ADHD
  • mommaof3mommaof3
    Posts: 36Member
    At the end of last school year, my sons teacher suggested that I take him and have him evaluated for ADD. On May 23 he was infact diagnosed (no surprise to me at all) I have always known in my heart that he needed this medication but now that it's actually written on paper I don't know that I want to give it to him! To be honest, the prescription is still in my purse, unfilled. Now, only 2 1/2 weeks into school, his new teacher is calling me about his "attention" problems :( What makes it even worse is that my son is 9 and very aware of what is going on and He has already refused to take the medicine because he thinks "something is wrong with him" :/ Do you have a child with Add? How does the medicine effect them? Did you even give them the medicine? Any and all suggestions are welcome here!
  • chaosmomchaosmom
    Posts: 4,186Member
    My ds13 has ADD (inattentive). We started with behavior modification techniques. Had him sitting right by the teacher so she could touch his shoulder when he was zoning out, broke up his asignments into 15-20 minute chunks with breaks in between, had a checklist on his desk to help him remember what to bring home (he forgot to use it lol). We struggled through until 6th grade when the assignments & expectations got too stressful for him to function. His grades had dropped & he was generally miserable. That's when we started medicine. We started with non-stimulants but they never helped & he had bad side effects. Moved on to Concerta which helped him for about a year & a half. Then switched to Vyvanse & has been on that for about a year. Side effects? With the Concerta, loss of appetite until it wore off then he pigged out in the evening. Vyvanse? Same as above for a while. But now, his body has adjusted & he actually eats some during the day. That's all that we saw. If you met him, you would never know he was medicated.
  • chaosmomchaosmom
    Posts: 4,186Member
    Just to add: don't let the school try to push you to medicating him if you don't feel like he needs it yet. You can get a 504 or IEP to do some behavior mod at school if his teacher isn't willing to cooperate without one in place.

    And as for your son thinking that something is wrong with him, explain that his brain, along with a lot of other people's brains, processes things in a different way. Not a bad way, not a wrong way...just different. And this medicine (if that's what you choose) will give him more control over the way his brain works.
  • mommaof3mommaof3
    Posts: 36Member
    Thank you so much for your words of advice! My biggest concern with the medicine is the "zombie" factor that I hear so many people speak of. I was glad to see your comment that you can't even tell your son is medicated! If I ever do decide on the medicine, I pray that we have the same results as that!
  • Rosie08
    Posts: 494Member
    You need to be aware that in certain states, they will not give a child a 504 plan unless they are medicated. Just make sure you know your rights.
  • meandmy243meandmy243
    Posts: 9,474Member
    My kiddo just started meds yesterday he's adhd and on ritalin.. he's short acting cause he has to eat but he had a major meltdown last night... school starts Tuesday.
    let them eat cake! because id rather have pie!!!
  • chaosmomchaosmom
    Posts: 4,186Member
    Yeah, if you get the zombie-like moods, the medicine is either at too strong of a dose or it is the wrong one altogether. Start low & work your way up on dosing. If you or your child aren't comfortable with it, don't hesitate to ask for something different! There are so many different medications & formulations.
  • mommaof3mommaof3
    Posts: 36Member
    You guys talk about rights. I don't even know what a 504 plan is?
  • Marley25Marley25
    Posts: 103Member
    I've got two adhd'ers and my 15 year has been on concerta since she was 7. She can tell when she hasn't had her pill and likes the control she has. We really didn't need to iep her until high school when the expectations became higher. We started with a low dose and have changed it with weight. I let her pig out when her pill wears off around 8pm. She's healthy.
  • pjlmom
    Posts: 4Member
    I have one add, boy 9 and one adhd, boy 7. I have them both on the daytrana patch. I like it because I can put it on 2 hours before they wake up and it saves our mornings. They also take adderoll. We do behavior modification and I have gone more the Dr Sears ndd book diet. With all of this my boys have been making huge strides in school. They are making and good grades. Teachers actually want them.in their class! As far as the zombie thing... I have never dealt with that, but not all meds do the same thing to different kids.
  • Arewethereyet
    Posts: 10Member
    I have a 15yr old Ds he was diagnosed when he was in grade 4 in grade 10 now and we still are having a hard time. We do have meds but when he takes them he doesn't eat and he just isn't himself. He is struggling in school and where I live ADD is not a recognized learning disability so no IEP is available. I am really at a loss for what to do myself so any advice I would also welcome.
  • PurpleFlowersPurpleFlowers
    Posts: 6,043Member
    @pjlmom, does the Daytrana patch make your kids itch( where the patch is applied)? This is my 11 year olds new med and we tried it only once and he said it itched. Im going to try it again today.
    Stay away from my chocolate and nobody gets hurt!

