Adderall is a stimulant that contains both amphetamine and dextroamphetamine and is commonly used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
It increases awareness and alertness, improving concentration, helping a person with ADHD focus. Unfortunately, there has been a rise in Adderall abuse among young teens and adults. They’re so focused on the temporary symptoms they experience that they don’t realize the dangerous effects of Adderall on the brain.
Adderall and the Brain
In people who suffer from ADHD, Adderall works by targeting the brain’s release of dopamine and norepinephrine, neurotransmitters that control the brain’s pleasure and reward systems. When these neurotransmitters are released, it increases a person’s mood and motivation to accomplish tasks. In people with ADHD, it also increases alertness and concentration. Nonreprinephine is particularly responsible for increased concentration because it regulates parts of the brain linked to attention and response. While Adderall can be helpful for people with ADHD when taken as prescribed, it can be extremely dangerous to those who misuse it.
At Banyan Treatment Centers Delaware, we’re aware that many young adults take Adderall without a prescription. But like any other stimulant, Adderall has a high potential for abuse. Those who are struggling to quit using Adderall can get help at our residential treatment facility in Delaware.
How Adderall Affects the Brain
The effects of Adderall on the brain are extensive and become most severe if it’s abused for a long period of time. Those who use Adderall without a prescription from their doctor, or misuse their prescription Adderall are at risk of suffering from decreased cognitive function. There are both immediate and long-term side effects of Adderall on the brain.
Short-Term Effects of Adderall on the Brain
Students or other people who want to get their work done quickly may take Adderall to help them stay focused; however, Adderall doesn’t affect people without ADHD the same way it affects those who do have it. It may actually have the opposite effect, like memory impairment. Even using Adderall a handful of times can cause unwanted short-term side effects like:
- Loss of appetite
- Heart palpitations
- Mood swings
- Difficulty sleeping
Despite these symptoms, a person who has become dependent on Adderall may continue to abuse it. Without help, users are at risk of permanent brain damage and overdose. At our drug rehab facility in Delaware, we offer a variety of treatments for substance abuse that can help those struggling with Adderall addiction.
Long-Term Effects Of Adderall On the Brain
Over time, continuous misuse or abuse of Adderall can cause side effects like:
- Decreased energy
- Memory impairment
- Mood swings
- Decreased cognitive function (difficulty learning or remembering things)
Because Adderall is an amphetamine, it can also have adverse effects on the heart. The risk of stroke, heart attack, and heart failure increase as the person’s addiction worsens.