Ativan for ADHD in Children

Frequently associated with anxiety and depression, ADHD is easily treated in adults. However, it can be far more difficult to ease the anxiety in children. Ativan for ADHD is now a common treatment and Ativan for children can be a good way to reduce anxiety.

Medications are often the best way to help children control their anxiety. However, this can also cause kids to become more hyperactive, depending on the medication. Ativan for children is one of a family of drugs that includes Diazepam (Valium), Clonazepam (Klonopin), Alprazolam (Xanax) and several others under the name of Benzodiazepine.

Ativan (Lorazepam) boosts the amount of GABA or Gamma Amino Butyric Acid produced by the body. GABA works as a neurotransmitter to help control nerve hyperactivity in the brain and Ativan has fewer side drug interactions than other similar drugs. It also flushes out of the system faster than the other drugs in the Benzodiazepine family.

Ativan for ADHD comes in 3 forms. Tablets are available in 0.5 mg, 1 mg and 2 mg doses while the oral solution comes in just one concentration of 2 mg per ml. Injections are also available in dosages of 2 or 4 mg per ml. Your child's doctor will prescribe medication according to the needs of the child.

Side Effects of Ativan

As with all medications, there are side effects associated with Ativan for children. The common side effects include:

depressed mood
thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself
feeling light-headed
blurred vision
muscle weakness
lack of balance or coordination
amnesia or forgetfulness
trouble concentrating
appetite changes
skin rash
sleep disturbance
loss of orientation

It's important to avoid stopping the drug abruptly after it has been taken for a while. Sudden withdrawal can cause tremors and muscle cramps, sweating, vomiting and even seizures. Some side effects such as depression, agitation and sleep problems may continue after the drug has been stopped.

While Ativan tends to interact with fewer drugs, it can still cause problems in some cases, so care should be taken. Consider all other drugs that your child is taking for other health problems and make sure your doctor knows of them.

Barbiturates may cause problems. These include Amobarbital (Amytal), Mephobarbital (Mebaral), Butabarbital (Butisol), Phenobarbital (Luminal) and Secobarbital (Seconal). MAO inhibitors should also be avoided when using Ativan. These inhibitors include Rasagiline (Azilect), Isocarboxazid (Marplan), Tranylcypromine (Parnate) and Selegiline (Eldepryl).

Medications for psychiatric disorders like Haloperidol (Haldol), Chlorpromazine (Thorazine), Pimozide (Orap), Mesoridazine (Serentil) and Thioridazine (Mellaril) and narcotics like Codeine, Butorphanol, Levorphanol, Meperidine (Demerol), Methadone, Morphine, Oxycodone and Propoxyphene are also potential troublemakers, as are many antidepressants, including:
Amitriptyline (Elavil,Etrafon), Amoxapine (Ascendin),Citalopram (Celexa), Clomipramine (Anafranil), Desipramine (Norpramin), Doxepin (Sinequan),Escitalopram (Lexapro), Fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), Fluvoxamine. (Luvox), imipramine(Janimine, Tofranil), nortriptyline (Pamelor), paroxetine (Paxil), protriptyline (Vivactil), sertraline(Zoloft), or trimipramine (Surmontil).

Treating ADHD without Medication

Depression is often associated with ADHD. For some children, medication can complicate this and other problems linked to ADHD. However, many children have been able to avoid the use of Ativan for children and other medications completely by combining changes in their diet with the use of natural herbal treatments that work by helping relax the hyperactive child while improving brain activity. Our family uses focus formula for ADHD from Native Remedies.

Learn about more than Ativan for ADHD Children on the ADHD medications page.

You may also be interested in:
ADHD Medications for Teens
Side Effects of ADHD Medication