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Adderall

debatability
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8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I've done a fair amount of research for an assignment at my school on the topic of adderall use among college students (as well as Americans in the modern workforce).

Using adderall to increase concentration and productivity is ridiculously common among college students, and I can understand why. Academic burnout is a very real thing and I can sympathize with students who feel they cannot possibly continue to produce quality content for their professors consistently throughout the year without the aid of synthetic substances. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports that around 15% of all college students have used adderall despite having no prescription or medical need for the drug which is a pretty big number considering that using adderall to promote academic performance is illegal and likely dangerous.

The use of adderall has quite a few downsides. It is an extremely addictive prescription drug. I have even heard claims that adderall has more addictive potential than meth... I have some doubts about this claim, but its not entirely baseless. Adderall is an amphetamine, making the substance and it's affects relatively similar to that of meth. A molecule of methamphetamine and a molecule of adderall are quite similar in appearance, and individuals who have used both substances report similar effects. I tried to find some studies that gauge the addictive potential of adderall in comparison to meth, but I haven't had much luck. All I have found is anecdotal evidence talking about personal experiences with adderall abuse. I would venture to guess that addictive potential depends quite a bit on dosage and frequency of use. Also, many sources have noted that adderall increases productivity at the expense of creativity, meaning that adderall users tend lack innovation.

Personally, I know a few people who have used adderall without a prescription, and I have come to the conclusion that it's something I will never mess with. Around 45% of college students feel that adderall and other prescription drugs are safer than drugs bought off the street. This belief is likely another reason that adderall use among college students is so high - student's simply don't recognize the drug's addictive potential.

That being said, I buy arguments that adderall use among college campuses (as well as in the workforce) is inevitable. Thus, colleges ought to somehow try to focus on harm reduction.
So, I have a few questions...

Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?
What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?
Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?

Also, if you have anything to add about recreational adderall use, please do although I did not cover it much in the OP.
FourTrouble
Posts: 12,771
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8/13/2015 1:48:17 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:
Also, many sources have noted that adderall increases productivity at the expense of creativity, meaning that adderall users tend lack innovation.

I disagree with this. It increases motivation, focus, and energy. Innovation is unaffected, except to the extent innovation is related to your motivation, ability to focus, and so on. If anything, it increases innovation. Anyone saying it comes at expense of creativity is probably just not a very creative person to begin with.

Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?

No. I think it's safe if used in moderation and legitimately helpful. I also enjoy using it outside school, as it really speeds up your mind and I love that feeling, so to be honest, I wish it were more readily available.

What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?

The could offer alternatives like modafinil. I'm guessing that would probably lead to a massive reduction in use of adderall, especially since modafinil is probably a better drug for improving productivity and performance at school. But that's just replacing one drug with another (though arguably better for academic purposes).

Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?

Yes. It works. I personally felt euphoric on it, as well as overall better (more self-confidence which translated into better performance on whatever I was doing). I think the risks/harms you mention don't come anywhere close to the real story. If used sparingly, in moderation, I don't think it's addictive at all. And even if used a lot, it's not the sort of drug you're gonna experience serious withdrawals from (you'll get greater withdrawals from most antidepressants). And besides, "addiction" isn't really such a harmful thing. Dependence on external nutrition is inherent to our biology; I don't see why adding a drug to the mix is bad if the drug itself can be used sustainably and healthily, to great effect (and adderall arguably can if swapped with other drugs like Vyvanse or modafinil). At least that's my opinion on it. I'm probably in the minority though.
ShabShoral
Posts: 3,236
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8/13/2015 2:08:13 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:
Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?
I see no reason to distinguish it from, say, drinking coffee or getting a good amount of sleep. If the output of the student is acceptable, it really doesn't matter what methods they used to produce it.
What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?
I don't think they could and I don't think that they should.
Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?
I haven't used it, but that's mainly because I haven't had the motivation to search it out. I wouldn't be opposed to it at all and I probably will eventually.
Also, if you have anything to add about recreational adderall use, please do although I did not cover it much in the OP.
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Skepsikyma
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8/13/2015 1:29:27 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I was on it as a child (ADHD), and I hated it. My mind felt 'tied' to something, like it was tethered to an exceptionally boring post. It was a horrible feeling, It also killed my appetite completely, and I ended up looking like Skeletor as a teenager. When I got off of it, I felt like a ball and chain had been removed from my leg.

