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What Happens if You Snort Adderall?

What Happens If You Snort Adderall?

Adderall is a prescription central nervous system stimulant used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Many people also abuse it as a “study drug” to increase focus and alertness and as a crash diet drug to suppress appetite. Others may use Adderall as a recreational “party drug” because it produces euphoria, energy, and excitability. Young adults, particularly college students, commonly abuse Adderall, both to assist them in studying and for recreational purposes. This stimulant can be abused in a variety of ways. While it’s most commonly taken as a pill, some people have begun to snort it. But why? What happens if you snort Adderall?

What Happens When You Snort Adderall?

Can you snort Adderall? Yes, but that doesn’t mean you should. Adderall is a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It's available in immediate-release or extended-release (ER) doses. For people with ADHD, Adderall is prescribed as an oral pill or tablet. As with many other prescription drugs, people experiment with different ways of using Adderall. Snorting, in particular, is a common form of use for many drugs, especially stimulants, because snorting is believed to produce an immediate and stronger rush.

However, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued multiple warnings about the dangerous side effects of misusing prescription medications. Misusing Adderall includes taking it in ways it isn’t meant to be taken. Snorting is the second most common way to use stimulants (after swallowing), particularly among college students. Regardless of how this drug is used, long-term abuse or misuse can lead to addiction and facilitate the need for prescription drug detox.

When you snort Adderall, the drug reaches the brain faster than it would if taken orally. Once Adderall reaches the brain, it affects the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and dopamine, which are responsible for euphoria and other psychological effects.

Other common effects of snorting Adderall include:

  • Euphoria
  • Increased alertness and energy
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • Increased blood pressure
  • High body temperature
  • Reduced appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Upset stomach
  • Dry mouth

Knowing what happens if you snort Adderall is only one piece of this troubling puzzle. When someone takes Adderall without a prescription or differently than how directed by a doctor, it’s considered drug abuse. In addition to the side effects listed above, snorting Adderall XR also increases the likelihood of overdose, which can result in coma, brain damage, and death. Long-time Adderall users who have become addicted can avoid overdose by getting inpatient treatment at our Delaware drug rehab before their habit gets worse.

Why Do People Snort Adderall?

Adderall tablets or capsules are crushed into a powder that can be snorted. Crushing and snorting Adderall XR bypasses the drug’s normal speed of action, causing it to kick in more quickly and produce more intense side effects. Despite the dangerous snorting Adderall side effects that can occur, people snort Adderall because it produces a more immediate and intense high. By sending the entire dose of the drug to the brain in one moment, the central nervous system becomes overwhelmed, making it more difficult to break the drug down.

As a stimulant, flooding the brain with Adderall can directly impact heart rate and breathing, resulting in seizures, elevated heart rate, hypertension, severe confusion, stroke, and even psychosis. Stroke, heart attack, coma, and death can occur when someone snorts too much Adderall and overdoses. When used recreationally or outside of a prescription, Adderall can cause addiction and other long-term repercussions.

Why Is Adderall Addictive?

A major facet of the answer to this question is the impact of the drug on the reward system within the brain. By heightening and blocking the reuptake of certain chemicals or neurotransmitters, like norepinephrine and dopamine, users may experience feelings of motivation, pleasure, and greater focus. Over time, the intense feelings of pleasure can be intensely reinforcing, resulting in a psychological dependence in order to experience the same effects.

Physical dependence is another concern to keep in mind. When a person uses a drug like Adderall for an extended period of time, they can develop a tolerance to it. Tolerance means that the user will need to ingest more of a substance each time they take it to experience the desired effects. This, in turn, can lead patients to increase their dosage without notifying their doctor, resulting in escalating drug abuse. Additionally, stopping said use abruptly can trigger withdrawal symptoms, including intense cravings that act as a risk factor for the cycle of addiction.

Not only do the effects of snorting Adderall make it dangerous, but misusing any substance can open a Pandora’s box of other health problems. While this sadly will not deter everyone from putting themselves at risk, it is still important to maintain awareness of the dangers and the consequences that may result from abusing drugs or alcohol. Luckily, there are resources available to help those in need overcome these challenges and rediscover their own empowerment throughout the process. Banyan Treatment Centers offers both an excellent detox in Delaware along with a wide array of therapy programs that can make a world of difference in the life of someone with an addiction.

How Does Adderall Abuse Impact Brain Functions, Chemical Messengers, and Natural Brain Chemicals?

Adderall abuse impacts brain functions, chemical messengers, and natural brain chemicals by affecting the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and dopamine, which are responsible for euphoria and other psychological effects. By heightening and blocking the reuptake of certain chemicals or neurotransmitters, like norepinephrine and dopamine, users may experience feelings of motivation, pleasure, and greater focus. Over time, the intense feelings of pleasure can be intensely reinforcing, resulting in a psychological dependence in order to experience the same effects. This regular abuse of Adderall can actually alter the way these brain chemicals are naturally produced and how they circulate through the central nervous system. Such alterations create an imbalance that only the continued use of the drug can rectify, signaling the onset of dependence.

When Adderall use is ceased, this imbalance manifests as severe withdrawal symptoms, including depression, fatigue, insomnia, and difficulties in concentration or clear thinking, alongside memory issues, tremors, and anxiety. These symptoms often present as the inverse of the Adderall “high,” fostering drug cravings and compelling the user into compulsive drug-seeking behaviors to avoid discomfort. Moreover, methods of intake like snorting Adderall can intensify these effects by delivering the drug more rapidly to the brain, thus accelerating the chemical changes and increasing the risk of addiction.

How Can One Spot Adderall Abuse, Addiction, and Behavioral Changes?

To identify potential abuse, addiction, or behavioral changes related to Adderall usage, it is critical to observe a variety of indicators. Individuals who are misusing Adderall may possess multiple prescription bottles despite not having a legitimate medical reason, and they might exhaust their prescriptions more quickly than expected. A common behavior is fabricating symptoms or visiting several doctors to obtain the same medication, known as “doctor shopping.”

Physical signs can also point to Adderall abuse, such as finding remnants of crushed pills, or tools used for cutting drugs. You might also notice residue on an individual’s clothing or face, indicative of snorting the substance. Other equipment like straws, razor blades, mirrors, and rolled-up money are also red flags.

Behavioral shifts are prominent among those abusing Adderall. These can range from sudden, intense bouts of euphoria, focus, and energy to episodes of depression, aggression, and anxiety. There may be noticeable changes in physical health, such as drastic weight loss, decreased interest in personal grooming, and altered eating habits. Performance issues at school or work, like dropping grades or poor job performance, are common too.

Financial difficulties may arise due to the excessive expenditure on acquiring Adderall. The individual might engage in increasingly risky activities and continue their drug use despite facing adverse effects. A general withdrawal from social interactions, a decline in participation in previously enjoyed activities, and increased secrecy are observed. Legal issues might also occur, alongside erratic adherence to personal obligations.

Extreme variations in sleep patterns, where the individual stays awake for extended periods followed by prolonged sleeping times, are another symptom of abuse. While Adderall has legitimate uses, particularly in the treatment of ADHD, its misuse can be perilous, leading to dangerous overdoses or serious health complications, and could potentially result in addiction. Observing these signs can help in recognizing when someone might be struggling with Adderall misuse.

If you or someone you know is addicted to drugs like Adderall or any other substances, our Delaware rehab center can help. Call Banyan today now at 888-280-4763 to learn more about our addiction treatment options.

Related Readings:

The Effects of Adderall on the Body

Effects of Adderall on the Brain

Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.
What Happens if You Snort Adderall?
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