Psychiatric Mental Health, part 24: Therapies - ADHD Medications

by Cathy Parkes June 12, 2023 Updated: August 10, 2023 2 min read

Full Transcript

Hi, I'm Cathy with Level Up RN. In this video, we will be talking about central nervous system stimulants, which are used to treat ADHD as well as conduct disorder and narcolepsy. And at the end of the video, I'm going to give you guys a little quiz to test your knowledge of some of the key points I'll be covering. So definitely stay tuned for that. And if you have our Level Up RN flashcards, definitely pay close attention to the bold red text on the back of this card because those represent the most testable facts that you are likely to see show up on a nursing school exam. Central nervous system stimulants include medications such as methylphenidate and amphetamine mixtures. And just like the name of this drug class implies these medications cause CNS stimulation. This, in turn, increases mental alertness and attention in patients with ADHD. Key side effects of CNS stimulants include insomnia, arrhythmias, decreased appetite, and weight loss. So, because this drug class causes decreased appetite and weight loss, we are absolutely going to monitor our patient's weight and growth throughout therapy. And because this drug class causes insomnia, we would never administer a CNS stimulant at night. So these are things that you are very likely to get tested on in nursing school. For children taking a central nervous system stimulant, periodic drug holidays are often recommended. This means not giving the medication to the child on weekends and/or during summer months in order to promote growth during those times.

All right. It's quiz time, and I've got three questions for you. First question. What is the mode of action of methylphenidate? The answer is stimulation of the central nervous system. Question number two. What time of the day should amphetamine mixtures be administered? The answer is earlier in the day, such as in the morning because these medications can cause insomnia. Question number three. When a child is taking a CNS stimulant, their blank should be monitored throughout therapy. The answer is their weight. All right. I hope you did great with that quiz, and I hope you found this video to be helpful. Take care and good luck with studying.


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