If someone else has a good experience with it, I'm not totally adverse to them using it. I obviously have a much bigger problem with the over-diagnosis of ADHD and subsequent over-prescription of Adderall. I don't doubt that this also fuels the illicit use of the drug, as I would have sold mine in a heartbeat had I not been watched like a hawk. HATED the stuff.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
debatability
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8/13/2015 6:46:03 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 1:48:17 AM, FourTrouble wrote:
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:

I disagree with this. It increases motivation, focus, and energy. Innovation is unaffected, except to the extent innovation is related to your motivation, ability to focus, and so on. If anything, it increases innovation. Anyone saying it comes at expense of creativity is probably just not a very creative person to begin with.

I would guess it varies from person to person. I've heard from people that frequently use it that it essentially removes all drive the person has to do anything but work speedily on the task at hand, which isn't always appealing. I think it's plausible that some people might be deterred from doing a through job on their tasks simply because they want to be as quick as possible.


Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?

No. I think it's safe if used in moderation and legitimately helpful. I also enjoy using it outside school, as it really speeds up your mind and I love that feeling, so to be honest, I wish it were more readily available.


How easy is is to use in moderation, though? I hear of many people becoming addicted.

What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?

The could offer alternatives like modafinil. I'm guessing that would probably lead to a massive reduction in use of adderall, especially since modafinil is probably a better drug for improving productivity and performance at school. But that's just replacing one drug with another (though arguably better for academic purposes).


What's the primary difference between adderall and modafinil?

Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?

Yes. It works. I personally felt euphoric on it, as well as overall better (more self-confidence which translated into better performance on whatever I was doing). I think the risks/harms you mention don't come anywhere close to the real story. If used sparingly, in moderation, I don't think it's addictive at all. And even if used a lot, it's not the sort of drug you're gonna experience serious withdrawals from (you'll get greater withdrawals from most antidepressants). And besides, "addiction" isn't really such a harmful thing. Dependence on external nutrition is inherent to our biology; I don't see why adding a drug to the mix is bad if the drug itself can be used substantially and healthily, to great effect (and adderall arguably can if swapped with other drugs like Vyvanse or modafinil). At least that's my opinion on it. I'm probably in the minority though.

I think more people have the propensity to get addicted than others, though. A lot of people don't like it's effects, yet still are capable of getting hooked and having to use it on a regular basis to get things done efficiently.

The whole thing really varies from person to person and if you like using adderall and don't feel that it harms you, use it all you want.

I don't really think colleges can do much of anything about the issue anyway given how common use of adderall and/or Ritalin is.
debatability
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8/13/2015 6:49:54 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 2:08:13 AM, ShabShoral wrote:
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:
Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?
I see no reason to distinguish it from, say, drinking coffee or getting a good amount of sleep. If the output of the student is acceptable, it really doesn't matter what methods they used to produce it.

Well, the problem many people find with adderall use is not that it is unethical. Generally people think the harms adderall can potentially cause outweigh the good because of it's side affects. Drinking coffee and sleeping a lot generally don't have downsides such as addiction and decrease in creativity or feelings of constraint.

What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?
I don't think they could and I don't think that they should.

I agree with the first part. There's probably little colleges can do.

Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?
I haven't used it, but that's mainly because I haven't had the motivation to search it out. I wouldn't be opposed to it at all and I probably will eventually.
Also, if you have anything to add about recreational adderall use, please do although I did not cover it much in the OP.
debatability
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8/13/2015 6:51:17 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 1:29:27 PM, Skepsikyma wrote:
I was on it as a child (ADHD), and I hated it. My mind felt 'tied' to something, like it was tethered to an exceptionally boring post. It was a horrible feeling, It also killed my appetite completely, and I ended up looking like Skeletor as a teenager. When I got off of it, I felt like a ball and chain had been removed from my leg.

