How Long Does Adderall Stay in your System?

Planning to take a drug test for Adderall? Here’s what you should know!

Adderall is a drug that is mainly used by athletes to enhance their performances. However, some people may also use the drug for recreational purposes. It is a common prescription drug given by child psychiatrists and tends to be helpful in the treatment of ADHD also known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. The main active ingredient present in Adderall is amphetamine which is also generally referred to as Sulf, Speed, Billy, Whizz, and Crystal by the drug abusers. The compound produces cortical excitability by exciting the central nervous system.

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Adderall mainly tends to be effective due to the presence of amphetamine which potentiate the activity of the neurotransmitters such as dopamine, adrenaline, and norepinephrine in the brain. These are the main neurotransmitters that can come into play during stimulations of fight or flight. The effects are almost similar to that of cocaine. However, in case of Adderall, the effects last for a much longer time, which is why, it is commonly abused.

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How Long Does Adderall Stay in your System?

If you have stopped the administration of Adderall, then you must have been wondering how long it can actually take for the drug to get eliminated from your system entirely. The early stages following the quitting of the drug can feel very typical. It can change a fully operating, active person almost into a zombie. The person will first experience an Adderall collision followed by the withdrawal symptoms. If the drug had been used in hefty amounts earlier, it could even lead to PAWS or Post Acute Withdrawal Symptoms.

The duration for which Adderall stays in the system is determined on the basis of the isomer that has been administered. Therefore, checking the constituents can prove to be helpful. There are mainly two types of isomers, the levoamphetamine, and the dextroamphetamine. These two isomers have a half-life of 10 to 12 hours and 11 to 14 hours respectively. Depending on the salt constituents that have been consumed, Adderall can stay in the body for a period of 55 to 66 hours.

The levoamphetamine can stay in the body for a period of 60.5 to 77 hours. While most of the drug is excreted out, some of it also undergoes a change and gets converted into metabolites, namely, benzyl methyl ketone, benzoic acid and p hydroxyl amphetamine. These metabolites, on the other hand, are eliminated much faster as compared to their parent compounds. At the minimum, Adderall can be found inside the body, even after 3 days of administration. If you have high body pH, which is also a clinical condition that affects the capacity of metabolism, the drug may stay inside the body for a much longer period.

Major Side Effects of Adderall

Adderall may be quite effective in what it does. However, it can also cause many undesirable side effects. These side effects can range from mild to severe. Regardless of the intensity, it is always prudent to consult a doctor immediately if you notice any of the symptoms suggesting a side effect.

The most common side effects are

  • Pain in the bladder
  • Cloudy urine
  • Blood in urine
  • Discomfort and burning sensation while urinating
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Discomfort in the sides or lower back
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Sleeping problems
  • Restlessness
  • Dry mouth
  • Decrease in the appetite
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach aches
  • Loss of sexual desire
  • Less common side effects
  • Symptoms similar to that of flu or cold
  • Hoarseness while coughing
  • Cool spells and fever
  • Severe side effects
  • Vision changes
  • Chest pain
  • Fainting
  • Seizures
  • Uncontrollable movement
  • Trouble while breathing
  • Delusions
  • Hallucinations
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Skin Rashes
  • Numb sensations
  • Weakness
  • Swollen tongue, face, and lips
  • Difficulty while talking and swallowing

It should be noted that, sometimes, the use of Adderall leads to some serious side effects. However, despite the severity, medical attention is not required. This is because the problem usually resolves on its own as the body starts adapting to the medication. However, if the situation gets too uncomfortable, you can always consult a doctor to make it more manageable.

Also Read: Adderall (XR) Side Effects for Long Term

How is Adderall Eliminated from the Body?

The procedure by which the toxic, as well as non-toxic, contaminants leave the body is known as discharging. This is done with the help of purgative organs, namely the kidneys and the sweat glands. The toxins are eliminated either through sweat or urine. Adderall discharge takes place mainly through urine, hair, and saliva. It is also passed to the infants through breast milk and found in trace quantities in the fetal flow. Blood, urine, and saliva test are also the most reliable routes for determining the presence of Adderall in the body.

Of all, the maximum elimination of Adderall from the body takes place through the urine. Hence, the kidneys are responsible for carrying out most of the processing. This is the very reason why urine tests are often the most commonly used approaches for determining the presence of Adderall in the body. In fact, the amphetamines from Adderall can be detected in the urine just 4 to 6 hours after the administration of the drug. But how long can adderall be detected in urine? Well, it can show up for as long as 2 to 4 days.

