you are just ignorant.

30 years ago I bought my speed from a Mexican cartel. They were called White Cross. The big difference is the Mexicans only charged me $0.10 per dose. The pharmaceuticals 50 times that.

So who is the bad guy?

People that have a chemical imbalance will do what ever necessary to remedy the situation.

Typically in this case it would be coke, crack, or meth.

People will self medicate with what ever is at their disposal.

I am 57 years old, an upstanding and productive citizen (very productive thanks to Adderall) but if I did not get my Adderall I would be smoking Crack. Crack is not very productive but it alleviates what ever it is that creates my need.

AJ's picture

adderall

I would be very interesteed in knowing where you get your adderall. It is a huge pain in the azz to get it now. Tried it and loved how it helped me focus in school. Thanks

anonanswers's picture

adderall

So my mom is on adderall and my younger brother is on ritalin. Sometimes I take my moms adderall, sometimes in the mornings before i go to school sometimes after school or on weekends it all depends on when i did it last and what i am trying to achieve on a certain day. On Sunday I did a line and cleaned my whole room and most of the house. Today I did a line before i went to school, by the time i am in class ready to write my focus level has increased dramatically.Today, I had a test on tournament styles and over the weekend i had been reviewing because i didnt want to do bad on this test. And at the end of all my review I still couldnt remember much. So today, i snorted some adderall and went to school to do this test, the teacher gave us about 10-15 mins to review, the test came around and i remembered everything. After school i came home and did another line and finished most of my final English paper that i still have a month to complete. I do think adderall has very positive benefits when it comes to concentration and motivation and procrastination.
There are negatives to this drug too. A year ago around this time, i was feeling very dependent on adderall/ritalin. I had been increasing the amount i was taking and leaving hardly any time to sober up before doing it again. I began to get very skinny and feel brittle, i could not sleep at all and was starting to vomit and have hallucenations because i was so sleep/nutrients deprived. I knew i was facing a problem with addiction because i started to feel sad once i stopped vomiting. I would have rather been sick to my stomach and going crazy instead of taking time to be sober. After not sleeping for 2 days i was laying in bed trying to sleep, everytime i opened my eyes the walls were moving and when i closed my eyes all i could hear was children laughing. After that scary experience i decided to let it go, once i was off of it for about a week i totally forgot about it until a year later. I think that once you have sobered up from adderall it is much easier to avoid it, but if you dont let your self take a break your body suffers. Everything in moderation!

Chiikiitabby's picture

Adderall

Honestly you don't seem to have an addiction at the moment, but are putting yourself at risk. If you already went through it once chances are sooner or later it will happen again. Personally I think if you "make up" your reasons for taking adderall doesnt't mean you're an addict. It depends on what reasons you come up with. I started taking adderall back in high school. I took it the first time without even knowing what it was, and at that point in my life I never expected myself to have such an addictive personality. I knew I had an addiction after taking it for 3 months straight, having those few days with no sleep, hallucinating from malnutricion and restlessness, trying to stop to get some sleep and food, and having the worst withdrawal symptoms that led me back to taking them to avoid it. Finally my provider disappeared for a while, so I was left to deal with withdrawal. It honestly took me a good couple months to really feel fine and stop trying to find more adderall. I stopped for a while until I started college and then I found myself starting to abuse it again. Never has it gotten as bad as that first time, and the only difference is back then I took it because it made me feel unstoppable. I thought I could do anything, and it helped me interact with others. Now I only take it when I work long hours, and at the end of the month to ride into the begining of the month. It helps with all the paperwork and organizing we do at work after each month. I can honestly say I don't have an addiction yet still use adderall for my own reasons. I don't snort it though, I do think that's a little too much. I've had my thoughts about it and thats when I realize if I were to start snorting it then I would be on the path to return to my addiction and I can't let myself do that. But if that works for you then so be it! To each his own! As long as you can take it and stop without going through withdrawal there is no addiction present.

