Going through Adderall withdrawal is both physically and psychologically draining. The NLM states that you should not, under any circumstances, “stop taking dextroamphetamine and amphetamine without talking to your doctor, especially if you have overused the medication.” Whether you consult a physician or not, coping with the side effects of Adderall withdrawal is not easy, and treatment is recommended.
Side Effect: Depression
The best way to cope with the symptoms of depression is to see your doctor or a counselor. You might be prescribed medication, and it is important that you receive it if your depression is severe enough. Depression is the most dangerous Adderall withdrawal side effect, and the best ways to combat it are to:
- Talk to people you trust about what you’re going through
- Eat healthy and drink lots of water
- Call someone when you get down or even ask someone you trust to stay with you for a while
- Read, watch, or do things that make you happy instead of feeding into your symptoms
Still, depression that results from Adderall withdrawal can be so intense that you may need professional help.
Side Effects: Drowsiness & Sleep Disturbances
Especially in the beginning, you will feel very drowsy and sleep often. Later, you will likely experience sleep disturbances and possibly even insomnia. In order to get your sleep schedule back on track, try:
- Talking to your doctor about herbal supplements that you can take to help with your insomnia
- Taking a warm bath before bed
- Drinking herbal tea (chamomile helps)
- Lying down in a cool, dark room for at least twenty minutes
The last one might also help you with the agitation you’ll undoubtedly feel during this time as well. Make sure to take it easy while going through Adderall withdrawal; your body will not be back to one hundred percent for at least a few weeks.
It’s normal for someone going through Adderall withdrawal to experience varying degrees of anxiety. If you have never dealt with this type of issue before, it may be very difficult for you. Make sure to take care of yourself by using these tips.
- Breathe in and out slowly, concentrating on making your abdomen rise and fall instead of your chest.
- Write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal to get them out.
- Talk to someone you trust about what you are going through.
Cravings are perhaps the worst side effect of Adderall withdrawal because they can cause a person to relapse, even months or years into recovery (depending on how severe their abuse was). The best way to cope with cravings is to attend formal stimulant addiction treatment or at least a support group for drug addiction help. This way, you can learn the kind of coping methods that will help you avoid relapse like
- How to recognize and fight your triggers
- How to respond to others who make it hard for you to say no
- How to “avoid high risk situations” (NIDA)
Since most of the withdrawal side effects from Adderall abuse are psychological, you will likely need some type of therapy treatment in order to cope. But there are little, every day ways to make these effects less intense.