In this guide, we will answer the question can you take Adderall as needed and provide extensive information about Adderall and its effect on the mind and body.
Adderall is a prescription drug containing two medicines: dextroamphetamine and amphetamine. It belongs to a class of drugs known as stimulants. The most popular treatment for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder is (ADHD). It’s used to treat narcolepsy as well.
The first-choice treatment option for ADHD is known to be Adderall. Studies show that it enhances focus and attention, and decreases impulsive behaviors. With the use of stimulants like Adderall, between 75 percent and 80 percent of children with ADHD can have improved symptoms.
In individuals with narcolepsy, Adderall is also beneficial in improving daytime wakefulness, although little related research is available.
Can you take Adderall as needed?
Since Adderall doesn’t have to build up day by day in your system, it can be given on an as-needed basis. And some parents choose to miss giving stimulant drugs for ADHD on weekends, holidays, vacations, or other school breaks.
The only issue with this approach is that during those periods, the symptoms of a child’s ADHD would not be under control. If your child actually has any attentional issues that interfere with schoolwork, that might not be a major deal. If they are also very impulsive and hyperactive, not taking medicine can become a greater issue.
Symptoms of ADHD can interfere with the actions of your child, relationships with family members, and how they do so socially. That makes “drug holidays” less common than it used to be.
Just as you probably did when you first launched them on Adderall, make sure that the benefits outweigh the dangers when thinking about a drug holiday.
Note that ADHD isn’t usually just a concern at school. If your child actually does well on medicine, then taking it every day and not missing doses on weekends or other school holidays is definitely a good idea.
How to take Adderall
How Adderall is taken depends on the type you’re using.
For Tablets with Adderall
Usually, the tablets are taken one to three times daily. The first dose should be taken in the morning, after waking up for the first time. It is best to spread out any additional doses and take them every four to six hours.
Later in the evening, try not to take Adderall pills. At bedtime, this may cause difficulty falling asleep.
For extended-release capsules from Adderall XR
The capsules are administered once a day. They should be taken in the morning, after waking up for the first time.
In the afternoon, you shouldn’t take Adderall XR. At bedtime, this may cause difficulty falling asleep.
Adderall on an empty stomach
On an empty stomach, you should take Adderall tablets and Adderall XR extended-release capsules.
With food, all types can be taken as well. Some people tend to take them with food to help avoid stomach discomfort.
Side Effects of Adderall
Mild or extreme side effects can be caused by Adderall. Some of the main side effects that can occur when taking Adderall are found in the following list. Not all potential side effects are included in this list.
Speak to your doctor or pharmacist for more information about potential side effects of Adderall, or advice about how to cope with an upsetting side effect.
More widespread side effects
Adderall’s more frequent side effects can include:
- Absence of appetite
- Dry mouth Dry mouth
- Sleeping Trouble
- Pain in the stomach
- Nausea and sickness
- Loss of weight
Within a few days or a couple of weeks, these side effects may go away. Speak to the doctor or pharmacist if they are more serious or are not going anywhere.
Significantly adverse reactions to Adderall
If you have serious side effects, call your doctor right away. If your symptoms appear to be life-threatening, or if you think you have a medical emergency, call 911.
The following may contain severe side effects and their symptoms:
- High blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, heart attack, and stroke are heart issues.
- Thought deficient or delusional
- Agitated or hostile behaviors
- Vision Blurred
- Extreme reaction to allergies
- Rhabdomyolysis-called muscle breakdown
Effects over the long term
When taken at doctor-recommended dosages, Adderall is safe for long-term use. For certain individuals, with continued use of the medication, typical side effects such as lack of appetite, dry mouth, or insomnia are minimized. These side-effects can persist for others.
Long-term usage of Adderall or other stimulants may induce some brain changes, such as reductions in the amount of dopamine in the chemical messenger. In individuals who misuse Adderall in high doses, this appears to be more likely to happen.
Long-term use can lead to physical and psychological dependency when Adderall is misused or abused. Many serious side effects can result from improper use, including:
- Extreme Sleeplessness (trouble sleeping)
- Disorders of the Skin
- Irritability or moodiness
- Symptoms of psychosis, including hallucinations and hostility
- Harm to the heart
- Unwanted weight loss and anorexia
Withdrawal symptoms after Adderall
Before quitting this drug, consult with your doctor. The symptoms of your condition can return if you stop taking it. You can experience symptoms of withdrawal as well.
