Adderall is a medication that is frequently prescribed to those who have been diagnosed with attention deficit disorder (ADD). Unfortunately, it’s not impossible for long-term complications to arise after extended use.
We’ve put together a brief guide that covers everything you need to know about the long-term effects. Let’s dive in.
How Exactly Does Adderall Work?
For those who are unfamiliar, this medication binds to the dopamine and norepinephrine receptors of the user’s brain. Additionally, it also binds to the norepinephrine receptors in the adrenal gland.
The goal behind this medication is to boost the overall level of dopamine in your brain in order to help you concentrate. Additionally, users often experience a sharp increase in alertness and may even experience euphoria.
As a result, it’s not uncommon for certain demographics to abuse this substance. For example, college students who need to accomplish a large amount of studying within a very short period of time might choose to take Adderall in order to help them do so.
The same can be said for those who need to maintain long periods of concentration, such as software developers. Whether you take this drug as intended or not, however, it can still have adverse effects on your body.
How Does It Affect the Brain?
Since Adderall is a stimulant, it simultaneously boosts energy levels while suppressing the user’s appetite and need for sleep. Additionally, the serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine neurotransmitters within the brain become notably more active.
Over an extended period of time, the increased presence of dopamine can influence how the user experiences pleasure. In some circumstances, someone who has engaged in long-term use of Adderall might find that they rarely feel pleasure without taking the substance.
As time goes on, the user may exhibit an increased tolerance. This means that they may inevitably need to take more of the drug at a time in order to experience the intended effects.
As you can tell, this type of behavior can easily become difficult to control and could even spiral into an addiction. This is particularly true for those who administer large doses of Adderall through alternative methods, such as snorting or injection.
This type of behavior is often typical of users who have a substantial tolerance.
What Side Effects Does It Have?
In addition to putting the user at risk of addiction, there are numerous other side effects of long-term Adderall usage. Although not all of them are overly serious, they can quickly become debilitating if not kept in check.
Let’s take a look at some of the most notable.
Stimulants can quickly raise blood pressure, heart rate, and body temperature. So, using this drug over a long period of time puts the user at an increased risk of seizures, heart attacks, and strokes.
This risk exponentially increases as the user begins to increase the dosage. Additionally, you may experience abdominal pain, insomnia, weight loss, and dizziness.
Insomnia is a particularly concerning side effect since it can easily exacerbate each of the other symptoms that a user experiences. Due to the strain that stimulant abuse places on the heart, the user is also at risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Unfortunately, many of those who heavily abuse Adderall tend to experience mood swings. They could also experience strong bouts of depression, panic attacks, and even psychosis.
Those who are addicted to Adderall often experience the full brunt of mental complications when attempting to stave themselves off of the drug. These situations can easily become unbearable, leading the user to begin using Adderall once again.
As this behavior continues, their tolerance increases, which prompts them to up their dosage. The user may eventually reach a point where they need to constantly be under the influence of the substance in order to function normally.
If I Experience Side Effects, What Should I Do?
Experiencing any of the above side effects can be particularly concerning. This is especially true if you develop intense headaches, high blood pressure, etc.
If you notice that any of the side effects you have from taking Adderall prevent you from performing your daily tasks, it’s worth seeking medical treatment immediately. Of course, you should also seek medical attention if you feel chest pain, abdominal pain, or experience a seizure.
However, it’s also important to understand that receiving medical treatment for your symptoms will not eliminate the underlying issue.
Those who suffer from addiction to Adderall will typically receive medical treatment and then immediately engage in this behavior once again. Over time, this creates a cycle of placing undue stress on the body, receiving treatment, and then repeating the process.
It should come as no surprise that this type of behavior can easily result in long-term health complications, such as kidney disease.
Instead, it’s highly recommended to work with a professional who can help you regulate and overcome your addiction. Due to the way Adderall affects the neurotransmitters in your brain, this can be virtually impossible to accomplish on your own.
A reputable rehabilitation facility is fully capable of helping you safely transition back to a normal lifestyle. So, keep this in mind when looking for long-term solutions.
Adderall Can Come With Debilitating Side Effects
It’s imperative that you fully understand how to recognize them. From here, you’ll be able to determine whether or not you should seek treatment from the long term effects of Adderall usage.
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