Does Adderall Cause Hair Loss? Here’s What Experts Say 2023 (2023)

If you’re taking Adderall[1] to treat ADHD, you might wonder, “Does Adderall cause hair loss?”

Hair loss is a concern for many. So understanding whether Adderall side effects include hair loss is crucial for anyone taking or about to take Adderall.

This article delves into the possibilities of Adderall-induced hair loss and its connection to the stimulant drug. We’ll explore the essential factors to answer the question, can Adderall cause hair loss? We shall also refer to a few expert tips on how Adderall may negatively impact hair follicles and discuss the role of nutritional deficiencies.

Finally, we’ll touch on hair loss prevention tips and provide insights for maintaining healthy hair growth while managing your mental health disorder.

Does Adderall Make You Lose Hair?

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The connection between Adderall and hair loss is still debatable.

While some people have reported experiencing hair loss while using Adderall, it’s not a guaranteed side effect for everyone.

Factors such as your response, dosage, and underlying conditions may contribute. If you’re concerned about hair loss while taking Adderall, it’s best to consult a medical professional who can provide personalized advice. They can evaluate the potential causes and explore alternative treatments or adjustments to manage ADHD symptoms while addressing any hair-related concerns.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is a central nervous system stimulant commonly prescribed to treat ADHD. This stimulant drug, amphetamine, helps people with ADHD focus and control impulsive behavior.

It contains amphetamine and dextroamphetamine,[2] which increase the levels of certain chemicals in the brain. While it effectively manages ADHD symptoms, concerns loom about its potential side effects, including hair loss. Some people taking Adderall have reported experiencing[3] hair pulling, which may lead to hair loss.

Understanding the link between Adderall-related hair loss requires a closer look at the effects of stimulant medications on the body. However, research is still scarce since Adderall’s impact on hair follicles and the normal hair growth cycle is still in its infancy.

Nutritional deficiencies,[4] high anxiety, stress levels, and even Adderall-induced trichotillomania may contribute to hair loss and greying.[5] However, it’s essential to note that not everyone who takes Adderall will experience hair-related side effects.

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The following sections will explore the potential causes of hair loss related to Adderall use.

The Connection Between Adderall And Hair Health

While Adderall can help manage your ADHD symptoms, you may experience some hair-related issues, such as thinning hair or hair loss. The connection becomes clearer when you look at the underlying factors. So, here are some possible links between Adderall and hair health:

Compulsive Hair Pulling And Hair Loss

One possible factor contributing to hair loss from Adderall is compulsive hair-pulling behavior, also known as trichotillomania.[6] Adderall-induced trichotillomania is an impulse control involving recurrent, irresistible urges to pull out your hair. This hair-pulling disorder may result in noticeable hair loss.

Adderall use can potentially exacerbate or trigger[7] this behavior in susceptible individuals, leading to hair follicle damage and hair loss.

Nutritional Deficiencies And Sudden Weight Loss

Another factor that can impact hair health during Adderall use is sudden weight loss and potential dietary deficiencies.

Adderall is known to suppress appetite,[8] which can lead to sudden weight loss and inadequate nutrient intake. Plus, many children with ADHD already have nutritional deficiencies,[9] so adding a suppressed appetite can worsen things.

So, a lot of essential vitamins and minerals necessary for healthy hair growth may be missing. Naturally, this affects blood flow and nutrients available for the hair follicle, leading to thinning hair.

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High Anxiety And Stress levels

Although these two aren’t direct causes of hair loss while using Adderral, they might still factor in hair loss. The link might be that using Adderall under immense stress[10] may lead to even further hair loss.

For example, stress disrupts the normal hair growth cycle, increasing shedding and potentially triggering conditions like telogen effluvium[11] — a scalp disorder that leads to hair loss from stress. Adderall can also affect stress and anxiety levels in some individuals, potentially exacerbating[1] hair loss.

Other Side Effects Of Adderall

In addition to the concerns surrounding hair health, there are several other side effects[12] associated with Adderall that you should be mindful of, such as:

  • Sleep disorders.
  • Headaches.
  • Sudden weight or appetite loss.
  • Changes in mood and behavior.
  • Heightened anxiety or irritability

In some rare cases, hair shedding, patchy hair loss, or even compulsive hair-pulling behavior may occur. These side effects may be attributed to various factors, including your response to the medication or underlying psychological and environmental factors.[13]

Talk to a healthcare professional immediately once you notice any concerning side effects or if you abuse Adderall. Professionals can recommend adjustments or Adderall alternative medicine to manage ADHD while minimizing side effects.

