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  • Sel Ghebrehiwot: Adderall is the brand name for a mixture of amphetamine salts

  • that was developed for treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, a.k.a. ADHD.

  • Since 2007, prescriptions have doubled in the U.S,

  • and even those who don't have a prescription are using.

  • An estimated 30% of university students used Adderall at some poinas a study enhancer.

  • But, what happens to your brain on Adderall?

  • Adderall is a combination of amphetamine salts,

  • and therefore is, yup, a close relative of methamphetamine,

  • commonly known as meth!

  • When Adderall is ingested, it takes effect on the brain within an hour of use.

  • Adderall affects neuroreceptors in the central nervous system,

  • increasing the effect of serotonin and dopamine.

  • In patients with ADHD, genetic studies have indicated that these individuals

  • may have dysfunctional dopamine release.

  • Because of the lack of dopamine, it is theorized that the brain is constantly seeking out stimulants,

  • resulting in the distractibility commonly seen in ADHD patients.

  • The dopamine and serotonin released by Adderall overcomes this deficit in ADHD patients,

  • causing increased focus and making you feel less distracted.

  • Adderall also causes the release of norepinephrine,

  • which activates the sympathetic nervous system, initiating your fight-or-flight response.

  • This results in your body moving blood and energy towards the major organs

  • and away from your limbs and digestion, which essentially increases alertness.

  • But in non-ADHD users, can it help you get better grades?

  • To investigate this, researchers had 32 people without ADHD perform four cognitive tests.

  • In one instance, they were given 10 milligrams of Adderall and was told it was Adderall.

  • In the second, they were given a placebo but was told it was Adderall.

  • In the third round, they were given 10 milligrams of Adderall,

  • but was told it was a placebo.

  • And finally, they were given a placebo and were indeed told it was a placebo.

  • The two groups that did the best were those who thought they had taken Adderall,

  • regardless of whether they had or not.

  • In fact, the group that did the worst were those who took Adderall

  • but was told it was placebo.

  • This is because although some studies have found that Adderall can increase repetitive learning tasks,

  • it does not make a difference when it comes to most cognitive tasks

  • or complex learning techniques like those needed for an exam.

  • Any increase in studying skills may be from the fact that the drug gives you energy,

  • and can help keep you awake for a night of studying.

  • because, as we said earlier, it is similar in chemical structure to meth.

  • The benefits of Adderall in academic circles is still up for debate.

  • But, the long-term detrimental effects of Adderall abuse are clear.

  • Consistent release of serotonin and dopamine

  • causes the brain to stop producing them naturally over time.

  • Therefore, you need to keep taking more and more Adderall to get the same effect,

  • making it highly addictive.

  • Long-term users of Adderall developed an inability to

  • feel pleasure without a chemical stimulant,

  • and these effects can linger even after you stop taking Adderall.

  • Adderall is a growing problem, so much so the

  • millenials have been referred to as "Generation Adderall."

  • The abuse of Adderall in our culture is following a similar pattern to the current opioid crisis.

  • Which means, as a society, we need to put measures in place to protect people.

  • Gregory Brown: Thanks to Sal, our editor, for narrating this video

  • and, wow, turns out Adderall is pretty intense!

  • Mitchell Moffit: But if you do need help with your exams or school,

  • we have some scientific study tips and other advice

  • over in a bunch of videos we've made, I put some there and in the description below.

  • Gregory: Thanks so much!

  • Make sure you're subscribed for a new video next Thursday.

  • We'll see you next week! Mitchell: Bye!

Sel Ghebrehiwot: Adderall is the brand name for a mixture of amphetamine salts

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Your Brain On Adderall - The Study Drug

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    Summer posted on 2020/07/30
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