The kids call it Graduation Day. There are no caps and gowns though. There are no diplomas either, let alone degrees. And there are certainly no proud parents or beaming teachers or relieved principals. But it's still a very special day. It's the day when a student graduates from Adderall to Meth.
Adderall to Meth
Many students have been on Adderall since they were in grade school. Perhaps they were withdrawn in class. Or maybe they got in some trouble at home. Heck, they could've just walked to the beat of a different drummer. Whatever the case, a doctor diagnosed them with ADHD, issued a prescription for Adderall and sent them on their way.
Soon enough, the Adderall stopped working. So the doctor prescribed a stronger dose. When that dose stopped being effective, the doc prescribed something even stronger. Four, five, six years later, the kids are taking four, five, six times the recommended dose. Eventually even that didn't suffice.
The kids went back to their old tricks. Only now they were also addicts. What once was a treatable anomaly became an untreatable character defect. They needed something stronger than even the strongest dose of Adderall. And they needed it bad. Otherwise they might fly off the rails and never come back.
The kids talk to their friends. Their friends talk to other friends. Someone knows a drug dealer. He sells meth. It makes Adderall look like unsweetened candy. Yuck.
Meth does the trick all right. It also works faster and lasts longer. The kid's immediately giddy. Comes down with the kind of happy-go-lucky that believes it can conquer the world. And energy? Man, oh man. The kid gets more energy than they know what to do with.
At first, they put all that energy to good use. They make friends with everyone. Their bedrooms are immaculate. They do their homework even before they get home. Nobody can figure out what happened, but everybody likes what they see.
Till they don't. The good use turns to abuse. The kid needs more and more meth just to get even, forget about getting high. They start lying. They start scheming. And they start stealing. Try to intervene and they'll bite your head off. Try not to intervene and it'll break your heart. Why? Because if the kid doesn't get help, the next three stops are jails, institutions and maybe even death.
It's no secret why kids go from Adderall to meth. Adderall is speed. In fact, Adderall is just one methyl group away from methamphetamine. That's it. The doctors not only don't tell people that; they make it a point to not tell people that.
Doctors are especially reluctant to tell the parents the whole sordid story about Adderall. The parents want their kids to get better. Adderall makes them better. Heck, it makes them better than ever. Why question a magic pill like that?
But parents should question rampantly-prescribed Adderall. And authorities should revamp the way doctors prescribe the drug to kids. Right now it comes down to the child drawing a frown face or a smiley face on a form. And there's got to be a more rigorous method of prescribing a highly-addictive drug like Adderall than simply drawing a frown face.
Till then though, the kids will keep drawing frown faces so they can receive stronger and stronger doses of Adderall. And when that stops working, they'll switch from Adderall to meth. Then the frowns really begin. Only now those frowns will be on faces of the parents.
The CDC says over 5% of all American children and teenagers were prescribed some kind of ADHD-treating stimulant like Adderall in 2016. That's well over 6 million kids running around on speed. Adult numbers are even worse. Much worse. How much worse? Well, as of 2018 an astonishing 16 million American adults were on prescription stimulants. Another estimated 5 million were illegally using some form of speed, prescribed or otherwise.
In fact, the numbers of people of all ages who've gone from Adderall to meth are rising at such a rapid rate that authorities fear we may be on the verge of another drug epidemic.
Adderall & Meth Addiction Treatment
Fortunately there's hope. There's also help. And we at Recovery Boot Camp can provide both. We treat young men who are addicted to Adderall. We treat young men who've gone from Adderall to meth. And we also treat stimulant-addicted men who are well past their Graduation date. We treat them all thoroughly. And we treat them all effectively. Regardless of age. Why? Because going from Adderall to meth is no way to graduate. But kicking addiction does make for a great Graduation Day.
If you or someone you love is addicted to Adderall, meth or any other kind of drug, please give us a call. We're here to provide hope. And we're here to provide help.