Ritalin: Abuse

Ritalin: Abuse
If the term ?Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?(adhd) is mentioned, the first thing that comes to many people?s minds is a drug called Methylphenidate, commonly referred to as ?Ritalin?. Most people know Ritalin is prescribed for adhd, and they most likely know at least one person who is currently taking it. However, in the 1960s, Ritalin and many other amphetamines were recognized as abusive substances, so many new controls were introduced to more closely monitor the prescribing of these drugs. Despite these new restrictions, the abuse and over-prescribing of Ritalin has re-emerged from the shadows.
One way the over-prescribing of Ritalin has emerged is its constant use for treating adhd in children and adolescents. adhd is a behavioral disorder and generally infects boys between the ages of six and fourteen (United Nations Warning on Ritalin, 1). Data shows that 10-12% of all boys in this range are taking Ritalin for the treatment of diagnosed adhd. Since 1990, the number of people taking Ritalin has increased by 500%. As of now, the United States has the highest level of Ritalin use and production. Canada uses just under half of what the U.S. uses of Ritalin and no other countries have come close. 7-10% of the U.S.?s boys are on this drug, which is an overwhelming number compared to other countries around the world. As a result of this, the government makes over $450 million annually in profits from Ritalin sales (Haislip, 12).
Despite the high demand for Ritalin and similar drugs, suitable alternatives on the market are proven safer for the body and still manage to have a Ritalin-like effect without the stimulant. Flavay, for example, is an all natural substance proven to improve memory and concentration, which is the general goal of Ritalin. Researchers have found that despite the over-prescribing of Ritalin, the drug is not entirely necessary. While Ritalin is a beneficial drug for some adhd sufferers; for others, it can be addictive and harmful, showing the same effects as speed and cocaine (Attention Deficit Disorder and Hyperactivity: A Natural Approach, 7-9).
The major problem with Ritalin, is how much of it is prescribed throughout the country. Many doctors and parents use Ritalin as a ?quick fix? for their child?s hyperactivity or so-called ?ADHD?, which the child may not even be infected with. Over 10% of young boys are diagnosed with adhd and taking Ritalin, that number is extremely high compared to the rate of other countries. Therefore, it can be inferred that doctors and parents often rush into the diagnosis of adhd just to say that the problem has been identified and by prescribing Ritalin, the child is receiving adequate treatment (Haislip, 2). However, this is not always the case.
Ritalin is an amphetamine, or a stimulant which is supposed to calm the patient and make them less jumpy and allow them to concentrate easier. What some fail to realize is that Ritalin is a legal form of speed and cocaine. Speed causes people to feel anxious, confident, aggressive, to talk excessively and take more risks than normal. Ritalin has this same effect, it can also cause aggression, over-confidence, and at times draw people over the edge. Furthermore, prescribing Ritalin for adhd, a disorder which in itself causes anxiousness and aggressiveness, would quite possibly make the situation worse.
Amphetamines are highly addictive substances, which is what led to Ritalin?s high level of abuse in the U.S. If a subject takes the drug long enough, they may develop an addiction to it. The most common form of Ritalin abuse is to crush the pills and snort the powder. This has greatly increased the illegal trafficking of the drug and led to more abuse. When a family has Ritalin in the house, it makes it easier for a member of that family to gain access to it and become addicted. Because Ritalin is a stimulant, it will make a person feel good, and as humans, we naturally want more of what brings us good feelings. Ritalin is successful in convincing people that they are happy when they take it and that it?s okay to abuse it.
A more startling effect of Ritalin, is heart failure and sometimes death. One boy died at the age of fourteen due to heart failure caused by Ritalin. The official cause of death was the long-term use of Ritalin, which for this boy was 7 years. It significantly damaged the blood vessels in his heart and caused his heart to deteriorate and eventually fail. This boy also had no heart condition at all before he began taking Ritalin.

Ritalin: Abuse 8.6 of 10 on the basis of 3942 Review.