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Old 01-10-11, 02:36 AM
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How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Hi

I have not been here in a really long time, i didnt realize or i guess maybe i just havent signed in. LOL

Anyways I went to shrink idk about a year and a half ago and they did a bunch of tests and said I have ADHD in addition to depression. I have been on every antidepressant under the sun. I also have a history of probs with coke and meth but i feel that is behind me now. I guess I was not all that suprised because our son has very bad ADHD and he acts just like me.

So they put me on Ritalin and at first it was 10 mg. I did not think it did much but i took it. I would take one in the morning and one at like 2 pm. After a couple months I went back and told them it did not help. So they put me on 20 mg twice a day. This was the first time in my whole life I felt alright (other than when I was abusing drugs). My husband really noticed a change in me. I could get a lot more done and was not as stressed out and depressed as normal. Actually I do not really notice it a whole lot but others can tell.

After idk about a year, it become apparent that it is not working as long. I have to really plan when i take them to get the most use of them. I get about 2 hours out of a pill before i turn into a ding dong again. So I take at like 8:30 am and 1 pm and work hard to get what i need done, done.

I call the clinic several months ago to see if i can change it and take 20 mg at like 8 am, 12 noon and like 4 pm and see if it will help. The doctor who originally prescribed it at the psychologists suggestion is not there any more. The one who is giving it to me now is very hesitant and asked me why i am even taking it, is it for depression (?) I was a little floored that they are writing me a script and dont even know why. I told them the thing from the psychologist should be in my chart. They told me 40 mg a day is the max dose (I know is not true cause my son was on like 60 or 80 mg). I ask if i could switch and try a different med like adderall and was told to just be happy i am getting what i get cause ADHD isnt real in adults. Well then why do they not just cut me off?

Our insurance will not cover scripts so i cant get anything much more than this anyways. I would like to be able to take an extended release med but they are more expensive.

I tried to bust these in half and take a half (10 mg) at like 8 am, 11, 1, and 3. Well when i do this, it knocks me out. I cannot stay awake.

I try to not take them on the weekend sometimes hoping i will reduce my tolerance to them. When i do not take them i have no motivation and am very tired. I am afraid that i am addicted to them because when i do not take them i feel crappy and i cant think.

I am not abusing this medication and take it twice a day unless i forget and just take it in the morning. Sometimes i forget it on the weekends. But usually if i have something i need to do i will not forget it. My husband will remind me if i forget.

Is there anything i can do to make it last longer? I don't think it needs to be any stronger. I just want it to last. When it doesnt I get real frustrated and to be honest it kind of makes me crave drugs or just want to say F it you know?

Should i go back to the psychiatrist? I would be willing to try strattera, in fact had a few samples and i thought they were okay but i have to wait for a generic.

When i try to go off it i am tired and hungry and depressed.

Thanks to anyone who knows what may help. I took l tyrosine for a while and thought it helped at first maybe but after a while i just decided it did not do much. I also took fish oil for a while.
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Old 01-11-11, 08:01 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joker_Girl View Post
Hi

I have not been here in a really long time, i didnt realize or i guess maybe i just havent signed in. LOL

Anyways I went to shrink idk about a year and a half ago and they did a bunch of tests and said I have ADHD in addition to depression. I have been on every antidepressant under the sun. I also have a history of probs with coke and meth but i feel that is behind me now. I guess I was not all that suprised because our son has very bad ADHD and he acts just like me.

So they put me on Ritalin and at first it was 10 mg. I did not think it did much but i took it. I would take one in the morning and one at like 2 pm. After a couple months I went back and told them it did not help. So they put me on 20 mg twice a day. This was the first time in my whole life I felt alright (other than when I was abusing drugs). My husband really noticed a change in me. I could get a lot more done and was not as stressed out and depressed as normal. Actually I do not really notice it a whole lot but others can tell.

