All the symptoms you have mentioned are very typical side effects of Ritalin. I agree with Murtle's suggestion to have your son's dose checked; he should not be a 'zombie'. In some instances it is necessary to switch to Concerta or Straterra as the side effects may be less severe, each person responds differently to the various medications. It is very difficult to say whether or not he will require medication for the rest of his school life, some children do while others can cope without. I wonder if you have been informed of the various drug free treatments for learning difficulties? Neurofeedback and the Dore programme are two examples of treatments which require no medication and therefore have no side effects such as the ones you are concerned about.
All the best.
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