    I think I like who I am becoming...
  • pjlmom
    Posts: 4Member
    It did. Make sure you put it on a spot that isnt rubbed by a waist band and put it on before he wakes up- it takes 2hrs to get into their system...it stings a little, but mine got used to it fast. Also, it does leave red marks but it hasnt scarred or permanently marked either of my boys (very.fair skinned). Ask him to give it a week, it is so nice to remove the stigma of having to go to.the nurse to take meds. Let me know if you have any questions...we have used it almost 2 years.
  • pjlmom
    Posts: 4Member

    I have a 15yr old Ds he was diagnosed when he was in grade 4 in grade 10 now and we still are having a hard time. We do have meds but when he takes them he doesn't eat and he just isn't himself. He is struggling in school and where I live ADD is not a recognized learning disability so no IEP is available. I am really at a loss for what to do myself so any advice I would also welcome.






    Its all been trial and error for me. I have one that eats like a horse and on that refuses. I would try a different medication and have the foods he likes to eat avaliable.
    And let him eat when he is hungry...even if its 9pm and the kitchen is clean.


  • i wish i would have seen this earlier!! my ds8 was diagnosed with adhd, sensory issues and so much more.  we have tried different meds and nothing worked long term until we went to and amazing therapist who told us we should treat his anxiety before any adhd meds would work.  2 weeks later his anxiety is under control and now his adhd is getting there.
    many kids have this underlying anxiety issue that makes the adhd drugs not be effective, in our case without dealing with the anxiety his adhd was so much worst.

    good luck mama,  it sometimes gets worst before better.


  • Bubandsis
    Posts: 113Member
    My son is ADD I wish I would have never started him on meds cause where were from every month we have to call to get his RX which can take several days to get the dr to write than if he runs out hes so hyper . At first he was a zombie but after the med was adjusted you cant tell that hes on meds
  • momofdbbmomofdbb
    Posts: 10,900Member
    I have add I took ritaln when I was a kid. It didn't make me into a zombie but it was a lower dose. I took a pill in the morning and one at lunch. My only complaint was they tasted nasty! I took the am one with juice bug the afternoon was taken at the water fountain I haven't taken anything since High School.
    " Wibbly wobbly timey wimey ......." The Doctor
    " I'm a leafe on the wind..watch how I soar ." Wash :((
    " Oh the wall had it comming.' Sherlock Holmes
    yea I am geek !!
  • mommaof3mommaof3
    Posts: 36Member
    Can someone please explain a 504 plan or iep??
  • momofdbbmomofdbb
    Posts: 10,900Member
    I know IEP
    http://m.kidshealth.org/parent/growth/learning/iep.html
    My DS has one. We have a meeting at the start of the year maybe once in the middle and one at the end of the year. It puts things in place that work for your child. Like my DS has an aide that stays with him to help him and can take some tests oraly. Especially the standardized tests. He has small motor skill issues so oral or computer works best for him. He has aspergers syndrome.
    Now I don't know anything about 504 plans.
    " Wibbly wobbly timey wimey ......." The Doctor
    " I'm a leafe on the wind..watch how I soar ." Wash :((
    " Oh the wall had it comming.' Sherlock Holmes
    yea I am geek !!
  • boring_nameboring_name
    Posts: 670Member
    A 504 is similar to an IEP in that it provides accommodations for your child to make the environment more fitting for his/her needs.
    An IEP does have more protections under the ADA but they are similar. 

    My DS had an IEP until 3rd grade for developmental delay. At 9 in 4th grade he was diagnosed with ADD Inattentive. We chose not to medicate him. Instead I pushed for accommodations that I knew would be helpful in keeping him on task and making school a more comfortable environment. At the beginning of 6th grade he was further diagnosed with Tourette's and OCD.

    Options for accommodations can include (this is what helps my son)... preferential seating (near the front and near the teacher), buddy system on work (can work with a peer who can help him focus), reminders above and beyond what the rest of the class gets, in 4th &5th grade he had a 'recorder' who filled out his planner with the homework etc for the day. 

    He is now in 7th grade and doing GREAT! He still has many accommodations (including preferential seating and reminders) other options for him now include being able to leave the class if it's too chaotic for him (he has 5 options of rooms he can move to instead), he can have a manipulative (small toy to keep hands busy) at all times, assignments can be shortened as needed (all odd problems instead of all problems), verbalizing work (he can talk through problems and do reading work out loud at a low volume because it helps him focus). There are more.. those are the ones I can think of now. 

    Think of what things help him. The schools can't make the classroom all about one child but should make reasonable accommodations to help your son be successful. 
    B
  • boring_nameboring_name
    Posts: 670Member
    http://www.chadd.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Ask_the_expert2&Template=/CM/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=3070

    This has some really good information including specific question/answers. IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), ADA (American's with Disabilities Act) and Section 504 are also defined. 

    I hope this helps give you information to help make your DS successful in school! 

