Adderall is a popular stimulant medication that contains a mixture of four amphetamine salts. It is prescribed to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy, but some drug users abuse it for its energizing and stimulating effects.
There are two Adderall formulations: immediate release and Adderall XR which is an extended release. Immediate-release Adderall comes in oral tablet form while Adderall XR comes in the form of a capsule that is taken by mouth.
The effects of Adderall (immediate release) last around 4-6 hours, so doctors may instruct patients to take it multiple times a day. Adderall XR, on the other hand, lasts for 12 hours or more, so it only needs to be taken once daily.
How long Adderall stays in your system depends on whether you took immediate-release or extended-release Adderall and other factors. In general, drug tests can detect Adderall in your body for 20-96 hours after your last dose. Using Adderall for extended periods of time or taking doses that are larger than you are prescribed can cause it to stay in your system even longer.
If you or someone you love may be addicted to Adderall, please contact Moving Mountains Recovery to learn about your treatment options.
What Factors Affect How Long Adderall Stays in Your System?
Adderall is usually taken by mouth, absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract, and eliminated from the body via urine. Adderall has a half-life of 11.5-13.8 hours, meaning it takes that long for half of a single dose of the drug to leave the body. It takes 4-5 half-lives for a drug to leave your system, so it can take 46 to 69 hours for a single dose of Adderall to leave your system.
Different people will metabolize Adderall at different rates depending on factors such as:
- Dosage – Using Adderall more frequently, for longer periods of time, and/or in larger doses can make it stay in your body longer.
- Body composition – Your age, weight, and body fat percentage will influence how long drugs stay in your system. Evidence shows Adderall leaves the body faster in people who weigh more and have more body fat.
- Metabolism – Metabolism can be affected by things like your age, weight, gender, liver function, and overall health. The faster your metabolism is, the quicker drugs like Adderall will leave your body.
- Organ function – If either your liver or kidneys are not working properly, Adderall will stay in your body for longer periods of time.
How Long Will Adderall Show Up on a Drug Test?
Drug tests may be used by employers, medical health professionals, sports leagues, and even legal systems to test for drugs, including amphetamines like Adderall. There are four types of drug tests:
Urine tests are the most commonly used type of drug testing. Adderall can show up on a drug test for 72-96 hours after your last dose.
Saliva tests are most often only used in medical settings, but Adderall can show up on a saliva test for 20-50 hours after your last dose.
Blood tests are the most invasive type of drug test and they are usually only used in medical settings. Adderall can be detected on a blood test or up to 46 hours after your last dose.
Hair tests are becoming more popular and they have a very large detection window. Adderall can be detected on a hair test for up to 90 days after your last dose.
How Do You Get Adderall Out of Your System Safely?
If you are prescribed Adderall by a doctor and have to take a drug test, your results cannot be held against you because you take the medication for legitimate reasons. However, if you abuse or are addicted to Adderall and are worried about failing a drug test, you may try to stop taking Adderall.
Over-the-counter detox supplements do not work, and using them with the purpose of clearing drugs from your system can be dangerous. The only way to get Adderall out of your body is to let your body metabolize it and eliminate it from your system.
If you are addicted to Adderall, you may experience symptoms of withdrawal when you stop taking it. Symptoms of Adderall withdrawal include:
- Increased appetite
- Slowed movements
- Slowed heart rate
- Sleeping issues
- Vivid dreams
- Body aches
- Muscle pain
Adderall withdrawal can last for 2-3 weeks depending on your situation. While Adderall withdrawal is generally not life-threatening, your symptoms can become so severe that you are tempted to continue using Adderall to get some relief, keeping you trapped in the cycle of addiction.
The safest way to detox from Adderall is to admit yourself to a drug and alcohol detox facility where you can be monitored and supported throughout the process.
Find Help for Adderall Abuse and Addiction Today
If you or a loved one are addicted to Adderall and ready to begin your recovery journey, please give us a call. Our team at Moving Mountains Recovery can connect you with a trusted detox center and make a plan for your treatment going forward. Don’t wait any longer for the help you deserve. Call now.
- Food and Drug Administration (FDA): Adderall, Retrieved April 2023 from https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2007/011522s040lbl.pdf
- National Library of Medicine: The effects of amphetamine on body weight and energy expenditure, Retrieved April 2023 from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1523237/
- National Library of Medicine: Treatment for amphetamine withdrawal, Retrieved April 2023 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7138250/