what is adderall?
Adderall and Mydayis are trade names for a combination drug containing four salts of amphetamine. The mixture is composed of equal parts racemic amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, which produces a (3:1) ratio between dextroamphetamine and levoamphetamine, the two enantiomers of amphetamine. Both enantiomers are stimulants, but differ enough to give Adderall an effects profile distinct from those of racemic amphetamine or dextroamphetamine, which are marketed as Evekeo and Dexedrine/Zenzedi, respectively. Adderall is used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. It is also used as an athletic performance enhancer, cognitive enhancer, appetite suppressant, and recreationally as an aphrodisiac and euphoriant. It is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant of the phenethylamine class.
Adderall is generally well tolerated and effective in treating the symptoms of ADHD and narcolepsy. At therapeutic doses, Adderall causes emotional and cognitive effects such as euphoria, change in desire for sex, increased wakefulness, and improved cognitive control. At these doses, it induces physical effects such as a faster reaction time, fatigue resistance, and increased muscle strength. In contrast, much larger doses of Adderall can impair cognitive control, cause rapid muscle breakdown, or induce a psychosis (e.g., delusions and paranoia). The side effects of Adderall vary widely among individuals, but most commonly include insomnia, dry mouth, and loss of appetite. The risk of developing an addiction is insignificant when Adderall is used as prescribed at fairly low daily doses, such as those used for treating ADHD; however, the routine use of Adderall in larger daily doses poses a significant risk of addiction due to the pronounced reinforcing effects that are present at high doses. Recreational doses of amphetamine are generally much larger than prescribed therapeutic doses, and carry a far greater risk of serious adverse effects.
The two amphetamine enantiomers that compose Adderall (levoamphetamine and dextroamphetamine) alleviate the symptoms of ADHD and narcolepsy by increasing the activity of the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and dopamine in the brain, which results in part from their interactions with human trace amine-associated receptor 1 (hTAAR1) and vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT2) in neurons. Dextroamphetamine is a more potent CNS stimulant than levoamphetamine, but levoamphetamine has slightly stronger cardiovascular and peripheral effects and a longer elimination half-life (i.e., it remains in the body longer) than dextroamphetamine. The levoamphetamine component of Adderall has been reported to improve the treatment response in some individuals relative to dextroamphetamine alone. Adderall’s active ingredient, amphetamine, shares many chemical and pharmacological properties with the human trace amines, particularly phenethylamine and N-methylphenethylamine, the latter of which is a positional isomer of amphetamine.source In 2017, Adderall was the 27th most commonly prescribed medication in the United States, with more than 24 million prescriptions.
This combination medication is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder – ADHD. It works by changing the amounts of certain natural substances in the brain. Amphetamine/dextroamphetamine belongs to a class of drugs known as stimulants. It can help increase your ability to pay attention, stay focused on an activity, and control behavior problems. It may also help you to organize your tasks and improve listening skills.
This drug is also used to treat a certain sleeping disorder (narcolepsy) to help you stay awake during the day. It should not be used to treat tiredness or to hold off sleep in people who do not have a sleep disorder.
Loss of appetite, weight loss, dry mouth, stomach upset/pain, nausea/vomiting, dizziness, headache, diarrhea, fever, nervousness, and trouble sleeping may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: signs of blood flow problems in the fingers or toes (such as coldness, numbness, pain, or skin color changes), unusual wounds on the fingers or toes, mental/mood/behavior changes (such as agitation, aggression, mood swings, depression, abnormal thoughts, thoughts of suicide), uncontrolled movements, continuous chewing movements/teeth grinding, outbursts of words/sounds, change in sexual ability/desire, frequent/prolonged erections (in males).