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Strattera Addiction And The Best Rehab Centers For Treatment

Medically reviewed by

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

February 13, 2019

Strattera is a medication prescribed for individuals with ADD and ADHD. Individuals who take this drug, however, find that they build up a tolerance to it and need to take more and more to feel the effects. Continuously upping a dose without doctor approval can leave individuals finding themselves dependent on and addicted to Strattera.

Strattera is a norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor used to treat ADD and ADHD. It works with the chemicals in the brain that controls concentration and hyperactivity. Those who struggle with ADD and ADHD are grateful to have medications available to them that allow them to focus and concentrate on their work. Without these breakthroughs in medicine, many people would find themselves in worse positions, however, when taken improperly, these prescriptions can be just as harmful as they are helpful.

Due to a steady increase in tolerance to these drugs, many people begin taking more than their recommended dosage and soon find themselves dependent. Others begin to take these medications because they believe it will help them study better and take tests even though they do not have a prescription, and soon they find they cannot do their classwork without it.

While considered safer than other similar medications due to the fact that the generic drug, Atomoxetine, is a non-stimulant, making it less addictive, there is still a risk of it being abused like any other drug. It is not classified as a controlled substance because it doesn’t affect the dopamine pleasure-sensors of the brain that affect addiction, but this also makes it easier to get a hold of without a prescription.

Short-Term Effects Of Strattera

While not believed to be as dangerous as other drugs that help with ADD and ADHD, Strattera can still cause the following effects:

  • rapid heart rate
  • nausea
  • numbness
  • dizziness
  • constipation
  • rash
  • insomnia

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Long-Term Effects Of Strattera

When people take Strattera for a long period of time, the most common effects are:

  • personality changes
  • hallucinations
  • loss of sex drive

Due to Strattera’s effect on a person’s appetite, many people experience extreme weight loss, which then leads to malnourishment, and other health problems can result from that.

Strattera Addiction Treatment

Many people consider Strattera to have non-addictive qualities, but that doesn’t stop people from developing a tolerance, causing them to take more medicine than they should, and depending on it for focus. Because of this, many doctors will recommend an outpatient rehab program that focuses on lowering doses back to normal levels and incorporating cognitive-behavioral therapy to give users life skills and coping mechanisms for their inability to pay attention and concentrate.

Because many of those who are being treated for Strattera addiction have an underlying ADD or ADHD diagnosis, dual-diagnosis treatment is recommended. Doctors will then not only treat the addiction but also work with the patient to get their disorder under control. Many also recommend attending weekly meetings with others who share the same experience. This allows for close friendships and bonds to form, giving those struggling with both their disorder and tolerance support to help them get through the hard times.

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