Medications to Treat ADHD (cont.)

Side Effects of ADHD Drugs

ADHD drugs sometimes have side effects, but these tend to happen early in treatment and are usually mild and short-lived. The most common side effects of ADHD drugs include:

In most cases, side effects can be relieved using one of the following strategies:

  • Changing the drug dosage
  • Adjusting the schedule of medication
  • Using a different drug

Always consult your health care provider before making any changes in your ADHD treatment regimen.

Rarely, medications for ADHD can cause more serious side effects. For instance, some stimulants are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems and sudden death in certain at-risk people. They may also exacerbate psychiatric conditions like psychosis, depression, or anxiety. So before you or your children start taking any ADHD medication, make sure you talk to a doctor about all of the potential risks.

WebMD Medical Reference


Medscape: "Once-Daily Guanfacine Approved to Treat ADHD."

Intuniv web site.

Attention Deficit Disorder Resources web site: "Medication Management for Adults with ADHD."

Strattera web site.

National Institute of Mental Health web site: "Questions Raised about Stimulants and Sudden Death." web site: "ADD & ADHD Medications."

Reviewed by Patricia Quinn, MD on September 02, 2012

© 2012 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Last Editorial Review: 9/2/2012


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