JBrettk12's picture

Adderall

It sounds to me like you are addicted to adderal,l wether you'd like to admit or not. "Everything in moderation" As an addict myself, (not from adderall) I truly wish I could do everything in moderation, but that's just not the case and the first drug I ever tried was adderall, and I've been taking it for over 10 years, and it's the only drug I've never abused, and if I didn't have to take it, I never would touch it again, but unfortunately I do suffer from extremely bad ADD/ADHD.. But in my 10 years of taking it while abusing pain medications, and taking "lines" 4-5 times a day. I began to feel the same way, and would never sober up before I would take more pain pills to feed my addiction. I did stop using them for about a year just like you, and then about a year later, I started taking them again, but this time in "moderation" after about 3 months I was even worse off then before!! And that's when I knew I could never take narcotic pain medication at all, and I was an addict!! I honestly have no idea how much you still take but the only reason I'm saying anything is because you have so many of the addiction signs.. 1. You steal them from your family. (I went to rehab and still never did that) 2. You say you would take a line, so I imagine you snort them so it hits you faster and you get a better rush. 3. You are willing to try it again and you think you can honestly control it this time, especially after last time when you were miserable, depressed, sick, etc. 4. You are creating excuses to justify you using adderall; if you didn't think you had a problem you wouldn't need to explain, why you take it, and why you take it so often. 5. And finally, you were in a forum reading about adderal, and then posting at 4:30 in the morning!! To this day I hate having to take my adderall, but I have too in order to remember things, stay focused, and stay awake/alert. I hope you don't take adderal anymore abs hopefully I'm wrong and you won't get into it as bad as last time, but why would you ever want to take a chance of going through all that misery again if you are, in fact an addict?? And lastly, I believe adderall is comparable to take steroids for school or work!! If you aren't an addict and you can get by and take it in moderation, do you really want to earn everything you've been working towards while cheating the whole time?? I'm pretty sure Lance Armstrong, and so many other no longer respected athletes?? (Just my two cents)

Serendip Visitor's picture

Do I need to get a script?

I am 20 years old and just finished my 5th semester of college. I took adderall for the first time 5/12 and was very pleased with the results. I felt as though I have never focused as well as I did that day, in my entire life. I have always worried about taking drugs that have amphetamines in them because of the chance of addiction. Although I worry about it, I am currently taking an adderall right now. This is my third adderall I have taken this semester and my second adderall in about week.
I honestly believe I have add. When I was in middle school my mom thought I had it so we went to a psychiatrist. We explained to the paychiatrist that i havr always gotten good grades but i just lack the ability to read effectively and study effectively because I end up having to read things over and over and get fed up. I earned a 3.5 in high school, but i never studied i just did all my homework. the psychiatrist told us to take this specific test online. When I took this test the results said I had a form of add. I can't remember the exact name because it was so long ago but basically it was a form of add for people that do well in school. I never received a script because we never followed through with getting it officially diagnosed.
Now in my 5th semester of college I am hoping for a 2.8 gpa. This will be the lowest gpa I will ever have received. I feel like I have "symptoms" that everyone claiming to have add has. The inability to read something once and get it, procrastination, and lack of motivation when It comes to something that bores me. As I said before I have taken it three times this semester. I can actually read something and get it the first time I read it when I'm on adderall, I can finish papers without getting on Facebook or fantasy football. I can quickly complete tasks without any disturbance. Not to mention it really helps me with focusing in sports. That is what scares me. It helps me so much that I feel as though I would quickly become addicted to it. I don't know if this would be an addiction or a solution for my add?
Something interesting that I noted was when my girlfriend and I took adderall at the same time, she "over focused" as I put it. She couldn't sit in a room with a ticking clock because it would drive her nuts while on adderall. Also she couldn't sit at the same table as me because the wobbling of the table from me writing was distracting her. I did not notice any of these things that were going on, I simply was focused on my schoolwork. I read in the posts that it made someone feel "normal" when they took it. That is exactly how I described it to my girlfriend. It makes me feel like I can function to my full potential. It makes me feel excited as to what I can do with my future if I get prescribed to fix my add. But also it scares me that it is such a slippery slope. I have never been one to fall to addiction and I am very wary of addictions to anything. But I feel like this could really mess my life up if I am misdiagnosed.
When speaking to my mom recently about going to the doctor to get a script she seemed to be all for it. She is currently prescribed to Ritalin right now. This add runs in my family. I feel like that is a tale tell sign for me to get a script but depression also runs in my family. I honestly felt depressed after taking adderall for the second time. I felt it 2 days after I took it. That also scares me especially sense I was on depression medication in middle school.
What I am asking is, does it seem like to you guys that I need adderall or am I just another college student that just can't get motivated to do my schoolwork?
I appreciate any and all feedback in this matter.

