Medically Approved

Amphetamine Salts: What are they and what do they do?

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Optum Perks Author

By Optum Perks Author

If you suffer from the inability to concentrate, stay focused, or pay attention, and you are taking medication for this condition (or perhaps you know someone who is), then most likely you are familiar with Amphetamine Salts (stimulants) -- also referred to as Amphetamine Salt Combo drugs.

So what are they anyway?

Amphetamine Salts are central nervous system stimulants that work to restore imbalance of the brain by increasing mental alertness and improving the ability to focus.  They're used to treat conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and sleeping disorders like narcolepsy.

Both conditions require treatment that involves taking the drugs once or twice daily, depending on your doctor's orders.  Each dosage comes in the form of a tablet or extended-release capsules (ER) and contains 10-30mg of medication.

While there is often confusion and concern over the difference between amphetamine salt drugs and amphetamine salt combo drugs, it is imperative to note they are actually the same thing, i.e., amphetamine and dextroamphetamine combined, which equates to Adderall.

OK, what about the disorders being treated by this drug?

Well, in case you're not "paying attention" or "you've gone to sleep again," I'm going to need you to wake up for this part …

ADHD is simply a chemical imbalance in the brain that affects behavior and causes the individual who has it to become hyperactive, impulsive, and inattentive.  Children, teens, and adults alike can suffer from any one of these three types of ADHD.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, less than 20% of adults with ADHD get diagnosed and treated, and even less than that seek help.  So if anyone ever tells you, consistently, that you have a problem paying attention, or staying awake, you might want to have yourself checked out to make certain you didn't catch this condition.

Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder where the individual who has it, has an excessive urge to fall asleep at inappropriate times -- which is due to the loss of the brain's ability to regulate their sleep-wake cycles.

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So how will these drugs affect me?

Some of the side effects you might experience when taking amphetamine salts are:

  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Fever
  • Stomach upset / pain
  • Nervousness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Nausea / vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Lack of energy
  • Sexual performance (some males reported)

As usual, you should always tell your doctor about any other medication(s) you are taking so they can prescribe the correct type and dosage needed for your condition; as well as make certain there are no interactions with any of them.  Even more important is the addiction factor.  There is the potential for takers of this drug to become addicted if they are not careful with how much they are taking.  Thus, they should not take this drug for a long period of time.  It is extremely important to work this treatment plan as closely as possible with your doctor until he/she releases you from taking it.


On the flip-side ...

Despite the list of side effects, there is a great deal of positive comments about the effectiveness of this drug.  Many have reported having a clearer mind, greater focus, more energy, more excitement, and more interest and ability to complete new projects, and that's a good thing.

If your doctor prescribes you amphetamine salts, it would behoove you to first visit the Optum Perks website and search for discount coupons for your prescription.