Is Adderall the Same as Meth? Similarities and Differences
A common belief held by many is that Adderall is the same as meth. Adderall is the prescription brand name for a drug that contains amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. Methamphetamines may be part of the same drug family but this is not the same type of drug as Adderall. Both stimulate the brain and cause an increase in energy levels but differ in many other ways. But, is Adderall the same as meth?
How Adderall Helps People
Adderall is a stimulant commonly prescribed to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Adderall comes in pill form and is classified as a methamphetamine drug. It is also used to treat narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that causes uncontrollable feelings of sleepiness and nodding off.
Adderall alters the amount of natural substances in the brain in order to help a person focus better. It allows people with ADHD to control their own behavior better and manage how they pay attention in a more successful way. When a person follows the prescription instructions, this medication can provide vast improvements in a person’s school, work, and personal life.
The Downside of Adderall
While Adderall can produce wonderful results for people with ADHD and narcolepsy, it can also become problematic. The risk for addiction to Adderall can come into play with someone who has a prescription but begins to abuse it, especially if they misuse it by taking excessive dosages.
Some people without prescriptions for Adderall end up taking or purchasing pills from friends, family, or drug dealers. When used without medical supervision, an addiction to Adderall can quickly develop. The same risk occurs when someone uses the drug recreationally, believing it to be safe because of its status as a prescription drug
Side Effects Associated with Adderall
Adderall use and abuse can result in several side effects, some of them potentially dangerous. These side effects can include:
- High blood pressure
- Rapid heart rate
- Muscle pain
- Diarrhea and constipation
- Difficulty thinking
- Blurry vision
- Elevated blood sugar
- Changes in mood
- Weight loss
What Is Meth?
Methamphetamines are powerful stimulants that affect the central nervous system. Often referred to as “meth” or “crystal”, for the crystalized rock version, methamphetamine has a huge risk for addiction.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that a legal type of meth can be obtained through a nonrefillable prescription. It is used to help treat ADHD and to aid with weight loss. However, these prescriptions are rarely written, and when they are issued, they are usually prescribed at very low doses.
While both Adderall and meth carry a similar risk of side effects, meth has a few that are exclusive to its addiction. These include tooth decay and loss, skin lesions, and violent or aggressive behavior.
Side Effects of Meth Abuse
Many potentially dangerous side effects may occur when a person uses or abuses methamphetamines. These can include:
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Difficulty thinking
- Difficulty using motor skills
- Weight loss
- Memory loss
- Decreased appetite
- Changes in brain function
What Meth and Adderall Have in Common
The federal government places each type of narcotic into a classification, otherwise known as a schedule. The schedule is determined by any medical value the drug has, as well as its potential for abuse.
Meth and Adderall are both classified as Schedule II drugs, which are considered to have a high risk for physical and psychological dependence. Schedule II drugs include cocaine, oxycodone, Vicodin, Ritalin, morphine, and methadone.
Meth affects a person similarly to Adderall but in a more intensive way. Meth provides excessive amounts of energy and a feeling of euphoria. For some, there is a tendency to view Adderall as much safer than meth. Because Adderall comes in prescription form and is often associated with users taking it to help them study or complete work assignments, it can seem like more of a “white-collar drug”, even when abused.
On the opposite spectrum, many believe methamphetamines to be much worse because of their street drug status. In fact, both drugs share similar audiences and can result in addiction, regardless of the social status or income of their users.
Differences Between Adderall and Meth
While these two drugs may be close in nature due to having amphetamine in common, their chemical makeup is decidedly different. Meth contains a chemical group called “methyl” that Adderall lacks. Street meth may contain any number of dangerous impurities that are added as cutting agents. These can include toxic substances such as chemicals and cleaning products.
Meth has a more potent ability than Adderall to cause the brain to release dopamine, which causes a person to experience pleasurable feelings. This is one sizable contributing factor to the reason that the potential for developing an addiction to meth proves to be higher than that of Adderall.
Drug Addiction Treatment in California
If you are experiencing an addiction to Adderall or methamphetamines, MD Home Detox can help you. We offer personalized detoxification services in the comfort of your own home. Our treatment offers you round-the-clock medical care in the privacy of a familiar setting, including access to concierge services and a sober companion.
Call MD Home Detox today at (888) 592-8541 or click here to email us and find out how we can help you reach your goals.