Adderall has a half-life of 6 hours. This means that 50% of the drug is wasted within 6 hours of ingestion. Therefore, this is the earliest that Adderall can be detected in the system post-ingestion. Although immediate detection can be difficult, the drug may take several hours to get flushed out of the body entirely. Adderall can be eliminated through the saliva for upto 72 hours after consuming it. Hence, this route easily allows for reliable detection for a period of upto 3 days.

As for the hair, Adderall continues to get excreted for as long as 3 months counting from the last dosage. Therefore, hair examination comes useful while determining exactly how long ago the drug had been administered. There are mainly two types of Adderall, the routine type, and the long-acting type. The routine Adderall gets eliminated from the body in a relatively shorter time as compared to the long-acting type.

Various Tests for the Detection of Adderall

There are a number of tests that can be used to determine the presence of Adderall in the system. These tests normally make use of pens to test for Adderall in the saliva, blood, and urine. The hair test is, however, the most powerful as it can be effective even after a period of 3 months. The most common is the urine test and can show indications of the use of Adderall for a maximum of 7 days. However, this is possible only if the concerned person has a kidney problem or if the dosage administered was extremely high. Normally, it can be reliable only for upto 4 days.

Adderall can also be determined through blood tests. This is because it can enter the bloodstream after being absorbed by the kidneys. Blood tests are mainly done in order to examine the Adderall metabolites that may still be getting distributed inside the body. Blood tests are also a very convenient alternative to urine tests, especially when elimination through urine has been inhibited owing to an alkaline diet.

Although the examination of hair tends to be highly reliable, it is also very expensive and therefore usually avoided unless really required. It should be noted that the effectiveness of hair examination is not tampered due to the use of hair dyes or other chemicals. This is because the tests make use of various detection markers and the architectural material found in the root hair. It should be noted that the dosage taken can also have a direct influence on the detection. For example, how long does 10mg adderall stay in your system? 10 mg Adderall can last between 4 to 5 hours.

Factors that Affect the Elimination Rate of Adderall from the Body

If you want to be precise regarding how long Adderall is going to stay in your body, it is important to understand the various factors that can have a direct effect on the elimination of Adderall from the body. Some of these are dosage, the frequency of administration, formatting and so on. The time required for a complete elimination may also vary from person to person.

  1. Snorting

Adderall is taken in a number of different ways and snorting is one of them. Have you been wondering how long does adderall stay in your system if you snort it? Well, the drug can stay in trace amounts within the body for quite a long period of time. However, it stops being detectable in the tests after a period of 4 days.

  1. Food

Food does not have a role in determining the absorption of Adderall. However, it does increase the time taken by the drug to reach the maximum level in the plasma concentration, by as much as 2.5 hours. People who consume a higher amount of fat in their regular diets attain the maximum concentrations in the plasma after 7.7 to 8.3 hours depending on the type of amphetamine that has been administered.

It should also be noted that consuming the drug together with food slows down the metabolism process, leading to the retention of the drug in the system for a much longer period of time as compared to when it is taken without food. At the same time, the speed of elimination also depends on the type of food and beverages that have been consumed. For example, an alkaline diet can delay the elimination of the drug from the system as compared to acidic diets.

  1. Functioning of the Liver

Amphetamine present in the Adderall, as well as its metabolites, requires hepatic isoenzymes such as CYP2D6 in order to go through the metabolic process. Therefore, people suffering from a hepatic impairment or dysfunction of some kind will retain the drug for a much longer period of time as compared to those with a normal function. This is because, with impaired functioning of the hepatic system, Adderall stays in the circulatory system for a prolonged period of time. Therefore, the length of retention will be based on the severity of the condition.

Along with the hepatic functioning, some other factors that affect the metabolism process are the genetic makeup, other drugs that are being administered together with Adderall, and so on. The drug itself will act as an inhibitor if the administered dosage is very high. On the contrary, small doses can expedite the elimination process even among the people suffering from hepatic disorders.

  1. Genetic Make up

The genetic makeup also has a lot of influence on the metabolism and elimination of Adderall from the body. It is mainly the cytochrome P450 2D6 (CYP2D6) enzyme which is encoded in the gene CYP2D6 that has a role to play in determining the Adderall elimination. The group of people who fall under CYP2D6 metabolizers excretes Adderall, as well as its metabolites, through the breakdown initiated by the CYP2D6 enzyme. This constitutes about 5.5 % of the total population. However, people who have very poor metabolism of the CYP2D6 will have the drug inside of their bodies for a much longer period of time. For the rest of the people, the drug is excreted out of the system at quite a normal rate.

However, it should also be noted that CYP2D6 does not affect the elimination of Adderall from the body by a very massive scale. Because of this, the difference in the rate of elimination is not going to be very huge. There are also a few other genes that determine the elimination of Adderall as well as its metabolites. Together with the metabolism, these genes also affect the speed of absorption of these substances from the body.

