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Controversy and Culture Surrounding Student Use of the Drug Adderall

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Last October, the Federal Drug Administration, or FDA, brought the drug Adderall into the limelight again due the struggle among pharmacies to meet prescription demands. People with Adderall prescriptions find it harder to fill prescriptions and pharmacists are currently working with doctors to alter the dosage of these prescriptions in hopes to make it easier for patients to fill them.

Pharmacist Nicole Pagano says her customers will look other places when put on a waiting list for the drug and college students are selling Adderall pills for $5 each, according to an article on The Ithacan website. Pagano says this has been a difficult dilemma since people need their prescription but only a few lucky ones are getting it.

The demand for Adderall among college students usually increases around finals weeks and students sell between five and ten pills per week. A senior college student interviewed said she uses the drug as a study aid, especially during stressful times like midterms and finals weeks. That student wasn’t even an ADHD prescription taker but says she didn’t feel prepared to handle her new college course load.

Students say the drug makes them feel more motivated and helps them to focus on the future. However, it can also make them distracted and they will focus on the wrong things, like social networking sites. Elaine Moore, an author who has written about the debate among amphetamines, says Adderall introduces moral questions. Moore feels the Adderall stigma is due to its effects on our society, rather than its side effects.

The vast numbers of students taking Adderall do not care for its side effects but instead of ending their prescription, they sell it to make money and this fuels the black market.

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