Dangers of Stimulant Abuse
The authors of an editorial published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal wants universities and colleges to be more proactive in protecting and educating young adults from the dangers of using illicit stimulant drugs. The drugs have increased in popularity among students because of the belief that the drugs will help their academic performance. “The vast majority of the evidence shows no cognitive improvements with the use of stimulants when compared with placebo in healthy individuals. In short, students who think simply popping a pill will improve their grades or give them newfound academic abilities are sorely mistaken,” wrote Dr. Daniel Rosenfield and his co-authors of the editorial. “Abuse of prescription medications such as methylphenidate and atomoxetine has been estimated at an alarming rate ranging from 5 percent to 35 percent. Without action, some of our best and brightest minds are at risk.” Stimulant abuse can lead to irregular heartbeat, depression, addiction, overdose or death. Universities are encouraged to open dialogue about the dangers of abusing stimulant drugs.