The Ultimate Guide to Ritalin Side Effects 2020 | Nootropics Review
Ritalin is a popular nootropic that is used by many to boost mental performance and energy. Similar to Adderall, many students in the UK use it as a study drug, however, it's more popular in the US.
But, should its popularity be a concern? What are the side effects most commonly associated with Ritalin?
We asked our team of nootropic experts to review the existing scientific literature and to draw their conclusions.
Did we miss anything? Do you want to let us know what your experience with Ritalin was like? Let us know in the comments below.
If you're interested in this topic, you should also consider checking out our article Smart Pill UK 2019 Review - Which Ones to Try and Which to Avoid.
Important note: this article discusses Ritalin when used as a nootropic/cognitive enhancer, and details Ritalin side effects for those without ADHD.
If you have been prescribed Ritalin for any medical condition, you should continue using it as advised by your doctor.
What is Ritalin?
Ritalin is the brand name for methylphenidate, a stimulant. It isn't an amphetamine but has similar effects as both substances are classed as stimulants.
Methylphenidate was first synthesised in 1944 and has been used medically since the 1960s. Today, Ritalin is used as a treatment for ADHD, narcolepsy, and other disorders.
It's believed by some to have cognitive-enhancing effects, and, as it's a stimulant, Ritalin can help with wakefulness as a result of sleep deprivation.
What are Ritalin's side effects?
Most of Ritalin's side effects are reported to be mild, according to studies into side effects on children with ADHD. However, these are among children that may normally be prescribed the drug, rather than people using it off-label without a cognitive 'need' for Ritalin, so results may differ.
By looking at various sources (the FDA, the NHS, manufacturer information and various independent studies), we have compiled the following comprehensive list of Ritalin (Methylphenidate) side effects.
Common side effects:
- Decreased appetite
- Stomach ache
- Increase in blood pressure
- Mood swings
Rarer side effects:
- Problems with your vision
- Cardiovascular issues
- Circulation Issues
- Psychological problems - it can potentially activate or exacerbate pre-existing mental issues and precipitate hypomanic or manic symptoms or can even lead to paranoid psychosis.
Options other than Ritalin?
If you want something that avoids the side effects of Ritalin but is still capable of improving your cognitive performance and studies, then consider a natural nootropic.
Brainzyme, for example, uses Tyrosine, which has been found to boost dopamine in the brain in a similar way to Ritalin.
But as it's from a naturally occurring protein, not a synthetic pharmaceutical, it can arguably cause less of the side-effects associated with Ritalin - and, as it is legal to sell, there's no chance of buying a counterfeit product that has been adulterated.
Because of the risks outlined above (side-effects, safety, legality etc), we do not recommend to use Ritalin as a nootropic. However, the good news is there are alternatives you can try.
People taking Ritalin as a nootropic mainly do so for three reasons: To increase concentration, to increase mental performance and to reduce tiredness.
We would recommend opting for a substance that is safer, comes with fewer side-effects, is better value for money and has been scientifically proven to do all of those three things.
If you liked this article, you should also consider checking out the following related articles:
The Ultimate Ritalin UK Guide - Uses, Side Effects and Legality in the UK.
The 7 Best Modafinil Alternatives to Boost Your Brain in 2019.
The Ultimate 2019 Adderall UK Guide: Legality, Alternatives & More.