Posted by: Lesley | 2010-01-28



Good morning.

I would like to query what is the lowest dosage for Ritalin? Does the higher the mg mean the longer the effects? I just need to know how does the doctor determine the dosage. My son is on 10mg, and I feel is spaces him out too much and his teacher feels its no longer affective.Wont increasing the dosage make him space out even more! He needs something that will last at least 6 hrs. I was considering putting him on stattera,but when I googled it, I got so scared as the side-effects seem worse.I dont know if its because Ritalin has benn studied and around longer.Sorry to ask so many questions, but am just trying to get some clarity and whats best for my baby. He is still struggling with his maths at school and actually failed it last year. His average with his other subjects. He is 10 yrs and in Grade 5.

Expert's Reply


ADHD Expert

Dear Lesley,
The correct dosage is dependant on a number of factors such as weight, age and degree of inattention. Often one of the determining factors of whether to increase the dose or not depends on the child's weight; as Ritalin suppresses the appetite upping the dose with an already underweight child would not be advisable. There are two types of Ritalin, namely short acting which is taken 2-3 times a day and long acting taken once a day. From your post I am not certain which one your son is on but perhaps discussing this with your pediatrician would yield more answers.

Strattera does come with its own set of side effects and it is almost impossible to say which ones your son might have. It is a competitive medication on the market to Ritalin and some people do prefer it as it is not a stimulant like Ritalin.

Your pediatrician may be more comfortable with Ritalin, however, you can discuss other options with him/her as well as the suitability of increasing your son's dose.

Good luck,

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