Vyvanse Withdrawal and Treatment
What Is Vyvanse?
Vyvanse is the brand name for lisdexamfetamine, a prescription medication used to treat attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as well as binge eating disorder.1,2 Like other similar ADHD medications, Vyvanse is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant. Via its stimulant effects, Vyvanse can ramp up certain processes and functions throughout the body.2
Vyvanse produces effects similar to other stimulant medications like:2
Vyvanse also has several chemical similarities and effects in common with illicit stimulant substances like:3,4
A relatively recently developed stimulant medication, Vyvanse is therapeutic when taken as directed, but like any of the substances above, Vyvanse misuse is possible.2,3 The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that about 10% of 12th graders have misused Vyvanse or other amphetamines in their lifetime.2
Short-Term Effects of Vyvanse
Vyvanse has several immediate effects, some of which may be pleasurable and reinforcing of problematic patterns of use. However, those who do misuse the drug by taking it in excess or more frequently than prescribed may also be at risk of experiencing dangerous adverse effects as well. Common side effects of Vyvanse include the following:5,9
- Blunted emotions.
- Changes in sociability.
- Impaired judgment.
- Dilated pupils.
- Nausea or vomiting.
- Reduced appetite.
- Increased blood pressure.
- Rapid heart rate.
- Irregular heart rhythm.
- Chest pain.
- Increased body temperature.
- Chills or sweating.
- Muscle weakness.
- Repetitive, purposeless movements, such as pacing.
- Involuntary muscle contractions.
Higher doses of Vyvanse may increase the risk of experiencing adverse physical and mental health effects. Some of these effects can be fatal without proper intervention. If you think someone has overdosed on Vyvanse or any other drug, call 911 immediately.
Long-Term Effects of Vyvanse Misuse
Taking Vyvanse for non-prescription purposes is a risky practice. As the misuse continues, the chance of becoming addicted to Vyvanse increases. Once someone is addicted to Vyvanse, it can be extremely challenging to quit. Addiction is one of many long-term consequences associated with Vyvanse abuse. Below is a list of other potential long-term effects of stimulant abuse:5,9
- Effects associated with needle use such as track lines, collapsed veins, HIV, or hepatitis.
- Effects associated with nasal use such as nose bleeds or perforated nasal septum.
- Malnutrition, as a result of decreased appetite.
- Increased risk of heart attack, respiratory arrest, or stroke.
- Increased risk of injuries due to violent behavior.
- Legal ramifications, due to theft, drug dealing, or driving under the influence.
- Tolerance, the need to increase the dose of the drug to achieve the same effects.
- Withdrawal symptoms, which emerge when use is suddenly reduced or stopped.
- Sudden death, resulting from dangerously high doses.
These long-term consequences can be prevented or minimized by seeking professional help, such as a Vyvanse detox program or Vyvanse rehab program.
Vyvanse Withdrawal Symptoms
Each person’s experience with Vyvanse withdrawal will differ, but the expected physical effects may include the following:4,5,6,7
- Inability to sleep followed by a strong desire for sleep.
- Fatigue and lethargy.
- Slowed movements and thoughts.
- Extreme hunger.
Vyvanse withdrawal symptoms that impact mental health include:4,5,6,7
- Irritability and agitation.
- Lack of interest and motivation.
- Social isolation.
- Strong cravings for stimulants.
- Intense, vivid dreams.
Vyvanse Detox Options
Detoxification can refer to the body’s natural ability to process and eliminate toxins from the system. Detox can also refer to a set of professional strategies used to safely assist an individual enduring withdrawal symptoms.6 The goal of any withdrawal management is to end drug dependence and start addiction recovery.7 Professional medical detox can help ensure your safety and comfort during Vyvanse withdrawal. There a range of services available based on the person’s specialized needs including:6,8
- Inpatient detox offers 24-hour care while providing the individual with compassion during this difficult time.
- For people with lower risks and stronger outside supports, outpatient detox allows the individual to regularly check-in with a clinic or other treatment outlet while being able to maintain most aspects of their daily life. Outpatient detox treatment can occur at doctor’s offices, clinics, and community substance abuse centers.
How Long Does Vyvanse Withdrawal Last?
Vyvanse detox length can be influenced by factors such as:4,6
- How you take it(orally, snorted, injected).
- The dose and frequency of use.
- The total duration of use.
- Concurrent mental health and physical health complications.
- A history of combining Vyvanse with another substance.
Many symptoms of Vyvanse withdrawal will begin within 24 hours of last use.7 The symptoms will usually last for 3-5 days in total, but the detox length could be a bit longer for people experiencing psychotic symptoms.7
The process of quitting Vyvanse may be quite different for a person taking the medication as prescribed by their physician compared with a person snorting or injecting high doses of the drug multiple times per day.
Vyvanse Addiction Treatment
Detox treatment for Vyvanse will commonly only last for days or weeks, but some people need additional treatment to maintain their recovery over time.8 People committed to achieving long periods of recovery should seek additional Vyvanse addiction treatment when drug detox concludes.6,8
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