Do You Have ADHD and Looking To Conceive? Here’s What You Need To Know

Why be concerned?
According to health experts, it’s important and could mean a number of things and have exact effects on the fetus. Much concern would be due to the ADHD meds such as Ritalin or Concerta that are often taken for the disorder.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found, between 2003 and 2015, there was more than a quadrupling in the number of young adult women filling prescriptions for ADHD medications. The greatest increases were seen among women in their late 20s and early 30s (childbearing ages).

“Half of all pregnancies in the United States are unplanned, and women may be taking prescription medicine early in pregnancy before they know they are pregnant,” said Coleen Boyle, director of the CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities.

“Early pregnancy is a critical time for the developing baby. We need to better understand the safest ways to treat ADHD before and during pregnancy,” Boyle added in a CDC news release.

The researchers reported that the rate of ADHD medication use rose 700 percent among women aged 25 to 29, while it rose 560 percent among women aged 30 to 34.

Boyle said, “If a woman is pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, she should talk to her healthcare provider about all medicines she is taking. Pregnant women should also talk to their doctor before stopping or starting any medicine.”

Lorber agreed, “There are definitely risks [with ADHD meds], and further studies are needed,” he said. “But for now, pregnant women should be very cautious in using stimulants and need to consult with a doctor.”

If you or someone you know has ADHD and looking to conceive, we encourage that you seek assistance from your local healthcare provider. To find out more about ADHD, visit our Health Conditions tab on

SOURCES: Matthew Lorber, M.D., psychiatrist, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, news release, Jan. 18, 2018

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