Students rely on 'smart drugs' to enhance grades

The addiction to succeed

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - More and more college students are becoming addicted to a popular prescription drug, not to get high, but in hopes to get better grades.
Medical experts say, the addiction to get smarter is a growing problem that could have devastating results.

Some students call it, educational steroids.

"It's very popular nowadays and it's a widespread problem on college campuses around the country," said Albert Ma, M.D. at the Psychiatric Wellness Center.

"For some students, there is an incredible amount of pressure to keep your grades up. That’s why they turn to smart drugs," said Kathy Jones, college student.

That pressure has caused many to look for a little extra help in the form of 'cognitive enhancing' drugs.
Those medications are usually prescribed to children with attention deficit disorders.

"I know a lot of students at Bakersfield College who use it. Ritalin is actually very popular, but Adderall is coming up in the world, and it's easier to get," said Tahirah Hill, college student.

Many college students are taking advantage of the availability of the medication, because it helps them to concentrate and pull all-nighters.

"A friend of mine takes Adderall without a prescription. He said, it helped him study better and get better grades. Unfortunately, he got addicted and his grades went down," said Josh Lund, college student.

Medical experts said taking these 'smart drugs' illegally is not smart at all.

"First of all, it is a felony to take these types of drugs without a prescription. Secondly, when you take someone Else's medication, the dose can be completely wrong for your body size. A person can have a heart attack and die from these drugs, if they are not screened by a medical doctor," said Ma.

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