How To Use Adderall Safely

When using stimulant drugs with amphetamine, such as Adderall, to treat ADHD signs and symptoms, it’s important to prioritize safety. Here are some considerations for safely using Adderall:

  • Consult a medical professional: Before starting Adderall, talk to a healthcare provider. They’ll assess your condition, discuss potential side effects, and provide appropriate guidance.
  • Follow prescribed dosages: Take Adderall as prescribed, avoiding dosage adjustments without medical advice. Taking higher doses or using it recreationally can lead to adverse effects.
  • Be aware of side effects: Educate yourself about the potential side effects of Adderall, including hair loss and other effects mentioned earlier. Promptly report any concerning side effects to your healthcare provider and immediately consider discontinuing Adderall.
  • Consider alternative treatments: Explore alternative treatments or other medications under the guidance of a healthcare professional if Adderall is causing intolerable side effects.
  • Monitor compulsive behaviors: Be mindful of any compulsive behaviors that may arise while taking Adderall. Report them to your doctor immediately to assess if adjustments are necessary.
  • Maintain a balanced diet: If you have ADHD, you might already be predisposed to nutritional deficiency, so add more nutritious foods to your meals. You can also use supplements to get all the nutrients your body needs to maintain healthy hair. Don’t forget to stay hydrated and look for fun ways to experiment with new foods.
  • Regularly evaluate treatment: Even if you do behavioral therapy[14] or any other treatment for ADHD, you should still see your doctor regularly. They’ll assess the benefits and the other side effects, making adjustments if necessary.

Following these guidelines and maintaining open communication with a medical professional can help you use Adderall safely. It also minimizes the potential risks while effectively managing ADHD signs and symptoms.

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Tips For Preventing Hair Loss

If you complain that “Adderall ruined my hair,” here are some tips that could help you prevent hair loss. They may also use these steps to promote new hair growth if you or your child stopped taking Adderall.

  • Maintain a healthy diet: Eat a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and proteins. Focus on foods that support healthy hair growth, such as leafy greens, nuts, and lean proteins.
  • Minimize stress and anxiety: Practice stress management techniques, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, or engaging in activities you enjoy. High-stress levels can contribute to hair loss, so finding ways to relax and unwind is crucial.
  • Avoid excessive heat and chemicals: Limit heat-styling tools and harsh chemical treatments in hair products that can damage hair follicles and weaken strands. Opt for natural hairstyles and gentle hair care practices.
  • Be gentle with your hair: Avoid excessive pulling, tugging, or tight hairstyles that can negatively impact hair follicles and lead to breakage or traction alopecia.[15] Traction alopecia occurs in women fond of wearing tight hairstyles that stress their hair follicles by pulling. Treat your hair with care and use gentle brushing and styling techniques.
  • Seek professional advice: If you experience excessive or sudden hair loss, consult a medical professional or a dermatologist specializing in hair health. They can evaluate your condition, identify underlying causes, and recommend appropriate treatment options or interventions.
  • Use hair-friendly products: Choose hair care products that promote healthy hair growth and prevent hair loss. Look for products containing ingredients like biotin, saw palmetto,[16] or keratin.[17]

Remember, preventing Adderall hair loss requires a holistic approach, addressing internal and external factors. By adopting these tips and incorporating healthy habits into your routine, you can minimize the risk of hair loss and maintain strong, vibrant hair. Of course, it’s easier said than done, but focusing on one habit at a time[18] helps.

The Takeaway

Hair loss can be a distressing concern if you use Adderall or experience other factors that contribute to this issue. However, the treatment starts with you understanding the potential connection between Adderall and hair health. Next follows being proactive in maintaining overall well-being and seeking professional advice when needed.

Nonetheless, prioritizing a balanced diet, managing stress levels, and using gentle hair care practices are essential in preventing hair loss. Additionally, getting professional medical advice and exploring alternative medication can help address adverse effects and optimize ADHD management.

Adopting these techniques and holistically approaching hair health will help you encourage healthy hair renewal and maintain overall well-being.

