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  • Take the First Step in Las Vegas

    Desert Hope is a beautiful oasis with modern charm located in Las Vegas, Nevada. We provide all levels of care from detox, in-patient, outpatient and sober living.

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  • A New Life Awaits

    Start your recovery at our spa-like facility in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. Holistic therapies, chef-prepared meals, and LGBTQ+ support are among the many features of our premier drug and alcohol treatment program.

    Visit Greenhouse Treatment Center Visit Greenhouse Treatment Center
  • The Best Place to Recover in Orange County

    Laguna Treatment Hospital is located in Orange County, CA. The first Chemical Dependency Recovery Hospital in the OC, we offer safe medical detox, mental health support, and wellness programs.

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  • Start Recovery at Our Southern Resort

    Take a step back from your life and get the help you need at our premier drug and alcohol addiction center. Nestled in the countryside 1.5 hours from Memphis, Oxford gives you the support you need in a calm and beautiful setting.

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  • Recovery Forecast includes Tropical Weather

    Your recovery can start at either of two premier drug and alcohol treatment facilities in the Greater Miami area - Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, FL. Our specialties include treatment for veterans and first responders.

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  • Sunny Florida Welcomes You

    Retreat to the sunny climate of Tampa, Florida for a stay at the gold standard of treatment facilities. We offer customized care plans to help you on your recovery journey.

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  • Helping New Englanders Find Recovery for Over 30 years

    Escape to the countryside to recovery in New Jersey’s premier drug rehab & treatment center. Located only an hour from New York City.

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We are pleased to announce that we are now in-network with policies utilizing Behavioral Healthcare Options (BHO) Now in-network with policies utilizing Behavioral Healthcare Options (BHO).

Are There Risks of Taking ADHD Stimulant Medications and Alcohol?

Taking ADHD Stimulant Medications and AlcoholADHD, short for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a brain disorder characterized by ongoing inattention, impulsiveness, and hyperactive tendencies that typically start in young childhood and can extend to adulthood.

These symptoms can make it extremely difficult to perform well in school and later hold a job. Stimulant medications like Ritalin and Adderall work to increase focus and stabilize energy levels so individuals affected by this disorder can function.

These medications are of the amphetamine class, a specific type of stimulant related to meth, but much safer and with much less severe side effects. Alcohol is classified as a depressant, causing basically the opposite effects. Combining the two can be risky due to unpredictable emotional symptoms and the fact that doing so can hide the signs of overdose.

Alcohol Poisoning

Alcohol poisoning is a serious concern. Over 2,000 people in the US over the age of 15 die from alcohol poisoning every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Thanks to information campaigns, more people have become familiar with the signs of the condition, which include:

  • Confusion
  • Vomiting
  • Slow or irregular breathing
  • Hypothermia
  • Pale or bluish skin
  • Unconsciousness
  • Seizures

Stimulants can mask many of the most obvious symptoms and prevent unconsciousness even when a person’s blood alcohol levels are dangerously high. Not only does this keep others from realizing when a person is in trouble, the lack of symptoms and lesser feeling of intoxication means that the intoxicated person might think it’s safe to drink more.
This risk doesn’t just apply to individuals with ADHD. It’s become increasingly common for young people, especially high school and college students, to take medications like Adderall and Ritalin without a prescription to give themselves a burst of focused energy. As student workloads have increased and ADHD medications have become more available, young people are finding that they can exchange a few dollars for a dose of a drug that allows them to get a lot of work done in a short period of time. Considering the fact that alcohol bingeing is also an unfortunate trend among this age group, it’s becoming more common for these two substances to be mixed.

MORE ON MIXING ALCOHOL WITH DRUGS:

Other ADHD Medication Health Concerns

ADHD Medication Health ConcernsThe most pressing health concern when it comes to ADHD stimulant medications is in regard to heart and blood pressure problems. Stimulants increase both heart rate and blood pressure and, if abused, can lead to irregular heartbeat and raised body temperature. Mixing a stimulant and alcohol can make these symptoms worse, particularly heightened body temperature and irregular heartbeat. There have been reports of individuals experiencing heart attacks and sudden cardiac arrest on these two intoxicants. Heightened body temperature also increases the risk of dangerous dehydration, which can already be a concern with alcohol consumption, as well as heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Another concern is the emotional and behavioral changes that can be triggered by mixing stimulants and depressants. Alcohol abuse has been known to cause aggression in some individuals. Stimulants like ADHD medications have been linked to irritability and aggression, especially if abused, and can also cause severe anxiety and panic attacks. In extreme cases, paranoia and delusions can occur from stimulant abuse. Combined with aggression and reduced inhibitions from alcohol, this cocktail can cause people to lash out physically, risking injury to themsel