What is Dexedrine?
Dexedrine is the brand name for the drug dextroamphetamine. As the name implies, it is an amphetamine. Dexedrine is used primarily in the treatment of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.) It is also used sometimes to treat narcolepsy.
What is Dexedrine? Amphetamines
Dexedrine is part of a class of drugs known as amphetamines. Amphetamines like Dexedrine act on dopamine receptors in the brain. They stimulate the receptor to release a rush of dopamine which stimulates brain cells, increasing mood and energy. Dopamine is closely related to the reward centers in the brain, which is why amphetamine use has such a high incidence of dependence and addiction. Amphetamines like Dexedrine have also been shown to have a neurotoxic effect on dopamine neurons over time, inducing Parkinson’s-like symptoms in long term users. This is why amphetamines have such a high rate of abuse and addiction.
What is Dexedrine? Medical Uses
Mostly Dexedrine is used to treat ADHD and narcolepsy. It’s off label uses include treatment for obesity and for medication-resistant depression.
The U.S. Navy uses Dexedrine as one of its “go pills”. They give it to pilots who have long flights in order to fight fatigue while flying.
What is Dexedrine? Recreational Use
Dexedrine is used recreationally for a variety of reasons. The drug causes euphoria, so some users abuse Dexedrine to get “high.” Dexedrine is also used illicitly as a “study drug.” Students take Dexedrine illicitly to improve concentration and increase energy while studying. Dexedrine is also abused by those who wish to lose weight, particularly those who suffer from eating disorders.
Dexedrine can be smoked, snorted, swallowed, or injected. The route of administration is a big factor in the abuse potential of amphetamines. Studies have shown that the more quickly the blood level of the drug rises, the more intense the “rush” and potential for abuse and addiction. Intravenous injection is the fastest route of drug administration, causing blood levels to rise the most quickly, followed by smoking, snorting, and ingestion (swallowing).
What is Dexedrine? Side Effects
Side effects of Dexedrine include hyperactivity, dilated pupils, blood shot eyes, flushing, restlessness, dry mouth, headache, rapid heart rate, hypertension (high blood pressure), fever, excessive sweating, diarrhea, blurred vision, dizziness, insomnia, palpitations, tremors, dry and/or itchy skin. Dexedrine can also cause seizures, heart attacks, even strokes.
Long term amphetamine use can result in depression and suicide as well as serious heart disease, amphetamine psychosis, anxiety and violent behaviors. Symptoms of amphetamine psychosis include hallucinations, delusions, thought disorder, and even sometimes catatonia. About 15% of people suffering from amphetamine psychosis fail to make a full recovery even after all Dexedrine use is stopped.
What is Dexedrine? Addiction
Dexedrine addiction is one of the most difficult forms of addictions to treat. Most chronic users experience heavy withdrawal symptoms when amphetamine use is abruptly stopped. Several drugs are used to treat withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Because of the neurotoxicity caused by Dexedrine on dopamine neurons, post-acute withdrawal (withdrawal lasting for weeks or months) is common.