Serendip Visitor's picture

script or not?

Your story is almost exactly like mine! I don't know what to do. And I plan on going to more school after this, and wonder if it's possible to get a script for it or not if you're going to a four year school, and if I can't, I know I cannot succeed. I made A's in high school then D's in college. I'm trying to go to a four year school, and when I was studying for a test to get in, I went to a Dr. to get adderall. I asked if that was even ok, he said a lot of students take adderall. I didn't tell him in my second visit that it made my heart race, because it really made me feel better overall, like I could finally accomplish the goals I've set forth for myself. I'm changing my D's to A's. I think that says something right there. I may or may not have Add/ADHD, because my family tried not to go to doctors unless absolutely necessary, and like you said, I was doing good in school. But, there were a couple times I called my dad and complained about how hard it was in college, and guess what he said. He said, "No one ever said it was gonna be easy." So I took it the way it was. Even a career counselor asked me how I'm going to make it in a 4 year school if I barely made it in college. That was very discouraging, but I didn't let it get me down. Sure, I took a while to get back in school because I moved, found a job, moved again, and got married, and found another job in my career. Four years after college graduation, I've taken the necessary application test twice and am now retaking two prerequisites that I got D's in so I can get into school again. It also takes maturity. But I seriously don't think I could do all this without adderall. That's what scares me. I don't want to compare myself to Lance Armstrong, but I really feel like I need Adderall and I don't want to be judged for it and I always want my supply when I need it. Or else, I will go to a four year school and waste my money if I cant be on adderall the entire time!!

Serendip Visitor's picture

I need some Adderall to read

I need some Adderall to read all of these posts O.o

Serendip Visitor's picture

whats so addictive about it

I get adderall on the regular every month. What's so addictive about it. It doese nothing to me but whhat its sopose to do. What makes this pill so addictive?

Paffa's picture

Adderell

The adderall is not the addiction a persons personality is. You can become addicted to the reward for behavior loop your brain feeds on when doing things that bring results you like, get a kick out of or seek. People map themselves into a routine of desirable outcomes. Why do you use the drug? You must want something out of it? And when you do you want more, repeated good outcomes? Even if physical side effects come with it the results are worth more then the risks of not doing it? That kind of logic hang up. So long as the habbit you have formed gets results you want of course you will continue to use it. Addiction is therefore a flawed course of logic rather then dependency because of chemical or physical alterations. Although I would warn you that some drugs do create chemical depency and serious withdraw alterations physically if you cut off. Meth being one of them. But by and large most addictions are because of faulty logic.

