How Does ADHD Medication Work?
ADHD medication works by increasing levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, chemicals which influence attention and concentration. By targeting these two chemicals, medication can help individuals focus better.
Medication can be beneficial for some people with ADHD more than others, but it does not cure the disorder. Additionally, it’s essential to note that a combination of medicine, therapy, behavior changes and skills training may work best in certain cases.
Your doctor will select the appropriate medicine for you or your child based on individual needs and potential side effects. They may try various doses and schedules before finding one that works best in each individual.
Stimulant medications are the most widely prescribed treatment for ADHD. These can be taken once or twice a day, depending on the medication; some are short-acting and work quickly while others take longer to take effect and remain in your system longer.
Stimulant-induced insomnia is a common side effect, lasting during and after treatment has ended. To manage this effect, avoid taking doses in the afternoon or evening and create healthy sleep routines and schedules.
Some children taking stimulants may experience temporary growth delays. This is only temporary and won’t affect your child’s final height.
Your doctor will closely monitor your or your child’s progress to ensure the medication works as prescribed and has no untoward reactions. They’ll check height, weight and blood pressure to confirm compliance with taking the medicine as directed.