- Adderall vs. Dexedrine comparison
- What are Adderall and Dexedrine?
- What are the uses for Adderall and Dexedrine?
- What are the side effects of Adderall and Dexedrine?
- Can I get addicted to Adderall and Dexedrine?
- What are the withdrawal symptoms of Adderall and Dexedrine?
- How should Adderall and Dexedrine be taken (dosage)?
- Which drugs interact with Adderall and Dexedrine?
- Are Adderall and Dexedrine safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
Adderall vs. Dexedrine comparison
- Adderall and Dexedrine are similar prescription stimulants used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or ADD) and narcolepsy. The only difference is Adderall contains two active ingredients, amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, one of which is the single active ingredient in Dexedrine (dextroamphetamine)
- For this reason, little difference exists in the effects and side effects of Adderall and Dexedrine, but Adderall tends to have more powerful effects because of the combination of ingredients. A few side effects of these drugs include:
- Both Adderall and Dexedrine work by stimulating the brain and central nervous system, though how exactly it works to correct ADHD isn't fully understood.
- Each medication has the potential for abuse and addiction.
- Each medication can interact badly with MAO inhibitors and blood pressure medications, among other drugs. Antacids may increase absorption of both Adderall and Dexedrine, enhancing effects.
What are Adderall and Dexedrine?
Adderall and Dexedrine are amphetamines.
Amphetamines stimulate the brain by increasing the level of the neurotransmitters, dopamine and norepinephrine, in the brain. (Neurotransmitters are chemicals produced by nerves that are released and attach to other nearby nerves as a means of communication among nerves.)
Quick GuideWhat's Your Biggest Fear? Phobias
What are the uses for Adderall and Dexedrine?
Adderall and Dexedrine are used for ADHD and narcolepsy treatment.
What are the side effects of Adderall and Dexedrine?
The side effects of Adderall and Dexedrine are nearly identical, given that dextroamphetamine is one of the two active ingredients in Adderall, the other being amphetamine. Amphetamine, itself, is in the same drug class as dextroamphetamine, and therefore has similar side effects.
Side effects for both Adderall and Dexedrine include nervousness, excitability, anxiety, increased heart rate and seizures, among others. Rarer, but more serious side effects from these drugs include sudden death, stroke, heart attack, aggression, manic episodes, psychosis, and growth suppression in children prescribed the drugs for an extended time.
Priapism, that is, a penile erection lasting more than four hours has been reported by some people if you suspect you have a priapism, call a doctor immediately.
This is not a complete list of side effects. If you are prescribed either medication, ask your doctor for more information.
Can I get addicted to Adderall and Dexedrine?
There is no question these medications have a high potential for abuse, especially if a doctor prescribes them for a long time. Adderall and Dexedrine are in a medication family called central nervous system (CNS) stimulants, which includes the street drug methamphetamine, sometimes called meth. All amphetamines are highly addictive and should be prescribed and used with caution.
What are the withdrawal symptoms of Adderall and Dexedrine?
Agitation, hyperarousal, and cravings can lead a person who is suffering from amphetamine withdrawal to lapse back into abuse.
Certain antidepressants in some health studies of people trying to quit amphetamine and dextroamphetamine abuse have proven slightly helpful for treatment of withdrawal symptoms, but how useful they are in helping people abstain remains in question.
How should Adderall and Dexedrine be taken (dosage)?
- Adderall usually is taken once or twice a day in pill form. Doses should be separated by at least 4-6 hours. The recommended dose is 2.5 mg to 60 mg daily depending on the patient's age and the purpose of the treatment.
- Adderall XR - the extended release version - is taken once daily. The recommended dose is 5 mg to 40 mg daily administered in the morning. The entire contents of the Adderall XR capsules may be sprinkled into applesauce and consumed immediately.
- Amphetamines should be administered during waking hours and late evening doses should be avoided in order to avoid insomnia.
- Adults with ADHD are treated with 5 mg of dextroamphetamine once daily or every 12 hours. The dose may be increased weekly by 5 mg/day up to a maximum dose of 40 mg/day.
- Children with ADHD should receive 2.5 mg to 5 mg of dextroamphetamine daily or every 12 hours. The dose may be increased by 2.5 mg to 5 mg/day weekly. The maximum dose is 40 mg daily.
- The dose for adults and adolescents older than 12 years of age is 10 mg of dextroamphetamine daily in pill form, but the dose may be increased weekly to a maximum of 60 mg daily.
Which drugs interact with Adderall and Dexedrine?
Amphetamines like Adderall and Dexedrine should not be taken with monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor drugs, including phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate), and Zyvox; use of amphetamine within 14 days of using MAO inhibitor drugs should be avoided. Patients receiving antihypertensive medications may experience loss of blood pressure control with amphetamine. Antacids may increase absorption of amphetamine salts and increase their effectiveness and side effects.
Are Adderall and Dexedrine safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
Amphetamines should not be used during pregnancy. Infants who are born to mothers dependent on amphetamines exhibit symptoms of withdrawal and have an increased risk of low birth weight.
Quick GuideWhat's Your Biggest Fear? Phobias
Amphetamine and dextroamphetamine (Adderall, Adderall XR) and dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine) are drugs prescribed for the treatment of ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) and narcolepsy. Side effects, drug interactions, warnings and precautions, and patient safety information should be reviewed prior to taking any medication.