After idk about a year, it become apparent that it is not working as long. I have to really plan when i take them to get the most use of them. I get about 2 hours out of a pill before i turn into a ding dong again. So I take at like 8:30 am and 1 pm and work hard to get what i need done, done.

I call the clinic several months ago to see if i can change it and take 20 mg at like 8 am, 12 noon and like 4 pm and see if it will help. The doctor who originally prescribed it at the psychologists suggestion is not there any more. The one who is giving it to me now is very hesitant and asked me why i am even taking it, is it for depression (?) I was a little floored that they are writing me a script and dont even know why. I told them the thing from the psychologist should be in my chart. They told me 40 mg a day is the max dose (I know is not true cause my son was on like 60 or 80 mg). I ask if i could switch and try a different med like adderall and was told to just be happy i am getting what i get cause ADHD isnt real in adults. Well then why do they not just cut me off?

Our insurance will not cover scripts so i cant get anything much more than this anyways. I would like to be able to take an extended release med but they are more expensive.

I tried to bust these in half and take a half (10 mg) at like 8 am, 11, 1, and 3. Well when i do this, it knocks me out. I cannot stay awake.

I try to not take them on the weekend sometimes hoping i will reduce my tolerance to them. When i do not take them i have no motivation and am very tired. I am afraid that i am addicted to them because when i do not take them i feel crappy and i cant think.

I am not abusing this medication and take it twice a day unless i forget and just take it in the morning. Sometimes i forget it on the weekends. But usually if i have something i need to do i will not forget it. My husband will remind me if i forget.

Is there anything i can do to make it last longer? I don't think it needs to be any stronger. I just want it to last. When it doesnt I get real frustrated and to be honest it kind of makes me crave drugs or just want to say F it you know?

Should i go back to the psychiatrist? I would be willing to try strattera, in fact had a few samples and i thought they were okay but i have to wait for a generic.

When i try to go off it i am tired and hungry and depressed.

Thanks to anyone who knows what may help. I took l tyrosine for a while and thought it helped at first maybe but after a while i just decided it did not do much. I also took fish oil for a while.

Hey JokerGirl, I'm new to this type of med, but also share your past
issues. Since I've only been taking Ritalin for a few months, the only
things that seem to affect the duration of the meds, is how you ingest
them. Do you take it on an empty stomache,with food, or after eating?
There have been some weird issues with me, where it won't seem to
work for more than an hour or so, and other times double that. Taking
it with food, might either make it be absorbed better or worse? Try to
experiment with taking it differently. Also, I've heard that sucking on the
pill seems to work better for some, don't know yet. Maybe it's just the
fact, that we both have had a past with "C", since it's so damn similar.
No idea, could be my issue, at least. Lastly, other meds you take, may
have some affect on the Ritalin working properly? Good luck. Hope it helps?

Dave
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Old 01-12-11, 12:39 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Hi

Thanks for responding!

I normally take it on an empty stomach. I do not usually eat until noon, if i eat then even. Many days i do not eat at all until supper so all of it is taken on an empty stomach.

If I do not take it I am definitely more hungry during the day.

I have noticed that sometimes when the pharmacy fills my pills they are white and sometimes they are yellow. The yellow ones suck. Sometimes you will take one and it is like it is nothing, my husband yells at me, did you take your pill, and i say YES!!! or "i think so, i cant remember anything so maybe i DIDN'T take the darn thing!" I know I have had trouble with them not working. And then sometimes, you take one, and it is like HOLY CRAP i feel like i am on speed. Much more consistency with the white ones.

What do you mean sucking on it? Like to get the coating off it and then swallow it? Or do you suck on it til its gone? Doesn't it taste bad? I am afraid if i do that it will not last very long. Also I can see myself skipping it rather than to have to taste it.

I know that it is structurally similar to the big "C" or the big "M" (i was more into the latter myself) but as long as i just take it the way i am suppose to it doesnt seem to cause me troubles. I know when i try to just quit taking it I will feel a bit of a craving. However when i just take the med i cannot feel it very much. It is weird. It makes me crave a cigarette sort of which "M" did that as well. For a while i had my husband dole them out to me until it became apparent that I was going to be okay with them.