  1. Format

There are mainly two different Adderall formats, the IR and the XR. A 20 mg XR Adderall capsule yields the concentrations of levo and Dextro amphetamine in the plasma comparable to 10 mg of Adderall IR id administered two times a day within an interval of 4 hours each. This basically means that when you take 2 pills of the IR Adderall, it is retained in the body for almost the same time as when taking one pill of XR adrenal. However, if you administer just a single pill of adderall IR capsules, it will be flushed out of the body in a much shorter span as compared to a single capsule of adderall XR. This is because 1 capsule of Adderall takes about 6 hours to get completely metabolized and distributed in the body. On the other hand, an XR capsule is only half metabolized within the same period of time.

  1. Functioning of the Kidney

After Adderall has been consumed, it is mainly the kidneys that are responsible for the elimination of non-metabolized amphetamine as well as its metabolites. Therefore, if the concerned person has some sort of kidney disorder, it is more likely that the Adderall is going to say in the body for a longer period of time than considered normal. Some cases of dysfunction may also lead to suboptimal excretion, inefficient excretion, and even circulation. The extra time taken for the complete elimination actually depends on the severity of the impairment. For a person with only a mild degree of impairment, the time taken for excretion remains almost the same as the time taken by a person with a completely normal renal functioning. However, in case of severe impairment, the drug will stay in the body for a much longer period of time.

  1. Rate of Metabolism

Although the basic metabolism rate is bound to have an impact on the elimination rate of Adderall from the body, it is not known if this takes place to a considerable extent. Commonly, people with a higher basic metabolism rate are able to excrete any type of drugs from the body at a much faster pace as compared to those with a lower rate of metabolism. This is because when you have a higher basic metabolism rate, the body will constantly be requiring energy even when you are at rest. This naturally leads to faster processing and elimination of whatever is ingested. However, it should be noted that the degree by which the metabolic rate affects the retention is much smaller as compared to the pH level, body fat, hepatic function and similar other most influential factors.

  1. Gender

Studies have revealed that the systemic exposure of amphetamine is greater for women as compared to that for men by as much as 20% to 30%. This means that if a woman and a man administer the same amount of Adderall, the systemic exposure will be much greater for women as compared to men. This is seen even if the total body weight of the woman is much less as compared to the man. However, if the doses for both the man and the woman are calculated on the basis of the required milligram for every kg body weight, the systemic exposure will be very different. However, this is not usually the case while determining the dosage of Adderall. On the other hand, the dosages are determined based on whether the person is an adult or not. Therefore, it is more likely that the two groups of people normally take almost similar doses.

  1. Urinary and Gastrointestinal pH

The pH of the gastrointestinal and urinary tract can have a great influence in determining the period for which Adderall is retained in the body. A person with a higher pH in the GI and urinary tract will naturally have a greater number of non-ionized amphetamine molecules. Along with this the rate of excretion of amphetamine through the urine is also largely reduced. It is normally observed that a pH higher than 6.0 can lead to the retention of Adderall for much longer hours than what is expected to be normal.

A person with a lower pH will, however, excrete Adderall at a much faster pace mainly because the increased acidity allows the drug to stay in the hydrophilic format. The pH of the urinary and GI tract may be a result of the medical condition of the body. However, it also gets affected by the types of food you eat on a regular basis. 6.0 is considered to be an optimal pH for the urinary and gastrointestinal tract. Any disturbance in the pH can have a direct influence on the drug elimination.

  1. Hydration

Hydration is another important factor that has a direct influence on the length of time for which it is going to stay in the body. People who drink large quantities of water have a higher rate of urine flow. This allows the body to excrete out a larger amount of Adderall in a very short span of time. On the other hand, people who are insufficiently hydrated will have a decreased flow of urine, and therefore poor elimination rate of Adderall form the body. However, as seen above, the elimination rate is directly affected by the pH. Hence, drinking different types of fluid may not have the same effect. Drinking slightly acidic fluids may be helpful in enhancing the process of elimination of Adderall.

  1. Dosage

Dosage is another one of the important factors that have a direct influence on the rate of elimination. For example, how long does 20mg of adderall take to get out of your system? This will actually depend on the half-life of amphetamine isomer that has been administered. For example, if the half is 12 hours and you take a dosage of 100 mg, then, after a period of 12 hours, the remaining Adderall in the system will be 50 mg, 25 mg after 12 hours and similarly, the value goes on decreasing. So how long does 20mg of adderall stay in your system? Going by the above calculations, it should be eliminated out of the body in about 55 to 60 hours. Similarly, how long does 30mg adderall stay in your system? When consumed at a dosage of 30 mg, the Adderall can stay for a period of about 55 to 66 hours.

