It's often called a cognitive steroid because it can make people better at whatever it is they're doing. When scientists administered amphetamines to Stanford's varsity swim team, lap times improved by 4 percent. According to one recent study, as many as one in five college students have taken Adderall or its chemical cousin Ritalin as study buddies.........This is a very common medication in childhood. Its purpose is to allow the child to learn. What exactly is it doing to this young brains?
I asked half a dozen psychiatrists about the safety of using nonprescribed Adderall for performance-enhanced journalism. Most of them told me the same thing: Theoretically, if used responsibly at a low dosage by someone who isn't schizophrenic, doesn't have high blood pressure, isn't on other medications, and doesn't have some other medical condition, the occasional use of Adderall is probably harmless............
But there are larger costs, and risks, to Adderall. Though the Air Force furnishes amphetamine "go pills" to its combat pilots in Iraq and Afghanistan.
I'll be honest, I prescribe a lot of Adderall. I assume it is going to the appropriate person but I am beginning to wonder.
The other problem, of course, is that it can be ground up and snorted. This can, in many cases, be as addictive as cocaine.
What a quandry. I wonder if I have inadvertently stepped in a big pile of trouble.