As it stands, Millennials are being spoon-fed a daily diet regimen prescribed of weekly therapy, anti-depressants, mood stabilizers and sleeping pills—all traveling at a hurtling speed down a dangerous road of chemical dependency and an era marked by its chemically driven productivity. The cycle of reliance on performing enhancing drugs such as, Adderall increases mental focus and clarity. In today’s modern era education is becoming increasingly more competitive—especially in the United States—where at a young age we’re conditioned to believe that a strong educational background will ensure we get a high-paying job that allows us to live the “American dream”.
Faced with the pressure of achieving the “dream”, Adderall and other stimulant medications give the added edge to fully thrive in high-pressure positions and or school courses that require a somewhat superhuman level of focus and understanding. With these current standards set in place, we’re now seeing an upward trend in the use of stimulant medication among students or young professionals looking to gain an edge in any and every competitive field.
How do we compete in an overly competitive world? What does that mean for a generation that needs to be deemed: limitless and tireless—constantly moving and striving to succeed. This becomes a cycle of reliance on medication that never existed at this scale until this decade.
Are eager doctors or worried parents to blame in an era where Pharma companies spend scores of dollars lobbying their products to be deemed safe by the FDA?
But before, we point the finger and assert judgement, we also have to ask: Are we the ones to blame for self-diagnosing ourselves? The wide-web offers endless insight on every medical question we’re pondering over.
The misuse and or misdiagnosis of ADHD medication, such as Adderall is still a heated debate—on who does or doesn’t need it. Former editor, Cat Marnell’s gripping Vice column explored her amphetamine addiction—revealing a darker side to prescription pill abuse and depicting how hazardous pills can be when they’re clearly misused.
We can argue that the evolution of medicine will help mankind—in terms of curing diseases and extending life—but we also have to be weary of how America is conditioning younger generations to continually reach for a pill for any and every ailment. There are other remedies and not every problem needs to involve a child psychiatrist or eager reading to write that script.
The question that remains to be unanswered still is, where is the future headed for millennials who have been conditioned this way? How do we change our outlook on how we perceive mental and physical health? There’s hope that the youth won’t be afflicted with these issues for years to come, but for now we’re in a waiting pool, hoping that the kids will be alright.