Compare Ritalin vs. Strattera

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Concerta (Methylphenidate)

Prescription only

Strattera (Atomoxetine)

Prescription only
Helps you focus and stay alert.

Concerta (Methylphenidate) is a first-choice treatment for ADHD. It comes in many different forms and is also available as a generic. That said, the immediate-release form needs to be taken more frequently than other alternatives.

4.8/ 7 average rating with 526 reviewsforRitalin
Helps you focus and stay alert.

Strattera (Atomoxetine) isn't considered a first-line medication for ADHD, but since it isn't a stimulant, it's still highly recommended.

4.3/ 7 average rating with 94 reviewsforStrattera
Upsides
  • First-choice medication to treat ADHD.
  • Concerta (Methylphenidate) is used in combination with counseling or other non-drug therapies to treat ADHD.
  • Available as a generic medication.
  • Available in many different forms: extended-release and immediate-release oral tablets, chewable immediate-release tablets, liquid, suspension, and skin patches.
  • Capsules can be opened and sprinkled in water or applesauce for people who don't like swallowing pills.
  • One of the few medications used to treat ADHD that's not a stimulant.
  • It isn't a controlled substance.
  • Strattera (Atomoxetine) is used in combination with counseling or other non-drug therapies to treat ADHD.
  • You usually only need to take it once a day.
Downsides
  • The immediate-release form needs to be taken two or three times a day.
  • After taking Concerta, the tablet shell can be seen in your stool, but don't be concerned since the medication was still absorbed by your body.
  • The second or third dose needs be taken by early afternoon, otherwise insomnia can affect you that night.
  • Patients should avoid alcohol since it'll cause worse side effects from Concerta (Methylphenidate).
  • It's a controlled medication and should be locked up to prevent potential abuse.
  • It's a second-line medication used to treat ADHD. Other medications are usually tried first.
  • It's only available as a brand name medication, so it can be expensive.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Chewable tablet
  • Oral solution
  • Liquid
  • Patch
  • Pill
Price
Lowest price near you
$27.74
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Lowest price near you
$106.04
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Reviews
526 
60%
think this treatment is worth it
42%
think this treatment works well
19%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Concerta (Methylphenidate)?

Leave a review
94 
46%
think this treatment is worth it
32%
think this treatment works well
24%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Strattera (Atomoxetine)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Concerta (Methylphenidate) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
10possible side effects
  • Nausea
    26%
  • Dry mouth
    20%
  • Decreased appetite
    16%
  • Insomnia
    15%
  • Changes in heart rate or blood pressure
    10%
  • Fatigue
    10%
  • Constipation
    8%
  • Dizziness
    8%
  • Somnolence
    8%
  • Erectile dysfunction
    8%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and warnings
  • Serious or life-threatening cardiovascular events

    History of heart problems

  • Aggressive behavior and psychosis

    History of psychotic episodes

    ...and 1 more risk factors

  • Long-term growth suppression

    Children ages 7 to 10

  • Abuse and dependence

    History of drug abuse

  • Seizures

    History of seizures

See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Suicidal thinking

    Age below 18

  • Serious or life-threatening cardiovascular events

    History of heart problems

  • Aggressive behavior and psychosis

    History of psychotic episodes

    ...and 1 more risk factors

  • Long-term growth suppression

    Starting Strattera (Atomoxetine) before puberty

See more detailed risks and warnings