Adderall Abuse (by Marnie Foster)

[ By on May 15, 2017 ]

In recent years, the abuse of adderall, a drug used to treat ADHD has skyrocketed in young adults, especially those going into college. According to a study done by Johns Hopkins, there has been a dramatic increase in hospital visits from the drug, yet the amount of prescriptions for the stimulant have remained the same. Research showed that 60 percent of non-medical adderall use was between the ages 18 and 25. Due to the increased  workload in college and stress from their job, many young adults turn to adderall for increased focus and the ability to stay up late cramming for exams. Although experts say that it is relatively easy to stop taking the drug, many have become addicted and as a result have felt their lives are controlled by it. Most misusers get the drug from a friend or family member, but some are able to acquire a prescription from a psychiatrist’s without a proper diagnosis. Furthermore, multiple prescriptions from different physicians enable those who are addicted to receive more pills than they are supposed to. Rabin Mojtabai MD, MPh, PhD, a professor of mental health at the Bloomberg school believes that adderall should be monitored in the same way as painkillers to prevent the provision of multiple prescriptions. In addition, he also believes that young adults, who primarily use it as a study aid, should be informed on the dangerous side effects from abusing the drug. Some believe, however, that the prescription drug system is already too restrictive and that individuals are in the better position to assess the risks and benefits of taking a certain drug that they may or may not medically need. Should we restrict people’s access to a drug that could potentially better their well being, or is our system too relaxed with this particular drug as it is?

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3 Comments on “Adderall Abuse (by Marnie Foster)”

  1. KNF

    Hi Marnie,
    I think this topic is very interesting and relevant to our society today. I think it would be helpful to look at how easy it is for young adults and even teenagers to obtain adderall and how willing doctors are to prescribe it. This issue has become so problematic that I think it is totally reasonable for you to consider if it is ethical to restrict or even ban the drug. We all know about the well-documented epidemics surrounding illegal drugs such as heroin and cocaine, however according to your post it seems as though adderall and the abuse of it can become similarly dangerous to the youthful population. I think one of the possible arguments against restricting the ability to obtain adderall might be that many people actually (responsibly) rely on the drug to be successful member of their community and that without it they would struggle. Overall, I think that this topic can allow you to be both specific in your research on adderall but could also broaden into discussing the system of drug regulation in the U.S. as a whole.

  2. KNF

    Caleb Jeanniton

    [ May 15, 2017 at 3:50 pm ]

    I think that this is a particularly interesting question to examine. As a student, I can sympathize with those who feel the urge to use medication that has the ability to help them get ahead. I have also wrestled with the idea of exactly what role the government should have in regulating certain medications. When I consider this question, I often look at the alcohol and tobacco industry. The only regulations on the use of those products are ones related to the age of the user. Should we apply this model to Adderall and other similar drugs? I’m not entirely sure, but I’m glad that you are interested in doing the research. I think that it would be beneficial for your argument if you explained the (potential) uncertainty around the adverse effects Adderall can have on the body.

  3. KNF

    Adderall and other stimulants like Ritalin are currently considered controlled substances and there is a registry system when you fill a prescription at the pharmacy for these. Once the information is recorded, I wonder what is done to track that information. How can health care providers be more vigilant to prevent prescription drug abuse in a society when medicine is generally becoming less and less personalized?

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