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What to Consider Before Taking Adderall

In our fast-paced world where there never seems to be enough hours in the day, it seems that almost everyone is looking for ways to develop focus or get ahead. Some people, whether they have been diagnosed with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or not, have turned to prescription medications to help them gain a competitive edge. Drugs like Ritalin, Concerta, Vyvanse, and Adderall are being used more and more by both children and adults and the abuse rates continue to rise.

For those with severe forms of ADHD, prescription drugs can be a lifesaver and allow them to regain the focus and concentration they lacked while not on medication. However, the illegal abuse of prescription stimulants is skyrocketing and it is something that our society as a whole needs to address.

Have you considered taking Adderall to treat your ADHD or just to gain more focus and concentration in your everyday work or personal life? If so, you should first be aware of the following facts:

 

You Must Speak with Your Doctor to Get a Prescription for Adderall

Adderall and similar drugs are not over-the-counter. They are Schedule II drugs that have a high potential for abuse and can only be taken when prescribed by a doctor. Adderall is generally only prescribed to those who have ADHD and those who do not have the disorder may have an altered reaction to the drug.

Your doctor or mental health professional can determine if you have ADHD by checking for symptoms listed in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5). There are 18 total symptoms and adults who display six or more symptoms and children under 16 who display five or more symptoms are generally diagnosed as having the disorder. In some cases, the doctor will prescribe a stimulant such as Adderall to see if it helps the patient manage their symptoms.

 

Those Who Do Not Have ADHD Are More Likely to Abuse Adderall

Some people take Adderall and other stimulants because they enjoy the euphoric feeling that comes with using the drug. This feeling is what leads many to abuse and become dependent on the drug. A recent study also found that those who experience these euphoric feelings when taking stimulants are less genetically predisposed to actually having ADHD. Those who use Adderall as a recreational drug are also more predisposed to abuse other drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and tobacco.

 

The Use of Adderall in the Adult Population is Increasing

In the year 2007, there were approximately 5.6 million prescriptions issued on a monthly basis to adults aged 20 to 39. In 2012, that number had tripled, approaching the 16 million mark. Adult prescriptions are increasing at a much faster level than those for children. Some believe it is due to the increased awareness that these drugs increase concentration and can even provide cognitive enhancements to users. This is causing adults to turn to the drugs as a way to cope with stress and work demands.

 

Stimulants Do Not Always Offer Positive Benefits

Fast Facts About ADHD -Mango ClinicAdderall and similar stimulants may help children sit still longer and improve their focus if they have ADHD. However, there is no proof that they actually improve their academic performance. In fact, stimulants can actually impair some creative abilities. In addition, stimulant drugs can be extremely addictive due to the rush of neurotransmitters such as dopamine that affect some users, giving them a sense of euphoria that can be easy to become dependent on.

Stimulants can also elevate blood pressure and speed up the heart. This can lead to issues such as constricted blood vessels and can also lead up to a heart attack or stroke. If you drink while taking Adderall, the effects can be even more dangerous. Drinking while taking Adderall increases the risks of heart problems and can cause heart attacks in otherwise healthy individuals.

Adderall can also increase anxiety due to the way it enhances the effects of dopamine. This can cause dry mouth, paranoia, shortness of breath, and nervousness—especially in those who are already prone to worry or anxiety.

Those who take stimulants may also have trouble sleeping. This leads to exhaustion the next day and causes many to take more stimulants to simply stay awake. Tolerance levels also build quickly with stimulants and users must take more and more to achieve the same effects. This makes stimulants very habit-forming and it can be easy to develop a dependence on them that is difficult to break.

 

Advertising for ADHD Drugs is Misleading

The FDA has cited every major ADHD drug—including Adderall, Concerta, Vyvanse, Focalin, and even non-stimulants such as Strattera and Intuniv—for misleading advertising and false claims. Some of the drugs have been cited multiple times. These false advertising campaigns by major pharmaceutical companies may be what has led to the increased use—and abuse—of stimulant drugs in the past fifteen years.

