The Risk of Relapsing on Ritalin after Recovery from a Severe Addiction

The Risk of Relapsing on Ritalin after Recovery from a Severe Addiction

Many recovering addicts experience relapse, as it is common in recovery. While some people relapse by abusing their drug of choice, other people relapse by abusing a different substance that may lead them back to the drug they initially abused. Ritalin is one such drug people abuse after getting clean from addiction, but this kind of drug abuse can lead to a full blown relapse.

What Is Ritalin?

Ritalin is a prescription medication that treats attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder by stimulating the brain to increase concentration, impulse control and decision-making abilities. It is highly addictive, and it mimics the effects of cocaine when crushed and snorted. Recreational abuse typically follows a “binge and crash” cycle, during which the drug’s euphoric high disappears before the substance leaves an individual’s system. To maintain the high, users often ingest higher doses of Ritalin to heighten the effects. Tolerance and dependence quickly develop with this kind of drug abuse.

Signs of Ritalin addiction include the following issues:

  • Agitation
  • Confusion
  • Delirium
  • Hallucinations
  • Fever
  • Enlarged pupils
  • Flushing
  • High blood pressure
  • Tremors
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting

People improve their chances of recovery and avoiding relapse if they address Ritalin abuse quickly—that is, before physical and psychological dependence become severe.

What Is Addiction Relapse?

Relapse is not failure, but a part of the addiction cycle that addicts often experience after undergoing rehab. In other words, addiction is a disorder that requires multiple treatments, just as individuals with other chronic health conditions (such as diabetes or hypertension) usually seek medical help more than once. Two definitions of relapse include the following examples:

  • Lapse – A process, behavior or single event, or a reemergence of a previous habit
  • Relapse – A process of backsliding and worsening of a previously improved condition

Many healthcare professionals say that relapse can be instructive, and even beneficial, if addicts learn from their mistakes. Relapse can actually lead to the following benefits:

  • A greater commitment to sobriety
  • Deeper insight into triggers, stressors and vulnerability to drugs and alcohol

Chronic relapse can also reveal that an addict is not ready to get sober. Addiction damages a user’s physical, psychological and social functioning, so the worse the damage in each area is, the greater the chances of relapse. In order to stay sober, all areas must be addressed at the same time.

Do I Need More Addiction Treatment?

Good reasons to return to rehab include the following examples:

  • Learn new information
  • Strengthen coping skills or practicing new ones
  • Incorporate healthier behavior patterns
  • Gain encouragement from others in a protected environment

With commitment and dedication to sobriety, it is possible to bounce back from relapse stronger than ever.

Help Avoiding Ritalin Addiction Relapse

If you or someone you love is struggling to stay sober, help is available. Admissions coordinators at our toll-free, 24 hour helpline can guide you to wellness, so do not go it alone when help is just one phone call away. You never have to go back to a life of addiction if you seek professional support.