Ritalin is a central nervous stimulant. It is usually prescribed to children and teens who are suffering from ADHD. To get a prescription for Ritalin you would need to be evaluated by a doctor and diagnosed with ADHD or have a less common problem that Ritalin could help such as Narcolepsy. The drug Ritalin comes in both time-release and sustained-release. The time-release version of Ritalin will release a certain amount of the drug after ingested at different times of the day. While the sustained-release version of Ritalin will release all at once ingested.
Ritalin is a very helpful drug for many people who need it. It can help someone with ADHD stay calm and focused- it basically makes their brain slow down so he or she can concentrate in school, work, or just life in general. However, Ritalin isn’t all butterflies and roses. Ritalin has the potential to cause addiction and abuse in someone who is taking more than prescribed or taking a friend’s prescription to study harder or simply stay up all night to party with friends.
Just like Amphetamines, such as Cocaine or Meth, Ritalin increases your ability to stay alert and focused for long periods of time. People working in a business atmosphere, college students who need an extra push, or simply people who want to stay up and party are defiantly at risk for a Ritalin addiction. There is a reason it is listed as a Schedule II controlled substance and that is because its high risk for physical and mental dependency and addiction.
The use and abuse of Ritalin is very high in the United States compared to other countries. This is most likely because Ritalin has become so available over the years. More and more teenagers feel as if they have a hard time concentrating and some doctors don’t bother to properly evaluate them and prescribe them Ritalin anyway. It is very common for these teenagers and students to sell or give away their Ritalin pills to people who need an extra boost. Other people will buy or take the drug just to simply get high and escape reality.
There are many other drugs that cause the same effect as Ritalin such as Adderall, Vyvanse, and Concerta. Ritalin is just the most common out of the three that a doctor will prescribe. The intense effect of Ritalin, the euphoric feeling, only lasts for about an hour. However, the drug will still be working but the feeling is not as intense. Of course, individuals who abuse Ritalin will take more and more until they get the desired effect they so crave. Although Ritalin is a prescription drug, people who take a higher dose than normal run the risk of attaining negative side effects such as: suppressed apatite, anxiety, confusion, hallucination, paranoia, chest pain, nausea, and head ache. The more dangerous effects of Ritalin are: heart attack, abnormally high blood pressure, stroke, and overdose. The more Ritalin you take the higher your risk of negative side effects.
Just like other stimulants, Ritalin increases the dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is known as the motivation molecule, which helps productivity, drive, and concentration. Ritalin for instance produces a much higher level of dopamine which makes it hard for the individual abusing Ritalin to focus when they are not on it, increasing the chances for more abuse and addiction.
When there is a problem, you will have the strongest desire to quit abusing Ritalin, but you can’t seem to stop no matter how hard you try. This can cause family and relationship problems because you are putting Ritalin before everything else. You will start to spend all your money on the drug, putting your need for food and water on the backline. There may come a time you completely run out of money and will steal or sell valuables to maintain your Ritalin habit. Life may become difficult, you can lose everything to the drug and feel like there is no way out. This, however, is far from the truth.
If you are willing to change your life, there is treatment available to individuals who want to stop but feel like it is impossible. Treatment for Ritalin addiction will start out with a detoxification period. In this detoxification period, you will meet with a doctor that will evaluate your symptoms and prescribe you medication to ease your withdrawal symptoms and make your detoxification more comfortable. Detoxification, however, is only the first step. You will need to follow up your detox with inpatient Ritalin Abuse treatment. In treatment, you will heal your mind, body and soul. The treatment center will help you get down to the underlying issues that caused you to abuse Ritalin and escape reality.
Detoxification and treatment is only the beginning of your recovery journey. Once you get a taste of the sober world you will not want to go back to the depths of where your addiction took you. There will be hard days, life isn’t going to be perfect. But it will be better than the life you were living addicted to Ritalin, other drugs, and alcohol.