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Adderall is the brand name for a prescription stimulant drug, which is prescribed to treat ADHD and narcolepsy. Adderall is a medication consisting of amphetamine salts, which act as a central nervous system stimulant. Adderall is a Schedule II drug, and it is considered to have a high potential for misuse and abuse. The drug is therefore is available by prescription only, and is only legal in the United States and Canada. Because of the risk of abuse associated with Adderall, individuals who have a history of drug abuse should not use the drug at all. Adderall actually carries what is known as a "Black Box Warning" from the federal government due to it's the risks associated with abuse of the drug.

A single dose of Adderall can last anywhere from for four to six hours, although there is an extended-release version which can last for up to 12 hours. Similar to other drugs of which are misused and abused, Adderall affects the areas of the brain which and central nervous system which are part of the body's natural reward system. When an individual takes Adderall, they soon feel more alert, excited, can become more active etc. Because individuals cannot naturally produce these feelings which the body registers as rewarding, taking Adderall becomes a habit because the individuals wants to experience these feelings again and more often. This is how someone can become addicted to Adderall.

Adderall can be habit-forming not just for someone who is abusing the drug recreationally, like without a prescription for instance. Individuals who have been prescribed the drug will often become dependent to the drug and need it just to feel normal, and will have significant trouble coming off of it when it is time to do so. The problem that individuals will encounter, with both recreational abuse and legitimate use of the drug, is that they will need larger and larger doses of Adderall to achieve the desired effects. This can produce many unwanted symptoms or "side effects", which can cause the individuals to have trouble sleeping, become irritable, hyperactive, and mood and behavior changes.

After the drug's effects have dissipated, users will typically feel groggy and want to sleep. Unfortunately, they typically will not be able to go to sleep because of the stimulant effects of the drug. Abuse of stimulants such as Adderall can cause also many life-threatening and dangerous side effects because of their effects on the heart and central nervous system, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. The risks associated with Adderall are not only likely if you are abusing or misusing the drug, and the drug has been associated with sudden death in children and teenagers. Again, this is child or youth has a pre-existing health issue such as a heart defect or other serious heart problem.

Students, in both high school and college, also commonly abuse stimulant drugs such as Adderall and Ritalin to become more attentive and proficient in their studies. This is more common than one would think, and 1 in 5 students actually admit to recreational use of stimulant drugs such as Adderall for this purpose. If they have an exam for example, and need to pull an all-nighter, a student will take a significant dose of Adderall to instantly become more alert and stay up all night to prepare and cram for school. Unfortunately, recreational use of stimulants such as Adderall are not only dangerous but recreational users are not using the drug the way it was meant to be used which puts their lives in danger. As discussed earlier, recreational users are typically taking much larger doses than would normally be prescribed which puts them at risk of overdose. Overdosing on Adderall can lead to heart attack, stroke, coma and even sudden death. This is especially true if the individuals already has a pre-existing known or unknown health condition such as a heart defect of other serious heart problem, or is they are mixing the drug with other substances such as illicit drugs or alcohol.

The drug is known to enhance performance in sports as well, and the drug has been banned by many non-professional and professional sports organizations as a result. Examples of this are the NCAA, who won't allow individuals to participate athletically unless they have a prescription for the drug. The UFC recently removed one of their athletes from a championship competition when it was discovered that the individual was using the banned substance. The NFL banned a NFC kicker for 4 games in 2009 because he tested positive for the performance enhancing drug, and an Arizona Cardinals tight end received a similar suspension for using the drug.

Individuals who become dependent to Adderall will experience what is known as withdrawal symptoms which are the body's way of telling you to take more or else. Unfortunately, this is why many individuals find it difficult to stop taking the drug, and individuals who attempt to do so may experience severe anxiety, depression and even suicidal thoughts. This is also why it is always recommended that individuals intending to come off of the drug do so under medical supervision or under the supervision of detox professionals, such as at a drug detox facility or drug rehab facility.

Between 2000 and 2004, over 37 million prescriptions were filled for Adderall, so this is big business for the drug companies and health care industry. Not to mention the illicit street value that the drug has which lines the pockets of drug dealers who make the Adderall available for misuse and abuse. Adderall is not a benign drug of abuse, the risks of abuse and misuse are serious and life threatening. Individuals who have become dependent or addicted to the drug should seek treatment at a drug rehab center which treats stimulant addiction. There are many programs available to help those who have become addicted to the drug, which can help them get off of it and resolve any underlying emotional and psychological issues which will ensure they don't get back on the drug in the future.