Abusing prescription Adderall hurts those with ADHD
Published: Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Updated: Wednesday, March 24, 2010 01:03
"Poppin Addies, Drinkin Nattys" – this slogan can be seen on several shirts around West Virginia University, and it all but condones the recreational use of the drug Adderall.
The first time I saw it was at a basketball game. Being a student afflicted with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, this struck a bad chord.
Adderall is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system and is labeled as a Schedule II controlled substance. This family of drugs contains the likes of opium, morphine, oxycodone and methadone.
The reason it is on this list is because Adderall has an extremely high potential for abuse. This potential for abuse is obviously exacerbated on college campuses where Adderall is seen as a miracle drug for that big night before the exam.
The University is no exception to Adderall abuse, and clearly by the T-shirt, its use is prevalent and even seen as socially acceptable, which is the most bothersome thing about the Adderall abuse.
Sometimes it feels as if Adderall is treated like candy and not a highly dangerous amphetamine that has the potential to kill if wrongly used.
One of the most obvious reasons students want Adderall is they rely on it to help succeed in school. Adderall helps people concentrate. In one sitting, the user could conceivably study for some six-straight hours working on schoolwork.
This seems like a great drug until it is seen just how much it is abused. The trafficking and under-the-table commerce of drugs such as Adderall is growing in numbers.
According to The New York Times, as many as 20 percent of college students have used Ritalin or Adderall at some point in their studies.
More and more students are relying on it as their psycho stimulant aid to take an exam or push through on that last final before leaving on break.
In that same Times article, Dr. Robert A. Winfield of the University of Michigan Health Services, said, "Things have really gotten out of hand in the last four or five years, students have become convinced that this will help them achieve academic success."
If you were to ask students at the school if they abused drugs, a majority of them would not consider Adderall usage before a midterm as drug abuse.
But it is.
Who does this prescription medication abuse affect?
This abuse not only hurts the abusers, but it also hurts the students with ADHD who actually need the medication to deal with their affliction.
Being a student with ADHD has become increasingly harder in the past few years, not because of the workload but because the amount of Adderall abuse has led to tighter restrictions on the drug.
It is now more difficult to be prescribed Adderall even if you have been diagnosed with ADHD for the majority of your life.
This is something few students think about before they pop a 30 mg time release and wash it down with some Red Bull.
It is hard to be a college student and have to be going through finals and exams, but this doesn't mean using Adderall as a safety net is a good idea.
Adderall is not a fix-all solution, nor is it a source to be relied on when trying to complete a homework assignment or study for a rough exam.
Adderall is a prescription stimulant used to help those who are afflicted with ADHD so that they may focus during school and other endeavours.
If you really think you need Adderall, go to a psychiatrist or some other qualified medical provider and get an evaluation.
Don't try to barter on the street to get something you don't really need.