 

Stimulants Such as Adderall Can Have Frightening Side EffectsSide Effects of ADHD Drugs

Along with increased blood pressure, heart rate, and anxiety, Adderall can also cause mental health issues that are especially troubling in children. The medication guide that accompanies Adderall warns users to notify a healthcare professional if they experience any mental problems including believing things that are not real or seeing or hearing things that do not exist. There is even evidence of stimulants drugs triggering depression in children and causing terrifying hallucinations in teens. Though rare, there have also been reports of stimulant abuse leading to suicide.

 

Diagnosis of ADHD Continues to Rise

The number of children between the ages of 4 and 17 who have received an ADHD diagnosis has risen over 41% in the last ten years. Almost two-thirds of those who have received a diagnosis have been prescribed a stimulant such as Ritalin or Adderall. Boys are twice as likely to receive a diagnosis than girls and are also more likely to be prescribed a stimulant medication. Today, almost 20% of high school boys have received an ADHD diagnosis. While some believe this is due to a recognition of the condition, others argue that it is due to pharmaceutical advertising and a misunderstanding of the natural temperament of boys of this age.

Common Symptoms of ADHD in Adults

Many of Those Who Use Adderall Do Not Consider It a Drug

Most people who take Adderall without a prescription do not consider it to be a dangerous drug. Instead, they thought of it as a study tool and considered it safe because it improved their concentration and because they knew that doctors prescribed it to children.

College students are among the most likely to use and abuse stimulants—especially those that are not prescribed to them. According to a recent study, more than 20% of Ivy League college students used an unprescribed stimulant at least once while in college to help them study. Estimates of those college students who use illegal stimulants range from 6.9% to over 35% and most of those students who were interviewed did not feel like they were cheating or doing anything illegal. In fact, college students were likely to brag about their usage on social media, especially on apps like Twitter and Snapchat.

 

Many Doctors Tend to Ignore FDA Warnings About Stimulants

There have been numerous FDA warnings regarding Adderall, Ritalin, and similar stimulants. Though the administration warns that these drugs can be highly addictive and have dangerous side effects, doctors continue to prescribe them. Even a 2004 FDA advisory warning about the possibility of cardiac arrest hasn’t changed the amount of stimulants doctors prescribe.

FDA warnings that Adderall, Ritalin, and other prescription stimulants are addictive and can have potentially dangerous side effects also haven’t deterred doctors from prescribing them.

Major League Baseball Players Are Among the Most Frequent Users of ADHD Drugs

Though there is a ban on stimulant use in the Major League Baseball Association, players continue to use the performance-enhancing drugs. When the ban was announced, players began requesting therapeutic exemptions so they could continue to take the banned substances. The rates of MLB players who take stimulants is more than double of the normal population. Though some argue that professional athletes are more likely to suffer from ADHD than others, many don’t agree and believe that players are only using the stimulants to enhance their playing abilities and gain a competitive edge.

The Cognitive-Enhancing Effects of Stimulants Are Unclear

Though many believe that stimulants will give them an edge in school, sports, or careers, experts caution that the cognitive effects of the drugs have not been widely studied and their effects are still unclear. There have been conflicting reports generated from the studies that have been performed and experts argue that most studies are conducted to find impairment in study subjects, not improvement. There is also a lack of evidence on the long-term effects of stimulant usage, especially in healthy individuals who do not display signs of ADHD. This should serve as a warning to those use the drugs for recreational use and make them think twice about using stimulants such as Adderall for everyday performance improvement.

 


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Do you have ADD/ADHD? Studies estimate that ADD/ADHD affects nearly nine million adults in the U.S; however, only a few receive accurate diagnoses and undergo proper treatment. Research shows that the condition can impair social, occupational and academic functioning, resulting in academic underachievement, underemployment, difficulties in personal relationships, conduct problems, and motor vehicle safety. It also causes hyperactivity, although this may decrease over time. Adderall is the most commonly prescribed drug for Attention Deficit Disorder treatment.

