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Amphetamines: What Parents Need to Know

What It Is:

Amphetamines are very addictive stimulants that accelerate functions in the brain and body. They come in pills or tablets. Prescription diet pills also fall into this category of drugs.

Sometimes Called: speed, uppers, dexies, bennies, hearts, truck drivers
How It's Used: Amphetamines are swallowed, smoked, snorted, or injected.
What It Does:

No matter how a person takes amphetamines, these drugs hit with a fast high, making the user feel powerful, alert, and energized.

These "uppers" pump up heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure, and can also cause sweating, shaking, headaches, sleeplessness, and blurred vision.

Prolonged use may cause hallucinations and intense paranoia.

Even after users stop taking amphetamines, they may still have problems such as aggression, anxiety, and strong cravings for the drugs.

Reviewed by: Larissa Hirsch, MD
Date reviewed: February 2015

Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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