Thread: Combining Ritalin and Adderall--Neuropharmacology

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    Combining Ritalin and Adderall--Neuropharmacology 
    I have acquired a decent supply of Ritalin and Adderall and find them both to be individually effective recreationally and as "study aids." Anyways, I am interested in what the effect would be in combining the two, as I am aware that they activate different mechanisms in the brain in order to primarily effect dopamine.

    As I understand it, amphetamines such as Adderall basically work by releasing more dopamine into the synapse so more dopamine receptor cells can be activated for a longer period of time. Now, Ritalin (Methylphenidate) works as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor, meaning that it partially blocks dopamine transporters that remove "used" dopamine from the synapse. By inhibiting its reuptake, more dopamine collects in the synapse than normal and thus the dopamine receptor cells become overstimulated.

    Anyone who knows the neuropharmacology of amphetemine or methlphenidate better than what I just explained please correct me and fill in the details. My question, though, is this: would Adderall and Ritalin somewhat "cancel each other out" if taken together or would they in fact act in synergy, each one potentiating the effects of the other? From my simple explanation above, I am somewhat inclined to believe that they would work in synergy with Ritalin functioning as a reuptake inhibitor and thus allowing the excess dopamine released into the synapse by Adderall to stay active longer. However, I have heard people claim otherwise and was wondering if anyone could provide a chemical explanation of exactly how they interact with each other and whether it is a worthwhile combination.

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    Bluelighter t3knology's Avatar
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    Jan 2003
    my friend who attends the same pharmacy school as i was telling me that no, they wouldnt be synergistic and that atleast if you take ritalin first... it would cancel out the effects of the adderal

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    Bluelight Crew Jamshyd's Avatar
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    Aug 2003
    Not on a train, sadly.
    ^ Yes, if I remember correctly, Methylphenidate's interaction with amphetamines is similar to that of Cocaine's.

    Since Cocaine blocks DAT, NET, and SERT, it will block the effects of amphetamines (MD(M)A included), since they rely on these transporters to mediate their actions.

    I imagine the same applies to Methylphenidate.

    I'm not sure as to what happens when you take Coke or M.phenidate after amphetamines, but I can only imagine it does more bad than good (excitotoxicity and oxidative stress comes to mind, but this is all conjecture, I could be wrong).

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    Bluelighter hussness's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
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    My guess is it depends on the relative affinity that methylphenidate has vs. amphetamine for DAT and NET. At low doses uptake into the nerve terminal would not be completely blocked by methylphenidate, and under these conditions amphetamine and methylphenidate would probably act synergistically. At higher doses most of the uptake would be blocked, so amphetamine, being (I think) the lower affinity compound would be excluded. Check out the image below that I think I stole off BilZor. I was going to defer to someone with a better understanding of this mechanism, but apparently those people haven't posted.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    bump.... what kind of doses would be low enough to maintain synergy and prevent the "cancelling"

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    Bluelighter Tomer's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
    Somewhere in my head
    Soccer, it's a silly combo, period. It doesn't make sense to combine the two. You're also putting more strain on your heart.

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    im prescribed both adderall and focalin for adhd... rely mainly on the adderall and it helps tremedously, so id hate to cancel my morning/ afternoon dose by taking a focalin a few hours later...

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    Jan 2007
    Northeast USA
    I'm actually curious as well. I am on too low of a dose of skRittles and it was my last one, all I have left is adderall. I was thinking about taking adderall on top of it to study all day. I'm about to fall asleep... since its a low dose for me will adderall be effective, and is it really more of a strain on my heart than a high dose of one or the other?

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    Bluelighter nasir~'s Avatar
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    May 2009
    Hamburg, germany
    low dose of both is kind of synergistic. for me, low dose =~ 15-20mg ritalin + 10-15mg dextroamphetamine.

    if you combine them in higher doses it's a waste of adderall/dex/rit.

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    Bluelight Crew ebola?'s Avatar
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    Sep 2001
    in weaponized form
    Not to mention likely cardiovascularly dangerous.


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    Bluelighter hamhurricane's Avatar
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    Feb 2007
    Riding A White Swan
    they most certainly do not cancel each other out to any appreciable degree, i have mixed the two at reasonable doses on numerous occasions without even thinking about it, as i have alternately been prescribed both of them at different times in my life. IME they do not cancel each other out nor do they act synergistically, they act additively as one would might expect. perhaps at higher doses something else would be experienced.

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    Experience tells that both compounds will NOT cancel out each. That was proven repeatedly. Of course (as said before by others) will the combo increase cardiovascular (negative) effects. I second the statement by hamhurricane:
    IME they do not cancel each other out nor do they act synergistically, they act additively as one would might expect.
    Higher doses were rather unpleasant.

    - Murphy

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    Vyvanse (70mg) + Focalin(20mg) = Extremely Clean House

    I took them at the same exact time, but i was still extremely speedy for around ~18 hrs

    EDIT: I also noticed an uncomfortable increase in heart rate

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    Bluelighter flacky's Avatar
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    May 2009
    Dallas, TX
    Something to note is that Ritalin's half-life is significantly shorter than Adderall's.

    Personally, I've tried this combo in the form of snorting crushed pills of each. I like the Ritalin because it's less jittery but it is definitely a fine aid to the stimulation from the Adderall.

    It is important to note, however, that yes, the synergistic effects are not just limited to stimulation and that this combo can be hard on the heart.

