Non Stimulant ADHD Meds
Non stimulant adhd medications are medications that help manage symptoms of ADHD without stimulating the brain. They function by balancing out chemical levels in the brain to enhance concentration and impulse control.
Contrary to stimulants, nonstimulant medications like methylphenidate (Ritalin) or amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (Adderall) do not increase the amount of neurotransmitters in your brain. As such, they have less potential for abuse and side effects than stimulants.
Atomoxetine, commonly marketed under the brand name Strattera, is a norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor that can be taken once or twice daily. This medication may be prescribed for children or adults who find stimulants too stimulating or who do not get enough benefit from them.
Clonidine, commonly marketed under the brand names Catapres and Kapvay, acts as a norepinephrine modulator and should be taken twice daily. Studies have demonstrated that taking this medication helps improve concentration while decreasing hyperactivity and impulsivity in approximately 55 percent of kids who try it out.
Guanfacine (marketed under the brand names Tenex and Intuniv) is an alpha agonist that acts by stimulating certain receptors in the brain to release thenorepinephrine, a chemical which helps improve focus, reduce hyperactivity and impulsivity. It may be prescribed for children or adults who aren’t receiving enough benefit from FDA-approved medication or experiencing side effects from other ADHD medications.
Stimulants are the go-to treatment for ADHD, but they’re not suitable for everyone. About three out of every 10 people don’t respond well to them or experience side effects from taking the medication.