Is It Safe To Have Ritalin While Breastfeeding?

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ADHD and sudden mood swings can create several complications while you are nursing. It can make it difficult for you to concentrate and get a good night’s sleep. Even though you believe in your doctor who prescribes you Ritalin to improve your concentration and sleep, you feel skeptical about the safety of the drug.

If you nodded along to either of the above concerns, then consider reading our post. Scroll down to learn all about Ritalin while breastfeeding and how safe it is to have.

What Is Ritalin?

Ritalin is popular as the trade name of the drug methylphenidate hydrochloride. The medication belongs to a class of medicines popular as central nervous system stimulants or CNS stimulants. The drug supports in modifying levels of neurotransmitters namely, norepinephrine and dopamine in your brain and supports the transmission of signals in your nervous system. Ritalin is popular for being highly effective in treating ADHD and narcolepsy during breastfeeding (1).

[ Read : Is It Safe To Take Antibiotics While Breastfeeding ]

Is It Safe To Have Ritalin While Breastfeeding?

Even though there is no concrete information about the safety of Ritalin while breastfeeding, certain medical studies reveal that the drug does pass through into the breast milk in quite low amounts. Minimal amounts of Ritalin in the breast milk don’t affect the infant negatively. Make sure you have low doses of Ritalin while nursing your baby, and only after consulting your doctor. If you need to take high doses of the drug, it is safe to go for bottle-feeding your infant to prevent exposure of side effects of the drug to your baby (2).

Health Benefits Of Ritalin While Breastfeeding:

Even though Ritalin is popular for altering the levels of neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine in your brain, the drug also offers you certain health benefits and aids in treating certain disorders. Here we list some benefits of having Ritalin while nursing a newborn.

1. A Cure For Narcolepsy:

Narcolepsy prevents you from keeping awake in situations when you can’t afford to doze off. When suffering from the sleeping disorder, you may feel sleepy while driving or working. Having the right doses of Ritalin can help minimize the symptoms of narcolepsy while nursing your infant. The drug has positive effects on the sleep parameters in nursing mothers, improves the restorative value of your sleep, and supports normal functioning of your nervous system (3).

2. Treats ADHD:

Ritalin is highly effective in treating attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in nursing mothers. The drug increases the levels of dopamine in your brain to improve neurological functions, cognitive functions and treat various disorders such as ADHD. The medication enhances your concentration abilities and encourages the goal-achieving behavior. Having the right doses of the drug prevents the frequency and occurrence of panic attacks and enhances your concentration (4).

3. Minimizes Obesity:

Having the right doses of Ritalin also prevents you from turning obese while nursing your newborn. The medication boosts your metabolic rate and reduces your appetite substantially. When you have the medication along with appropriate workout and diet plans, the drug helps you stay fit and in shape enjoying good health (5).

[ Read : Is It Safe To Take Painkillers While Breastfeeding ]

4. Prevents From Turning Lethargic:

Improved levels of dopamine resulting due to the intake of Ritalin reduce weakness and prevent you from turning lethargic. The medication refreshes your mood and helps you live an active life (6).

Ritalin And Breastfeeding -The Side Effects:

Even though low doses of Ritalin does not affect your health and infant while breastfeeding, having high doses can have certain side effects. Find below potential side effects of high doses of the drug.

  • Palpitations
  • Increased blood pressures
  • Anxiety
  • Aggressive or unusual behavior
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Nausea
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Stomach pain
  • Fever
  • Blurred vision (7)

If you suffer from any of the above side effects after having the drug while nursing your infant, see your doctor as soon as possible.

Did you have Ritalin while nursing your infant? How did you benefit from it? Share your experience with fellow moms on Ritalin breastfeeding. Leave a comment below.

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