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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What medications are used to treat ADD in children?

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  • 1


    Serving the interests of children and young people with childhood language and related disorders View Profile

    Treatment for ADD/ADHD in children should be multifaceted, with medication being just one of the strategies included in a child's management plan. The main medications prescribed to treat ADD/ADHD are stimulant medications such as Dexamphetamine and Methylphenidate (Ritalin/Attenta/Concerta). Strattera is a newer drug that has also been introduced for management of ADD/ADHD. These drugs are highly regulated and require strict monitoring by health professionals. It can often take some trial and error to find what particular drug and dosage works for the individual, and this can change as a child grows and develops.

  • Dr Tim Edwards-Hart

    Clinical Psychologist, Psychologist

    Dr Tim Edwards-Hart is a clinical psychologist working with adults, young adults and adolescents (age 15+). He has expertise assessing and managing ADHD, anxiety, and … View Profile

    As CHI.L.D Association said, the most common medications for ADHD are stimulants such as Ritalin and Dexamphetamine. As far as medications go, these are very safe and have been used for treating ADHD effectively for over 70 years. Other medications, such as Strattera, were developed more recently and are typically only prescribed when there is a reason for not using stimulants. For younger children, it is recommended to first test behavioural strategies at home and school before trialling medication. For adults and older teens medication is often prescribed as a first treatment option.

    Whatever the age, for some people medication is sufficient, but it is more common to require additional support. Depending on the specific needs of each person, this support could involve help with diet, exercise, study strategies, sleep, anger, anxiety or feelings of hopelessness. This is where psychologists and other allied health professionals can be particularly useful in helping manage ADHD.

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