I do not take any other medications, other than occasional tylenol/aleve/ibuprofen for pain. I am not abusing any drugs, i do smoke but not very heavily (~1-2 packs a week), and i am a light social drinker (less than a 6 pack a month).

I believe this med works for me, and i like it; I do not feel like i need the dose to be larger. If I take a half a pill (10 mg) it will knock me out. If I take 1 1/2 pills (30 mg) or 2 pills (40 mg) it feels exactly the same as if I take 1 pill (20 mg). It does not seem to be any more effective. I like it other than that it doesnt last long enough.

I have heard drinking orange juice or acidic things makes it less effective so i am trying to not do that.

I guess I am wrong in saying I cannot feel them. I can, but it is not like i am high off of them. I take it, and if it is going to work, about a half hour or so later, I feel very calm and energized, peaceful, happy, and productive. I am able to do what i need to do and think very clearly and am more pleasant to be around.

When it is gone, it is GONE, and i am scatterbrained and all over the place and irritable.

Have you tried the BRAND NAME ritalin? I have only used the generic but i am thinking about it, just to see if it will work better.
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Old 01-12-11, 11:09 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

I'm not completely sure about sucking the pill, or having it just melt on your tongue? It must taste horrible? Do you get the racing heart side effect
at times? I'm starting to wonder if I'm even ADD, after reading how people
are reacting to this med? Either I'm taking too much, or not enough? I also
have a few other issues I should mention. It's pretty disturbing, but here it
goes. I'm 38, a mechanic of over 20 years, have had to have both my damn
hips replaced at age 30. If that weren't enough, have had a messed up back, which has probably been attributing to all the leg issues I'm going
through at the moment, and since I had the replacements done. The dr.'s
said my hip bones died, from lack of blood flow, from the alcohol and drug
abuse. I did ride my bike hard for 20 miles everyday, for a few years straight, so I think I wore my hips out with a combination of both. It was
only 3 months being clean, after completing a month long rehab, that I
started having hip issues, and was diagnosed with Stage 4 Avascular Necrosis. What a reward for getting clean, huh? The dr's said, that if I
didn't get my hips replaced soon, I'd be crippled for life. I got them done,
and guess what? I'm still crippled.LOL. Anyway, enough about my nightmare. So, the Ritalin makes you relaxed, and able to sleep? I'm
thinking I may have been diagnosed wrongly. It makes me jumpy, racing
heart most of the time, and tense. This might mean I don't have ADHD?
Sorry about the messed up post, can't seem to correct it for some reason?
Might actually be ADHD?
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Old 01-12-11, 11:42 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

The outside coating has nothing to do with it. It is medication it has to be motabolized. It all gets broke down in session no matter what you do.
-EDIT-
Oh plus how are you going to have a meaningfull medication trial with your doctor when you have been changing the way you take your medication.

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Old 01-12-11, 02:25 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

I don't know. I havent been sucking on them i am afraid of the taste of them anyways. I don't like the way any pill tastes.

This seems like it works, the only thing i did different was to try to bust them in half and take them more often but it knocks me out when i do that, i am very zombiefied. I am back to taking one at about 8:30 and one at about 2 pm. I just wish they would last longer.

Yes, I could go to sleep on it, the dose I am on, but it doesnt make me tired. If that makes sense? It doesnt tend to make me any more or less tired than I already am. Unless I take half a dose. Then I am done for I will go to sleep.

I have tried to talk to the Dr about it but they don't even seem to understand why I am on it and thought it was for depression. I don't know why they would write a script if they don't know. It doesnt make any sense. They told me be happy I am getting anything because adults dont have ADHD and if I keep wanting to change it around or try something different I am going to be cut off.