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    Bluelighter Hugs & Drugs's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
    i found them to be quite synergistic
    taking dexamphetamine first, then insufflated ritalin about an hour later

    can anyone tell me how railing dexamphetamine compares to oral use?
    i have the 5mg IR tablets btw


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    Bluelighter Cloud_9's Avatar
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    Dec 2006
    Ganymede orbitting Jupiter
    Quote Originally Posted by Hugs & Drugs View Post
    i found them to be quite synergistic
    taking dexamphetamine first, then insufflated ritalin about an hour later

    can anyone tell me how railing dexamphetamine compares to oral use?
    i have the 5mg IR tablets btw

    Honestly... every time I have taken my d-amphetamine this way I have short-changed myself. All I would be left with is a sense of impending dread and shortly after, a raging headache for the next hour. Plugging your d-amp is where its at! Smooth yet powerful come-up and a lengthy duration compared to even oral use. Railing d-amp tends to kill the high almost before you get to enjoy it.

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    Bluelighter Nexius's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    The Abyss
    I am curious on this, I take my vyvanse daily and 3x 10mg ritalin IR a day (take them how i feel it needed IE 20mg ritalin in the morning, then my vyvanse and 10mg ritalin at night)

    Do these really counteract eachother, it is somewhat strange of a combination for me.

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    Well, I thought I would add some personal experience to this thread, as I am actually prescribed vyvanse and ritalin concurrently. I take about 40mg vyvanse and 10mg ritalin in the morning and 10mg ritalin over the course of the day. The reason I got this prescription was that vyvanse by itself was kinda fucking with my writing style. I couldn't write a proper sentence--my syntax was all screwed up. RItalin didn't induce that kind of problem, but wasn't sufficient to fix my ADD. Therefore, he tried adding a mixture of both, and it works. I am efficient, and I can write too.

    I don't notice an excess in the cardiovascular effects. You would think I would, as my heart would skip a beat when I was taking effexor, but somehow, my BP is fine, and my pulse is also fine. In addition, I noticed that my heart would get kinda jumpy when I was just taking vyvanse, however, when mixed together, I feel lucid and have no cardiovascular problems. Yeah, I have no appetite, but I am not sure that is completely related to the medicines. They kinda synergize in my system and make me function. It might not be good for the brain, which may be increasing neurotoxicity and increasing oxidative stress, but I am functional. Also, people don't seem to notice that I am ultra speedy either, nor do I get that whole "I am on speed" effect. What causes a problem is if I start adding caffeine to this mix. If I drink caffeine with this mix, then I start getting heart issues. People think it is weird that I seem to be quite alert even though I never drink caffeine. I get that whole "you don't drink coffee?" How could you be a scientist and not drink caffeine? Too much dopamine is a bad thing. However, adderall/vyvanse have a larger effect on norepenephrine, while ritalin has more of an effect on dopamine reuptake, so they can work together effectively in small doses if you have a dopamine and norepinephrine deficiency.

    However, if taken in recreational doses, mixing the two might lead to some problems. Mixing the two doesn't seem so recreational.

    I will try t go through the receptor interactions tomorrow when I am not about to pass out to try to figure out why this is the case. (Sorry about the possibly jumbled message... I am about to go to sleep.)


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    Bluelighter Wizzle's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
    The Netherlands
    I have taken cocaine while already on amphetamines and it did seem like a normal (but strong) coke high for as long as the coke lasted.

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    ^Agreed, though at the dose I was doing and ROA it would have been very odd indeed were it otherwise. Glad I put that shit down when I did.

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    Yes you can mix it, but I would only use the Ritalin as a booster for the Adderall, and not try to get them to peak at the same time.....Ritalin being the stronger reuptake inhibitor of dopamine and Adderall being both the releaser of dopamine as well as the uptake inhibitor of both dopamine and norepinephrine, Ritalin could further reduce your bodys ability to break down the excess dopamine released by the Adderall.....It could be a recipe for overdose or toxicity if you use them at the peak of Adderall, but seem to be safe enough if you use it at the tail end of Adderall to prolong its effects.....In fact, some people are medically prescribed the combo of Ritalin and Amphetamine (Such as Adderall) safely.....Keep in mind that even a "regular" dose for an ADHD patient can be a huge dose for a noob and you dont necessarily need 'more' to get the desired effect. You can always add more later. Taking away requires an ambulance ride.

    I am not using these recreationally or to substitute for an amphetamine addiction, but....I was recently prescribed Adderall XR 30mg, which is the same mg/day I had been taking of Ritalin which did nothing to improve my overall energy levels. I had 15mg of Ritalin in my system from the morning, then tried the Adderall as soon as I got it on the same day. I had no problems at all. It was fine.

    For fatigue and narcolepsy Adderall works better. A lot better. A whole lot better. My dopamine is already depleted from a long term course of pain medication and I am in the tapering process. Ritalin is a dopamine reuptake inhibitor and I have low it did very little for me. With Adderall its a weak reuptake inhibitor but a stronger releaser as well of dopamine. That is why Adderall will continue to work despite dopamine or adrenal fatigue better than ritalin or caffeine will.

    I know this is an old thread, but I found it and the info was relevant for myself (before I decided to take it). What I am posting might be relevant to somebody else who needs this info.

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    Unless you take a high enough dose of each to saturate the DAT/NET you'll get a additive response, MPH will reduce the maximal effect of amphetamine however by preventing its uptake via DAT/NET. So unless you're on a massive dose you'll get a additive response, and if you're on the maximum dose... call a doctor...

    Hope this clarifies

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