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So, Just How Long Do The Effects Of Ritalin Last?

If you’re curious about how long does a Ritalin high last, this is a good place to find it out. According to Medlineplus;

“Ritalin is prescribed by doctors to control symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It helps people who have difficulty focusing, controlling actions, and remaining still or quiet. It is also prescribed to treat narcolepsy. that causes excessive daytime sleepiness and sudden attacks of sleep). Ritalin is in a class of medications called central nervous system (CNS) stimulants. It works by changing the amounts of certain natural substances in the brain.”

  • Ritalin’s scientific name is Methylphenidate
  • Ritalin is a central nervous system stimulant affecting the nerves and brain used for impulse control, hyperactivity
  • Ritalin immediately increases energy, alertness, increases heart rate, breathing and blood pressure

How Long Does Ritalin Last

Ritalin and its metabolites are fully eliminated after 1 or 2 days of ingestion. There are some factors that affect how long Ritalin stays in your system, including age, weight, height and frequency of usage.

  • Once ingested Ritalin’s effects are experienced for approximately 3 – 4 hrs

Research shows children tend to clear traces of the drug faster than adults. Individual factors such as body height, weight, dosage and frequency of usage are important considerations in determining how long does Ritalin last.

Compared to Adderall

Both Adderall and Ritalin are CNS stimulants. They both speed up the brain activity. They are also both ADHD medications. Adderall is more addictive but Ritalin has more adverse side effects especially if it is used for longer durations. Ritalin works faster and it reaches peak performance faster when compared with Adderall. The effects of Adderall are felt for longer than those of Ritalin. They both work in similar ways and have common side effects.

Side Effects

Some common side effects of taking Ritalin include;

  • Fast heartbeat
  • High blood pressure
  • Dry mouth
  • Chronic trouble sleeping
  • Loss of appetite
  • Over excitement
  • Nervousness
  • Chest pain
  • Decreased blood platelets


Ritalin has been used since the 1950s to treat a variety of conditions such as depression, fatigue syndrome and narcolepsy. It is commonly prescribed for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). It has helped thousands of patients control their symptoms. The drug is abused by many teenagers for its stimulant effect. Even when prescribed by a doctor taking too much may have some undesirable changes in the user’s brain when used over time. There is also the potential for abuse. More and more teens are abusing the drug thinking they are safer than other street drugs. It is unfortunate that they can easily get access to the drugs. Abuse starts slowly and the user builds tolerance with time and they need more doses and this could lead to convulsions, headaches or even hallucinations. Some resort to snorting as they search for a bigger rush.

  • According to a recent survey 24% of high school students abuse Ritalin and Adderall

Snorting, Shooting, Smoking & Injecting

The drug can either be taken orally or snorted. The drug is also water-soluble so it can be dissolved in water and then injected into the blood stream, but injecting is not common. Ritalin comes in small pills shaped like common aspirin tablets.

  • Crushing then snorting the Ritalin is known to increase the potency of the drug

If the drug is taken orally, it takes an hour to reach the user’s brain and cause effects. Snorting it on the other hand allows the drug to reach the brain immediately. People who snort it have increased feeling of euphoria. Snorting high doses leads to anxiety, aggression and irritability. When Ritalin is snorted it could cause fainting, seizures as well as blurred vision. Snorting can also harm your nasal passages and can spread disease if the snorting instruments are shared. It could cause life-threatening complications such as irregular heartbeat and difficulty breathing.

Street Names

On the streets, Ritalin is also known as;

  • diet coke
  • kiddie coke
  • rids
  • skittles


Read: Comparative article on Ritalin vs Adderall

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