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From Nemours' KidsHealth
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- Could ADHD Be Hereditary?
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- Helping Kids Cope With Cliques
- Taming Tempers
- Connecting With Your Preteen
- Helping Kids Deal With Bullies
- Kids and Alcohol
- Teaching Your Child Self-Control
- Disciplining Your Child
- What Is ADHD?
- Your Child's Habits
- Taking Your Child to a Therapist
- About Teen Suicide
- Talking to Your Child About Drugs
- Cyberbullying: New Problems, New Tactics
- Marijuana: What Parents Need to Know
- Drugs: What Parents Need to Know
- Disciplining Your Toddler
- The Rise of Psychiatric Diagnoses in Younger Kids
- 5 Ways to Bully-Proof Your Kid
- Helping Teens Who Cut
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Does Ritalin Have Side Effects?
My child has just been diagnosed with ADHD, and the doctor put him on Ritalin. Are there any side effects I should be concerned about?
Ritalin is just one of many medications doctors use to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Ritalin, also known as methylphenidate, works by allowing children with ADHD to concentrate and focus at school and at home.
As with other psychostimulants, each child can respond somewhat differently. Many kids using Ritalin have few, if any, side effects. Others experience side effects like stomachaches, insomnia, decreased appetite, growth problems, irritability, and blood pressure problems.
To learn more about ADHD, various treatments, and possible side effects, talk to your doctor.
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: November 2010
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