View Full Version : ritalin vs concerta

07-16-14, 03:04 AM
I want to know if anyone else hear that

My dr. said concerta is better then taking ritalin 2 times a day as the ritalin confuses the brain when it goes down in the body and then you take again

did anyone hear of this?

I started with concerta and not I might try taking ritalin but ritalin for 4 hours won't be enough

07-16-14, 03:50 AM
I have never heard of ritalin confusing the brain.

07-16-14, 03:57 AM
so there are many who take say 10 mg and then 3 hours later 10mg and then 3 hours later again

pharmacist suggested this but my dr preferred taking concerta if I need it for a longer period

I stopped concerta though as I didn't like the side effects

MADD As A Hatte
07-16-14, 07:19 AM
... My dr. said concerta is better then taking ritalin 2 times a day as the ritalin confuses the brain when it goes down in the body and then you take again ...

Hi DavidA

Good question! No, Concerta and Ritalin do NOT "confuse" the brain - quite the reverse. I think when you say "confuse" you mean "have an effect on".

Yes, Concerta and Ritalin both have an effect on the brain, they each have side effects, and they each are used for slightly different reasons. The difference between Concerta and Ritalin is a bit like the difference between the various types of insulin used by people with Type 1 Diabetes. Quick-acting insulin has certain advantages and particular reasons for use; and so has slow-acting insulin.

"Ritalin" and "Concerta" are brand names, invented by well-paid marketing people, for a stimulant medication - methylphenidate. If you're into the chemistry, knock yourself out reading this:

Concerta is the long-lasting, slow-release form. If your dose is right, it is effective for about eight to ten hours. This is good for people who have a problem with getting distracted (because you don't have to remember to take your next dose of meds, in the middle of the day). Concerta is also good because it's doesn't create marked peaks and troughs of the drug in your brain. A downside of Concerta, however, is the side effect of being a powerful appetite suppressant. It means you have to actively remind yourself to eat during the middle of the day. Personally, that's not a problem for me, but for my teenage son, that's a big problem. He needs more food than I do!

Ritalin, on the other hand, has a more noticeable action for most people (i.e. when it kicks in, and then later wears off). This activation-deactivation is what you're referring to when you saying "confusing the brain". An upside of Ritalin is it works quickly, and it last for about four hours. A downside is the headaches some people experience as it kicks on/off; and FORGETTING to take their second dose at lunch time.

For these reason, just like with treating diabetes, you need to take the right form of the medication, for the right use. Sometimes you might want to take the short dose of meds, and sometimes the long dose. It all depends on your personal circumstances. Your doctor should be able to assist you in making informed decisions around your medication regime.

Personally, I take Concerta 54mg in the morning, which gets me through the day. Then, some evenings, I take 2 x 10mg of Ritalin so I can study for my university courses, or maybe so I can socialise without doing / saying anything totally embarrassing! I want to be asleep by midnight, so if I'm taking something in the evening, I want a drug which will have worn off before the witching hour!

That regime works for me, but everyone's different.

If you're genuine in wanting to understand how these drugs work, I'd encourage you to:

- read wikipedia - see the link above

- talk further with your treating medical professional, but remember you are an active partner in your own healthcare, so ask lots of questions, and read as much as you can to inform yourself

- phone the customer help number at the drug companies, and talk to their medical people. They were very helpful for me, in the early days, in understanding side effects, dosing regimes, etc. In my experience, yes, they represent the company making their product, but they will talk to you at lenght, in order to assist you in using their product responsibly.

All the best, please come back with more questions and we'll all be happy to help point you in the right direction for answers.