Annon's picture

It works for everyone until it doesn't

I was prescribed through the end of college and into law school. I believe they are conductingong term studies as we speak to prove this but long term use greatly impairs your endocrine system and it becomes a roller coaster of what it makes you feel, I believe this where the aggression/irratabity comes from because the hormones in your body become imbalanced from the overtime spring your endocrine does. So you feel awake but not happy or euphoric like once affected you. The rigidity and concentration are there but the test you took these for makes you angry or depressed cause hormones are whack so you begin concentrating on the distractions you were trying to avoid. After 10 hours of playstation 3 you reluctantly cram for couple bours. Most of the time you don't sleep. Then before you leave for your test you couldn't dare think of eating. So you are depressed from sleep deprivation, brain & body are starved from lack of nutrients and hormone imbalance leaves you irratiable. The point is it is dangerous drug though it really does not seem that way at first. Getting a prescription seems like it is an A+ in a bottle but if don't really need these then it ends up doing way more harm than good. Of course everyone uses those trigger phrases to justify their need for it "I can't co concentrate" "I procrastinate" and "I have tough time finishing one task." Don't think people realize that people who do actaully have ADHD can't do those three things to their own extreme detriment such as losing their career, separated from spouse, and suffer severe depression knowing full well all they have to do is follow up and finish just one task but there live sinks lower they still can't. This is what happens to good portion of adults with undiagnosed ADHD. By most accounts after prescription they only take the recommended does and many see a complete reversal in success in work, and relationships. What I am curious about is how many of you prescribed would have the same problem? If you didn't have adderral would you procrastinate and lose concentration that you failed not just one test but multiple test until you flunked out of school? I bet after one failure you would realize I procrastinate because who really wants to study when there are so many other things to do. It doesn't take drug to help you concentrate it really is just a matter of will power. After I got off of it I had to be a little better at scheduling times to study but my essays were more creative and took for less time to write because I did obsess for hours on one paragraph. My experience was it was a quick fix but over the long haul it actually stunts your potential. Just my experience though.

Serendip Visitor's picture

I refuse to believe...

that you made it through college, much less through law school. Your spelling and composition are horrible. There is no way you wrote all the papers required to finish law school if the is the quality of work you turned in. Just my experience though.

Serendip Visitor's picture

I DONT BELIEVE

he made it through law school to listen to people like you give him/her shit. i think after spending all that time typing all those papers and what not, they are not going to give one hoot or holler about proper anything especially a forum. C***. anyway im curious to know, how many of the 10mg little blue buggers i should take before actually feeling anything.

Serendip Visitor's picture

LOL

Adderall is ok and helpful to everyone ya? Agree on some fronts and intense;y disagree on others... as a recreational user ( usually oral vyvanse as it lasts longer but adderal maybe three times in a year at mos)- I find MYSELF able to not crave this and use it in increasing amounts or times. I enjoy the effect for specific situations, and then forget it the rest of the year until I am in a situation or have a task that I feel adderall will help me with or enhance my ability to complete more efficently.

That said, I have a ex friend, who started adderall as well in school for exam reasons. Within her first day and dose of ever taking it, she was asking for more within three days and is now taking an average minimum of SEVEN 20mg adderalls a day or as many as she can get. She was a THEFT prevention officer at a very good department store, and since she tweaks so much off the adderall, she fell asleep on the cameras, left the entire department store open all night as well when she woke up and left work.

She was fired the next morning. Her daughter is nine. She has not been enrolled in the third grade yet, because mom is now too tired and tweaked out too WALK HER KID HALF A BLOCK to the bus station, or to ever get up earlier than 10 or 11 am. No exagerattions, this little girl has not been to one day of school yet as of october 24th this school year. I as a concerned family member will be intervening this week, calling the school, etc, because obvious intervention is needed here as it is fundamental for the child to recieve at least the opportunity of a basic education and she is being denied this because the lure and effects of adderall for her mother, as a specific person, elicited a VERY strong adfdiction, her "drug of choice"

THAT ALSO SAID, I am a 8 year recovered heroin addict. I was on the needle for a long time. I am a young woman who is in college and put this behind me 8 years ago. I do not consider myself an acticve addict, as I have never relapsed on my drug of choice, and do not have a pull to any drugs to abuse them heavily or cause physical dependance in any way besides opiates... which I voluntarily turn down at surgeries, etc, because addiction is more HEAD than the actual drug, and I think adderall is just as lethal as shooting heroin ON A PERSON TO PERSON SPECIFIC BASIS. Your chemical and hormonal makeup, along with your lack of or established mental issues have a role in whether or not adderall is going to be " a best friend oir worst enemy" (or in my case an aquantiance I see two to three times a year) . What makes me loathe alcohol, and not crave to abuse other drugs, but I am immediatly addicted to opiates? It has to do with our levels of dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephidrine ( i know i spelled this wrong) rtespectoivley, and people who have a predisposition to be low in any of these, have a tendancy to become physiolocially dependant and psychologically dependant on those drugs that effect the reuptake of these chemicals in our brains, respectivley.

