Does Adderall Cause Hair Loss?

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You finally have an ADHD (aka attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder) or narcolepsy diagnosis, and you’re taking Adderall to help with your symptoms.

We love to see it.

Many prescription meds list hair loss as a side effect because they can interrupt the hair growth cycle. So it’s fair to wonder if Adderall® can cause shedding.

Like any medication, side effects can happen. And although certain adverse effects like hair loss might seem trivial to some, it can be jarring to suddenly notice clumps of hair whirling down the drain.

We have good-ish news. While it can happen, Adderall-related hair loss is uncommon. 

Let’s dig into the link between Adderall and hair loss, how common it is and whether something else might be causing you to lose your once-luscious locks. 

We’ll also cover whether Adderall hair loss is permanent and how to stop this side effect in its tracks if it’s happening to you.

(Related: How to Fix Thinning Hair?)

Can Adderall Cause Hair Loss?

We don’t like to beat around the bush, so let’s set the record straight. Does Adderall make your hair fall out?

Stimulant medications like Adderall, dextroamphetamine and Ritalin might cause you to shed more hair than usual. Thinning hair isn’t a common result of taking ADHD stimulant drugs, but alopecia (the fancy medical term for hair loss) is a possible side effect — according to the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) label. 

There’s also research linking hair loss to prescription stimulants like Adderall, specifically amphetamines. 

 The medication itself may not be the direct cause of hair loss, though. Adderall use might indirectly lead to excess shedding, thanks to the secondary effects it can have on your body (and mind). 

Potential side effects of taking Adderall include: 

  • Headaches

  • Feeling nervous or jittery

  • Dizziness

  • Constipation or diarrhea (ugh, pick a lane!)

  • Loss of appetite

  • Weight loss

  • Nausea

  • A dip in sex drive or sexual function

  • Sleep issues

 Contact your healthcare provider if any of these side effects are severe or affecting your daily life.

How Common is Adderall Hair Loss? 

Not very. 

One small retrospective case study looked at dermatology clinic medical records for patients aged six to 18 with various types of alopecia. Researchers found a strong association between alopecia universalis and ADHD stimulant meds.

Here’s the thing: The study was small, involving 124 cases — only three involving alopecia universalis. And there was no evidence of a link between stimulant use and other types of alopecia.

Plus, it’s important to point out that the study didn’t look at Adderall, specifically.

Some case studies suggest that hair loss and thinning can happen when taking stimulants. But case studies aren’t a good indication of what can happen at a population level. Sure, individual medical cases can be interesting, but they just don’t provide enough data for a definitive conclusion.

It’s also worth noting that if you notice more shedding than usual while taking Adderall, factors other than medication alone could be at play.

Take weight loss, for instance — one of the most common side effects of Adderall.

Weight loss is a top cause of a form of temporary hair shedding known as telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium happens when your body goes through a stressful event, whether emotional or physical. Sudden, rapid weight loss is one possible trigger.

And since Adderall can make you feel a bit barfy or suppress your appetite, you might not be taking in enough nutrients. Nutritional deficiencies can also cause hair loss.

An uptick in stress can cause this type of hair thinning, too. And taking a new medication, even if it helps with your symptoms, can definitely be stressful.

Compound that with the fact that Adderall can mess with your ability to fall and stay asleep (it’s a stimulant, after all) — and voila! — a perfect recipe for temporary stress-related hair shedding. And to bring it full circle, lack of sleep can spike your cortisol and lead to higher stress levels.

(Related: Do Hair Growth Products Work?)

Is Adderall Hair Loss Permanent? 

Adderall shedding is different from hair loss due to male pattern baldness (aka male androgenetic alopecia).

A combo of genetic factors and the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a byproduct of testosterone, are responsible for the permanent balding that causes a receding hairline. Some folks are just more sensitive to the effects of DHT (gee, thanks, genetics), which can bind to receptors on that pretty head of yours and miniaturize your hair follicles.

Miniaturization doesn’t just slow hair growth. It eventually stops it altogether, causing bald areas at the crown typical of male pattern baldness.

You can find out more about miniaturizing by checking out our guide to DHT and male pattern baldness.

Any hair you lose from taking Adderall, on the other hand, will likely grow back. That’s because the shedding is likely triggered by an interruption in the hair growth cycle — not due to permanent damage to the hair follicles.

How to Stop Hair Loss From Adderall

If you just started taking Adderall and are concerned about recent hair shedding, it’s a good idea to talk with your healthcare provider. They may recommend switching meds or adjusting your dose.

PSA: Don’t start messing with your medication dose or stop taking it without talking to a healthcare professional first. 

Treatment for Adderall-related hair loss depends on the root (heh) cause.

Maintaining Good Hair Health While Taking Adderall

Here’s how to prevent hair loss while on Adderall.

If you have hair loss resulting from a nutritional deficiency, you might benefit from a diet adjustment. This could involve incorporating more nutrient-dense foods, taking biotin gummies or both.