If someone else has a good experience with it, I'm not totally adverse to them using it. I obviously have a much bigger problem with the over-diagnosis of ADHD and subsequent over-prescription of Adderall. I don't doubt that this also fuels the illicit use of the drug, as I would have sold mine in a heartbeat had I not been watched like a hawk. HATED the stuff.

Did you experience any withdrawal like symptoms once you stopped using it? That all sounds pretty unpleasant...
Wylted
Posts: 21,167
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8/13/2015 6:56:19 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I think all college students should get an adderal prescription, if they have low energy or have to work a job while attending college full time. While anything that increases focus, does reduce creativity, I think the benefits outweigh those small harms. Spend a few hours off adderal contemplating your project, so you can use that creativity, while on adderal.

Idiots can get addicted to anything and abuse it, but I don't think it will be a problem for most people. I'll use adderal about 1 or 2 days a week to make up for energy deficits, but in all honestly sometimes I go months without using it. I've never heard of somebody treating meth that way, but if I'n wrong about that, please let me know so I can start using that from time to time :)
Wylted
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8/13/2015 6:58:52 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I haven't felt like it's affected my creativity at all, but most studies shows that focus hurts creativity, and probably for obvious reasons. I assume the effect is imperceptible to me and just try to compensate for it.
Wylted
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8/13/2015 7:00:39 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 6:49:54 PM, debatability wrote:
At 8/13/2015 2:08:13 AM, ShabShoral wrote:
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:
Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?
I see no reason to distinguish it from, say, drinking coffee or getting a good amount of sleep. If the output of the student is acceptable, it really doesn't matter what methods they used to produce it.

Well, the problem many people find with adderall use is not that it is unethical. Generally people think the harms adderall can potentially cause outweigh the good because of it's side affects. Drinking coffee and sleeping a lot generally don't have downsides such as addiction and decrease in creativity or feelings of constraint.

What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?
I don't think they could and I don't think that they should.

I agree with the first part. There's probably little colleges can do.

Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?
I haven't used it, but that's mainly because I haven't had the motivation to search it out. I wouldn't be opposed to it at all and I probably will eventually.
Also, if you have anything to add about recreational adderall use, please do although I did not cover it much in the OP.

See I disagree. Usually coffee's boost is more short term, but the increased focus (if you experience that on coffee, not all people do), should also harm creativity.
Wylted
Posts: 21,167
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8/13/2015 7:02:29 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Here is a dirty little secret of colleges. They actually encourage adderal use among students. I've talked to several professors who will outright tell you that they and counsellors direct people to psychiatric professionals who are more likely to prescribe it.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,286
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8/13/2015 10:13:18 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 6:51:17 PM, debatability wrote:
At 8/13/2015 1:29:27 PM, Skepsikyma wrote:
I was on it as a child (ADHD), and I hated it. My mind felt 'tied' to something, like it was tethered to an exceptionally boring post. It was a horrible feeling, It also killed my appetite completely, and I ended up looking like Skeletor as a teenager. When I got off of it, I felt like a ball and chain had been removed from my leg.

If someone else has a good experience with it, I'm not totally adverse to them using it. I obviously have a much bigger problem with the over-diagnosis of ADHD and subsequent over-prescription of Adderall. I don't doubt that this also fuels the illicit use of the drug, as I would have sold mine in a heartbeat had I not been watched like a hawk. HATED the stuff.

Did you experience any withdrawal like symptoms once you stopped using it? That all sounds pretty unpleasant...

Not that I recall. I gained weight (from 110 pounds to 125 at 18 years old). I felt better after I had stopped using it.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
FourTrouble
Posts: 12,771
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8/13/2015 11:22:25 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/13/2015 6:46:03 PM, debatability wrote:
At 8/13/2015 1:48:17 AM, FourTrouble wrote:
At 8/12/2015 11:43:03 PM, debatability wrote:

I disagree with this. It increases motivation, focus, and energy. Innovation is unaffected, except to the extent innovation is related to your motivation, ability to focus, and so on. If anything, it increases innovation. Anyone saying it comes at expense of creativity is probably just not a very creative person to begin with.

