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CNS stimulants

Related Terms

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Background

  • Central nervous system (CNS) stimulants, also called psychomotor stimulants or uppers, are a class of drugs that speed up physical and mental processes. They temporarily make patients feel more alert and improve mood.
  • Stimulants are typically used to treat medical conditions such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), attention-deficit disorder (ADD), fatigue, and narcolepsy. Some stimulants have been used as appetite suppressants, although the safety of this use remains controversial.
  • Examples of CNS stimulants include amphetamines, such as methylphenidate (Ritalin®), methamphetamine (e.g. Desoxyn® or Desoxyn Gradumet®), caffeine (e.g. coffee or tea), nicotine (cigarettes or cigars), and the illegal drug cocaine.
  • Side effects of stimulants vary depending on the specific dose and type of drug. In general, side effects of short-term use may include anxiety, insomnia, dry mouth, depersonalization, feeling of euphoria, increased heartbeat, crying, dysphoria, decreased appetite, hyperventilation, irritability, depression, nervousness, paranoia, mood swings, restlessness, and shaking or trembling.
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Types of Central Nervous System (Cns) Stimulants

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Uses

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Side Effects and Safety

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Overcoming Addiction

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Integrative Therapies

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.