Using Adderall and weed together may, on the surface, seem like a clever way to counteract the adverse effects of each substance. Because Adderall is a stimulant and marijuana is a depressant, one could easily imagine that some of their effects would offset each other, making the experience of using these substances more pleasant overall.
Indeed, some users report that marijuana use relieves some of the distress and irritability that be associated with Adderall. They also say that Adderall’s ability to induce alertness and help counteract the lethargy and decreased cognitive function that can be caused by marijuana use.
There may be significant, long-term risks associated with the recreational use of Adderall and weed. Chronic Adderall abuse itself can cause devastating, life-threatening effects, such as seizures, anxiety, and depression. Marijuana impairment could lower inhibition and reduce a person’s ability to realize how much Adderall and using and underestimate the potential for adverse effects or overdose.
When used in combination, both drugs can result in an accelerated heart rate and palpitations. And, unfortunately, there is not much research that has been conducted on the interaction between Adderall and weed. Instead, only anecdotal reports from users exist who have experimented with the combined use of both substances.
Is There a Safe Way to Combine Adderall and Weed?
Regarding the safety of using both Adderall and weed in conjunction, there is no way to know for sure what consequences a person will experience. The effects of both substances vary widely, depending on several factors. These include the amount of Adderall used, whether it is being used as directed for a medical purpose, and the potency and amount of marijuana they are using. And, of course, individual differences such as biology also come into play.
That said, information obtained from users who have experimented with the use of Adderall and weed suggests that using this combination may lead to the following:
Heightened Euphoria – Both Adderall and week can offer users a boost of euphoria because they increase dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is a chemical that allows people to experience pleasure and reward from engaging in certain activities, such as eating and having sex.
Increased Stimulation – Both Adderall and weed use can increase heart rate, and this effect may be amplified when the two substances are used together. For some, this experience may feel exciting and fun. For others, such as those with a heart condition or anxiety, this effect can be very distressing.
Reduced Anxiety – Both Adderall and weed can induce anxiety, but when used in combination, certain adverse side effects of each substance might be canceled out by the others. These include anxiety, paranoia, irritability, insomnia, and loss of appetite.
Increased Risk of Overdose
Although it is not believed that the use of marijuana can ever be life-threatening, Adderall, when used in excess, can lead to overdose and death. And because using weed with Adderall can mitigate some of the side effects of the latter, this combination leads to more Adderall use, increasing long-term risks and the potential for overdose.
A lethal dose of Adderall has been reported to be between 20-25 mg per kg of weight. Using this guide, a lethal dose for someone who weighs 70 kg (154 pounds) would be about 1,400 mg. This is more than 25 times higher than the highest prescribed dose. This amount would be, indeed, an incredibly high amount to accomplish. Still, a person using marijuana might not experience the effects needed to remind him or her that she has taken too much—this could be disastrous.
What Is Adderall?
Adderall is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that includes amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It is FDA-approved to treat the symptoms of ADD/ADHD and narcolepsy. At prescribed doses, Adderall works to reduce the hyperactivity and lack of focus associated with ADHD, allowing people to feel more alert and focused.
Many people, particularly those in high school or college, report abusing Adderall as a study drug to utilize its stimulant effects. Students take it to stay awake for long periods to cram for tests or to complete challenging assignments. Like other stimulants, Adderall can place a significant amount of cardiovascular and psychological distress on a person’s body and well-being.
Effects of Adderall
Common side effects associated with Adderall use include the following:
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Dry mouth
- Loss of appetite and weight
More severe side effects may include the following:
- Swelling of the face
- Itching, rashes, and hives
- Numbness or tingling
- Paranoia or feelings of suspicion
- Agitation and confusion
- Fever and sweating or chills
- Severe muscle stiffness or twitching
- Impaired coordination
- Nausea and vomiting
- Difficulty breathing
- Blistering or peeling skin
- Weakness and fatigue
- Changes in vision
- Slow or difficult speech
- Motor or verbal tics
- Teeth grinding
Marijuana is considered to be a relatively safe substance compared to many others, such as alcohol or opioids. However, the potency of marijuana has increased in recent years, and THC levels can be found as high as 13%. By comparison, In the 1970s, THC levels were only about 2%.
Chronic or excessive use of marijuana can lead to mental and cardiovascular problems, including anxiety and panic attacks, paranoia, hallucinations, accelerated heart rate, and dramatic increases in blood pressure. When taken in conjunction with Adderall, these effects can be amplified, in which the user will experience the adverse effects of both.
Potential Long-term Effects on the Brain
There aren’t many studies that have examined the effects of combining cannabis and Adderall regarding a person’s mental health. Nonetheless, there are some things we know about the brain in general and how substances such as these can alter its functioning long-term.
For example, using drugs such as Adderall and marijuana chronically can impair the brain’s ability to release dopamine and serotonin naturally. This effect can lead, at least short term, to intense feelings of depression and anhedonia, in which a person cannot experience pleasure when a chemical component isn’t there to induce it. Moreover, these drugs combined may cause severe issues, such as clinical depression, after long-term use.
How Treatment Can Help
Abusing Adderall and weed qualifies as a polysubstance disorder in which or more substances are taken in conjunction. Such substance abuse requires an intensive, comprehensive approach that can effectively address both problems, as well as any co-occurring mental health conditions, such as depression or anxiety.
A reputable professional recovery program, such as those offered by Recovery By The Sea, can help individuals sustain sobriety and long-term relief from the dangerous effects of Adderall, weed, and other substances.
During this type of full-spectrum treatment, clients can benefit from evidence-based and alternative therapies, such as the following:
- Individual and family therapy
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Peer group support
- Art and music therapy
- Stress management
- Educational programs
- Health and wellness programs
- Relapse prevention planning
- Medication-assisted treatment
- Aftercare planning
Substance abuse of any kind has the potential to cause adverse, life-altering effects and severe health problems over both the short- and long-term, including death. The sooner you get help, the sooner you can begin to reverse some of the damage done and prevent more problems from occurring in the future.
If you are struggling with substance abuse or addiction, we urge you to call us today and seek treatment that can help you recover before it’s too late!