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The Dangers of Mixing Adderall & Alcohol

Adderall is a common prescription medication that offers life-improving benefits to certain people. Alcohol is a recreational substance that is used safely and moderately by many adults. But if a person combines the two, the dangers of mixing adderall and alcohol be catastrophic. 

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is a prescription medication that contains amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, both of which are stimulants. Adderall is typically used to treat people who have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is also often prescribed to people who are suffering from narcolepsy.

Adderall’s ability to enhance focus, concentration, and attention has also prompted many people to abuse it for performance-enhancing purposes. This type of Adderall abuse is popular among students and some professionals who may feel that they need a cognitive boost to prepare for a test or complete a complex project.

Adderall may also be abused for recreational purposes. As a central nervous system stimulant, Adderall is in the same category as amphetamine, methamphetamine, and cocaine. People who abuse Adderall as a recreational drug may do so to stay awake for extended periods of time or to counteract the effects of depressants such as alcohol. 

Anyone who uses Adderall without a prescription (and without following the directions of a qualified physician) puts themselves at risk for myriad negative outcomes. As we will discuss in a later section, when a person abuses Adderall and alcohol at the same time, the likelihood that they will experience physical or psychological problems may increase significantly.  

Signs of Adderall & Alcohol Abuse

Adderall and alcohol have different effects on a person’s body and mind. The following signs may indicate that a person has been abusing them.

Signs of Adderall Abuse

People who abuse Adderall may exhibit symptoms such as the following:

  • Heightened sense of concentration and attention
  • Increased ability to remain focused on a task
  • Elevated energy levels
  • Speaking more rapidly than usual
  • Appearing to be nervous, anxious, or jittery
  • Becoming agitated or irritated when unable to acquire or use Adderall
  • Trying to borrow or steal Adderall that was prescribed to someone else
  • Purchasing Adderall without a prescription from illicit online or offline sources

Signs of Alcohol Abuse

Initially, alcohol abuse can have a stimulating effect on a person’s behavior. But this substance will eventually depress a person’s ability to perform basic cognitive or physical functions. People who have been abusing alcohol may exhibit signs such as the following:

  • Diminished inhibitions
  • Acting with uncharacteristic recklessness
  • Slurred speech
  • Difficult following conversations
  • Impaired coordination
  • Loss of balance
  • Poor judgment
  • Memory loss

Dangers of Mixing Adderall & Alcohol

Adderall and alcohol share several features. For example:

  • In the United States, Adderall and alcohol are both legal substances for people who meet certain criteria
  • Adderall and alcohol are both extremely common.
  • Some people are able to use Adderall and alcohol safely, separately, and in moderation
  • Adderall and alcohol both have the potential for abuse and addiction. 

When substances are legal to use and/or commonly prescribed, many people mistakenly believe that they do not pose a risk of harm. The truth is that virtually every drug or medication can be dangerous when it is used improperly. In the case of prescription medications, improper use includes combining the drug with alcohol or other substances. 

When a person abuses Adderall and alcohol at the same time, or within a short period of time, they may expose themselves to several dangers. The more frequently they engage in this behavior, the greater their risk can become. Potential dangers of mixing Adderall and alcohol include the following:

  • Elevated body temperature
  • Accelerated heart rate and blood pressure
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Increased risk of being victimized
  • Physical injuries due to recklessness, impaired coordination, and/or poor judgment
  • Development of addiction to one or both substances
  • Being arrested and incarcerated
  • Conflicts with loved ones, which may lead to lost relationships
  • Onset or worsening of mental health concerns
  • Substandard performance in school or at work
  • Academic failure and job loss
  • Accidental death

Treatment Options for Addictions to Adderall & Alcohol

Addiction can be treated. With proper professional care, a person can stop using these substances, learn how to regain control of their behaviors, and resist future urges to abuse Adderall and alcohol.

When people enter treatment for addictions to Adderall or alcohol, one of the most important first decisions is determining which level of care is right for them. Many people benefit from spending time in one or both of the following outpatient levels:

Depending on the scope of each person’s needs, their treatment history, and which program they are participating in, treatment for addictions may include elements such as the following:

Begin Treatment for Adderall or Alcohol Addiction in Atlanta, Georgia

If your life has been disrupted by a compulsion to abuse Adderall and/or alcohol, please know that you are not alone. At Inner Voyage Recovery Center, a team of experienced and dedicated professionals is ready to help you achieve the healthier and more hopeful future that you deserve. 

Our addiction treatment center in Georgia is a safe and respectful place where every person receives customized care and comprehensive support. To learn more about our programs and services, or to schedule a free assessment, please visit our Admissions page or call us today.

