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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Adderall Abuse Epidemic In America

The academic world is facing an enemy far greater then anyone could of thought. The abuse of prescription medicine to deal wilth the stresses of life has become a rampant problem with no real solution in sight. Drugs like Adderall, Ritilan, and Dexedrine have become coping mechanisms for a number of reasons throughout the collegial atmosphere and in many cases have become not only socially acceptable, it's almost expected. It is almost hard to believe that 14 million prescriptions of Adderall were filled last year; it is no wonder the drug can be found on every college campus. Adderall abuse went relatively undetected for a long time because it is a prescribed medicine. However, like any prescription medication it can be sold or traded amongst peers and it is on a regular basis. There is no question that there is an Adderall abuse epidemic in America.

"At Cornell, a 2006 Gannett study found that at least six percent of the student body had used the drugs in the past year - though the impression of many students is that the actual percentage is much higher", according to the Cornell Sun. Many people do not talk about taking the drug because of the legal ramifications; many people also view amphetamine use as a way of cheating. Amphetamines give people a heightened sensitivity and greater concentration. Adderall is an amphetamine that increases the amount of dopamine released in the brain increasing the number of neurotransmitters available which increases concentration and alertness. When people take more than the prescribed amount the drug becomes tantamount to Crystal Methamphetamine; abuse can have a damaging effect on the brain resulting in permanent damage.

Sadly, Adderall abuse continues after college as people find that they have become dependent upon it to get their work done. Over time, one has to take more of the drug to get the desired effect because of higher tolerance levels. Amphetamine addiction is a real problem among young adults and many times treatment is the only solution. The vast majority of people who use prescription psychostimulants have very little idea about the serious side effects that can accompany the drug; prescription drugs have become such commonplace and are inside just about every medicine cabinet, this has given many students the idea that there is nothing wrong with their use.

I encourage you to watch this video of a CNN Interview with Dr. Drew Pinsky about this problem.

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