Gateway drugs are any drugs that are a ‘stepping stone’ towards more drug use, abuse, and possible addiction. For the longest time, marijuana was considered to be the most dangerous gateway drug. While any drug can be a gateway drug, marijuana was considered to be the ‘only’ one to worry about. All of the different drug prevention programs had preached the danger of marijuana as a gateway drug. The truth is that there is a new gateway drug that is just as dangerous; if not more. Adderall, a prescription medication, is rapidly growing in popularity. It is so dangerous because it is much more powerful than marijuana, easy to obtain and even easy to hide. Young adults are using and abusing this drug at an alarming rate. It is especially dangerous because it can and will lead to other prescription drug abuses.
Gateway drugs are any drug that provides a pathway to harder drug use. Alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, and marijuana are all considered gateway drugs. These drugs deliver an experience that can push users towards harsher drugs such as meth, heroin, and/or cocaine. Gateway drugs boost dopamine levels, which give users pleasure sensations. Parts of the brain are affected by this drug use and prepare it for future drugs. The brain is now being prepared for more intense and harsher drugs. The idea of gateway drugs have been around for several decades, but have been increasing with popularity over the last two or three decades. This is substantially true today as more and more young adults are exposed to drugs.
Adderall the Drug
Adderall is a central nervous system stimulant. It is most commonly known to be prescribed for those suffering from Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. When this drug is taken as directed by a physician, it can be safe and beneficial for those suffering from the mentioned disorders. It is prescribed to help individuals concentrate. It is most commonly referred to as the sit still drug, which was why it became popular and prescribed for in the past. The drug works on the central nervous system by stimulating various parts to increase focus. While the drug is safe for medical use, it can also be very dangerous if it is abused.
Problem with Adderall
A major problem with Adderall is that people think that it is safe to take without a prescription. Since the drug is taken regularly by so many, those without a prescription think the drug is safe. This drug has potential for addiction and many young students are falling victim to the drug. Students can experience difficulty sleeping, periods of excessive sleeping, loss of appetite and jitters. The mind often becomes cloudy and unfocused sometimes to the point of severe discomfort. Withdrawal from Adderall can cause severe depression and extreme mood swings.
Attention Deficit Disorder Medication and College Students
College students are being drawn to medications like Adderall in an attempt to increase their scores. The prescription medication is used to help those with Attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder focus. The drug is believed to increase focus and prevent fatigue in those who do not have those disorders. Students take the drug when they are preparing for exams to help them focus. The Treatment Helpline has stated that approximately 25% of college students use prescription drugs to help them study. This is a large percentage of college students, but the actual amount is much higher. There have been zero results from studies proving that these drugs help increase scores.
Adderall is the new gateway drug and not recognizing this would be a huge mistake. Parents and physicians alike utilizing this drug should reconsider their actions. Can the drug be beneficial? Yes, but are there other ways treat children? Of course. Adderall should be prescribed and used with serious caution and concern because it can lead to substance abuse and possible addiction.