What can happen to your body when you misuse prescription stimulants?

Short-Term Effects

Stimulant use can have side effects, even when prescribed by a doctor. Misusing them can be especially dangerous. Taking high doses of a stimulant can cause:

  • increased blood pressure
  • irregular heartbeat
  • dangerously high body temperatures
  • decreased sleep
  • lack of interest in eating, which can lead to poor nutrition
  • risk for seizures and stroke at high doses
  • if drugs are injected, there is an increased risk of HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases from shared needles

Long-Term Effects

Over time, prescription stimulant medications can cause:

  • heart problems
  • psychosis (having false thoughts or seeing or hearing things that aren’t there)
  • intense anger
  • paranoia (feeling like someone is going to harm you even though they aren’t)