Netflix exposes addictions

By Ginger Simons

The Netflix documentary “Take Your Pills” sheds light on the widespread addiction that defines the current generation of college students: prescription stimulants.

Drawing from testimonies of people diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder and those who buy Adderall and Ritalin off the street, the documentary tracks the rise of the illegal use of amphetamines in the United States and how this is affecting college students in particular. Abusing these pills can have negative effects on the body such as dependancy and a disconnect from the world.

The film discusses the way American work environments have cultivated a culture of productivity, where value is based on a person’s level of output and prospects. It draws attention particularly to college students who are trapped in a continuous cycle of overworking, burning out, underperformance and overworking.

The documentary cites this as the main reason drugs such as Adderall are so commonly found on college campuses, used as “study drugs” for students who do not have prescriptions. Instead, an underground racket of pills has roped students into purchasing and continuously using drugs to manage their schoolwork.

The documentary does an excellent job portraying this epidemic which lurks on college campuses. The effects of such prescription drug abuse is seldom talked about and not fully understood by the general populous, and this production brings a lot of those undiscussed issues to the limelight.

“Take Your Pills” raises awareness for this problem by explaining the effects Adderall abuse can have on a person’s life. Though the productivity-amping effects can seem ideal at first, long term usage can bring about a severe detachment from reality and the body’s physical dependence on the drug to feel normal.

Adderall and similar drugs are intended to aid those with ADD in performing at a similar rate as their peers. Taking excessive amounts of Adderall or using it outside of the prescription of a medical professional can take over a person’s life quickly, and cause long term damage far worse than the standard all-nighter.

The documentary dispels the belief these drugs can help raise productivity levels and exposed a study which revealed the drugs only make a person feel more confident, they do not enhance any abilities.

Though the stress of exams, projects and jobs can tempt college students to seek a “boost” through illicit drug abuse, “Take Your Pills” advises viewers to heed with caution when using any kind of stimulant, illicit or otherwise.