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Adderall Review – 12 Things To Consider

By Michelle Giordano

Reviewed by Rebecca Williams, MD, MA, MB, BChir

Last Updated:

Evidence Based | Overview | Nutrition Info | Health Benefits | Side Effects | Warnings | Price | Shop For Adderall | Directions | Conclusion

Adderall is a prescription medication used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). According to the CDC, this condition affects over 6 million children and approximately 4.4% of the adult population in the United States. [1][2]

ADHD can affect a child’s performance at school and overall behavioral well-being. Adults living with ADHD have difficulty carrying out daily tasks and focusing, which challenges their ability to work and disrupts their relationships with family and friends.

Proper treatment of ADHD may restore an individual’s quality of life. Adderall is considered a first-line treatment option for those living with this disorder.


1) Quick Overview

Adderall is a stimulant medicine that contains a mixture of four amphetamine salts. Although the exact mechanism of action for Adderall in the treatment of ADHD is unknown, it is believed to alleviate symptoms of this condition because it increases the amounts of two neurotransmitters, norepinephrine and dopamine, in the brain. These substances allow people to focus better and help improve attention span.

2) Who Makes Adderall

Adderall was originally developed by Shire Pharmaceuticals. It is now produced by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, which is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. In the United States, their central business unit is located in Lexington, Massachusetts. The company’s goal is to improve health using innovative strategies.

Nutrition Info

3) Ingredients of Adderall

Adderall is comprised of four active ingredients:

  • Dextroamphetamine saccharate
  • Amphetamine aspartate monohydrate
  • Dextroamphetamine sulfate
  • Amphetamine sulfate

Inactive ingredients in an Adderall tablet include:

  • Lactitol
  • Microcrystalline cellulose
  • Colloidal silicon dioxide
  • Magnesium stearate

4) Does Adderall Work?

Studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of Adderall to treat symptoms of ADHD. One study conducted at the State University of New York and published in the National Institutes of Health showed that Adderall was superior to Ritalin and placebo. The study found that this medication produced remarkable improvement in negative behavior and academic productivity. [3]

Health Benefits

5) Adderall Health Benefits

Treating ADHD offers those living with the condition a myriad of benefits. Adderall may help to:

  • Improve attention span
  • Increase focus
  • Provide better academic achievement
  • Decrease impulsivity
  • Decrease hyperactivity
  • Develop better socialization skills
  • Improve relationships with family and friends
  • Enhance overall quality of life
Side Effects

6) Side Effects of Using Adderall

It is important to note that Adderall is a controlled medication, meaning that it may be habit-forming. The doctor who prescribes this medication will closely monitor the patient to assess for signs of dependence or addiction.

Common side effects of Adderall include:

  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Weight loss
  • Insomnia
  • Increased heart rate
  • Raised blood pressure

More serious adverse events that may occur include the following:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Numbness
  • Unexplained wounds
  • Hallucinations
  • Paranoia
  • Vision changes
  • Muscle twitches
  • Seizures

7) Adderall Product Warnings

Adderall is a powerful prescription drug that can interact with a range of other medications and over-the-counter (OTC) products. This drug should not be used with a class of medications known as the MAOIs. Simultaneous use can lead to severe interactions including hypertensive crisis, brain hemorrhage, and seizures. Adderall also interacts with certain blood pressure medicines, blood thinners, and seizure medications.

Because Adderall can increase blood pressure, a patient should speak with their doctor before taking certain OTC medicines. Many cough and cold products available OTC contain pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine, which can also raise blood pressure.

In addition to raising blood pressure, Adderall can increase heart rate, so children or adults with any cardiovascular issues should be assessed by their physician before starting this drug to ensure they are a candidate to use Adderall.

Shop For Adderall

8) Who Sells Adderall?

Adderall is only available to patients who are issued a valid prescription by their physician. Most pharmacies keep this drug in stock.


9) Adderall Price

Adderall is an expensive medication that can cost hundreds of dollars for a one-month supply. Fortunately, most insurances cover this drug, so you will be responsible for your copayment. If for whatever reason, it is not covered by insurance, the pharmacy can provide discounts to lower the price.


10) Adderall Directions

The dose of Adderall is individualized for each patient; however, this medication is generally taken once or twice daily. The dose is usually initiated at 5 mg and can be increased at weekly intervals until the lowest effective dose is reached. The dose of Adderall should not exceed 40 mg per day.

11) Adderall Reviews

"I am 30 years old and have ADHD. I have been taking Adderall for approximately three years now. The last dose (25 MG XR 24 hours as my doctor states) I received makes me extremely irritable, especially when my concentration gets broken." [Read full review]


"I've had only one side effect taking Adderall IR 20mg: dry mouth. I did get a slight headache at the end of the day when it started to taper off, but nothing bothered me. " [Read full review]


"I was diagnosed at 50 yrs old, and for most of the past 20 years, I have taken Dexedrine. For a year or so because I had a new doctor, I was prescribed Adderall and hated it. It made me jittery, and my focus and ability to concentrate for periods were awful." [Read full review]


"I have always struggled in school, and my parents did not believe in ADD or ADHD. I would listen to someone talk to me for 10 minutes and not tell you one word that they said. I went from a D student at a very good university to making the Dean's list." [Read full review]



12) Conclusion

Adderall is one of the more popular stimulant medications available on the market for ADHD. Improving symptoms of this condition can transform an individual’s life, allowing them to have a more productive and meaningful existence.

Our recommendation is to first consult with your physician to see if Adderall is a good fit. If they deem it appropriate, and there are no potential contraindications, Adderall may be a great option for treating ADHD.

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