Who Might Need a Drug Test for Adderall?

Unless you have a legal prescription, consumption of Adderall is considered to be illegal. This is because amphetamine is a controlled substance under the schedule II and although it has some specific uses, it is commonly abused. Hence, it might be necessary to have some selected groups of people tested for Adderall. Listed below is the specifically targeted population that might need a drug test for Adderall.

  • Academics

So far, there have not been any drug tests for amphetamine on the students studying at various levels, including graduation level, college, and high school. Although the drug can be highly advantageous for cognition, there has always been an ethical debate of whether it should be allowed to the students or not. There are chances for amphetamine tests to be conducted in the future, so that the system remains fair for all the students and no particular section has any leverage over the others.

  • Athletes

Adderall does not only provide a boost to the mental performance, but also the physical performance. It increases the focus during sports while also promoting power and endurance. Therefore, it can be very tempting for the athletes to use amphetamine in order to boost their performance. In fact, many tests conducted among the athletes have revealed adderall abuse. If found with amphetamine, the athletes may face a suspension, get banned from certain sporting events for a certain duration of time or be fined massively.

  • Criminals

It is not uncommon for criminals caught in the act to be subjected to various types of drug tests. Most of the times, an amphetamine test is also included. Many criminals are involved in the illegal buying and selling of Adderall. Therefore, the test can help in determining whether the drug had been consumed before the act or how it came to be acquired by the criminal. If found positive during the drug test, the person may have to serve a prison sentence.

  • Patients from Drug Rehab

Rehab centers treat many patients who have been addicted to adderall. Since the main purpose of a rehabilitation center is to assist the patients in living a healthy and normal life, drug tests are a mandate. This helps the patients to stay committed. If an inmate is found with amphetamine in his/her system, the person is usually given a warrant.

  • Employees

Many a time, companies carry out drug tests on their employees in order to make sure that have not been working under an intoxicated state. While amphetamine may be a performance booster, it is illegal to be used without a prescription. If found with amphetamine, it may spell trouble for the employee.

  • Military Members

The training processes in the military can be very rigorous, especially during the starting phase. Therefore, new members in the military are regularly put through drug screening tests. A positive result may lead to the delisting or barring of the concerned member.

How to Cleanse your Body of Adderall?

There are a number of different techniques to flush out the Adderall from the system in a very short span of time. So if you have been looking for some effective ways on how to eliminate adderall from system, the following tips can be helpful:

  • Acidify pH

The more alkaline the pH of the urinary and the gastrointestinal tract, the longer the retention. Therefore, take measures that can help in lowering the pH or increasing the acidity. This could involve the consumption of foods and beverages with a low pH. There are also a few supplemental acidifiers that can do the same work, only in a more effective manner. If you are bent on the single most effective method on how to get adderall out of your system, this is the one that you should go for.

  • Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal has a very large surface area and is perfect for clearing not only Adderall, but all other drugs from the system. It is one of the best detoxifying agents for quick and effective amphetamine elimination.

  • Calcium d Glucarate

This is a drug that helps in enhancing the detoxification process by promoting its elimination during excretion. It also keeps the drug from circulating back to the bloodstream.

  • Drinking Water

If you do not have any supplements to expedite the elimination, it would be prudent to know that drinking water flush out adderall. Since drinking lots of water increases the rate of urination, you will be able to flush out a lot of toxins in a very short time. Drinking acidic water can prove to be even more helpful.

  • Food

If administered on an empty stomach, the drug reaches a maximum concentration in the plasma very rapidly and also gets flushed out at a much rapid rate. However, you can still promote the elimination rate even after the intake by opting for food items such as meat, grains, fish, and sugar.

  • Exercise

Exercise is always one of the best ways for overall detoxification of the body. It promotes the cognitive function while also increasing the levels of dopamine and thereby putting you in a positive mood. It promotes endogenous antioxidant response of the body to fight oxidative stress. It also keeps the kidneys in a healthy condition, thereby maximizing the elimination during excretion.


Just like any other derivative of amphetamine, Adderall works by stimulating the nervous system. It works similar to adrenaline and is widely misused. There are different rates of Adderall elimination depending on the age, weight, dosage, urinary and metabolism function and more. Adderall tends to affect different drug tests. However, if taken in small quantities, you can flush Adderall out of system in 48 hours. If you have been looking for the effective ways on how to get adderall out of your system for a drug test, try detox drinks and other remedies as mentioned above. This can help in cleaning out the system completely. Special detox shampoos are also available if you are going in for a hair test.

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