Concerta is a stimulant based medication used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, otherwise known as ADD or ADHD.
It has the same active ingredient as Ritalin and all other Methylphenidate or stimulant-based medications.
It is often utilized as part of a comprehensive treatment program that may include behavioral therapy, neurofeedback, etc.
The treatment professionals that provide ADHD treatment often includes some combination of psychiatrists, medical doctors, psychologists, therapists, counselors, neurologists, child development specialists, and educational and family supports.
It comes in 18mg, 27mg, 36mg, or 54mg tablets and the starting dose is usually 18mg or 36mg once daily. It usually begins working within 30-60 minutes and has an average duration of about 10-14 hours.
Because ADHD medications affect every individual differently, what works for your neighbor may not work for you or your loved one. See this helpful guide to finding the best dosage.
- Works quickly.
- Given only once a day.
- Long lasting.
- Doesn't risk mid-day gap or rebound since medication is released gradually throughout the day.
- Wears off gradually so there is less rebound.
Disadvantages: Abuse Potential
Any stimulant may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person for whom it was prescribed. The full dose of this drug is released at once if crushed and snorted. Be sure to read about the dangers of abuse.
Comparison With Other ADHD Medications
Since this medication is a stimulant, the side effects are probably familiar to anyone who has ever consumed too much caffeine: nausea, loss of appetite, mild headache, sleep disturbances or insomnia.
In addition, weight loss or other weight changes may occur in a small percentage of people who take this medication. For more information, see this safety guide about weight loss.
If you experience any severe or unusual side effects, report them to your doctor immediately. If severe enough, report to your nearest hospital emergency room in order to get your symptoms stabilized.
Once discharged from the emergency room, contact your prescribing doctor to inform them of your condition and situation.
The medication can produce withdrawal symptoms in those who abruptly stop taking it, or by quitting "cold turkey." For information, read this important safety warning about withdrawal.
Inform your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following: difficulty swallowing or esophagus problems, and a history of Gastrointestinal blockage of the stomach or intestines.
Also report a family history of suicide, glaucoma, history of a heart attack, high blood pressure, history of a drug or alcohol abuse, liver disease, mental illness including anxiety, bipolar disorder, depression, or schizophrenia, motor tics or family history of Tourette's syndrome, overactive thyroid, or seizures.
Also, inform your doctor if you are taking or have recently taken an MAOI such as Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, or Parnate in last 14 days.
Report any allergic reactions to methylphenidate, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives, pregnant or trying to get pregnant, or breast-feeding.