Serendip Visitor's picture

I have a question... Why is

I have a question... Why is this a bad thing? If more people are getting higher scores on tests this is a GREAT thing. I know plenty of kids that don't take Adderall that do way better academically than kids that do take it. It is all in will power. If you don't want to harm your body with drugs (like me) good more power to you. It is not like Adderall makes people magically learn material anyway. If some kids are aware of the risks and it helps them focus on homework then how is this bad? Most research shows this drug is harmless, but there is always opposition that say it is addictive (like marijuana). These people are the kids and parents of kids who fear competition. The same kids who are always making excuses for how everything is somebody else's fault. Take some responsibility (or Adderall) and hit the books. Andrew Carnagie, one of the most successful and caring barons said "And while the law of competition may be sometimes hard for the individual, it is best for the race, because it ensures the survival of the fittest in every department." Maybe when they make a drug that directly teaches you some then you cry foul. Also anyone that has ADHD and says it makes them normal are lying to themselves. Some of my friends have bad ADHD and got prescribed to Adderall turning them in to zombies. Maybe an extremely small dose would make them "normal", but these days doctors are handing them out like candy. They could think that it makes them normal due to tolerance build up, constant use, or finally achieving average grades.

Serendip Visitor's picture

if you think Aderall isn't a

if you think Aderall isn't a bad thing at all, read this article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/03/us/concerns-about-adhd-practices-and-amphetamine-addiction.html?hp&_r=0

I think that maybe this drug could be okay, but overall, it really shouldn't be used recreationally at all. I can cause an addiction, one that this young man never gave up. Yes, in the short term it could be a good thing, but overall it is very bad.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Because

Its not the addictive part that is really bad.

IT CHANGES WHO YOU ARE.

Irritable, itching, aggressive!!! ANGER towards the smallest things....tics. It's like dealing with an abusive hardcore alcoholic. I'm dealing with a spouse who's been on it for two years. She's having thoughts of "being alone because its easier"... but hasn't thought about what that means. (Me taking our children away)

It's very scary. Evil. It's like the "Black Spiderman" suit.

PLEASE. If someone you love is taking this, please warn them of the side effects.

Visitor's picture

smh

To everyone who is trying to get a fake prescription from your doctor, forget it. Yes you can bullshit to your doctor and he/she may prescribe you the drug (if you make your case sound legit) but for those just talking to their doctor to see if they would give you a prescription just for studies, papers ect. you're out of luck. Giving out fake prescriptions is a felony and I doubt your doctor is going to risk his or her career for you. On the other hand, having friends can get you places. Chances are if you have at least one friend that uses drugs recreationaly such as weed they probably know someone that can get you adderall, and if they don't they know someone that knows someone that can. So be social. Anyway adderall isn't harmfull for people without ADD or ADHD in small doses, but be carefull, It is addictive and can in the long run lower performance for someone who is not on the drug and that has become dependent. If you do decide to take the drug (i admit i have in the past and probably will in the future for uber important assignments) just be smart about it. Don't be an idiot and pop one or two for every exam, every paper, or every little assignment. Same thing for most things in life aka MODERATION!!! Plus people genreally don't just give this shit away for free, everything cost money. If you do begin to use a lot you will notice a more serious disease known as beign broke!

Serendip Visitor know it all's picture

Adderall vs cannabis just a little education

Weed is not a drug. It is actually a plant formally named cannabis.

Marijuana is a plant containing a psychoactive chemical, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), in its leaves, buds and flowers. Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug, with forty-two percent of American adults reporting that they have used it.

Despite the fact that marijuana's effects are less harmful than those of most other drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, it is the most common drug that people are arrested for possessing. U.S. marijuana policy is unique among American criminal laws in being enforced so widely and harshly, yet deemed unnecessary by such a substantial portion of the population.

Read up :)

http://www.drugpolicy.org/drug-facts/10-facts-about-marijuana

Adderall is unfortunately a drug that contains amphetamines.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amphetamine#section_2

You tell me which is worst.

