The Cost of Adderall: Street Value Vs Prescription

Edmund Murphy
Hailey Shafir
Written by Edmund Murphy on 29 November 2022
Medically reviewed by Hailey Shafir on 08 June 2024

Adderall is a prescription stimulant (amphetamine-dextroamphetamine) used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Though only available under prescription, it is regularly sold illegally on the street with prices ranging from $2 to $35 per pill. Adderall pills sold on the street may sometimes be counterfeit.

Key takeaways:
  • The cost of Adderall on the black market can vary depending on many factors including location and purity (real Adderall will cost more as may Adderall XR), but most notably by the dose of the drug being purchased.
  • For those who don’t have insurance, 30 tablets of 20mg strength Adderall will cost approximately $285 per month.
  • Adderall is often first abused while under prescription, but many become dependent on the drug and require more than they are able to get legitimately.
The Cost of Adderall: Street Value Vs Prescription

The street cost of Adderall

Adderall (amphetamine-dextroamphetamine) can cost as little as $0.33 and up $35 per pill at street level. Adderall can be difficult for users to buy on the street as the drug is only available under prescription. However, there is a large presence of Adderall on the black market and people are able to buy the drug from vendors online or through the dark web.

The cost of Adderall on the black market can vary depending on many factors including location and purity (real Adderall will cost more as may Adderall XR), but most notably by the dose of the drug being purchased. However, Adderall prices are often a lot cheaper than illicit substances like cocaine, which can cost hundreds of dollars per gram.

Here are the average street drug prices of Adderall by mg strength across the US.

  • 5 mg: $2.50 to $15 per pill
  • 10 mg: $3 to $10
  • 15 mg: $2 to $10
  • 20 mg: $5 to $20
  • 25 mg: $10 to $30
  • 30 mg: $5 to $35

These prices will vary depending on your location and how prevalent Adderall use is there. These prices may also change depending on whether the generic form, standard-release, or extended-release forms of Adderall are being sold.

Prescription Adderall cost without insurance

Adderall is mostly obtained with a prescription from a doctor to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and sleeping disorders like narcolepsy. Adderall prescriptions will be covered by health insurance for those who have it but can be costly for those who don’t.

For those who don’t have insurance, 30 tablets of 20mg strength Adderall will cost approximately $285 per month. The cost of Adderall without insurance can depend on the dosage (strength), brand name vs generic, and whether it is immediate or extended-release Adderall.

Read here to learn more about the cost of prescription drugs.

The reason people buy Adderall illegally

Adderall is often abused for its stimulant effects. It is particularly popular among students during times of stress such as exam season, as well as athletes and professionals. When abused, Adderall causes users to be able to stay awake and focused for long periods of time. It can also cause feelings of mild euphoria, a rushing sensation in the legs and arms, and a loss of appetite; all of which are additional reasons for abuse.

Adderall is often first abused while under prescription, but many become dependent on the drug and require more than they are able to get legitimately. This is also true for those who do not have health insurance, as the price of the drug may be unaffordable for some. This leads to purchasing Adderall on the street which can lead to further dependence, addiction, and unforeseen health risks such as fatal overdose.

Factors that affect the street cost of Adderall

The cost of Adderall purchased illegally may vary drastically depending on different factors. The most common of these are dosage and availability in the area. Other things that may affect the price of Adderall include:

Quantity purchased - Dealers will sometimes give special prices depending on whether a large amount is purchased or not.

What version of the drug is being purchased - Brand name Adderall will often cost more than the amphetamine-dextroamphetamine generic version.

Local laws - Drug laws vary from state to state and some have more stringent penalties for possession and illegal distribution of prescription medications.

Demand - As with laws, the demand for certain drugs will be different from area to area. Lower demand will often make acquiring Adderall more difficult and therefore more expensive.

Counterfeit vs real Adderall - Many drug dealers will often sell fake Adderall if they are unable to obtain the real version. Fake Adderall may be cheaper but can also lead to dangerous side effects.

The cost of fake Adderall

Fake Adderall has been an increasing issue on streets across the US. often, Adderall and other prescription medications that are produced illegally on the street contain other substances that may be dangerous to the end user.

In September 2022, A man in Rhode Island was arrested for possession with intent to supply of 660,000 fake Adderall pills with a street value 0f 4.6 million USD ($7 per pill). These pills were found to be laced with a hazardous amount of methamphetamine, a drug known for its powerful high, and addictive properties.

Buying Adderall from street dealers is always a risk, but the potential for buying fake Adderall containing other harmful substances is a much greater risk, with a fatal overdose being a likely outcome.

Effects of Adderall abuse

The physical side effects of Adderall emerge shortly after use as dopamine production is increased. If taken in the recommended dose, users will feel the beneficial effects as intended while those who abuse the drug will feel the full stimulant effect and high.

 The immediate effects of Adderall abuse may include:

  • Being more sociable/talkative
  • Restlessness
  • Feeling irritable or on edge
  • Intense focus
  • Nervousness/anxiety
  • Dry mouth
  • Increased heart rate or palpitations
  • Boosted mood or confidence
  • Being more productive
  • Getting more enjoyment from daily tasks

 For those concerned about someone potentially abusing Adderall, the warning signs can be hard to spot after the initial high has worn off.

Related: How long does Adderall stay in your system?

Treatment for Adderall dependence

If you're abusing Adderall chronically and developing physical dependency and/or a psychological dependency on it, addiction treatment and therapy may be needed.

There are several treatment options available for people who suffer from Adderall use disorder, some of which may only be necessary for severe cases of addiction. These include:

  • Adderall detoxification
  • inpatient or residential rehab
  • substance abuse counseling
  • group therapy
  • behavioral therapies
  • medical and psychiatric care
  • outpatient treatment programs

There are many rehab centers that offer prescription drug abuse treatment options. Visit our rehab directory to find a rehab solution for Adderall abuse near you.

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Resources:

  1. Intechnic. (2020). StreetRx. RADARS.
  2. Feds seize record amount of methamphetamine-laced fake Adderall pills in Rhode Island. (n.d.). NBC News. Retrieved November 29, 2022, from
  3. West Michigan Man Sentenced To 23 Years In Prison For Illegally Possessing Firearms And Intending To Sell Fake Adderall Pills. (2022, June 28). Www.justice.gov.
  4. Dominic, P., Ahmad, J., Awwab, H., Bhuiyan, Md. S., Kevil, C. G., Goeders, N. E., Murnane, K. S., Patterson, J. C., Sandau, K. E., Gopinathannair, R., & Olshansky, B. (2022). Stimulant Drugs of Abuse and Cardiac Arrhythmias. Circulation: Arrhythmia and Electrophysiology, 15(1).

Activity History - Last updated: 08 June 2024, Published date:


Reviewer

Hailey Shafir

M.Ed, LCMHCS, LCAS, CCS

Hailey Shafir is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor, Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist, and Certified Clinical Supervisor with extensive experience in counseling people with mental health and addictive disorders.

Activity History - Medically Reviewed on 15 December 2022 and last checked on 08 June 2024

Medically reviewed by
Hailey Shafir

M.Ed, LCMHCS, LCAS, CCS

Hailey Shafir

Reviewer

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