Long-Term Effects of Adderall Addiction

Adderall has helped millions of people achieve a better quality of life. Unfortunately, this drug is also frequently abused. The potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction can have a profound negative impact on a person’s physical, psychological, and social well-being.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is the brand name of a prescription medication that contains two stimulants: racemic amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It is most commonly prescribed to people who have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It may also be used to treat narcolepsy.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about 8.7% of adolescents and about 4.4% of adults in the United States have ADHD. Experts estimate that more than 60% of these individuals take Adderall or another prescription medication to help them manage their symptoms. 

When a person with ADHD takes Adderall as directed by their prescribing physician, they may experience the following beneficial effects:

  • Improved concentration and focus
  • Longer attention span
  • Less likely to be distracted
  • Diminished impulsivity
  • Better retention and recall of information

These effects can have a significant positive impact on a person’s ability to function at work, in school, and in other important areas of life. They have also led many people to abuse the drug. 

Why Do People Abuse Adderall?

Many people who don’t have ADHD abuse Adderall in an attempt to improve their focus, concentration, and learning capacity. 

Among both students and professionals, Adderall has developed a reputation as a performance-enhancing substance for the mind. Whether they are cramming for a final exam or pulling an all-nighter to finish an important presentation, people who are seeking to illicitly boost their cognitive capacity often turn to Adderall abuse.

In other cases, people abuse Adderall for recreational purposes. As a stimulant (a category that also includes cocaine), Adderall can increase a person’s energy and improve their mood. It may also enhance the effects of certain other recreational substances. 

Regardless of why a person begins to misuse this drug, the potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse include addiction and a host of other distressing outcomes.

What Are the Signs & Symptoms of Adderall Addiction?

The following signs and symptoms may indicate that a person has become addicted to Adderall:

  • They develop powerful cravings for the drug.
  • They spend a considerable amount of time acquiring and using it.
  • They attempt to buy, borrow, or steal Adderall that has been prescribed to someone else.
  • They lie to one or more doctors in order to get a prescription for Adderall.
  • They continue to use Adderall even after experiencing physical, psychological, or social problems due to prior use.
  • They need to use larger amounts of Adderall to achieve the effects that they were previously able to experience via smaller doses.
  • When they can’t acquire or use Adderall, they become angry, agitated, or irritated.
  • They use Adderall in ways that are clearly hazardous, such as by combining it with alcohol or other drugs.
  • They lie to or otherwise deceive friends and family members about the amount and frequency of their Adderall use.
  • They have dramatic mood swings and changes in energy level.
  • Their appetite changes, which leads to unintentional weight loss
  • When they try to stop using Adderall, they find that they are unable to do so.

What Are the Long-Term Effects of Adderall Addiction?

The following are examples of the many potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction:

  • Insomnia
  • Unhealthy weight loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Impaired brain functioning
  • Cardiovascular damage
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Seizure
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety and/or depression
  • Psychosis
  • Paranoia
  • Legal problems, such as being arrested, fined, and jailed
  • Medical problems due to aggressive or reckless behaviors
  • Job loss and unemployment
  • Financial difficulties

Contrary to the persistent myth, a person doesn’t have to hit “rock bottom” before they can get help for an addiction. The sooner someone gets the care they need, the less likely they are to experience continued long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction.

How Is Adderall Addiction Treated in Atlanta, GA?

Adderall addiction treatment has two primary goals: to help a person end their Adderall use and to prepare them for long-term recovery.

To accomplish this, effective treatment for Adderall addiction can include a variety of therapies and support services. To build a foundation for successful recovery, people may need to acquire important information, develop new skills, adopt relapse-prevention strategies, and make certain lifestyle changes. Therapy can be an essential part of this effort.

When a person receives care at Inner Voyage Recovery Center, their customized treatment plan may include elements such as these:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Individual and group therapy
  • Family support services
  • Adventure therapy
  • Trauma-informed care

We also offer Christian counseling services for those who wish to incorporate principles of their religious faith into their treatment. 

Begin Treatment for Adderall Addiction in Atlanta, GA

Inner Voyage Recovery Center offers personalized treatment and comprehensive support for adults who have become addicted to Adderall and other prescription medications. Our Adderall addiction treatment center in Georgia features customized programming at three outpatient levels: a partial hospitalization program (PHP), an intensive outpatient program (IOP), and an outpatient rehab. 

When you’re ready to end your Adderall abuse and begin your journey toward successful recovery, the Inner Voyage team is here for you. Visit our admissions page or contact us directly to learn more.