If your family doctor prescribes your son Adderall to control ADHD symptoms and improve focus and concentration, you may be wondering whether this drug comes with any risk factors such as addiction or abuse. Read on to learn more about Adderall and how to keep your family safe from substance use disorders.
Is Adderall Safe?
When used as directed under a doctor’s supervision, Adderall can help people safely manage ADHD and narcolepsy. However, like all stimulants, Adderall comes with some potential for abuse. If people without these health conditions take Adderall, they can experience dangerous side effects.
Using Adderall in a non-approved way – such as crushing and snorting pills to achieve a more powerful high – puts people at risk of an overdose. Combining Adderall with other substances, such as alcohol, heightens this danger.
Adderall Abuse and Withdrawal
Many young adults view Adderall as a “study drug” that can help them get better grades or elevate their athletic ability. Due to Adderall’s prevalence on campuses nationwide, this drug is fairly easy for younger people to obtain and use without a legitimate prescription, which can create a dependence.
It can be challenging to notice when someone is misusing Adderall, especially if your son is a driven student or athlete who has always felt motivated to be an overachiever. Here are some warning signs of Adderall abuse:
- Unusual excitability and talkativeness
- Secretive behavior
- Sleeping or eating too much or too little
- A noticeable decline in personal hygiene
- Impulsivity or irritability
- Overworking academically or athletically
Because stimulants cause changes in users’ brains, people who have used Adderall for a long time may experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when they try to cut back or quit. As an Adderall user progresses from tolerance to dependence to addiction, they may feel they can’t function normally without this drug. At this point, Adderall use and abuse becomes a top priority, taking precedence over school, work and family obligations.
Talking to Your Child About Adderall Abuse
If your son does not have a current ADHD diagnosis and you discover a supply of Adderall in his room or backpack, it’s essential to start a conversation with him as soon as possible. Your early intervention can prevent a worsening drug addiction.
First, make sure your son knows that using someone else’s Adderall without a prescription is illegal and dangerous. Emphasize that he doesn’t need drugs to be smarter or perform better in class or on the field. If your son says he has trouble maintaining good grades without taking Adderall, offer to get him a tutor to help him hone his study skills or master challenging school subjects.
Where to Get Help for Adderall Abuse
If your loved one’s Adderall misuse or substance withdrawal has become a significant stumbling block in his life, Spearhead Lodge is here to help. We provide long-term, evidence-based addiction treatment services focusing on young men’s unique needs. To learn more about our curriculum and what we offer, please reach out to us today.