How to Help a Methylphenidate Addict

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Methylphenidate abuse is increasingly prevalent and can be an extremely hard habit to kick. Helping someone with an addiction can take time and several attempts. However, with the help and support of loved ones along with the right treatment, recovery from methylphenidate addiction is possible.

Help for Addicts

Stopping Ritalin/methylphenidate use “cold turkey” can lead to a number of withdrawal symptoms, including depression and the emergence of underlying mental disorders. The symptoms elicited by sudden elicited by sudden withdrawal can elicit can be so intense that they encourage the user to again seek out Ritalin and harm his own recovery efforts.

Many find that the high level of care and added level of accountability found in a substance abuse treatment program can help them safely and comfortably traverse the dicey period of stimulant withdrawal and resist the urge to continue use long enough to make progress towards recovery.

Treatment programs for methylphenidate addiction can include inpatient rehabilitation or outpatient treatment, both of which may include at least some of the following aspects of treatment:

  • Intake and evaluation.
  • Safe, supervised observation and treatment during initial detoxification.
  • Group and/or individual therapy.
  • Participation in other recovery programs, such as 12-step programs.
  • Skills training.
  • Aftercare planning, such as transfer to another facility.

To learn more about what treatment has to offer and to find the right treatment provider for yourself or a loved one, call a caring treatment support representative at 1-888-744-0069 who will talk you through the process and get you on your way to a healthy, happy life today.


Is Methylphenidate Addictive?

Methylphenidate, which is marketed under the trade names Ritalin and Concerta, is prescribed for treatment of ADD and ADHD. While it is prescribed for legitimate medical use, abuse is a growing problem all over the world. This is especially true in the United States, where according to the United Nations, 85% of the world’s methylphenidate is produced and consumed.

Drugs like Ritalin and Concerta are often produced for the cocaine-like effects they can produce, which include:

  • Increased focus.
  • Wakefulness.
  • Talkativeness and increased activity.
  • Appetite suppression.

When methylphenidate is not taken as prescribed by a doctor, or when it is taken without a prescription at all, the drug can be extremely addictive.

Methylphenidate functions as a stimulant by increasing the activity of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain. When someone is diagnosed with ADHD, they are prescribed the lowest effective dose and, while adhering to such a dose, are at minimal risk for experiencing a stimulant “high”. However, when someone abuses the drug, typically with doses well above those indicated on the prescription, the user is subject to the risks of addiction and overdose.


What are the Signs of Addiction?

When some develops a methylphenidate addiction–for example, through misuse of Ritalin or Concerta–he may experience an array of physical and mental symptoms that indicate methylphenidate abuse.

Physical Signs

  • Loss of appetite/weight loss.
  • Euphoria.
  • Insomnia.
  • Hypertension (raised blood pressure).
  • Fast heart rate.
  • General anxiety.
  • Panic attacks.
  • Visual and auditory hallucinations.
  • Paranoia.
  • Violent/aggressive behavior.

Other Signs

  • You are putting use of methylphenidate above your other priorities.
  • You visit many doctors in an attempt to get a Ritalin or Concerta prescription.
  • Your personal relationships are suffering.
  • You are depressed when you’re not able to access/use the drug.
  • You are suffering financially from purchasing methylphenidate.
  • Your moods are constantly shifting.
  • You continue using this drug even when you discover that there is a strong link between your health problems and the drug.

Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Excessive sleeping.
  • Irritability.
  • Depression.
  • Confusion.
  • Decreased concentration.
  • Suicidal ideation (thoughts of suicide).
  • Strong cravings for the drug.

If you see any of the above signs in yourself or in someone that you care about, it’s important to find a rehab treatment facility that will help them as soon as possible. Call 1-888-744-0069 to speak to someone who can help you find the care you need.


Addiction Treatment

Doctor supervising patient There are a variety of inpatient and outpatient options for methylphenidate addicts to choose from to get on the road to recovery.

Inpatient/facility treatment offers a number of benefits, which may include:

  • Supervised medical attention.
  • 24-hour/day care.
  • Those in treatment are separated from the everyday environment that may have been contributing to the substance abuse problem to begin with.

Outpatient care and treatment provides the benefit of taking the individual through the treatment process while allowing him to live at home and continue to work.

An addiction specialist or doctor can help you determine the right type of treatment for your situation. However, it’s important to note that withdrawal  can result in, or worsen, depression or other mental health illnesses. Inpatient care can prove especially beneficial for those recovering from an addiction to methylphenidate, as concurrent mental health conditions and concerns can be treated simultaneously.


Call Our Hotline Today

It can be hard to know where to look for a rehab facility when looking for treatment for methylphenidate abuse. Our experts can help you and talk you through the process.

Our hotline is open right now and our treatment specialists can help direct anyone to the best help for a methylphenidate addiction. Call us at 1-888-744-0069 to begin your path to recovery today.


 How to Help Someone with Alcohol or Illicit Drug Addiction

Help for Prescription Drug Abuse


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Patrick Condron, M.Sc., M.A.C., is an addiction specialist and drug and alcohol counselor. He is Executive Director of Lazarus House, Inc., a transitional residential program for men and women who continue to work on their recovery towards independent living.
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