A common theme heard from addicts about why they don’t kick their drug habits is that they are afraid of the withdrawal process. Most addicts who have experienced even the briefest glimpse of the physical and emotional pain associated with a drug withdrawal would rather retreat into their habit than tackle the problem head on.
However, for those sufferers who do manage to break through the binds of withdrawal, they will be coming out clean and sober on the other side. This is the only way to begin an effective addiction treatment program for any addiction.
The drug Ritalin is prescribed for patients who are struggling with attention deficit disorder. The drug acts as a stimulant and it can mirror the effects of taking other forms of stimulants such as cocaine or amphetamines. Obviously, this would mean that the withdrawal symptoms for a Ritalin addiction could also follow the pattern of withdrawal from those other drugs. You might notice these symptoms occurring in someone you’re close to as they are coming down off a Ritalin high or trying to kick the habit themselves.
Withdrawal Symptoms from Ritalin Abuse
Depending on the level of abuse, the following withdrawal symptoms can show up in a couple hours to a single day once the person stops taking Ritalin.
- Exhaustion: A person abusing Ritalin can conceivably stay up for hours if not days. When the drug wears off, their bodies will shut down and “crash.” When this occurs, you’ll find the sufferer sleeping all through the day and still not feeling rested.
- Disruption of Sleep Patterns: Along with the crashes of withdrawal, the sufferer could also develop insomnia as a result of taking Ritalin, even after they stopped using.
- Binge Eating: While on the drug, a user won’t have any desire to eat. However, during withdrawal, the brain will send out signals for the need to replenish. This manifests itself in an increased desire to eat at alarming rates. The unintended consequence could be rapid weight gain.
- Lack of Focus: Ritalin alters the brain chemistry. When taken in abusive doses, that damage can have a lasting effect resulting in a state of confusion during withdrawal.
- Depression: No one is going to be happy coming down off drug abuse. Severe bouts of depression need to be monitored because they might lead to suicidal thoughts or actions.
- Drug Cravings: This is the heart of the withdrawal — the craving to continue using. As the body tries to readjust, the rationalization begins. An addict will be thinking that just “one pill” can smooth out the rough edges. These are the kinds of triggers that can lead right back to the abusive cycle.
For all practical purposes, Ritalin is a legitimate medication. This allows the person who has become addicted to think they can kick the habit themselves. Unfortunately, without proper supervision and guidance, there is a greater chance of relapse. That’s why it is important for those caught up in the throes of an addiction to seek professional help. That kind of help can be found by calling the toll-free number on this page. A clean and sober life can be found again.