Serendip Visitor's picture

adderal

I like your answer. You have a point

AJFRESHMAN's picture

College freshman

1st month in college n i know everyone thinks i would party my ass off but no cuz my college is not a party school apparently. I have no job and a slim social life because of the dullness of my area and because of this i planned to excell in class in order to gain greater scholarships and transfer to better school with hope of a better future than i would gain at my current school. I played it straight and i can already feel the pressure of college folding in. High school, high fought through the difficulty and managed above a 3.0 gpa but led me to immature bouts of frustration and depression. College has already proven to be more difficult and a great urge of refusal to go thru what i did in high school is making this boost seem really promising. I just want to do good and live comfortably in college. No more stress plz.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Your post

This goes for everyone considering to take adderall from someone with ADHD who's been on it since second grade.

Alright it's pretty understandable that you would want to obtain this boost to help you out but seriously, if you're going to do it only use it for studying for midterms and exams and maybe for assignments. I have ADHD and have been taking adderall ever since I was in grade 2 (which I was failing at the time and they thought I had a learning disability, after getting tested in a controlled environment however, they found out that I was in the 97th percentile for math, meaning that I was equal or better than 97 percent of people my age). They diagnosed me with ADHD and my life turned around after I started my medication (Adderall XR).

Fast forward to today: I'm currently enrolled in university and have been pretty much off of my adderall for most of my time here except for some midterms and exams. Here is the thing: When you take this drug you'll notice your drive kick up a few notches and you'll start to be able to work so much faster and better and it'll feel great. This is why it's so addictive. The reason I stopped taking it was originally just out of immature "going against the system" type reason in high school, but I later found out a few things that scared me:

-People using the drug long term become dependent on it for motivation. This is simply because the drug motivates you, so you will forget how to motivate yourself and when you stop taking it you are likely to have an even more difficult time trying to motivate yourself

-If you have a predisposition to schizophrenia, Adderall may accelerate or amplify it and may have very detrimental effects in the long run

-As it says in the article: people without ADHD have regular levels of dopamine in their frontal cortex. If you spike this level of dopamine by taking Adderall, you're going to push the limits of your capacity. It's kind of like the movie limitless but obviously at a lower scale. If you force your brain to function at a higher capacity than it's supposed to YOU'RE GOING TO BURN OUT.

Anyways guys, back to me. As I said I've been trying to stay off it because I'm fearful that I won't be able to motivate myself in the future and even though I can easily have a lifelong prescription to the stuff, I kinda don't like relying on pills to succeed. My first year of using it as I said above went well and my GPA is at 3.08 so about a B+. Second year is starting up and I am really worried that I will fall behind, in fact I already am behind. Today I took a quarter of my old dosage (My old dosage was 80mg, I took about 20mg today) and it's like night and day for me. I thought after not taking it for so long that I had found my way around it and I would do ok but the simple matter is I still have way too much difficulty concentrating and I cannot afford to do poorly in school anymore. I think that the only reason I was still doing good in university to this point is because after seeing what I'm capable of on the drug throughout middle school and most of highschool, I know that I am smart and can get good grades so that was enough motivation in itself to still do well.

Obviously the decision is yours guys but I know a lot of people who have been doing it way too much, more than myself who actually has the frigging disorder!

Don't become dependent on it, you can rationalize this all you want and say it's for a just cause and that it can't hurt me that much but it doesn't take much to slip and it's a steep slope to go down guys. Use me as an example, like me I'm sure most of you are perfectly capable of achieving good grades or at least satisfactory ones, you just need the discipline. You need to yell at yourself in your mind and be harsh, like a Drill Sergeant in the military. That's how I am with myself when I'm not on my pills and it's been enough for awhile like I said, and I'm the one who is actually supposed to be getting this medication.

You have been warned, please don't do anything stupid.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Where do you get it?

Where do you get the adderall if you don't have a prescription?? I go to ASU and I'm a freshman, and I've realized that college is kind of challenging. I'm an extremely well rounded student, but I need a little more help with the studying concept because in high school, studying was redundant and there was no need for it. Where can I buy the adderall if I don't have the prescription?

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