Adderall gaining attention on college campuses - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Adderall gaining attention on college campuses

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They are known as smart pills. Drug specialists often refer to them as cognitive enhancers because they boost the brain's reward center and enable students to concentrate for hours without fatigue.

On college campuses, some say Adderall is a go-to drug during heavy testing periods.  

"I've known people who have used it," student Alex Baumgerdner. "They'll take it before they study because it will help them to focus better on their work." 

Drugs like Adderall are prescribed for Attention-Deficit Disorder, and students say it has a popular drug on campus. Peggy Haecker, Executive Director of the Benton-Franklin Substance Abuse Coalition says Adderall often falls under the radar. 

"What we're hearing about so far is that kids are accessing it, using it for study times," Haecker said. "They go to other drugs for party time. They go to this for study time."

Drug specialists say Adderall is amphetamine-based, so it can become habit forming and can have sever side effects such as sleep deprivation and heart problems. Specialists warn students not to take it unless they do have ADD.