Drugs for study not worth the risk 0

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By Anny Chih, 24 hours Vancouver

When there are academic papers to write and final exams to study for, social media can breed unprecedented levels of procrastination. Performance inducing drugs can be especially tempting to easily distracted students during this time but while drug dependencies are difficult to break, most post-secondary classes will be over before the holidays even begin.

Ritalin and Adderall are prescription medications commonly used to treat symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), but they’ve also become household names in dormitory settings where stress levels run high among students without the condition. Students often think that these drugs are no more dangerous than marijuana, but just as marijuana is illegal without a prescription so are Ritalin and Adderall.

In addition to potential side effects, the use of Ritalin and Adderall can cause other unintended effects such as an intense focus on the wrong subject and perceived drug dependency for future exams. There have also been several reported shortages of ADHD medications in the USA over the past decade, so as the student demand for illegal use of the drugs increases so does the likelihood that patients who require the drug to function normally will not be able to access their prescribed medications.

Before risking drug dependency and potentially blocking patient access to medication, students can use more reliable tools to gain focus on their study material. These tools can be as simple as the power button on a phone, or they can be more advanced programs that block specific websites on a computer.

An annual Internet Trends report published by Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers this year documents how mobile users reach for their phones an average of 150 times each day. Even if only one minute is spent each time, this means two and a half hours can be saved for study by simply turning off the phone and keeping it out of view.

If will power is still lacking, productivity programs like Freedom ( and Anti-Social ( respectively block the Internet and specific social websites for set time periods.

Academic papers and final exams are important, but a single term’s grades are not worth putting an entire life in jeopardy by taking illegal drugs or becoming dependent on controlled substances.


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