Psychostimulant Drugs in High Schools

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Topical Essay Psychostimulant drugs like Adderall and Ritalin are being used at an increasing rate among high school and college students. Since this drug has been around the amount of kids being prescribed to it has increased dramatically. This drug was originally created to help kids with ADHD, but now kids that aren’t even prescribed these drugs are taking them in order to enhance their academic performance (Loe 2008). Is the increase use of this drug becoming a problem, or is there a bigger problem at hand where students feel like they have to take it in order to be and stay successful. Students are taking Adderall and Ritalin at an increasing rate. Even students that are not even prescribed these drugs are getting them through the “grey market” to help them academically. There was a study conducted at the University of Michigan that found that 1 out of every 4 students have taken these types of drugs. Their study also showed that colleges in the North eastern United States with higher admission standards had a higher percentage of students taking Adderall or Ritalin (Loe 2008). One problem that is being addressed by Sociologists is the medicalization of this problem. Medicalization is the idea where back in the day a problem was looked at as a personal behavioral problem, but it is now defined as a medical issue that can be treated with some type of prescription (Loe 2008). “According to Loe (2008) that is what’s being done with ADHD and drugs like Adderall. While it’s true that these drugs are helping students do better academically, but it is creating an idea that every problem that comes up can just be taken care of with a pill. This puts the blame on the student as an individual rather than the student body at large.” I... ... middle of paper ... ..., so based on this I worked extremely hard to do well and get good grades. Now that there is such a high demand for students to do well, it is causing students to have to rely on drugs and Ritalin to meet these demands. Due to the fact that more pressure is being put on students to do well in school, drugs like Adderall and Ritalin are being used at an increasing rate. The high demand for students to succeed created the need for these psychostimulant drugs in order to be able to keep up with the high demands. Works Cited Loe, M., & Cuttino, L. (2008). Grappling with the Medicated Self: The Case of ADHD College Students. Symbolic Interaction, 31(3), 303-323. Retrieved from ProQuest Social Sciences Premium Collection. Loe, M. (2008). The Prescription of a New Generation. Contexts, 7(2), 46-49. Retrieved March 20, 2014, from American Sociological Association.
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