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Bipolar and ritalin



New member
Nov 5, 2020
Hi, I'm new here so sorry if this post is inappropriate.

I was wondering whether Ritalin could induce hypomania when you're bipolar.


Well-known member
Apr 15, 2020
London, UK
Dear Thesuburbanrevolt,

Welcome to forum and feel free to ask whatever questions come to your mind. Before my first bipolar episode, I was prescribed Ritalin (Concerta) for ADHD. I was always bright and capable, but I struggled with concentration and hyperactivity which took a serious toll on my grades in high school. The medication really helped. I was on it for approximately 2.5 years and it really helped turn my life around. However, after finishing school, I decided to ditch the Ritalin, due to side effects and a desire to not always be dependant on medication to work.

When I entered university, I would take it only occasionally, when I had a big project or assignment. My first manic episode came slap bang in the middle of exam season. Due to my racing thoughts, I found it difficult to concentrate, so I went back to the ritalin. Funnily enough, despite it making my mood symptoms worse, I was still able to concentrate and I passed my exams. I would not recommend that anyone does this, as it made my mania far worse and I became delusional and even psychotic.

There has been research to show that for people with comorbid Bipolar and ADHD, who have been adequately stabilised using mood stabilisers or antipsychotics, it is safe to be treated with medicines such as Ritalin for ADHD. Since, I have been stable for a few months now on Lamotrigine and Aripiprazole I have decided to resume the treatment of ADHD. However, since antipsychotics interfere with the action of stimulants, I opted to go for a non-stimulant option. About a month ago my psychiatrist started me on Strattera and it has been going reasonably well so far.

I am not a doctor, so I can't give you a definitive answer, so really you should speak with your psychiatrist. I will say that it is important to have a holistic approach to treating mental health especially in co-morbid cases its important to treat both disorders without making the other one worse.

Hope this helps and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

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