appear to help children
with ADHD by increasing the levels of norepinephrine in the brain.
Nonstimulant Medications for ADHD: How They Work
Higher concentrations of norepinephrine are thought to boost a person’s ability to pay attention and stay focused, while lessening hyperactivity and impulsive behavior.
This naturally occurring chemical in the body acts as both a stress hormone and a neurotransmitter, or chemical messenger.
WHat is norepinephrine?
norepinephrine is released by nerve cells (neurons) to send messages from one part of the brain to another — and from the brain to the rest of the nervous system.
Then, it gets reabsorbed into the neuron.
As a neurotransmitter,
selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI),
Some nonstimulants, called
block this reabsorption (or reuptake) to leave higher concentrations of norepinephrine in the brain.
work in other ways. While the exact mechanism in ADHD remains unclear, they likely help stimulate brain receptors that bind to norepinephrine.
on the other hand, are believed to help ADHD by blocking the action of molecules known to remove dopamine (another neurotransmitter), which indirectly boosts dopamine levels.
Dopamine is associated with attention, focus, pleasure, movement, and motivation.
Stimulants are the most commonly used medications to treat ADHD, but your child’s doctor may prescribe nonstimulants if stimulants aren’t effective or tolerable or there is a risk of substance abuse or addiction.