I would guess it varies from person to person. I've heard from people that frequently use it that it essentially removes all drive the person has to do anything but work speedily on the task at hand, which isn't always appealing. I think it's plausible that some people might be deterred from doing a through job on their tasks simply because they want to be as quick as possible.

No. It absolutely doesn't do what you're describing. That's just not how it works chemically. People who feel that only feel that if that's their intent. If you want to be creative, or if you want to let your mind wander through ideas and different tasks/disciplines, you absolutely can.

Is adderall use for academic purposes a problem, in your opinion?

No. I think it's safe if used in moderation and legitimately helpful. I also enjoy using it outside school, as it really speeds up your mind and I love that feeling, so to be honest, I wish it were more readily available.


How easy is is to use in moderation, though? I hear of many people becoming addicted.

Easy. Use it when you really need a boost or want to have a good time. Never more than once a week. Treat it like any drug. You're not gonna do MDMA every day; don't do adderall every day either.

What can colleges do to deter students from using adderall?

The could offer alternatives like modafinil. I'm guessing that would probably lead to a massive reduction in use of adderall, especially since modafinil is probably a better drug for improving productivity and performance at school. But that's just replacing one drug with another (though arguably better for academic purposes).


What's the primary difference between adderall and modafinil?

Different drugs. Modafinil is an anti in arc old optic; pilots and the military use it to stay awake 48 hours with same level of performance as if they slept. It improves focus and motivation just like adderall. But it doesn't make you jittery or feel speedy, and its nowhere near as euphoric (i.e. not at all). It's basically everything adderall is supposed to be but isn't for increasing productivity, focus, intelligence, and so on.

Have you ever used it, and what was your experience with it?

Yes. It works. I personally felt euphoric on it, as well as overall better (more self-confidence which translated into better performance on whatever I was doing). I think the risks/harms you mention don't come anywhere close to the real story. If used sparingly, in moderation, I don't think it's addictive at all. And even if used a lot, it's not the sort of drug you're gonna experience serious withdrawals from (you'll get greater withdrawals from most antidepressants). And besides, "addiction" isn't really such a harmful thing. Dependence on external nutrition is inherent to our biology; I don't see why adding a drug to the mix is bad if the drug itself can be used substantially and healthily, to great effect (and adderall arguably can if swapped with other drugs like Vyvanse or modafinil). At least that's my opinion on it. I'm probably in the minority though.

I think more people have the propensity to get addicted than others, though. A lot of people don't like it's effects, yet still are capable of getting hooked and having to use it on a regular basis to get things done efficiently.

Those people probably have other underlying problems. Solve the problems, not the symptoms.

The whole thing really varies from person to person and if you like using adderall and don't feel that it harms you, use it all you want.

I don't really think colleges can do much of anything about the issue anyway given how common use of adderall and/or Ritalin is.

Modafinil would replace adderall in an instant if people try it. Another alternative is micro-dosing on LSD, or more research into nootropics (I'm scared sh!tless of most nootropics as there's no research on long-term effects and I've heard try horror stories about those).
Otokage
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8/17/2015 9:05:52 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
The problem is not adderal, but the ridiculously high expectations both teachers and parents put on students, which we need to realize are teenagers and their marks are the least of their concerns. It is very upseting to see teens so stressed with their highschool work as if they were doing some sort of NASA important job. Some teens really need to relax and enjoy the beautiful stage of life they are in, but they can not do it if their own family are preventim them from doing it. I've never had an ADH student in class (in my country this is usualy a problem reported on little kids, not teens), but if I ever have one, Im going to work big time both with him and hopefuly with their parents in order to give him a good learning experience through highschool.

As for the university, we all know some friend that used drugs in order to improve their marks. Ironicly, this is also the friend we know does not like to study very much, so he/she compensates the lack of effort with drugs. Not very wise and, Imo, not very effective either.