Psychological Conditions Associated with ADD

Nearly 50% of adults with ADD also suffer from associated psychological conditions such as borderline personality disorder, anxiety, bipolar disorder, depression, and others. The co-existence of these conditions makes it difficult to accurately diagnose ADD since symptoms are remarkably similar to that of ADD. Medical practitioners must determine if the patient has ADD or a mental disorder with symptoms similar to that of ADD, or both ADD and a mental disorder. Speak with a licensed ADD doctor in Miami today, call us now.

Common Symptoms of ADD

  • Common symptoms of adult attention deficit disorder include:
  • Chronic tardiness
  • Chronic boredom
  • Low frustration threshold
  • Low motivation
  • Anger management issues
  • Poor prioritizing skills
  • Concentration and attention problems
  • Procrastination
  • Impulsive behaviors
  • Problems in primary relationships
  • Poor management of time
Symptoms of ADD/ADHD
ADD/ADHD Symptoms

These symptoms can either be direct manifestations of ADD or a result of issues with proper social adjustment. Depending on the situation and innate disposition, ADD patients can exhibit antisocial tendencies (such as withdrawing from friends and family) or become uncomfortable when left alone, thus requiring and demanding constant social attention.

If left untreated, ADD will adversely impact the quality of the patient’s life and upset several key areas, such as proper management of home life, ability to foster close relationships, and being successful at work. Adderall can help with symptoms. To determine if ADD is a serious problem, speak with a licensed ADD doctor in Miami today.  Let’s take a look at some of the ways it can impact your daily life.

Happiness

One of the major ways ADD affects a patient’s life is in his/her level of happiness. The symptoms of ADD can wear you down, causing you to feel overwhelmed with life or overreact when confronted with stressful situations. It makes you tired, anxious, and nervous while making you feel like you are on an emotional roller coaster. This could lead to feelings of depression, rendering you incapable of enjoying the pleasures of life.

Productivity

Adult ADD can make it difficult to finish projects, whether big or small. This means that little household tasks such as paying bills, house cleaning, laundry, etc. are either not done properly or not done on time. The same goes for larger projects such as completing a house renovation project, taking classes to improve professional skills, etc. These manifestations of ADD significantly impact your productivity, thus reducing satisfaction and overall efficiency.

Relationships

When it comes to relationships, most people see ADD sufferers as impulsive, inattentive, distant, and unconcerned; however, this is not the case. ADD symptoms make it difficult for patients to be effective communicators and attentive listeners, meaning that they are not their best in social settings. Miami ADD patients may forget important information such as partners’ birthday, anniversaries, and social events and may interrupt others when speaking. As such, many persons see them as socially inept or immature and may begin to keep their distance.

Self-Esteem

ADD can also impact a patient’s feeling of worth and self-esteem. Since symptoms of ADD make patients unable to complete projects or precisely focus their thoughts and energy on a particular undertaking, it makes them question their capabilities. This could reduce the feeling of self-esteem and confidence they have in themselves. Others may also feel that ADD patients cannot be relied upon to complete projects as at when due, further worsening the situation.

These are just a few ways that ADD negatively affects the everyday life of those suffering from the condition. In short, yes: ADD is a serious issue and can affect the quality of life of a patient. The good news is that accurate diagnosis, management, as well as appropriate Attention Deficit Disorder treatment in Miami can greatly improve the symptoms and manifestations of the latter. You do not need to live an unsatisfactory or unhappy life, incapable of creating deep and meaningful relationships with those you care about or underachieve in your chosen career or profession. If you would like to meet with a qualified physician to discuss your Attention Deficit Disorder treatment in Miami and see if Adderall prescription can help, please schedule an appointment at our ADD/ADHD Miami clinic by calling (305) 776-2898.

Attention Deficit Disorder treatment at Mango Clinic

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