Amphetamines are synthetic, addictive, mood-altering drugs used as a stimulant to the central nervous system.
Two examples of amphetamines are Adderall, which is a prescribed medication, and methamphetamine or “crystal meth”, which is an illegal drug sold on the street.
Effects of Adderall Addiction
Although Adderall is a legal form of amphetamine and is generally prescribed to patients with ADHD to help them focus and concentrate, it can be misused and very addicting. Adderall boosts levels of dopamine, a key player when it comes to maintaining focus and attention. Those dopamine levels drop when you stop taking the drug, causing your body and brain to adjust to the change.
Most people who take it as directed don’t have any issues when they quit. But if you use it too often or too much, you may notice effects when you stop.
Adderall Withdrawal Symptoms
If you have been taking Adderall for a long time, or misusing it, you may notice that you feel hungover or intoxicated when you quit taking it. This can be a sign of stimulant withdrawal. Other symptoms of Adderall withdrawal are depression, irritability, or other changes in mood. You may have a hard time sleeping or feel unusually tired or fatigued. You may also experience nausea, stomach cramping, or vomiting. There is no specific treatment for Adderall withdrawal, but we encourage you to contact a medical professional to seek advice when you want to stop taking it.
When you use amphetamines, legally or illegally, therapeutically, or recreationally, you can become physically dependent on it. Using amphetamines can lead to physiological and neurological changes in which the brain becomes reliant on substance use for the presence of amphetamines to properly function making it extremely difficult to stop using the substance without withdrawal symptoms.
Amphetamine Withdrawal Symptoms
If you have been taking amphetamines for any length of time, typically you will experience a “crash” lasting 1 to 2 days and then a longer period of withdrawal that may persist between 5 days and 3 weeks.
Examples of Amphetamine Withdrawal Symptoms
- Fatigue and/or sleeping for unusually long periods of time
- Increased appetite
- Uncontrollable body movements and twitches
- Slowed reaction and movement
- Confused thoughts
- Body aches and pains
- Irritability and/or agitation
- Lucid dreams or unpleasant dreams
- Emotional outbursts
Here are a few factors that come into play when you are wondering how severe your withdrawal symptoms will be:
- How long have you been using methamphetamines?
- How much and how often have you been using? What dosage?
- Are you using any other substances at the same time as the methamphetamine?
- Do you have any pre-existing psychological or physical ailments?
- What is your gender, age, weight?
Everyone is different, and your answers to the above questions can influence how your body metabolizes amphetamines during detox. Detoxing off amphetamines can be extremely uncomfortable and can trigger relapse but is usually not life-threatening. You can reduce the likelihood of relapse by detoxing with the help of medical professionals.
The amphetamine withdrawal timeline is incredibly varied across the spectrum depending on the length and intensity of use. Chronic amphetamine users may experience Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptoms (PAWS) which are symptoms lasting longer than 2 weeks and may last up to a year.
Some signs that you may be experiencing PAWS are:
- Problems with short term memory
- Impaired ability to focus, concentrate or maintain attention
- Lack of self-control
- Depression with or without suicidal ideation/behaviors
- Inability to experience pleasure
- Sleep problems
- Physical complaints with no medical origin
If you believe you are experiencing signs of PAWS, you may want to consult a medical professional to prescribe supportive medications to help manage these symptoms.
Amphetamine Withdrawal Treatment
If you are wanting to quit using amphetamines and would like information about our detox center, please give Pacific Crest Trail Detox, LLC a call at (844) 692-7528, and speak with one of our caring admissions staff who can help access your needs.
If you have already gone through the process of detox and would like to join one of our treatment options at Oregon Trail Recovery, LLC, please call us at (855) 770-0577 and our admissions staff will help you find the next best place for your specific recovery needs.