Ritalin and Adderall: Legal Drugs Kids Get Hooked on First


Nowadays ADHD medications are overprescribed and the diagnosis of ADHD is handed out as a rote method of dealing with hyperactive children who “lack” focus and concentration.

I remember when I was in 6th grade I was a bit hyper and I would constantly find myself staring out the window, daydreaming about running around outside and not being stuck in a classroom. My teacher thought this was unacceptable and sent me home with a note telling my parents that I should be checked out by my doctor. At my doctor’s visit he asked me two questions.

Doctor: “Do you have trouble concentrating in class?”

Me: “Yes, class is boring.”

Doctor: “Do you have a lot of energy, more than you think you should?”

Me: “Well, yeah. I want to run around with my friends and have fun instead of being in boring

Math class.”

Doctor: “Okay. I’m going to give you medication that’s going to fix that.”

Me: “Fix what? I’m not broken…”

I left the doctor’s office that day with a prescription for Ritalin. The active ingredient is Methylphenidate which is almost chemically identical to cocaine. And I was 11 years old.

In an article written by Dr. Rick Nauert, PhD he states:

"In Europe, as in the U.S., diagnoses for ADHD have exploded over the past two decades. Between 1989 and 2001, the number of diagnoses in German clinical practice increased by 381 percent.

"The costs for ADHD medication, such as for the performance-enhancing psychostimulant methylphenidate (Ritalin), have grown nine times between 1993 and 2003. In Germany, the government health insurance company, Techniker, reports an increase of 30 percent in methylphenidate prescriptions for its clients between the ages of 6 and 18. Similarly, the daily dosage has increased by 10 percent on average.

"Researchers say that despite these statistics, there is a remarkable lack of research on the diagnostics of ADHD. In spite of strong public interest, very few empirical studies have addressed the issue, Schneider and Bruchmüller noted (http://psychcentral.com/news/2012/04/02/is-adhd-overdiagnosed/36813.html)."

Like cocaine, Ritalin is a powerful stimulant that increases alertness and productivity. Ritalin and cocaine also look and act very much alike. ADHD children are typically taken off of Ritalin when they reach adulthood. Interestingly, these individuals seem to be more prone to cocaine addiction. Why is that? Because Ritalin and cocaine are similar drugs, it's possible that ADHD adults are unknowingly using cocaine as a replacement for Ritalin.

I realized later in life that I couldn’t be the only kid that went through this debacle. After further research it was found that ADHD was completely over-diagnosed and over-medicated especially in the United States. In the last ten years there has been an estimated 40% increase in ADHD diagnoses and around 20% of teenage boys in the United States has received an ADHD diagnosis along with a prescription for hardcore central nervous system stimulants (http://www.salon.com/2014/03/01/the_truth_about_adhd_over_diagnosis_linked_to_cause_championed_by_michelle_rhee/). Feeling enraged at this current state of affairs I decided to grab one of my coworkers and asked her if she had ever been diagnosed with ADHD and received meds. She said:

“Oh, absolutely. I was 14 and it was exam time at school. I had a Social Studies exam that I wasn’t prepared for at all. One of my friends took Adderall and I asked her for one. I went to my mom’s office after school and took it. I remember I was sitting down and I was about to eat a cheeseburger when I felt the Adderall kick in. I was like ‘I do not want to eat this cheeseburger.’ I went home and studied all through the night and did really well on my exam. So I felt like I needed this stuff to be successful at school. I went to my psychologist and told her that a friend had given me her Adderall and I wanted some. And she agreed. It was as easy as that.”


Anyone who is not completely perturbed by this situation needs to wake up! In this country we are hooking kids on strong stimulants from a very young age because they want to be running around and playing outside rather than pay attention in Social Studies class. The answer, in my opinion, is to stop drugging kids for acting like kids. Giving them strong psychotropic medication at such an early stage in their development only sets the stage for disaster once they grow into adulthood. They learn that taking a pill to “fix” something is the right way to handle any issues. This “take a pill for every ill” mentality is what keeps drug rehabilitation centers and psychiatrists office filled to the brim every year.

If you or a loved one is struggling with ADHD medication addiction call Narconon Suncoast today!


Jason Good

Jason has been working in the field of addiction and recovery for over 11 years. Having been an addict himself he brings real-word experience to the table when helping addicts and their families, while also offering a first-person perspective to the current drug crisis. Jason is passionate about educating the public about what’s currently going on in our society, and thankfully, offers practical solutions. Jason is also the co-host of The Addiction Podcast—Point of No Return. You can follow Jason on Google+, Twitter, or connect with him on LinkedIn.