Becoming Tolerant To Ritalin?


Asked by Christine-momofZack

Becoming Tolerant To Ritalin?

My son is 6 yrs old & has adhd. He has taken clonidine 2 help in sleep @ night, focalin, adderall (neither of those 2 worked), daytrana gave him a rash, but worked. Ritalin LA was the miracle drug, 20 mg, until he grew tolerant 3 1/2 mos in2 taking it. His behavior became awful & the problems in school reverted back 2 how he was b4 the Ritalin began. So 2day he took Intuniv (prescribed by his dr) 4 the 1st time. She was wary about pushing him up 2 30 mg of Ritalin & wanted us 2 try Inuntive b4 increasing the Ritalin. He took it at 8:10 this AM, played his t-ball game, played out in the yard with his sister & is now taking a nap (he still always naps on the weekends). I didn't notice anything different in him this AM, still very hyper, got upset easily over a couple of things, talked a lot and argued with me a couple of times. I know it's only, literally been 6 hrs on this new drug so I will wait and see...I read it takes a little bit to c the effect. Has anyone else had experience with their children becoming immune 2 the stimulants? The Ritalin was helping him SOOOO much, I just can't believe it wore off like that?!?!? I am really hoping this Intuniv will help him, it sounds very promising from it's website and other postings.


Thank you for your question and welcome to

I am not a medical professional and would not be able to give you medical advice. If you have questions or concerns about medications, these would best be addressed with your doctor or pharmacist.

That said, I can tell you I raised a son with ADHD (he is grown now) and so do have some personal experience with stimulant medication. I have also spoken with a number of parents through this website and other websites I have worked with. How stimulant medications are metabolized is different in each person, this is why some medication works for one person but doesn't work for another. Changes in a child's metabolism can result in medication working differently than it did previously.

Certain foods, such as citrus (for example orange juice) can interfere with the absorption of the medication and interfere with how it works. It is recommended that this medication be taken before eating, however, that sometimes causes problems, especially in young children, because it can decrease appetite and then the child doesn't want to eat. In those cases, it might be recommended that the medication be taken an hour after eating.

You may want to speak with your pharmacist about other foods that can interfere with Ritalin and the best time to take the medication. Changes in your son's diet or even when he takes the medication, may be contributing to the effectiveness.

For more information:

ADHD - Frequently Asked Questions About ADHD Medications

ADHD Drug Information


Answered by Eileen Bailey