Can You Take Adderall When Pregnant?

When you become pregnant you have a full list of things you aren’t allowed to do, take and eat. This often includes prescription medications, which you may be taking for legitimate reasons, but still can’t take them while you’re pregnant because of potential risks to the fetus.

So, what about Adderall when pregnant? What should be known about the possible risks of Adderall when pregnant?

The following provides an overview of everything to know about Adderall during pregnancy.

Adderall When Pregnant | Can You Take Adderall When Pregnant?
Before looking at the specifics of Adderall during pregnancy, what is this drug and how does it affect the user?

Adderall is a prescription drug, meaning it’s a controlled substance in the U.S., given to adults and children to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and narcolepsy. It’s a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, both of which are classified as stimulants. Adderall stimulates the central nervous system and affects brain neurotransmitters including dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.

If someone has ADHD, the use of Adderall can help increase focus, concentration and also self-control over certain behaviors. It has therapeutic benefits when used appropriately, but it’s often abused.

People who abuse Adderall tend to do so because they want to experience a high, or they want to increase their school or work performance. The reason Adderall can make people feel high is because it increases dopamine levels in the brain.

Even outside of the conversation of Adderall during pregnancy, this prescription drug does carry risks with its use. Some of the side effects and risks of Adderall include anxiety, nervousness, headache, nausea, vomiting, and changes in heart rate and blood pressure. It’s also possibly addictive and suppresses the appetite of users, which is why it’s sometimes used as a way to lose weight.

Despite what people may see as benefits of Adderall, the even more severe risks than what’s above can include psychosis, cardiac arrest, stroke, and in some cases, death. Adderall can increase the risk of many cardiac problems, particularly when it’s abused, or someone takes large doses.

There’s also the potential for Adderall to increase the risk or make certain mental health problems worse such as depression or bipolar disorder.

All of these are things that should be emphasized to women when they ask about Adderall during pregnancy because many of these issues can affect the mother and her unborn child.

For example, eating a nutritious diet is important during pregnancy, but Adderall could prevent a mother from doing that. Women who are pregnant may also already be at a higher risk of raised blood pressure, and that risk is even more significant when they’re taking Adderall.

So what about the specifics of Adderall during pregnancy? Are there additional risks beyond the general risks of taking Adderall?

If you’re asking “can you take Adderall when pregnant,” the simplest answer is no. There are people with certain medical histories who are warned against taking it including people with a history of drug abuse and high blood pressure, and also warned against taking Adderall are pregnant women.

According to the FDA, Adderall is classified as a pregnancy category C drug, meaning that there are possible side effects which have been shown as it relates to Adderall during pregnancy. It is not categorized as being safe for pregnant women to use.

Some of the specific risks of Adderall during pregnancy can include premature birth, low birth weight, and having an infant born going through withdrawal because they became physically dependent on the drug during pregnancy. There is also some evidence showing the use of Adderall during pregnancy can reduce blood flow to the fetus.

Along with not taking Adderall when pregnant, breastfeeding mothers are also warned against using it, because the drug has the ability to pass through breastmilk. Some of the symptoms of a baby exposed to Adderall through breastmilk include appetite loss, insomnia, restlessness, and failure to thrive.

If you take Adderall and you’re pregnant, you should speak with your physician about their recommendations when it comes to managing your ADHD symptoms and tapering off the use of Adderall while pregnant.

The general recommendation when it comes to Adderall during pregnancy is that women don’t use it because it can harm the mother or the unborn baby. Women who are pregnant or considering becoming pregnant who take Adderall should speak with their doctor first and foremost about their options.

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.