Focalin and Adderall are two types of prescription drugs that are used to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
As stimulants, they increase alertness and improve concentration and focus in people with this disorder. Many people who have ADHD or loved ones with this condition may compare the effectiveness and strength of Adderall vs Focalin. If you’re looking into asking your doctor about these medications, then knowing their differences is important. As an inpatient rehab in Illinois, we also know that sharing more information about these medications can reduce the likelihood of their abuse.
What Is Adderall?
Adderall is a prescription stimulant used to treat ADHD and narcolepsy. Its ingredients are dextroamphetamine saccharate, amphetamine aspartate, dextroamphetamine sulfate, and amphetamine sulfate. Adderall can produce certain side effects, including dry mouth, stomach pain, weight loss, anxiety, and loss of strength. People who take this medication regularly may initially experience these side effects when they first start using the medication or when their dose is increased. These side effects usually subside as the individual’s body adapts.
What Is Focalin?
Dexmethylphenidate or Focalin is a man-made stimulant that’s derived from methylphenidate. Methylphenidate is known by the brand names Ritalin, Concerta, and Metadate. Dexmethylphenidate is the most active ingredient in methylphenidate, which is why Focalin is twice as strong as Ritalin and Concerta. Focalin side effects include difficulty sleeping, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, headache, loss of appetite, weight loss, or dizziness. Like Adderall, Focalin’s side effects should become regulated once the person is accustomed to the medication. If not, they should call their doctor immediately.
Adderall vs Focalin: How Are They Different?
They sound pretty similar, but are Focalin and Adderall the same? Although both Focalin and Adderall work similarly by blocking the reuptake of norepinephrine and dopamine, they are not the same. The difference between Adderall and Focalin is that Focalin only contains one kind of amphetamine salt, dexmethylphenidate, while Adderall contains four kinds of amphetamine salts. Another major difference between the two is that there’s no generic form of Vyvanse available, making it more expensive than Adderall. However, this also means that Vyvanse is less likely to be abused, although there are no studies that provide head-to-head trials.
Although they’re different, both Adderall and Focalin affect the brain by activating the release and blocking the reuptake of norepinephrine and dopamine. Norepinephrine plays a role in managing functions like breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure, while dopamine plays a role in mood and reinforcing pleasurable behaviors. Prescription stimulant abuse has become more common among young adults, particularly college students. Individuals who do not have ADHD often abuse the stimulant drugs Adderall, Focalin, or Ritalin to improve their performance at school or work. However, this can lead to some serious consequences.
Long-term stimulant abuse can lead to addiction, among a variety of other physical and psychological repercussions. Without the help of detox for prescription drugs, individuals who are addicted to their medications may turn to illicit stimulants like cocaine or meth for a more intense high. These drugs are even more addictive and physically impacting. Without the assistance of a medical detox center, these individuals also increase their chances of relapsing after quitting and overdosing.
If you’re battling stimulant addiction or know someone who is, our prescription drug addiction treatment at Banyan Treatment Centers Heartland can help. To learn more about our inpatient substance abuse treatment in Illinois, call us today at 888-280-4763. Addiction can happen to anyone, and it doesn’t just go away. If you’re struggling or have a loved one who is, don’t wait to get help.