View Full Version : One month on Ritalin - works well but whats the downside ?


coolbanana
05-03-17, 05:26 PM
One month on Ritalin. The first week was 10 Mg and its been titrated upwards.

The plan apparently is to eventually move onto concerta.

It's not interfering with my sleep patterns even when I take it pretty late
e.g 8 pm. I can still go to sleep by half 12. I suppose its because Im so productive that I am actually using my energy. I started off hopefully with a rational, adult mature attitude that its a terrible thing to burn the candle at both ends. Or to skip meals. My appetite has the edge taken off it but I still enjoy food. I honestly dont see any side effects. I havent tried drinking a beer yet. I only do that every few months at a reunion with good friends. The ones I care about the most. Any anxiety I used to have has melted away.

The first 10 mg made me slightly euphoric... or it might have been the fact it lifted me from a situational depression and opened my eyes to a greatly improved life with far less unsolved problems. In the first week I felt addicted probably because I was worried about losing my new functionality.
More Ritalin now , say a pile of them doesnt give me any buzz. Theres no sense of being addicted or doing this to ''get high''. My intense motivation is to be productive.
After a month , I took a day off. I could see the functional difference but didnt panic because I knew the pills were there if I needed them.

I ran 10 km last week, go to the gym, I eat organic food a lot, no raw sugar, and so little junk food that it makes no difference. I made a big lifestyle change 4 years ago in an attempt to heal myself and lost a lot of weight which I kept off and replaced with muscle. A bad break up was the initial motivation.

The biggest worry I have now is that any side effects could be hidden or long term. Is a higher dose of Ritalin worse for your heart ? As I put my doc under pressure to titrate upwards am I effectively damaging my heart long term ?

The good news is my blood pressure was measure today one month in and my blood pressure was perfect before. Its still perfect except for some reason its slightly lower. I feel less stressed with Ritalin - the only increase in heart rate happens when I worry if its damaging me somehow.

What do you guys think and how do your experiences compare ?

Its still early days so who knows , there could be a better drug for me. I still have symptoms of inattentivity but the difference is now I can actually make and carry out plans. I can focus and overcome this.

Fuzzy12
05-03-17, 05:49 PM
I just heard today again (from a professor of neuroscience at MIT in a video lecture) that ritalin is one of the very few drugs that has pretty much no known long term effects. And it has been studied extensively. It's surprisingly safe.

If things are going well right now then don't worry too much about the future

coolbanana
05-03-17, 05:58 PM
I just heard today again (from a professor of neuroscience at MIT in a video lecture) that ritalin is one of the very few drugs that has pretty much no known long term effects. And it has been studied extensively. It's surprisingly safe.

If things are going well right now then don't worry too much about the future

Thats reassuring :)

Lunacie
05-03-17, 09:25 PM
Research on kids has shown that use of stimulant meds promotes growth in
the areas of the brain that are underdeveloped. Don't think any studies have
been done in adults looking at this benefit.

I've been watching for research showing long term downside for years now and
haven't come across any.

snjyds
05-03-17, 10:04 PM
I use Methylphenidate 2 X 20 mg, which is Ritalin. My side effects are:
1. Loss of appetite: Which is good as I need to lose weight.
2. Insomnia: If I take one 20 mg pill after 2:30 PM I have difficulty falling asleep. Otherwise, if I have taken both pills before 2:00, then not a problem.
3. Anxiety: I get anxiety reactions occasionally, esp. if I ingest both pills within a span of 3 hours. Otherwise, if I take one a 8:00 AM and the other at 2:00 PM then not a problem.

Cyllya
05-03-17, 11:52 PM
Higher doses might cause you more side effects or they might not. If you only go to the higher doses after having gained a tolerance of a lower dose, you will usually get less side effects than if you had gone straight to the high dose.

For many people, the med becomes less effective over time. (This process can be uneven, so side effects might still happen even when effectiveness doesn't!) One reason it's good to stay at the lowest effective dose for as long as possible is so that you have room to increase the dose later if you need to. Most research has been done on amounts 72mg/day or less, so even if a larger amount is good for you, you may have trouble getting doctors to prescribe more than that.

When people have adverse effects bad enough to avoid the medication, it's usually apparent early on. Get regular doctor visits to check for heart problems, just in case. (My psychiatrist never checks my heartrate or blood pressure, but my GP checks every time I go in for any reason, including for routine med refills. It's probably not necessary for most people to get checked that often though.)

snjyds
05-04-17, 02:46 AM
Most research has been done on amounts 72mg/day or less, so even if a larger amount is good for you, you may have trouble getting doctors to prescribe more than that. Are you sure? I use 20 X 2 = 40 mg Ritalin (Methylphenidate) each day.

After at least 10 years of using it, it is beginning to lose its effectiveness.

I asked my doctor if I could increase my dose, but he flatly declined. He said that I'm just one step below the maximum allowable NIH level, and I have anxiety attacks too (which may increase with more Ritalin).

Cyllya
05-12-17, 12:19 AM
Are you sure? I use 20 X 2 = 40 mg Ritalin (Methylphenidate) each day.

After at least 10 years of using it, it is beginning to lose its effectiveness.

I asked my doctor if I could increase my dose, but he flatly declined. He said that I'm just one step below the maximum allowable NIH level, and I have anxiety attacks too (which may increase with more Ritalin).

Official prescribing information for Concerta (https://www.concerta.net/pdfs/Prescribing_Info-short.pdf) says 72mg is allowed. It's possible that they allow higher amounts when it's Concerta, even though that doesn't entirely make sense. (As far as I know, the dosage of Concerta is 100% methylphenidate, unlike Vyvanse compared to regular amphetamine.) It's possible different drugs have different recommendations just because of what form of the drug the studies have been done on.

According to the little chart in that prescribing info for patients switching from IR methylphenidate to Concerta, if you're taking 20 mg methylphenidate two or three times daily, you'd switch to 72mg of Concerta.

Concerta approximately splits the amount into three doses, but the later doses are larger.

coolbanana
05-12-17, 09:11 PM
thanks for the feedback folks.

No downsides so far. I can take it at 8 pm and still fall asleep at 12 or 1 . This is because sleep is one of my goals. I have a lot to achieve with my life while I still can. I'm just worried they might take me off it . Not because I'm addicted to it . I just want to get **** done. If I was into getting high and abusing my body I could have done it easily by now on my own.
Does anyone feel like a creep when asking for a medication rise or a prescription refill , as though they're watching for signs of abuse? Of course I'm not abusing it . I just want to achieve my life goals. The date when I can get a refill is strictly controlled and the regular doctors and receptionists who I call to get a refill feel uncomfortable with it I think. And the shrink has a lot of power because this drug has unlocked the door to my life - while it works.