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
ADHD/ADD in Adults: Symptoms & Treatments in Pictures
Most people don't associate adults with the term ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) but it is a common disorder in...
ADHD Symptoms in Children
What is ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)? Learn to recognize ADHD symptoms in children....
Childhood ADHD Quiz: Test, Symptoms & Medication
Find out causes, symptoms, and treatments for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a widespread behavioral condition...
Adult ADHD Quiz: Symptoms & Test
What are the symptoms of adult ADHD? Take this quiz to learn what it means for an adult to suffer from ADHD and what can be done...
Adult ADHD: Organization and Time-Management Tips in Pictures
Learn daily living tips for adult ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). If you have ADHD or you just need to get...
ADHD in Children: Better Parenting
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common disorder seen in children. Parents can learn tips and techniques to...
ADHD: Top Concentration-Killers in Pictures
Learn the truth about multitasking, email overload, nagging thoughts, hunger, and other brain drains of modern life. See what's...
Related Disease Conditions
Adult ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
About 2%-6% of adults have ADHD, a common behavioral problem. Symptoms include impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention....
Childhood ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in Children)
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) causes the following symptoms in children: excessive activity, problems...
13 Tips for Parenting a Teen With ADHD
Parenting a teenager who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can be challenging. Parents can use specific...
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Teens
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in teens is a disruption of neurocognitive functioning. Genetics contribute to...
Parenting a Child With ADHD
ADHD is a behavioral condition with characteristics that include hyperactivity, inattention, and impulsivity. Parenting a child...
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Daily Health News
Mental Health Resources
Subscribe to MedicineNet's Depression Newsletter
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
FDA Prescribing Information
"Treatment for amphetamine withdrawal"
Cochrane Library of Systematic Reviews
Top Adderall vs Dexedrine Related Articles
13 Tips for Parenting a Teen with ADHDParenting a teenager who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can be challenging. Parents can use specific strategies to help their teen cope with school and homework. Special care should be taken to help an ADHD teen drive safely and avoid alcohol and drug use.
ADHD Symptoms in KidsWhat is ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)? Learn to recognize ADHD symptoms in children.
Adult ADHD SlideshowMost people don't associate adults with the term ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) but it is a common disorder in adulthood. Learn about symptoms, tests, treatment and medications for ADHD.
ADHD in ChildrenAttention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) causes the following symptoms in children: excessive activity, problems concentrating, and difficulty controlling impulses. There are three types of ADHD: the predominately inattentive type, the predominately hyperactive/impulsive type, and the combined (inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive) type. Stimulant medications are the most common medication used to treat ADHD.
ADHD MedicationsAttention deficity hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) affects 8%-10% of school-age children. ADHD medications are designed to increase the ability of the sufferer to pay attention and manage their impulses. ADHD drugs are available in liquid, pill, and patch form.
ADHD & ParentingAttention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common disorder seen in children. Parents can learn tips and techniques to teach ADHD children life skills, coping mechanisms, and better ways to learn with ADHD.
Take the Childhood ADHD QuizFind out causes, symptoms, and treatments for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a widespread behavioral condition commonly seen in children. Take the Childhood ADHD Quiz.
Adult ADHDAbout 2%-6% of adults have ADHD, a common behavioral problem. Symptoms include impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention. Treatment may involve ADHD education, attending a support group, skills training, and medication.
Adult ADHD QuizWhat are the symptoms of adult ADHD? Take this quiz to learn what it means for an adult to suffer from ADHD and what can be done about it.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in TeensAttention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in teens is a disruption of neurocognitive functioning. Genetics contribute to ADHD. Symptoms of ADHD in teens include inattention, hyperactivity/impulsivity, or a combination of these. Treatment may include cognitive behavioral therapy, behavior therapy, medication, or alternative therapies.
Living With Adult ADHDLearn daily living tips for adult ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). If you have ADHD or you just need to get yourself and your family organized, use these helpful tips to make your day flow smoothly.
Parenting a Child With ADHDADHD is a behavioral condition with characteristics that include hyperactivity, inattention, and impulsivity. Parenting a child with ADHD presents a variety of challenges. Treatment options for children with ADHD include medication and behavioral therapy.
Stimulants for ADHD
Stimulants are compounds (caffeine, nicotine, cocaine) or medications that stimulate the CNS or central nervous system. Stimulants increase blood pressure, mental alertness, energy, and heart rate. Approved medical uses for stimulants include:
- ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
- Transient resistant depression
Stimulants can be highly addictive so they are no longer recommended for treating nervous system disorders and asthma.
Examples of stimulants prescribed to treat ADHD in adults or children include:
- Adderall (amphetamine/dextroamphetamine)
- Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine)
- Desoxyn (methamphetamine)
- ProCentra (dextroamphetamine)
- Ritalin (methylphenidate)
- Concerta (methylphenidate)
- Daytrana (methylphenidate)
- Metadate (methylphenidate)
- Methylin (methylphenidate)
- Quillivant XR (methylphenidate)
- Focalin XR (dexmethylphenidate)
Drug interactions, dosage, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
vyvanse vs stratteraVyvanse and Strattera are both used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine) however, is a prodrug form of amphetamine and therefore has some of the same addiction problems of other ADHD drugs. Strattera (atomoxetine) however, is a selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), which is not addictive - its main advantage. Read about dosage, side effects and pregnancy safety information.