Amphetamines are sold as prescription medications to help people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. When used under medical advice, the stimulant effect of these drugs helps to improve attention. Amphetamines are also widely abused by people who take them outside of the prescription, seeking their euphoric and energy-increasing effects. This misuse is concerning because the drug can damage your mental and physical health.
Amphetamine abuse is illegal, and the substance is looked for in drug testing. If you use this drug or care about someone who does, you may wonder how long amphetamines stay in your system. This blog post answers that question and others that you may have about amphetamines.
Amphetamines As Prescription Medication
Amphetamines are powerful central nervous system stimulants. They are commonly prescribed by licensed medical professionals for ADHD. Meds that contain amphetamines include Adderall XR and Dexedrine.
Amphetamine is classed as a schedule II substance by the DEA because of its potential for abuse. The drug causes greater alertness and improved concentration in the user. For this reason, some students misuse amphetamines to help them to study longer, particularly during exam periods.
Any users of amphetamines should follow the professional medical advice given by their treatment provider. Taking this medication outside of a prescription exposes the user to the dangers of amphetamine overdose.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse shares that in 2021 3.7 million Americans misused prescription stimulants.
If you buy illegally produced amphetamines, you can not be certain about what is in the dose. Contaminants can appear as a result of mistakes made during manufacture in clandestine laboratories, or because the dealer has cut the drug with other substances.
Some recreational users deliberately combine amphetamines with other drugs such as cocaine, marijuana, and heroin. Using several drugs together may mean it takes longer for your body to flush amphetamines out of its system.
Meth and MDMA are types of illegal amphetamine.
Drug Abuse When You Have a Prescription
Tests such as blood tests can be carried out to check for drug abuse even when a person is taking amphetamines on a prescription. This happens because the medical profession is aware that the drug has a high potential for medication misuse.
If you have a prescription for a drug such as Adderall XR but wonder if you are misusing amphetamines, ask yourself the following question.
- Are you using amphetamines more often or in greater amounts than your doctor recommends?
Answering yes to this question indicates that you are abusing amphetamines.
Do You Have a Substance Abuse Problem?
If you agree with the following statements, it may indicate that you have a substance use disorder. This is a form of mental health disorder that is treatable with medical help. Contact your medical provider to find out about treatment options.
- You have tried to stop using amphetamines but can’t quit.
- You have tried to reduce the number of amphetamines you take, but can’t.
- You spend a lot of time seeking, using, or recovering from amphetamine use.
- You experience withdrawal symptoms (e.g., fatigue, aches, pains) when you try to stop taking.
- You notice that amphetamines are causing you problems, but you can’t stop.
When Can a Drug Test Detect Amphetamines?
Potential or current employers may require their employees to be screened for amphetamine use, and the test may also be necessary for legal proceedings. How long amphetamines stay in your body depends on several factors.
How Long Do Amphetamines Stay in Your System?
The half-life of a drug is the amount of time that it takes your body to eliminate half of the substance. There is no precise figure for amphetamine half-life, although 10 hours is a good ballpark estimate.
The amount of time it takes your body to process the drug is affected by urine ph and the variety of amphetamine that you have used. Other factors can affect how long the drug will stay in your system. These include:
- Your age and state of health
- How much amphetamine you took
- Other substances that you took alongside amphetamine
In cases of substance abuse, when larger quantities have been taken, not only will a person’s body have more amphetamine to expel from the system their liver may also be weakened, meaning this essential internal organ struggles to break down the amphetamine and flush it out.
Half-life elimination times should not be taken as a guide for how long a drug test can pick up on the presence of a drug in your body. The detection window depends on what kind of drug test is used, e.g., urine test or blood test. It ranges from a few hours up to 90 days or more.
Urine Tests for Amphetamine
Urine testing can pick up indications of amphetamine use for up to one to three days after you have taken the drug.
Saliva Tests for Amphetamine
Saliva testing can detect whether you have used amphetamines for up to one to two days after you last took them.
Blood Tests for Amphetamine
Blood testing picks up on the presence of amphetamine for up to four to six hours after your last dose.
Hair Tests for Amphetamine
A test of your hair follicles may find amphetamine for up to three months after you last used it.
Treatment for Amphetamine Abuse at Cornerstone
If you are worrying about the results of a drug test or simply wondering how long amphetamine will stay in your system, it’s a sign that you may have a problem with this drug.
Here at Cornerstone in Southern California, we are experts in treating addiction, substance abuse, and mental health disorders. We provide detox treatments to help you get all traces of amphetamines or other drugs out of your system. We also offer therapies to help you learn about why you abuse substances and how you can change your life.
Our services include:
- A free assessment to help you understand your substance use and the options for recovery.
- Medically-assisted detox
- Talk therapy
Contact us today to find out how we can help your recovery.