Amphetamine Addiction

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What is an Amphetamine?

There is often a lot of confusion surrounding the amphetamines definition, and one of the most common questions is: “Is amphetamine a stimulant?”

The answer is a resounding yes. This is why amphetamine addiction is becoming more common.

Amphetamines are a type of stimulant in the body’s central nervous system. In a healthy and legal setting, they are typically used by medical professionals to treat a variety of disorders, although they are prescribed for fewer problems than they had been in the past.

As a type of stimulant of the body’s central nervous system, it is easy to get caught in a cycle of abuse and leads to amphetamine addiction.

Methamphetamine and dextroamphetamine are the two most common types of amphetamines. Both are known for increasing brain activity in areas that may otherwise be lacking when certain disorders or conditions are also present.

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Even without the presence of pre-existing medical conditions, they can be used to stimulate the nervous system, including the brain.

These stimulants typically increase energy, confidence, and focus, which is what makes them both effective for closely monitored prescription use and desirable for illicit drug seekers.

List of Amphetamines

Several prescription medications are made using either amphetamine or the active components it contains.

The most common ones are:

  • Vyvanse
  • Dexedrine
  • Adderall
  • Desoxyn
  • Other generic drugs

Non-prescription amphetamines are highly addictive, cause physical and mental health problems, are often stronger than legal amphetamines, and they’re frequently chosen for their mind-altering side effects.

Common illicit stimulants that are created from amphetamines are:

  • Ecstasy
  • Molly/MDMA
  • Speed
  • Crystal meth

These illicit stimulants can be injected, snorted, smoked, or swallowed, leading to varying degrees of intensity, addiction, and withdrawal symptoms.

What Are Amphetamines Used to Treat?

Prescription amphetamines are most commonly used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and other related disorders. They are also used to treat narcolepsy and, less commonly, depression.

In the distant and questionable past of the medical field, they were also prescribed for weight loss, hangovers, and nasal congestion, but this has not been the case for decades. Adderall is a commonly prescribed amphetamine-based drug used to treat ADHD.

Adderall is one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs, and many individuals take it to feel awake, alert, and focused. It is common for overwhelmed students to turn to this drug to help them keep up with the demands of schooling.

Considering the wide range of physical and mental side effects that can be caused by amphetamine abuse, it shouldn’t be used as a non-prescribed study aid, and research has shown that these individuals often show a lower level of performance than students that are not on amphetamines.

What is Amphetamine Addiction?

We know that there are several healthy uses for amphetamines, so the next question is: How do you get addicted to amphetamines?

Amphetamine abuse can occur for a variety of reasons, but the most common cause is that frequent or long-term use can lead to amphetamine addiction. Whether the drugs are prescribed or illicit, dependency may develop. The risk is heightened if you take more than the amount prescribed, but even if instructions are followed, there is no guarantee that addiction won’t develop.

Amphetamine addiction is characterized by the inability to cut back without feeling withdrawal symptoms or the inability to perform regular tasks without the influence of amphetamine.

Outside of prescription use, it is typically used to elicit feelings of euphoria, lose weight, or stay awake. A recent study showed that of the 5.3 million individuals (ages 12 and above) who misused prescription stimulants, where 4.8 million of them used amphetamines.

Symptoms of Amphetamine Addiction

It’s not always easy to tell if you or someone you love has an amphetamine addiction.

However, the following symptoms are typically a pretty good indication that it may be time to get help:

  • You feel the need to skip school or work so no one will discover your addiction
  • You have trouble completing tasks without it
  • You’ve lost your appetite and you’re losing a lot of weight
  • You’re developing dental problems
  • You have difficulty stopping on your own
  • You experience withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop
  • You go through episodes of intense mood disturbances and/or violence
  • You have heightened levels of paranoia, anxiety, or restlessness at night
  • You’ve experienced hallucinations
  • You often feel confused when you’re not on amphetamines

These symptoms typically indicate an amphetamine addiction, but a true diagnosis will come when you speak to a professional. Our admissions coordinators will ask you questions regarding the amount and length of your amphetamine use to determine the best treatment option for you.

They can also call your insurance company to verify your eligibility for the rehab facility, and provide alternative options, if necessary. Later, blood tests and a physical examination will help medical professionals determine the severity of your addiction and identify any potential health problems that it may have caused.

Potential Complications from Amphetamine Addiction

Making the decision to get help and starting your treatment plan may be a bit scary, but the potential complications of an untreated amphetamine addiction are far worse. In this type of addiction, overdoses are very common.

It’s also possible to develop:

  • Brain damage
  • Heart problems
  • An increase in both heart rate and blood pressure, which may lead to a heart attack or stroke
  • An increased risk of injury due to impaired judgment
  • Malnutrition or dangerous weight loss
  • Intense insomnia
  • Increased body temperature
  • Muscle spasms
  • Unpredictable mood swings
  • Lingering fatigue, depression, or anxiety

Please note there can be additional complications.

Common Causes for an Amphetamine Addiction

Each individual is different and root causes for any type of substance abuse will vary, but there are a few factors that will put you at higher risk of becoming addicted. These factors include easy access to the drugs, underlying mental health issues, and a high-stress daily life, among others.

Individuals with a family history of substance abuse are also at a higher risk. Mental health issues like schizophrenia, depression or anxiety, and bipolar disorder increase the likelihood of developing an amphetamine addiction (along with several other addictions).

Whether it’s an amphetamine and mental health or an amphetamine and alcohol, the key to a healthy and lasting recovery is to treat all related issues rather than just the symptoms on the surface.

Getting Help

For individuals with severe addictions, our medication-assisted drug detox may be the place to start. We offer round-the-clock treatment support – emotional, physical, and medical. You never have to worry about going through this process alone. We also offer inpatient rehab facilities, outpatient treatment options, and a variety of useful therapies.

Each treatment is completely customized, confidential, and completed with a highly trained and caring staff.

These drugs change the structure of your brain, effectively changing the way that it functions and making it harder for an addicted individual to stop on their own. If amphetamines are holding you or your loved one hostage, it’s time to reach out and get help. It’s typically difficult to beat an addiction, but it’s less difficult once you understand the alternatives.

Amphetamine addiction often leads to incredibly dangerous health complications and even death, but only if you let it. Let us help you turn the tables on your addiction.

Addiction Treatment that
Just Works

Individualized treatment programs delivered in a comfortable, relaxed setting promote healing in your recovery journey.