Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Adderall is a prescription drug used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, but now more and more women in their 20s and 30s are turning to drug for relief.
Many of those women don’t have a prescription; they’re using the drug to cope with the demands of life.
Kelsey Barber once used Adderall and now she’s warning others about its dangerous and potentially deadly impact, after the experience wasn’t quite what she expected.
"It was like a roller coaster of I'm tired but I’m awake. It was hard to sleep and it would make it hard for the next day when I was tired but couldn't sleep,” Barber said.
Barber says she always felt anxious and could barely function, let alone make it through the day.
"You don't really have an appetite that's what makes you crash is the lack of eating and your blood sugar gets really low and you just feel like crap,” Barber said.
But hundreds of women like Barber are gravitating to the drug because it kills their appetite, helping them lose weight.
Others say it gives them just the boost they need to accomplish daily tasks.
“Even when prescribed appropriately sometimes it can cause problems as a stimulant, it can increase heart rate, increase blood pressure,” said Dr. Davidd Levy of the Family Medical Group.
The drug is used to help with focus and concentration, but can become addictive.
In eight years, Adderall prescription for women between ages 26 and 39 have gone up 750 percent.
“Can this be deadly? Absolutely, Adderall has the side effects besides just the inconvenient side effects like palpitations and high-blood pressure,” said Levy.
“For people that take it and they feel good and their grades are going up, their productive and losing weight, it could be very addictive and they can't function like a normal person without it,” Barber said. “It’s not good…you can’t live like that. I don’t recommend it.”