girl holding a pill(UGA Today) College students who misuse stimulant drugs or nootropics like Adderall or Ritalin are also likely to drink heavily and use other drugs, according to new research from the University of Georgia.

Students who reported binge drinking or frequent marijuana use were eight times more likely to have used prescription stimulants or “study drugs” they did not have a prescription for.

The study, which was published recently in the Journal of American College Health, paints a different picture of prescription stimulant users than most universities may be familiar with, said study author Ash Warnock, a doctoral student at UGA’s College of Public Health.

The storyline of a college student who doesn’t have a medical need for a stimulant bumming a pill from a classmate or friend to help them focus and study took off several years ago. But the perception that this type of abuse of cognitive enhancers is reserved for ambitious high achievers may be off the mark, said Warnock.

Catching up on studies

“Stimulant use may be a kind of catch-up behavior, he said. ‘Some studies have shown that students who party with drugs and alcohol on the weekends use stimulants like an academic catch up because they’re behind on their studies.” Read the rest.

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