Adderall Withdrawal Timeline​

Table of Contents

What is Adderall?

Adderall is a stimulant composed of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. The drug is most commonly prescribed for fatigue or sleeping disorders, to increase mental sharpness, and to boost concentration levels in adults who have ADHD or narcolepsy. When taken for extended periods and without breaks, this drug can lead to addiction and bring about withdrawal symptoms, including anxiety, depression, and insomnia.1

Is Adderall Addictive?

Yes, Adderall poses a risk for addiction. The drug works by increasing dopamine and norepinephrine amounts in the brain, impacting mood, energy levels, and focus. When taking this stimulant for an extended time, Adderall tolerance can build up. Moreover, taking Adderall every day over a long time can lead to dependency. The person will experience a range of withdrawal symptoms if they go off the drug. Over time, addiction can develop.2

Adderall Withdrawal Symptoms ​

The body is used to functioning in a certain way, so it will react accordingly when drug use stops abruptly. Adderall withdrawal symptoms are different for everyone and depend on several factors such as the dosage, duration, and other underlying conditions. The following withdrawal symptoms are associated with Adderall use:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Restless sleep patterns
  • Elevated heart rate
  • High blood pressure levels
  • Fatigue
  • Panic attacks
  • Suicidal thoughts

The American Psychiatric Association lists additional symptoms of stimulant withdrawal, including:

  • Vivid dreams
  • Increased appetite
  • Difficulties with thinking or concentrating
  • Slowed movements or reflexes
  • Headaches
  • Adderall cravings

How Long Does Withdrawal from Adderall Last?

Adderall withdrawal symptoms are generally not felt until a few days after stopping use. They can last up to one week, depending on how long the person was abusing Adderall before deciding to stop.

Two of the most common potential withdrawal symptoms experienced during this period are depression and anxiety. However, these types of symptoms may not be experienced by everyone, and there are several other possible symptoms.

If someone has been taking Adderall for an extended time and stops using it suddenly, they may experience long-term withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can be felt for a few weeks to a month.

Adderall Withdrawal Timeline ​

  • Day 1-3: Some of the initial withdrawal symptoms include insomnia, fatigue, and depression.
  • Day 4-7: After the initial symptoms subside, another wave of symptoms may appear. The person may begin to feel irritable, anxious, restless, or unable to concentrate. They may also have trouble sleeping at night.
  • Week 2: Sleep will likely start to return to normal for most people, but it can continue to fluctuate at this point in the process. The person may also experience extreme fatigue, feelings of sadness, and drug cravings.
  • Week 3 and onwards: The withdrawal symptoms should have subsided by now. However, there is a risk that some symptoms could linger, especially if the patient has a high Adderall tolerance and has been using the drug for a long time. Some long-term withdrawal symptoms may include fatigue, cravings for taking the medication, and mood swings.

Generally, a person will return to their normal functioning within 1 to 3 months after they stop taking the drug.

Coping with Adderall Withdrawal Relief


At the moment, there are no approved medications to treat Adderall withdrawal symptoms. However, if a person is going through severe mood or withdrawal symptoms, their doctor may prescribe temporary medications to reduce their discomfort.


If a patient is experiencing severe irritation, aggression, or aggravation, their doctor may prescribe a long-acting benzodiazepine like Klonopin. It is recommended that a patient should be prescribed benzodiazepines for a week at most.3


If the patient is suffering from severe depression, their doctor may prescribe antidepressants.

Pain Relievers

A patient can take over-the-counter painkiller medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen if they are experiencing severe Adderall headaches or body aches.

Sleep Aids

Insomnia is one of the withdrawal symptoms of Adderall. If a patient is having difficulties falling or staying asleep, their doctor may prescribe prescription sleep aids such as Ambien.

Long-Term Treatment for Adderall Addiction ​


Prescription stimulants increase the activity of dopamine and norepinephrine. They can alter brain chemistry in such a way that encourages reward-seeking behavior. This factor means that a patient’s brain is going to have difficulties resisting cravings.4

For patients who have been misusing or abusing Adderall and have developed an addiction, they can considerably benefit from a comprehensive, long-term addiction treatment plan.

Inpatient treatment facilities are a good option for those battling a more severe addiction to Adderall. Inpatient treatment facilities provide around-the-clock care and supervision, which can be very beneficial for some people who need additional support outside of their daily life.

Outpatient treatment facilities work well for people with less severe cases or those who have to attend work or school. Patients continue to live at home but attend group and individual therapy sessions each week.



Cognitive-behavioral therapy  is one of the most effective types of psychological treatments when it comes to Adderall addiction. It involves the patient meeting with a therapist regularly, who will work with them to examine the patient’s thoughts and behaviors related to drug use.

The approach used by CBT therapists includes:

  • Understanding how the person relates to the drug
  • Defining what it means for them to have a healthy relationship with the drug and providing coping strategies so that they can get back on track

In addition, CBT therapists will also look at other pressures or stressors in a patient’s life, as these factors may be contributing to their Adderall addiction.



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