Adderall abuse common among studying students

While pulling an all-nighter is a common studying technique during finals week, other “techniques could be potentially harmful.

Student who abuses Adderall, using it as a study tool, may face many health and legal risks.

Adderall is a prescribed drug that helps people with Attention Deficient Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder better focus.

A report released last month in the online journal “Drug and Alcohol Dependence” showed that college students have the highest Adderall abuse rate.

“I take it to help me study longer, not better. I take it when I’m screwed,” said James Davis, a University of Central Florida student. “I have a huge test that I need to pass, and I haven’t studied at all for it.”

College student may abuse Adderall because of so called positive effects. Some of Adderall’s effects include increased concentration and focus and ability to stay awake for longer periods of time.

However, many students may not be aware of the drug’s negative effects like headaches, ticks, paranoia, nervousness, insomnia and dry mouth. Mixing Adderall with other medications or alcohol can increase a person’s health risks, causing cardiac arrest, hypertension and psychosis.

“Students that abuse Adderall aren’t often aware of the serious side effects. Heart attacks and deaths are both risks of the drug when not used properly,” said Clarence Herring, a pharmacist at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital.

Herring stressed that a students who takes Adderall without a prescription are not the only ones who face health risks.

Having an Adderall prescription and missing dosages because people sell or give away some of their pills can actually lead to a dosage increase and possible loss of the control over the person’s ADD or ADHD.

Health risks are not the only consequences for students that abuse or sell Adderall; abusing the Adderall, like any other drug, is a felony.

“Generally, if a student abuses drugs, it is illegal, period,” said Assistant Chief of Florida A&M University Police Department James Lockley. “If a student is found selling or using a drug without a prescription, they can face anything from (an) arrest to jail time.”

The Florida State University Police Department is also strict about enforcing the abuse, selling and giving away of Adderall.

“If a student is found processing Adderall illegally, it is a felony. It’s a class II narcotic (felony), just as cocaine is,” said Lt. Jim Russell of FSU PD.

More common methods of studying and doing well on assignments are getting enough sleep prior to studying, eating healthy and allotting enough time for studying can improve a student’s focus.

For more information on the health and legal consequences of taking Adderall without a prescription visit

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