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Why are some children prescribed non-stimulant ADHD medication?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Children and adolescents are prescribed non-stimulant attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) medications for several reasons. First, some young people do not respond well to stimulant medications. This is very rare, though. The National Resource Center reports that 80% of people experience a reduction in their ADHD symptoms when they take stimulant medications.

Another reason for taking non-stimulant medications is that stimulant drugs may interact with medicines taken for other medical conditions. A third reason that children take non-stimulant medications is because they are unable to tolerate the side effects of stimulant medications. For these young people, non-stimulant medications, including anti-depressants and atomoxetine, are given to treat ADHD.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.