What Effect Does Adderall Have on Your Body

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The prescription drug Adderall is commonly used to treat attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is an amphetamine which, used as prescribed and under a doctor’s care, can help the person who has serious trouble focusing attention, controlling movement and organizing their life activities. When students and young people who do not have ADHD take the drug, it also boosts their attention, focus and ability to get work done. Consequently, the drug has become known as the study drug among college students. But, plenty of adults facing long workdays and nights, experiencing tedium on the job or looking for a boost to give them an edge in the office have also turned to illicit use of Adderall.

There is a common misconception that if a person uses a prescription drug, it is somehow less dangerous than taking a "street" drug. Adderall is a drug, and no matter where you buy them, drugs cause changes within the body that have the potential for harm. Adderall’s effects were dangerous enough that Canada ceased marketing the drug in 2005 after close to two dozen deaths was linked to its abuse.

As a stimulant, Adderall makes the user feel giddy or euphoric. It does this by stimulating chemicals related to feelings of happiness. Each time we experience something pleasurable from seeing our favorite team win the World Series to hearing our favorite song play on the radio, it is the release of these chemicals which makes the occasion feel so very good. Adderall users bypass the experience but still get the great emotional rush. That seems appealing until you consider some of the other effects of taking Adderall.

While it is true that Adderall stimulates the release of happy chemicals such as dopamine, it does not do so in exactly the same way that the body would naturally. Normally chemicals like dopamine travel from neuron to neuron until they wind up back where they started, ready to be released during the next pleasurable experience. Adderall interrupts this cycle and inhibits the body’s natural tendency to rebuild its stores (called reuptake). Of course, the user senses the interruption in the process and feels a craving and takes another pill.

In addition to preventing what should occur, Adderall can cause things to change which should not occur. Taking Adderall can cause blurred vision, lower normal appetite, aggravate nervous ticks and negatively affect digestion. Perhaps more dangerous, it prevents normal saliva production at the same time it increases urine production. This puts the body at risk for dehydration. It elevates blood pressure which can be particularly dangerous for people with pre-existing heart conditions. Young people taking Adderall have sometimes become susceptible to psychiatric effects such as delusions, hallucinations or hyper-excitability.

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