Doctors prescribe Adderall in varying doses. Notably, they adjust the amount of drug that the prescribe depending on different factors such as tolerance and age. This is done to reduce the risk of adverse side effects or overdose. Nevertheless, various doses of Adderall is available in the market

Adderall is a drug used to treat the mental disorder ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Furthermore, some studies have also shown that it can be useful in treating other mental disorder such as Binge Eating Disorder (BED).

The drug was introduced in the US back in 1996 by Richwood Pharmaceuticals, now a subsidiary of Shire Pharmaceuticals. Additionally, Richwood initially made the drug as an instant-release medication. However, as they see the drug’s potential, they decided to introduce the extended-release version of the drug in 2002.

How Much Adderall Should I Take?

Adderall is available in two versions; one is the instant release version, and the other is the extended release version. The Adderall IR and Adderall XR offer various pros and cons. Hence, taking which type of drug and the dosage of Adderall you should take depends on different factors.

Adderall Instant-Release

Adderall IR contains 100% immediate-release of its main components such as dextroamphetamine. It was formulated to help address sudden onsets of the symptoms of ADHD. Furthermore, it is also preferable for people who wish to take the drug on an “as needed” basis.

Manufacturers made Adderall IR in tablet form. Hence, individuals who want to take lower doses could cut it in two. One problem with Adderall IR is that a person needs to take the drug multiple times a day. This makes it harder for children as it is incredibly easy for them to miss a dose without the supervision of an adult.

Adderall IR is available in 5 mg, 7.5 mg, 10 mg, 12.5 mg, 15 mg, 20 mg, and 30 mg dosages. Doctors do not recommend it for children below three years old. For children between 3-5 years, the recommended dosage should begin at 2.5mg daily. This amount may be increased at weekly intervals until the best response occurs. (1)

For children six years and older, they can be given a starting dose of 5mg a day. This may also be increased depending on the intensity of the drug’s effect. A patient must remember that the daily dosage should not exceed 40mg.

Adderall Extended-Release

Adderall XR is an innovation of the previous drug formulation. It was made in such a way that only half of the drug is released immediately in the body. The other half is then released a few hours after the patient took the pill.

This formulation made it easier for children and adults to take the drug. It made it possible for a single pill to work throughout the day. Hence, this reduces the possibility of them missing a dose. The only drawback is that after taking the drug, there is no way to prevent the other dose to take effect.

Adderall XR is available in 5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, 20 mg, 25 mg, and 30 mg. dosages. Tha patient should only take the drug once a day. Children 6 years and above may take a 10mg pill in the morning. However, if they find this dosage ineffective, they may increase the dosage up to a maximum of 30 mg a day. Adults, however, may immediately start with a 20mg/day dosage. (2)

Can you overdose on Adderall?

Adderall contains the drug Amphetamine, a highly addictive and potent drug. Because of this ingredient, Adderall carries the same dangers as it. Hence, the risk of overdose and addiction are equivalently high for both drugs.

Some side effects of Adderall overdose may include abnormal heartbeats, cerebral hemorrhage, delusions, muscle pain, tremors, painful urination and more. Amphetamine overdose is rarely fatal with proper care. However, the possibility of addiction is extremely high which could cause more long-term damage to a person.

Before taking Adderall, make sure to consult your physician for the proper dosage for you. If the prescribed dosage does not take effect, avoid increasing your dosage without the supervision of a trained medical expert.


Adderall IR vs. XR: What’s The Difference? (n.d.). Retrieved August 30, 2017, from Mental Health Daily:

Adderall XR Dosage. (n.d.). Retrieved August 30, 2017, from Drugs: