Almost nobody experiments with drugs to become an addict, but there is a fine line between experimentation and addiction. When experimenting with Ritalin, people often cross that line. Ritalin is the brand name for methylphenidate, a central nervous system stimulant that enhances mental and physical functions by chemically changing the brain. The problem is that it is addictive, so users should seek professional help as soon as possible to overcome an addiction to this drug.
How Ritalin Works
Ritalin increases attention and energy, so it addresses both attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. People often abuse Ritalin to gain an academic advantage by increasing attention and providing the energy to study all night. It is also commonly used as a diet pill, as Ritalin suppresses appetite. And because Ritalin is so commonly prescribed, many people find it easy to acquire simply by asking friends and family members.
Signs of Ritalin Addiction
When people experiment with Ritalin, they are often unaware of the risk of addiction. Upon prescribing Ritalin, healthcare providers should instruct patients to take periodic “holidays” from the drug. This occasional break from the drug reduces the risk of Ritalin dependence, but people who obtain the drug illegally may not know to take the breaks from the drug, so they risk addiction with long-term use. If you become addicted to Ritalin, then you may exude any of the following signs:
- Physical effects, such as persistent sleeplessness, weight loss and increased heart rate
- Mental effects such as anxiety, panic attacks and mood swings
- An inability to function when the drug is not in use
- An inability to stop using the drug despite problematic results
- Withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuing use of the drug
In addition, someone experimenting with Ritalin may develop a psychological addiction. When someone becomes an addict, she may not be able to feel happiness, confidence or personal satisfaction when she is not abusing Ritalin. Users may become psychologically dependent on the drug as they use it to for means other than prescribed, like to increase attention or to decrease appetite. Once these effects diminish, insecurities may build. Because of these insecurities, experimentation with Ritalin then turns into psychological addiction. Seek help to overcome Ritalin addiction.
Ritalin Addiction Help
Experimenting with drugs like Ritalin can quickly lead to physical and psychological addiction. If you or a loved one has become addicted to Ritalin, seek appropriate treatment by calling our toll-free helpline right now. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you have about Ritalin addiction and treatment.