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The Truth About Amphetamines

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Amphetamines, like all drugs, are chemical compounds that are used to influence the way the body functions. Many people use them to help them become faster, stronger or smarter.

Amphetamines, such as Dexadrine, Ritalin, and Adderall, work by stimulating the central nervous system. Use of these stimulants is now common incompetitive schools, sports, and the health professions. Unfortunately, what often begins as a way of overcoming a triple shift at the hospital or packed week of exams turns into a habit. After all, if the drug improved performance once, then it should do so again and again and again, right?

Why Amphetamines Don’t Make You Stronger, Faster or Smarter

Whatever reason an individual decides to use stimulants, they are going to feel alert, awake and in some ways more “alive”.  That’s because stimulants like amphetamines increase your heart rate and metabolism.  They can increase your focus in the short term.

Sleep can become impossible and eating unnecessary. Depending on the route of administration and the dosage, the drugs begin working almost immediately and last from 4-6 hours or longer. Sounds easy and positive, right?

This is only part of the story on short-term effects however.  Like all drugs, there are unpleasant side effects. Depending on the drug, amount, frequency and individual’s health, amphetamines and stimulants can increase your blood pressure and blood rate so much that you can burst blood vessels.

The Negative Effects of Amphetamines

High doses can also bring on array of negative symptoms, including paranoia, blurred vision, nausea and vomiting, delusions, anxiety, loss of coordination, and convulsions.

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Many users choose pharmaceutical amphetamines for standardized dosage and to avoid the drug culture. This does not immunize them against the long-term effects of usage. These drugs are addictive, especially if used in a competitive academic, professional or athletic environment.

What starts as a single use is perceived as necessary for continuing performance. Stimulants do not increase speed, strength, or intelligence. Although it might appear that they can make you a super human, the drugs simply force the body to reorganize energy supplies momentarily.

The consequences of amphetamine or stimulant use are serious.  Like illegal drugs, prescription amphetamines are addictive.  After only a few uses in a short-time period, higher dosage of Adderall is necessary to achieve the same effects. Increasing tolerance is a sign the body is being drained of a limiting factor, such as a hormone or specific nutrient.

Physical and/or psychological dependency are common. Long-term, the drugs damage nerve cells, reduce immune function, and cause psychosis and malnutrition.  Yes, in the long-term the use of amphetamines has the opposite effect of the short term; it makes the person slower, weaker and less intelligent.

It can be hard to compete in today’s competitive environment. Stress at work, school or on the field can cause individuals to look for solutions.  Chemical solutions, like amphetamines are dangerous to your long term health and can actually have the opposite of the intended effect.

It is better to learn healthy coping mechanisms to deal with the competition and stress. If you or someone you love is under immense pressure to perform and needs to find a solution, please call us today at.  Substance abuse treatment and behavioral therapy can help an individual overcome substance abuse and learn to manage stress and competition in a healthy way.

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