I do think it helps but maybe I should just give up and go off of it. It is so frustrating when it quits working if I still am busy.

Edited to add:

I have been on this dose for a little over a year. It has become less effective in the past two months or so. Or maybe not less effective but not wanting to last more than about an hour and a half.
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Old 01-12-11, 03:21 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Here's a little of my experience:

I wouldn't be able to handle 2 x 20mg per day. When taking Ritalin, I can take a single 20mg dose for therapeutic effect, but I can't imagine the big spaces you're getting between the effect of the medication.

I usually took 40 to 50 mg per day. I spaced my doses out every three hours to avoid those spaces between doses. A typical day might be 8 am with 20mg, 11 am with 10mg, 2 pm with 10mg, 5 pm with 10mg.

I took the white tablets, 10mg each. That made it easy to tailor doses. Doing the above worked a lot like Concerta for me. (I chewed the white tablets when there wasn't water around. Otherwise, they might get stuck in my throat and cause problems. Tastes terrible, but it does seem to absorb a little more quickly.)

As to your question about addiction, my experience is that some of the yucky feeling between the medication and on weekends is a rebound. Some of it is your natural ADHD self. It doesn't mean your addicted. I'm taking a break after taking Ritalin daily all last year. Starting the break was easy. The break is relatively easy except my ADHD symptoms are back in full force.

Good luck.
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Old 01-13-11, 03:20 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joker_Girl View Post
I don't know. I havent been sucking on them i am afraid of the taste of them anyways. I don't like the way any pill tastes.

This seems like it works, the only thing i did different was to try to bust them in half and take them more often but it knocks me out when i do that, i am very zombiefied. I am back to taking one at about 8:30 and one at about 2 pm. I just wish they would last longer.

Yes, I could go to sleep on it, the dose I am on, but it doesnt make me tired. If that makes sense? It doesnt tend to make me any more or less tired than I already am. Unless I take half a dose. Then I am done for I will go to sleep.

I have tried to talk to the Dr about it but they don't even seem to understand why I am on it and thought it was for depression. I don't know why they would write a script if they don't know. It doesnt make any sense. They told me be happy I am getting anything because adults dont have ADHD and if I keep wanting to change it around or try something different I am going to be cut off.

I do think it helps but maybe I should just give up and go off of it. It is so frustrating when it quits working if I still am busy.

Edited to add:

I have been on this dose for a little over a year. It has become less effective in the past two months or so. Or maybe not less effective but not wanting to last more than about an hour and a half.


I thought I was the only one , who only got an hour and a half or two, of good effects from the meds? It makes me feel so much better, not being the only person, to only get a few hours of "Feeling Good" with one dose.
The Dr. had me on 2 (10's) in the morning, and 1 (10) at noon. The messed
up thing, is that I'm positive, that the 20mg at any one time, is way too
much for me to function on.

I have finally stopped this taking my meds all
"Willy Nilly" thing, and am writing a schedule down for the past two days,to
see what is working when, and what's not? The only reason for this, is that
I'm unfortuneatly taking pretty potent amounts of Methadone for pain
management and have had a couple scary **** episodes of interactions.

I can not see your just stopping the Ritalin all together, helping anything,
esp. your ADHD. If the side effects are much worse, than the benefits of
any med, then I'd recommend a tapering process to eventually stopping the
med all together. I'm obviously not a Dr., but have had a lengthly run of
over 10 years on and off some pretty heavy meds.

Only you and your Dr.s can properly work out your medication issues. Not any opinion from me or anyone on a forum, should be advising you of what
to do, just your health care provider.
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Old 01-13-11, 09:55 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Are you going to a psychiatrist or ADHD specialist? I think that is what I need to do.

