Can Ritalin Addiction Be Treated?
Ritalin addiction treatment is possible, but it is important to seek help as soon as you can if you have abusing your or someone else’s medication. The sooner you seek treatment, the easier it will be to make a change. Call 800-768-8728 now to find rehab centers that can cater to your needs.
What Causes Ritalin Addiction?
People misusing Ritalin is what causes addiction. In the same way that drugs of abuse like methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine can create addiction, prescription drugs can cause this issue if a person uses them in the wrong way. Misuse of Ritalin comes in several different forms:
- Taking someone else’s prescription or buying/obtaining the drug without a prescription
- Taking the drug more often than prescribed
- Taking it in larger doses than prescribed
- Taking it in a different way than prescribed
- According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, prescription stimulants are often crushed and snorted or injected to speed up their effects. This is considered abuse and can lead to addiction
People often misuse Ritalin and other prescription stimulants in order to obtain the other effects of these drugs. Ritalin can cause weight loss, an ability to stay focused and awake for a longer period of time, and euphoria (when taken in large doses). When people take advantage of these effects, the frequent use of Ritalin will cause changes to the way the brain works, and eventually, what was once voluntary use will become compulsive (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
How Does Ritalin Addiction Treatment Work?
A person will often need to go through detox first. Ritalin can cause severe withdrawal symptoms, including
- Extreme cravings
Pharmacological interventions may be utilized, and the individual will often go through a crash period and will need to be tested for depression and any other severe symptoms. Then, they can usually begin their actual addiction rehab (as detox itself is not a full treatment for addiction).
According to the NIDA, “Treatment of addiction to prescription stimulants, such as Adderall and Concerta, is based on behavioral therapies used in treating cocaine and methamphetamine addiction.” These methods have been found to be very successful for the treatment of other types of stimulant abuse, and as there are currently no medications approved to treat stimulant addiction itself, most of the program revolves around the use of therapies.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps patients learn to see their substance abuse in a different way. Patients are also able to learn better life skills that allow them to avoid relapse in the future. Through CBT, patients are able to recognize and avoid their triggers, cope with cravings and stress, and practice better habits.
- Contingency management uses prize incentives to help patients make changes to the reward pathway of the brain. This program gives patients vouchers for activities contingent with a drug-free lifestyle for every negative drug test they provide. It has been found to be especially effective with stimulant abusers.
- The Matrix Model, which was created specifically to treat stimulant addicts, can help Ritalin users in a number of ways (NIDA Archives). The program uses several different methods, including relapse prevention, trust building, and drug testing, to create a strong rehab program for patients.
Often, several of these treatment options can be used together. A patient may also need to take antidepressants or other medications to help with the lingering effects of withdrawal from Ritalin. All in all, it is important to build a well-rounded treatment program that applies to the needs of every individual patient.
Is Ritalin Addiction Treatment Effective?
Ritalin addiction can be treated with the help of a professional rehab program, but it is also important for a patient to do their best to put an end to their abuse and work hard on their recovery. However, the NIDA states that drug addiction treatment is extremely effective in helping individuals stop abusing dangerous substances and gain back control of their lives. The treatment options currently available for Ritalin addiction are effective and can help a person create real, lasting change.