You may have withdrawal symptoms if you have been taking high doses of this drug and you quit taking it. This may include:
How to know Adderall is working for you
It’s doubtful that Adderall can make any ADHD symptom go away, but you’ll know that it works when certain symptoms improve, such as the ability to stay concentrated and complete a job. If an individual with ADHD says they are doing better at work or school, Adderall can work.
“In about 80 percent of my pediatric patients, Adderall helps reduce ADHD symptoms,” Dr. Chatigny says. Children with ADHD undergo what the drug terms a paradoxical reaction. This soothes them and most frequently increases their ability to concentrate.
In individuals who do not have ADHD, users can experience feelings of euphoria and increased energy levels, as well as possible harmful physical and emotional side effects, since Adderall produces an excess amount of dopamine.
Instead of Adderall, is there a non-stimulant drug a person with ADHD can take?
There is no abuse risk for non-stimulant drugs like these and others. The downside, however, is they usually take longer to function,’ she says. “Within 30 minutes to an hour, amphetamines like Adderall begin to function. It can take 4 to 8 weeks for non-stimulants like Strattera to achieve full efficacy at the correct dosage.
For patients with ADHD, particularly in adults, Dr. Chatigny favors a non-stimulant treatment regime because central nervous stimulants such as Adderall are controlled drugs, meaning they are regulated by the federal government because they have a high potential for violence, addiction and physical dependency.
Chat with your doctor about Adderall, ADHD, and other drugs, as always.
Adderall can be addictive
A surge of dopamine and other neurotransmitters in the brain is triggered by medications including Adderall and Ritalin, bringing a feeling of euphoria to many people.
They help people feel alert, awake, and concentrated, but they also make it difficult to sleep, making it more tempting when you’re tired the next day to take another pill.
People also develop a tolerance for these medications, causing the same result to be achieved more and more over time. As it can be easy to become reliant on them, stimulants are considered habit-forming or addictive.
Effectiveness of Adderall
It is not appropriate to over-sell the possible beneficial effects of Adderall, other stimulants, or medical care for ADHD. Understanding that stimulants are first-line psychopharmacological therapies for ADHD does not mean that we can foresee how a single person would be affected by any drug or dose. “It is true that in days, or even in hours, some symptoms may improve dramatically,” Weiss says. “But waiting to judge the full effect of the medication is important, because it may take some time for all the data to accrue.”
Judging the efficacy of a drug needs more than a doctor saying, “How are you doing?” “At least two steps are required:
- Before beginning medicine, take careful inventory of the problems you face (writing them down, one by one),
- Each challenge is periodically assessed as therapy progresses in order to control change (or not), worsening symptoms, or new side effects.
Experts recommend talking to your physician weekly during this titration process and using an ADHD drug monitoring log like this. Once indicated, in-office visits can take place every three to four weeks to discuss side effects, physical wellbeing, well-being of patients and families, and other treatments.
In this guide, we answered the question can you take Adderall as needed and provided extensive information about Adderall and its effect on the mind and body.
FAQs: Can you take Adderall as needed
Should Adderall be taken daily or as needed?
Adderall XR is taken orally, once a day, with or without food. The first dose is usually administered first thing in the morning; for the best results, it should be taken at the same time of day.
Can you take ADHD meds as needed?
The majority of people with ADHD will need to continue to take medicine, but others will be able to avoid taking it. Your doctor may recommend that you take the medicines once a year to see if you still need them. Taking a drug break so that the body does not get too used to it
What happens if you don’t take Adderall?
You could experience one or more of these after you quit if you have taken Adderall for a long time or misused it: depression, irritability, or other mood changes. A tough time sleeping and rare fatigue (fatigue).
What happens if you take Adderall without ADHD?
Stimulants fill the brain with dopamine in persons who do not have ADHD, causing an excess of dopamine. So stimulants taken without a medical purpose can impair brain communication and induce euphoria instead of having a calming effect as they would on individuals with ADHD.
Does Adderall affect you sexually?
A possible side effect for men taking Adderall is erectile dysfunction (ED). Some men show diminished interest in sex and trouble having and maintaining an erection. This sex drive or sexual performance change can cause anxiety and embarrassment.
Does Adderall permanently change brain chemistry?
Long-term, high-dose use of Adderall may cause serious side effects, including changes in how neurotransmitters are formed by your brain. But all of these side effects can be reversible if you avoid taking Adderall.