I feel that I have become tolerant to this dose and that the only thing that will help is to either take them more often or to get an extended release version. I do not really want to talk to the doctor about this (this is a general practitioner who is prescribing it now) because i am honestly afraid they are going to take it away if I keep complaining. What kind of irritates me is, it is not like I am constantly complaining about it or trying to pull something. I have called about it twice and the last time, when I asked if I could try Focalin and was told NO....they did not get my script written for the next month until almost two weeks later. They let me run out. I was crazy as a loon, and it was like that was my punishment. LOL for the first few days after i got my script, it worked BEAUTIFULLY and lasted nearly 3 hours. Now it is back to normal.

My dread at having it taken away scares me. I feel that while I am not abusing this med, I am certainly addicted or physically dependant on it to some extent. This does not make a lot of sense to me, because it is not like I get high off it. But I know, without a doubt, that I DO NOT want it taken away, and I really deep down, DO NOT want to go off it and go back to the way I used to be.

Keep in mind, it is not like I take a lot of pills and I am not one to be in to the doctor very often. It is not like I am running out of the med early....in fact I should have been out of last months pills a week ago and I have 4 left, since I do not always take them on the weekends. I have taken to calling RIGHT ON the day I should be out so I never have to go without them for a week again.

I am thinking about taking one in the morning, and then busting one in half and taking a half at like noon and a half at like 3.

I wish they would just understand. It really helped so much for the first year. I do not want anything but for it to last longer. I worry that my past use of cocaine and meth has done something to my brains to where it doesnt work right. I doubt that is the case. It is certainly something I can NEVER confess to anyone if I do not want to be branded for life. I am aggravated that I have been told 40 mg is the max dose when my child was on more than that at age 10. I am aggravated at being told ADHD is not real in adults. I think they should come and follow me around unmedicated for a while and then tell me what they think about that.

Is ritalin the ONLY med you have tried for ADHD? Have you ever tried strattera? I really wish that would come down in price because i would give it a try. I think where it is not a scheduled drug they might be more willing to let me try it.

Have you ever tried brand name ritalin? I wonder if it might last longer. I was told if you take tums with it or maalox it makes it absorb better and it is stronger but i dont know if I need it stronger, i just need it to last.

Thanks for all your help and I hope you will find a med or dose that works for you as well.
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Old 01-17-11, 11:33 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

"How can you get ritalin to last longer" - by not taking it... lol.

Take a drug vacation, if you take it everyday - of course your body is going to build a tolerance to it. What my psychiatrist recommended, was to take it on the days when I had work or school(*5 days out of the week*), thus giving me a 2 day cooling period.

Also, drink alot of water too. Not only is it good for you, but, in my personal opinion I believe it may possibly help with drug tolerance too. Enough clean water will filter out toxins throughout the body on a celluar level.

Here's an article I found for you regarding drug holidays for more information: http://www.adhdaction.com/adhd-drug-holiday.html

P.S: I tried straterra, it did absolutely nothing for me. It was fairly new when it came out, and, immediately was taken off when the FDA black box warning came out linking straterra to possible liver failure. However, this is my experience - straterra may be different for you. I would wait for the patent on it to die, so you can afford a generic.

Although, you could try effexor or wellbutrin. Anti-depressants with neophineprine reuptake inhibitors that basically do the same thing as straterra but also raise serotonin.

As far as herbal remedies go, I found sam-e to be effective. 400mg 1x daily - after the 6th day was feeling pretty good. However, it wasn't good enough to pay $60 a month for.
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Old 01-17-11, 05:46 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Wellbutrin made me almost suicidal, don't like pscyhe meds. Lots of people
have great success with them, but not me.

Taking a med vacation could just help with the meds working much better
when you start taking them again? It sure can't hurt, unless you just can't
function without being on them? Not taking them as often can help, too.

I have had some amazing results with Ritalin. It wasn't before realizing,
that my Caffeine and Nicotine intake was completely destroying the meds
working mechanism. I couldn't, for the life of me, figure out why the meds
were acting so different all the time? The chest pains and racing pulse were
from a everyday stimulant cocktail of soda, cigs, and Ritalin. Also stopped the
severe circulation issues with my legs and feet. Just by laying off the soda with
Caffeine and smoking, the Ritalin works properly, now. Hope this helps somebody?