Finding healthy stress-coping mechanisms may help if you’re experiencing stress or anxiety-related shedding with Adderall use. Find what works for you — whether it’s meditation, running or reading a good book. 

Consider talking with your healthcare provider if that jittery, anxious feeling doesn’t go away. They may adjust your dosage, switch your meds or refer you to another mental health professional.

Stress in check, but still experiencing hair loss? 

Haircare products like our volumizing shampoovolumizing conditioner and thickening shampoo with saw palmetto may help minimize temporary hair shedding. 

These medicated products can also help with hair thinning:

Does Adderall Cause Hair Loss? Key Takeaways

Taking Adderall isn’t likely to affect your hairline, but hair loss is a possible side effect. 

Still, it’s not the medication itself that leads to temporary shedding, but what happens as a result of you taking it. Here’s what to keep in mind:

  • You might change your eating habits while taking Adderall. Side effects like nausea and headaches can mess with your appetite, making mealtimes less appealing than usual.

  • Stress can impact your appetite, too. Adderall can make it tougher to get a good night’s sleep. As a result, it might be harder to cope with day-to-day stressors. 

  • All these factors can contribute to telogen effluvium. Higher stress levels, rapid weight loss and nutrient deficiencies are potential triggers for temporary hair loss.

Not sure what to do about this new shedding? Start an online consultation with a healthcare professional to discuss hair loss treatments from Hims.

If you think your hair fallout is due to stress and are struggling to cope, consider looking into online mental health services.

Want to learn more about the potential side effects of Adderall? Check out our guide to Adderall and ED.

This article originally appeared on Hims.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

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8 Smart Ways to Reduce the Price of Your Prescription Drugs

8 Smart Ways to Reduce the Price of Your Prescription Drugs

If you’re charging prescriptions to a credit card or digging for change in your car and couch every month to scrounge up enough money to pay for prescriptions, you’re not alone.

Around seven percent of U.S. adults can’t pay for prescription drugs they need, according to a 2021 Gallup poll. That’s an estimated 18 million people who say they had to go without at least one prescribed medication in the last three months, according to the poll.

If you struggle to pay for your meds or even worse, go without necessary medications, here’s some good news. With a bit of research and a strategy for finding discounts, you can save on prescription drugs.

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Drug discount cards have been saving consumers money on prescriptions for decades. If your insurance doesn’t cover a prescribed drug or you’re saddled with a high copay, check the price on these drug discount sites to see how much you can save.

  • GoodRX
  • Blink Health
  • SingleCare
  • WellRX

Not up to the research? Ask your pharmacist if they have information on how much you can save with certain prescription discount cards.

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Just because you’ve filled your prescriptions at CVS for the last 10 years doesn’t mean that pharmacy is the only game in town. Check prices at other local pharmacies, including your grocery store. If you can save enough to make the switch worthwhile, dole out your prescriptions among more than one pharmacy.

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Ask your doctor if the prescribed medication has a generic version to save big bucks. “Generic drugs have exactly the same active ingredients and effects as brand-name drugs, but they can cost 30 percent to 80 percent less,” according to the Food & Drug Administration.

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Ordering a 90-day vs. a 30-day supply may save money on certain drugs. Check prices for both quantities before you fill a prescription. You’ll pay more upfront but the savings over three months may be worth it.

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Check with local pharmacies for any discount programs they offer. For example, when you pay $20 (or $35 for a family plan) to join Walgreens’ Prescription Savings Club, you can get discounts on more than 8,000 medications. Plus, you can fill 90-day prescriptions on select generic drugs for the price you’d pay for two 30-day prescriptions.

Bonus: Walgreens’ program also provides discounts on prescriptions for your pets.

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Save money by comparing prices at online pharmacies that deliver prescription drugs right to your doorstep. You may save a lot by ordering online.

 Plus, you’ll save on gas and time by not having to drive to the pharmacy and wait in line.

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Many drug manufacturers offer patient assistance programs if you meet income eligibility requirements. Contact the manufacturer for that pricey drug to find out if you’re eligible for deep discounts on a medication. To get an idea of how patient assistance programs work, visit RxAssist, which lists a comprehensive directory of patient assistance programs.

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It is important to choose your health insurance wisely.  Brokers are trained professionals that can assist you in finding the best plans for your unique needs.  If possible, find a broker that is familiar with plans in your area and that is certified to sell ACA plans.

“The least expensive plan is not always the best or the most cost-effective option.  Sometimes, a silver or gold plan may cost you less due to lower copays on brand name prescriptions. For those on Medicare, always have a broker review your part D (drug) coverage annually.  Even if your monthly premium is not set to increase, there is no way to know that your prescriptions are still covered the same way for the next year unless you do an analysis of this plan,” says Analisa Cleland, an insurance and financial advisor at Coto Insurance.

If you are on a Medicare Advantage plan, have a certified broker review your coverage annually to ensure that your plan is still a good fit for your individual needs.

This article originally appeared on Debt.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

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