+ 18 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial processhere

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  1. Weyandt, L.L., White, T.L., Bergljot Gyda Gudmundsdottir, Nitenson, A.Z., Rathkey, E.S., De, K.A. and Bjorn, S.A. (2018). Neurocognitive, Autonomic, and Mood Effects of Adderall: A Pilot Study of Healthy College Students. [online] 6(3), pp.58–58. doi:
  2. (2019).Dextroamphetamine and Amphetamine: MedlinePlus Drug Information. [online] Available at:
  3. Narine (2013). Adderall-induced Trichotillomania: A Case Report. Innovations in clinical neuroscience, [online] 10(7-8). Available at:
  4. Almohanna, H.M., Ahmed, A., Tsatalis, J.P. and Tosti, A. (2019). The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Hair Loss: A Review. [online] 9(1), pp.51–70. doi:
  5. Zhang, B., Ma, S., Inbal Rachmin, He, M., Baral, P., Choi, S., William Antonio Gonçalves, Shwartz, Y., Fast, E.M., Su, Y., Zon, L.I., Aviv Regev, Buenrostro, J.D., Cunha, T.M., Chiu, I.M., Fisher, D.E. and Hsu, Y.-C. (2020). Hyperactivation of sympathetic nerves drives depletion of melanocyte stem cells. [online] 577(7792), pp.676–681. doi:
  6. Grant, J.E. and Chamberlain, S.R. (2016). Trichotillomania. [online] 173(9), pp.868–874. doi:
  7. Moattari, C.R. and Katlein França (2022). Adverse psychocutaneous effects of prescription stimulant use and abuse: A systematic review. [online] 20(1), pp.7–15. doi:
  8. Poulton, A., Hibbert, E.J., Champion, B. and Nanan, R. (2016). Stimulants for the Control of Hedonic Appetite. [online] 7. doi:
  9. Villagomez, A. and U.P. Ramtekkar (2014). Iron, Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Zinc Deficiencies in Children Presenting with Symptoms of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. [online] 1(3), pp.261–279. doi:
  10. Eva M.J. Peters, Müller, Y., W. Snaga, Fliege, H., A. Reißhauer, Schmidt-Rose, T., Max, H., Schweiger, D., Rose, M. and Kruse, J. (2017). Hair and stress: A pilot study of hair and cytokine balance alteration in healthy young women under major exam stress. [online] 12(4), pp.e0175904–e0175904. doi:
  11. Grover, C. and Khurana, A. (2013). Telogen effluvium. [online] 79(5), pp.591–591. doi:
  12. Cregin, D., Koltun, R., Malik, S., Umeozor, D. and Begdache, L. (n.d.).Impulse: The Premier Undergraduate Neuroscience Journal. [online] Available at:
  13. Weissenberger, S., Ptacek, R., Klicperova-Baker, M., Erman, A., Katerina Schonova, Jiří Raboch and Goetz, M. (2017). ADHD, Lifestyles and Comorbidities: A Call for an Holistic Perspective – from Medical to Societal Intervening Factors. [online] 8. doi:
  14. Sprich, S., Safren, S.A., Finkelstein, D., Remmert, J.E. and Hammerness, P. (2016). A randomized controlled trial of cognitive behavioral therapy for ADHD in medication-treated adolescents. [online] 57(11), pp.1218–1226. doi:
  15. Billero, V. and Mariya Miteva (2018). Traction alopecia: the root of the problem. [online] Volume 11, pp.149–159. doi:
  16. Evyatar Evron, Juhasz, M., Arash Babadjouni and Natasha Atanaskova Mesinkovska (2020). Natural Hair Supplement: Friend or Foe? Saw Palmetto, a Systematic Review in Alopecia. [online] 6(6), pp.329–337. doi:
  17. Basit, A., Asghar, F., Saima Sadaf and M. Jaleel Akhtar (2018). Health improvement of human hair and their reshaping using recombinant keratin K31. [online] 20, pp.e00288–e00288. doi:
  18. Dalton, A.N. and Spiller, S. (2012). Too Much of a Good Thing: The Benefits of Implementation Intentions Depend on the Number of Goals. [online] ResearchGate. Available at:


Is Adderall making my hair fall out? ›

While it's still considered a rare side effect of the medication yes, Adderall can cause hair loss. However, this side effect is more prevalent in individuals who abuse this prescription medication and are not being monitored by a physician.

Does Adderall make you lose fat or muscle? ›

Yes, Adderall can make you lose weight. Decreased appetite and weight loss are both common side effects of stimulants like Adderall IR (immediate release) and its extended-release version, Adderall XR. For example, during clinical trials of Adderall XR: 22% of children lost their appetite, and 4% lost weight.

