A common question people have is what the differences are when comparing meth vs. Adderall. This is an important question for so many reasons, and it’s one we’ll explore in detail below to give you an answer as to how meth vs. Adderall are similar and different.

Methamphetamine vs. Adderall | Science Says They're Almost Identical

Adderall is a brand name prescription medicine that stimulates the central nervous system and has two primary active ingredients which are amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. When someone takes Adderall, the chemicals alter the user’s brain chemistry and how messages are sent between brain nerve cells.

Adderall can be taken in varying doses starting at 5 mg up to 30 mg doses, and it’s approved by the FDA for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. When someone takes Adderall as prescribed, it’s intended to help the person maintain a sense of concentration and focus, and also remain still and it can create more of a sense of control.

Despite the fact that Adderall is a prescription drug, it can have some serious side effects.

It’s also a drug that’s commonly abused and used illicitly without a prescription, particularly among college students.

When someone takes Adderall, and they aren’t medically prescribed to, it can create a euphoric high, and it can help them stay awake for longer, to concentrate more, and to lose weight because it suppresses the appetite.

As a stimulant, when high enough doses of Adderall are taken, it can be addictive. This happens as the drug starts to alter the mesolimbic pathway in the brain, which stimulates a cycle of addiction including reward and cravings.

Most medical professionals believe that people who take Adderall as prescribed don’t become addicted, however.

When you take Adderall, and you don’t have a prescription, you’re at a high risk for abusing it and becoming addicted.

So, since it is a stimulant,  many people wonder the differences in meth vs. Adderall.

Before comparing meth vs. Adderall, it can be helpful to understand what meth is. Meth is an illegal drug with no medical uses. It’s used exclusively to get high, and it crosses the blood-brain barrier quickly, leading to euphoria, increased energy and feelings of increased confidence. However, there can be severe side effects including psychosis, changes in the brain’s function and structure, memory loss, aggression, and violence, among others.

Even more troubling in some cases than the stimulant component of meth is the fact that it’s synthesized using highly toxic chemicals which can range from acetone to battery acid. This makes this already-dangerous substance even more damaging and deadly.

Increasingly medical professionals and researchers have come out to compare meth vs. Adderall and point out just how similar they are. There are some differences, but there is also a move toward the thinking that Adderall can be very dangerous, yet tends to fly under the radar when drug addiction is being discussed.

First when looking at meth vs. Adderall is the chemical makeup of each, which is very similar. They have minimal differences in their chemical makeup, but methamphetamine does have more of something called methyl, which is important in this discussion because it lets the drug cross the blood-brain barrier more quickly. This leads to a more powerful effect.

There’s also something else important to understand when comparing meth vs. Adderall and that’s the fact that meth has a lot of toxic chemicals that can cause brain, liver, kidney and lung damage, among other physical and mental side effects and problems.

At the same time, many of the negative side effects of Adderall and meth are similar to one another. These include irritability, the potential for problems with the cardiovascular system, and excessive weight loss. With chronic Adderall use, effects can include not only addiction but also hostility, depression, and paranoia.

So, to sum up meth vs. Adderall: both drugs do have some similarities to one another. They do act on the brain in a similar way, but meth tends to be more potent because of certain differences in its chemical structure and how quickly it passes the blood-brain barrier. You’re also more likely to become addicted to meth more quickly because of the small differences, but there is a potential for addiction with Adderall as well.

If you or a loved one live with methamphetamine addiction or are using methamphetamine recreationally and want to stop, it’s time to seek professional help. The Recovery Village® provides care to those struggling with methamphetamine. Reach out to one of our knowledgeable representatives today to learn how you can start on your path to recovery.

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