ADHD medications are often prescribed for children and adults. Some of these drugs include Adderall, Concerta, Dexedrine, Focalin, Metadate CD, Methylphenidate, Novo-Cortef, Strattera, Vyvanse, and others.
What Are ADHD Medications Used For?
ADHD medications are used for treating symptoms of ADHD. These medications work by increasing levels of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine helps control behavior and attention. People with ADHD tend to have lower levels of dopamine than other people. This imbalance makes it difficult for them to pay attention and concentrate.
What Are The Side Effects Of ADHD Medications?
There are several side effects associated with ADHD medication use. Most commonly reported side effects include headaches, stomach upset, dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, constipation, and blurred vision. In rare cases, these medications can cause serious side effects such as seizures, hallucinations, suicidal thoughts, and even death.
Can You Take ADHD Medications While Pregnant?
If you take ADHD medication while pregnant, there is no evidence that it will harm your baby. However, some studies suggest that taking certain ADHD medications during pregnancy may lead to birth defects. Talk to your doctor before starting any new medication.
Can ADHD Medications Be Taken By Children?
ADHD medications are safe for children as young as 6 years old. There is no need to wait until a child reaches puberty before treating them with ADHD medications.
Can ADHD Medications Cause Weight Gain?
If you take ADHD medication, you might notice weight gain. This is because these drugs work by increasing levels of dopamine, a chemical found in the brain. Dopamine helps control appetite and energy levels. However, some people who take ADHD medications also develop an eating disorder called binge eating. Binge eating occurs when a person eats more food than normal during a short period of time. People who have binge eating often feel guilty afterwards.
How Does Stimulant Medication Work?
Stimulant medication works by increasing the amount of neurotransmitters (dopamine and noradrenaline) in the regions of the brain responsible for the mental processes involved in self-regulation. Neurotransmitters are like chemical messengers in that they carry information in the form of electrical impulses from the presynaptic nerve terminal of one neuron (or nerve cell), across the synapse (or gap between two neurons), to the receptor of the next neuron. If neurotransmitter levels are low within the nerve synapse electrical impulse transmission between neurons is interrupted, which compromises brain function.
Individuals with ADHD are thought to have low levels of dopamine and noradrenaline in the regions of the brain responsible for oneâ€™s executive functions. Executive functions are the mental process you rely on to regulate or control your thoughts, words, behaviour and emotions. As stimulant medication increases the availability of dopamine and noradrenaline within the nerve synapse it helps facilitate the transmission of electrical impulses between neurons which improves an individual with ADHDâ€™s brain function and executive function control.
When taken at therapeutic doses, stimulant medication does not produce the euphoric effects associated with drug abuse in individuals with ADHD.