Why is Ritalin (methylphenidate) safe but meth isn’t?


I read an about the damage meth does to you and how it takes way too long to recover from it. How is Ritalin different even tho chemically they are cousins?

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Meth is actually a prescribable drug in the US under the name Desoxyn. Dosage and usage habits matter a lot in how damaging something is.

To answer your question, meth and Ritalin are not super chemically similar. Adderall and especially Sudafed are common drugs that are very similar to meth chemically.

I’m not in any way an expert here, but my understanding is a lot of meth addicts actually begin as Adderall users who either need something stronger to maintain their focus or are taken off their Adderall prescription somehow.

Methylphenidate and methamphetamine are not really that close to each other. Methylpentynol for instance makes you sleep.

Methamphetamine is more harmful because it’s almost exclusively cooked in an unregulated environment and cut with substances that are bad for you.

Methamphetamine is MUCH stronger and MUCH more addictive.

There’s a limit to how much ritalin you can be prescribed. You don’t see people tweaking and having psychotic episodes on ritalin very commonly. Especially if it’s used as prescribed.

Controlled low amounts of pharmaceutical grade meth won’t be as bad for you as high amounts of the street version.

People that truly need ritalin are pushed from an understimulated state to a normal state. This brings them closer to what the brain of a neurotypical person is like. Tweaking for instance is because someone is extremely over stimulated by a drug that is too strong.

Meth is more similar to Adderall.


The basic adage “the dose makes the poison” fits this pretty well. Methylphenidate, used as intended, comes in pills that must meet pharmaceutical-grade purity standards and contain precisely controlled doses to achieve the desired cognitive effect. Methamphetamine is produced and consumed in totally uncontrolled concentrations and quantities. Believe me, if you abuse methylphenidate in high enough doses, it’s no longer “safe.”