The Disturbing Truth About Meth, Adderall, ADD, Children & Prescription Medications For AD[H]D This comes as a shock to me, but I absolutely must report this... To friends, to family, to my doctors and in a letter to the FDA. This is a report on my experience as a psychiatric patient with Adderall prescriptions, and an informative essay on what I have recently learned about his drug. General History Adderall is the brand name for a dextroamphetamine salts and amphetamine sulfate combination pill. It comes in blue, orange and white tablets which are sometimes sold on the street as "speed," "speed pills," or just plain, "uppers." Adderall is prescribed for ADD, ADHD, (especially in children), and for narcoleptic patients. The starting dose for a child is about five or ten milligrams. The highest dosage recommended by the drug company is forty milligrams, and this dose is supposed to be reserved for patients with narcolepsy. It is a schedule II controlled substance. My Adderall Prescriptions I have been prescribed Adderall and Ritalin and other similar drugs for much of my life to treat amotivational syndrome. (That is, serious inability to motivate oneself to do simple tasks such as attending school or work and can even hinder the activities of daily functioning, such as showering, brushing one's hair or teeth or even feeling dramatically overwhelmed to not get out of bed). My amotivational syndrome is probably a symptom of a diagnosis of bipolar disorder II and/or a side-effect of medical marijuana (for pain). Last semester, I felt that I could not complete any work for my one class. I simply could not and would not do the work and I was falling terribly behind. My psychiatrist prescribed 40mg of Adderall. I soon realized that my doctor is quite malleable, and I managed to start getting 90mg per day prescriptions. I had to go to five pharmacies to even find a place that carried the 30mg tablet of the drug --I was instructed to take 30mg x3 per day. Please note that I did indeed fanaggle such a high prescription from my doctor, and it was not hard to do. It is a popular drug amongst teens. A bottle of 90mg per day for 30 days would be worth $900 on the street. With insurance, I paid just $5. My friends and I partied with the drug for a while. I passed my class and things were alright for a while. I started getting insanely thin though and would stay awake for days. I decided that the drug was ridiculously strong and that we were all playing with fire. I discontinued the prescription. Crystal meth?! I would first like to say that I am not a drug addict. I have a license for medical marijuana, but that is it. I do not even drink alcohol. I am not a tweaker or stimulant fiend. Above I described experimental dabbling but out of logic, sanity and good judgement, I have refrained from ever taking Adderall since I last discontinued it, last year. However, tonight a friend came over and brought some crystal meth with her. Having never done the drug before, I decided to try it. I have always been interested in pharmacopia and with the knowledge that I do not suffer from desire or addiction, I tried it. I indeed experienced a mental shift, and I discovered something that horrified me... The street drugs didn't get me nearly as intoxicated as the prescription Adderall pills. I used the meth for quite a while as an experiment to see if I could even get equally high from the street drug. Well, here's the serious news: I couldn't! ...I was unable to experience a high from street crystal meth that could measure up to the intensity of the euphoria experienced from 60mg of Adderall. One may be wondering about the variables... Was the meth bunk or not good quality? I believe it to be some of the best quality because the friend who brought it here is a 48 year old woman who has been addicted to crystal meth for most of her life. (I am currently allowing her room and board at my house for a few days until she enters a "Clean And Sober Living Environment") I believe the drugs I received were strong, and they satisfied her (a street addict's craving). Adderall? Meth? What Does All This Mean? I did some research on Adderall and I discovered some shocking information. First, Adderall is a more refined version of amphetamine sulfate than you can buy on the street. Second, I discovered it's in the list of top 10 drugs prescribed in America. And thirdly, I found out that over 67% of patients who receive the prescription are under the age of eighteen. Conclusion After my personal experience with methamphetamine crystals from off the street, along with my research on the medication Adderall, I am deeply concerned. Based on common logic, it would follow that Adderall is much more psychologically addicting than crystal methamphetamine. Many addicts claim they became addicted and their life changed after "that first hit." ...If Adderall has an even higher potential for addiction and abuse, it may be responsible for stimulant addictions in many individuals, particularly children. The drug is most commonly prescribed to kids, and in a small dose. However, because children appear innocent, and because the patient will develop some bit of a tolerance to the substance, it is easy to manipulate medical professionals into prescribing ridiculously large amounts of this drug based on falsified claims as to physical tolerance. I have received prescriptions that would get an elephant high from more than seven different psychiatric physicians with little to no difficulty. However, what one must understand, and what is an outrage to me personally is that they are giving CHILDREN *methamphetamine* and *dextroamphetamine* for attention defecits. It is my opinion that one need not EVER take amphetamines as a solution to any kind attention disorder, particularly minors. It is my opinion that it would be better for children to take crystal meth off of the street for their "ADD" than this medication due to its completely unnecessary ability to get the patient in a state of euphoric intoxication more powerful than that of methamphetamine. (I am not saying I think children should do street drugs; I am expressing the fact that I think crystal meth would be a safer choice than this drug, even in its low doses). The only exception I see however, is narcolepsy. This drug and Desoxyn (methamphetamine sulfate --another ADD and narcolepsy drug) have proved to be the only way certain narcoleptic individuals can function without filing for disability. I recognize this need and I believe the drug is properly used when given to narcoleptics. Furthermore however, I believe that the drug should never be prescribed in dosages larger than 40mg. These doses have not been tested and are not recommended by the chemists that produced the drug. While researching the long-term effects of methamphetamine and dextroamphetamine, one will discover that in children it stunts brain and body development and it is believed to be responsible for the development of certain mental disorders characterized by hallucinations and paranoia. It leads to lack of appetite and serious weight loss. It increases the activity in the heart so much as to include a warning in the package insert about tachycardia (rapid heartbeat), sudden cardiac arrest, sudden heart attack, stroke or coma. Amphetamines also have a known history of sapping calcium out of the bones for metabolic reasons, however this leaves the user/pediatric patient with weak bones and loss of teeth. It causes permanent memory damage, twitches, severe mood swings, manic episodes, poor judgement, impaired driving skills and physical dependence. So What Can We Do About This? Presently, there is not much anyone can do to change pharmaceutical law. I feel a personal responsibility to spread this news to my family, friends, doctors, and to spread the word to physicians on message boards and in newsletters. To take this issue further, I am writing to the FDA, The American Medical Association, The American Psychiatric Association, local politicians, senators, and my governor. I doubt it will make much difference, but in the meantime, ***PLEASE*** do NOT give this drug to your children. ***PLEASE*** tell your family and friends about the risks of amphetamine medications and if you so wish, please write to the National Board Of Health, the Surgeon General, etc. about your concern. If you do choose to use or abuse this medication, please remember to take time off to eat and sleep, drink plenty of water, avoid driving and educate yourself on the signs of heart attack.