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Is Adderall A Controlled Substance?

Isaac Alexis, M.D., AAMA, AMP-BC

Medically reviewed by

Isaac Alexis, M.D., AAMA, AMP-BC

Adderall, a prescription stimulant used in the treatment of ADHD and narcolepsy, is a controlled substance. If you are addicted to Adderall, a formal treatment program can help you reclaim your life in recovery.

A lot of people wonder if Adderall is a controlled substance. More information on this question, as well as about Adderall in general, is discussed below.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is the brand name for a medication that is a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. This prescription medicine is used primarily in the treatment of ADHD and narcolepsy. It comes in two different forms: instant release and extended release.

This medication is a central nervous system stimulant that works by allowing people to concentrate more easily. It can also provide increased energy while simultaneously calming someone with ADHD down. This allows a person to focus on one task at hand rather than being easily distracted.

Like many other stimulants, Adderall is frequently abused. Abuse of Adderall can involve taking more of the drug than what is prescribed or taking someone else’s prescription. Many people abuse Adderall for the high it can elicit. Symptoms of an Adderall high can include feelings of euphoria, bolstered self-confidence, and extreme energy.

Despite the good feelings that an Adderall high can provide, dangers come with abusing this drug. People can experience a number of negative side effects, including rapid heart rate, increased blood pressure, and insomnia. The longer a person abuses the drug, the worse the side effects will be.

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Its potential for abuse is a primary reason why Adderall is classified as a controlled substance. Here is more information on what a controlled substance is and why Adderall is classified as one.

Why Is Adderall A Controlled Substance?

The Controlled Substances Act was put in place in 1970 and influences the making and distribution of certain medications. Medications can fall under one of five “schedules,” with each schedule representing the safety and potential for abuse of a medication.

Many medications used in the treatment of ADHD are considered a Schedule II substance. This includes Adderall and Adderall XR.

What this means is that there is a high potential for dependence and abuse of Adderall and other ADHD medications like it. Other substances classified as Schedule II controlled drugs include narcotic painkillers like Vicodin.

What Does This Mean For You?

If you have been prescribed Adderall, it’s important to take the drug as indicated by your doctor. You will not be able to fill an Adderall prescription earlier than every 30 days in most cases. Additionally, you will have to get a new prescription each month from your doctor, as Schedule II substances cannot simply be “refilled” like other drugs.

If you are worried about the possibility of addiction to Adderall, it’s important to talk with your doctor about your concerns. He or she can inform you on what to look for and may prescribe the extended release version of the drug, which can reduce the risk of abuse.

Getting Treatment For Adderall Abuse And Addiction

Common signs that someone is abusing an Adderall prescription include going through the prescription too quickly, insomnia, and weight loss. If you or a loved one is abusing or addicted to Adderall, seeking treatment is the best way to prevent the harmful side effects and dangers that come with abusing this drug.

Many people who are addicted to Adderall have found great success with intensive treatment such as an inpatient treatment program. Inpatient programs offer daily support and customized recovery plans.

To learn more about Adderall being a controlled substance and the treatment options available for Adderall abuse and addiction, contact our treatment specialists today.

WebMD - Why Are ADHD Medicines Controlled Substances?

DEA - Drug Scheduling

RxList - Adderall

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