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From Nemours' KidsHealth
- 5 Ways to Bully-Proof Your Kid
- Helping Kids Deal With Bullies
- Your Child's Habits
- Taking Your Child to a Therapist
- Teaching Kids Not to Bully
- Talking to Your Child About Drugs
- Taming Tempers
- Developing Your Child's Self-Esteem
- 504 Education Plans
- Cough and Cold Medicine Abuse
- Helping Teens Who Cut
- Could ADHD Be Hereditary?
- Teaching Your Child Self-Control
- How Can I Help My Child Overcome Shyness?
- My Child Is Stealing
- Disciplining Your Toddler
- Disciplining Your Child
- Marijuana: What Parents Need to Know
- Connecting With Your Preteen
- Helping Kids Cope With Cliques
- Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)
- Kids and Alcohol
- Childhood Stress
- About Teen Suicide
- Temper Tantrums
- Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Special Needs Factsheet
- Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Does Ritalin Have Side Effects?
- Social Phobia Special Needs Factsheet
- Separation Anxiety
- Anxiety Disorders Special Needs Factsheet
- ADHD Special Needs Factsheet
- What Is ADHD?
- Autism Special Needs Factsheet
- Anxiety, Fears, and Phobias
- A to Z: Panic Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder Special Needs Factsheet
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Special Needs Factsheet
- Drugs: What Parents Need to Know
- Eating Disorders
- Cutting Special Needs Factsheet
Trusted External Resources
Does Ritalin Have Side Effects?
My son has just been diagnosed with ADHD, and the doctor put him on Ritalin. Are there any side effects I should know about?
Ritalin is just one of many medicines doctors use to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Ritalin (also known as methylphenidate) helps kids with ADHD concentrate and focus at school and at home.
Ritalin is a stimulant, a type of medicine that increases alertness. As with other medicines, each child can respond to it differently. Many kids using Ritalin have few, if any, side effects. Others have side effects like stomachaches, insomnia, decreased appetite, growth problems, irritability, and blood pressure problems.
Be sure to talk with your son's doctor if you need more information about ADHD, as well as its treatments and their possible side effects.
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: May 01, 2017