Last edited by DSLDAW2; 01-17-11 at 06:06 PM.. Reason: More info.
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Old 01-17-11, 06:01 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

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Originally Posted by String View Post
I usually took 40 to 50 mg per day. I spaced my doses out every three hours to avoid those spaces between doses. A typical day might be 8 am with 20mg, 11 am with 10mg, 2 pm with 10mg, 5 pm with 10mg.
This is almost exactly the formula I've settled on. My dosage is lower, though. I take 10mg at 9am, 5mg at 12pm, 10mg at 3pm, and 5mg at 6pm. If I pull a late nighter (which I often do, being a writer), I'll take a long break, then start the same pattern around 11pm. My Rx is for 20mg, 3 times daily, but I'm comfortable managing my symptoms at this lower dosage, and it allows me to take my medication continuously even if I have to be up for 24+ hours.

I often take breaks on weekends. It's not easy to build a tolerance to Ritalin AFAIK, but I'm not taking any chances.
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  #13  
Old 01-18-11, 12:42 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Ritalin SR would last longer... otherwise, there's nothing to do, Ritalin doesn't last long, that's the way it is.
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Old 01-18-11, 09:54 AM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Thanks for the replies.

I tried 20 mg in the AM, 10 mg at noon, 10 mg at 3 pm. I did pretty well til about noon and then I was just zombified the rest of the day. But, I did eat at noon so maybe that is part of it.

I took Sunday off from it and I just felt like crap. If I don't take it at all, I just want to lay around and space out, or do dumb things like look at Wikipedia for 6 hours. Plus I get yelled at for wiggling all the time, tapping my foot, getting up and down repeatedly while the family is trying to watch tv or whatever. My brains feel fuzzy and nonfunctional, and, to a lesser degree, it is like coming down off drugs.

I do think as soon as I get a chance I am going to go to an ADHD specialist psychiatrist if I can find one. I am torn between the fact that I really think it needs increased in frequency and on the other hand, I feel if I increase it to, say, 3 times a day, then eventually THAT won't work.

I think I would maybe be wise though to go to someone else like in a bigger town, who knows more about it than they do here. I only decided to try it after I went to a psychologist because I was such a depressed scatterbrained suicidal mess.

I have tried a lot of antidepressants too.

I think if I could go to a different Dr who is more knowing about this kind of a thing. I cannot believe they thought I was on it for depression. That made me mad because I have the thing from the psychologist. I don't know. I don't like having to call up there and ask for a script every month, they make me feel weird. I don't like having it filled here in town. It is just embarrassing. I know it shouldn't be.

Am I behaving like a drug addict? I don't want to be a drug addict again. I really do not feel like I am cause it is not like I am getting high off this or taking a lot of it. But I just feel like trying to make sure I get the medicine and all the associated crap is causing drama in my life you know?

I want to see if someone will give me the long acting kind. I'm paying like $40 a month for my mediciine now and I would be more than willing to pay more to get it to last.
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Old 02-25-11, 06:10 PM
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Re: How Can You Get Ritalin To Last Longer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bezuidenthustra View Post
This is almost exactly the formula I've settled on. My dosage is lower, though. I take 10mg at 9am, 5mg at 12pm, 10mg at 3pm, and 5mg at 6pm. If I pull a late nighter (which I often do, being a writer), I'll take a long break, then start the same pattern around 11pm. My Rx is for 20mg, 3 times daily, but I'm comfortable managing my symptoms at this lower dosage, and it allows me to take my medication continuously even if I have to be up for 24+ hours.

I often take breaks on weekends. It's not easy to build a tolerance to Ritalin AFAIK, but I'm not taking any chances.
I was taking regular 10mg dosages every 3 hours, but it builds up after a while. This 10-5-10-5 schedule seems like a great idea. Thanks for sharing.
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