What drugs cause hair loss? ›

Meds That Can Harm Your Hair
  • Anticoagulants.
  • Antidepressants, mood stabilizers, bipolar disorder medications.
  • Antimicrobial tuberculosis drugs.
  • Arthritis, inflammation drugs.
  • Blood pressure meds.
  • Cholesterol-lowering meds.
  • Epilepsy and anticonvulsant meds.
  • Severe acne and psoriasis.
Jul 8, 2022

Does your brain stop producing dopamine on Adderall? ›

Another significant long-term effect of heavy Adderall use is dependence on the drug. If you take high doses of Adderall for a long time, your brain may become dependent on the drug and eventually produce less dopamine. You might experience: mood changes, including low moods.

What does Adderall deplete in the body? ›

Stimulant drugs like Adderall and Vyvanse may help to relieve feelings of sadness or overwhelm, but they can also deplete stores of magnesium in the body. Magnesium is a key element for maintaining your mental health, so this can be problematic.

What are the alternatives to Adderall? ›

Stimulant alternatives to Adderall include Ritalin, Concerta and Daytrana (methylphenidate); Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine); and Dexedrine (dextroamphetamine). Nonstimulant alternatives to Adderall include Strattera (atomoxetine), Intuniv (Guanfacine) and Kapvay (clonidine).

Why do bodybuilders take Adderall? ›

Adderall improves endurance in the gym. It enhances cardio. It increases focus and mental clarity during workouts.

Does Adderall mess up your metabolism? ›

Yes, Adderall can cause weight loss. Stimulant drugs like methylphenidate (Ritalin) and amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (Adderall) decrease your appetite and increase your metabolism, causing you to eat less and burn calories quicker than usual.

What foods to avoid on Adderall? ›

Foods that contain large amounts of citric acid and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) will prevent the absorption of both Adderall IR and XR into the body. Fruit juices high in vitamin C, soda drinks, and food with high levels of preservatives should be avoided an hour before and after taking Adderall.

Why am I suddenly losing so much hair? ›

Medical conditions. Thyroid disease, lupus, diabetes, iron deficiency anemia, eating disorders, and anemia can cause hair loss. Most times, when the underlying condition is treated, the hair will return unless there is scarring as in some forms of lupus, lichen planus, or follicular disorders.

What drug makes your hair grow back? ›

Minoxidil (Rogaine).

Products with minoxidil help many people regrow their hair or slow the rate of hair loss or both.

What does Adderall do to your face? ›

Skin Side Effects for Normal Adderall Dose

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, serious skin rashes, including Stevens-Johnson syndrome (a rare and painful skin disorder), skin peeling and blistering, and hair loss have also been reported with Adderall.

How many years can you take Adderall? ›

There is no standard timeframe for how long a person should take Adderall. However, if you feel that it's no longer benefiting you or is causing you harm, bring these concerns up with your doctor. After canceling your prescription, the next step is to make a safe plan to cut Adderall from your daily routine.

At what age should I stop taking Adderall? ›

Medications that are FDA-approved specifically for ADHD in adults are the stimulants Adderall XR, Concerta, Focalin XR, Vyvanse, and the nonstimulant Strattera. The approved maximum age for use of these medications varies from fifty-five to sixty-five.

Is hair loss from Vyvanse reversible? ›

By and large the answer is yes. So long as the health of scalp and follicles are unaffected, the hair that was lost will grow back with time once the patient has stopped taking amphetamines.

What foods should you avoid when taking Adderall? ›

Foods that contain large amounts of citric acid and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) will prevent the absorption of both Adderall IR and XR into the body. Fruit juices high in vitamin C, soda drinks, and food with high levels of preservatives should be avoided an hour before and after taking Adderall.

Why is my hair falling out? ›

It can be the result of heredity, hormonal changes, medical conditions or a normal part of aging. Anyone can lose hair on their head, but it's more common in men. Baldness typically refers to excessive hair loss from your scalp. Hereditary hair loss with age is the most common cause of baldness.

What are the side effects of Adderall shortage? ›

While symptoms vary from person to person, those experiencing Adderall withdrawal may notice the following:
  • Fatigue.
  • Mood swings.
  • Heightened anxiety.
  • Disrupted sleep.
  • Increased hunger.
  • Gastrointestinal issues.
  • Irritability.
  • Lethargy.
Feb 15, 2023


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