Prescription drug abuse is epidemic in the female population. Although much of this abuse is focused on tranquilizing agents such as pain killers and sleep aids, many women gravitate toward drugs that deliver the opposite result; they do not seek sedation, they seek speed.
Adderall is an amphetamine or stimulant. It is legitimately used to treat narcolepsy and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). However, two groups of females, college students and working mothers, often view Adderall as nothing short of a wonder drug.
In the last decade alone, the abuse of habit-forming Adderall among young women between the ages of 20 and 44 has risen an alarming 264 percent. It is unlikely that all these women have ADHD, or suffer from another equally challenging physical condition. Instead, these women struggle with the unrealistic societal expectation placed upon them to be perfect. “Perfect” is a multi-faceted concept, which includes, but is not limited to, being smart, successful, attractive, popular, and of course, thin.
The first “at risk” group are those entering college. The pressure on a young college woman is enormous. She must be good looking and achieve academic and social success. The more competitive the school environment, the more the pressure in all areas escalates. Enter a drug such as Adderall. Taking this medication allows her to be sharp and focused while studying, and importantly, remain skinny since Adderall can suppress appetite.
The second highly vulnerable group is mothers, specifically those who work outside the home. The stress to be an attentive, nurturing mother and a dedicated, competent employee is tremendous. She is only one woman with far too many balls in the air. It comes as no surprise that stimulants are commonly abused in this population. In fact, the slang terminology for Adderall within this group is “mommy crack.” To ensure an ongoing supply of Adderall, a woman may claim to have ADHD and even visit multiple doctors for additional prescriptions.
Whether 20 years old or 40, continued abuse of this “wonder drug” does not end well. Addiction changes everything, from a woman’s personality, to her outlook on life, to the status of her health. Further, death from cardiac complications is not unusual.
If you or someone you know is abusing Adderall, seek professional help immediately.
- Dr. Kim Dennis
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