    I don't believe a public school (or any school receiving federal money) can refuse services if a parent chooses not to medicate. If that is happening it can and should be challenged. Public schools can not require them to be medicated or to stop medication either. That is interfering in the health choices of the family regarding a medical condition.. it can be equated to them refusing to allow a diabetic child access to services to support their medication or testing needs.
    B
  • Rosie08
    Posts: 494Member
    Ok. My masters is in special ed. As far as medication, some states have ruled they can refuse services if you don't medicate. Illinois is one. That's something you need to find out. You must educate yourself on bothfederal laws and state laws. And policy does change, so keep updated. This will help you to be your child's best advocate. I currently teach adults in a public school, but when I taught minors, I was constantly in trouble for ensuring parents knew their rights.

    This explains the differences( short on time) http://www.ed-center.com/504

    Keep all documents, take whomever you want with you to any meetings, and don't let one person tell you how it will be. PM me with any questions.


  • mentalmom
    Posts: 3Member
    My DD9 was diagnosed last spring with ADHD and ODD (oppositional defiance disorder). Since she was still doing well in school, grades were good and she wasn't getting in trouble, we decided to hold off until things started to change. Now that she is in 4th grade and things have gotten significantly harder, I wonder how long we should go before trying meds. All family is outraged that we were even considering meds, and that makes me nuts. It's not what I want, but if it is right for her, why should anyone be opposed? Grrrrr...
  • alexsmommy
    Posts: 62Member
    A little late to posting, but I'm fairly new here :o)

    My DS13 (Will be 14 in a week and a half) is in 8th grade and was diagnosed ADHD when he was in second grade. We started off on Aderol and it worked great. He took it in the mornings, it lasted until about 4 or 5 pm and didn't take it on weekends or days off of school This way he was only using it for school.He was on it until fourth grade when my now exH decided he didn't want him on it anymore. Grades went into the toilet. (DS is in honors classes BTW. Smart kid, not challenged enough, typical ADD) Finally in 6th grade after they threatened to keep him back a year I convinced exH to put him back on meds. This year we switched him to Stratera. He kept forgetting to take his meds in the morning and he hated that it killed his appetite. (He's really skinny, not even 70 pounds) Stratera is taken everyday and works everyday. It doesn't have the lack of appetite like the other meds nor does it have the "zombie" effect.

    When looking into ADD meds, try to avoid anything that is ritalin based. Aderol is. Ritalin is the worst when it comes to loss of appetite and the zombie effect. But, both of those can be avoided with the right doses for your child's weight. Sometimes it takes trial and error with meds.

    As far as rights and such, you have to check with your school systems and state. Our school system told us they could put him in LD classes if we wanted, but that was our only option. Our public school's answer to IEP's is to put them in LD classes. That was not an option for us. The other options were to home school him and at the time that wasn't feasible either, or a $3000 a month computer learning program for children with ADD. Yeah, that didn't happen either! LOL! Meds were our only route.
  • alexsmommy
    Posts: 62Member


    I don't believe a public school (or any school receiving federal money) can refuse services if a parent chooses not to medicate. If that is happening it can and should be challenged. Public schools can not require them to be medicated or to stop medication either. That is interfering in the health choices of the family regarding a medical condition.. it can be equated to them refusing to allow a diabetic child access to services to support their medication or testing needs.


    No, as a matter of fact that is illegal. No school can even tell you to go get your child diagnosed with ADD. They are not doctors. When I asked my DS's 2nd grade teacher if she thought he had ADD way back when she said I could have him checked if I wanted but she couldn't comment. I asked my mom about it since she is a teacher and she said it is illegal for them to tell a parent to go have their kid checked out or put on meds. They are not doctors, they are teachers.
  • Emmasmom04Emmasmom04
    Posts: 268Member
    my daughter, who is 7 has it. I kept ignoring the teachers until last year (2nd grade) that were telling me she was and she needed medication. I didn't want to put my baby on it, I figured she would grow out of it. Things got really bad around here. I did not take her to a pediatrician like a lot of people do. I took her to get some counseling, then to see a psychiatrist so I could be sure that's what it was and make sure it was the correct diagnosis.  She started taking a very low dose of concerta and it has helped so much. At first she didn't want to take it for the same reason, she thought there was something wrong with her. I just asked her to try it for a while and see if she felt better. Her grades have improved and she has started to make friends. It really has helped her so much.  The only negative side effect she has experienced is a decreased appetite, so I have to be on top of that.
  • sleevienickssleevienicks
    Posts: 45Member
    My daughter is 3, and has not been diagnosed yet - her father has ADHD, however, and so does my godson. I helped raise my godson and I just want you to know that medicating him was really difficult. He never, ever wanted to eat and go so very thin! In the summertime I never gave him his medicine. 

    Have you considered alternatives to medication? Like getting your son to drink something with a lot of caffeine in it in the mornings? I tried that with my godson and that seemed to help and it didn't affect his appetite like the ritalin did. He hated taking his medicine but didn't mind drinking a pop in the mornings :) It made things go a lot smoother! That's for sure!

    Good luck to you!!
  • etherieletheriel
    Posts: 790Member

    Have you considered alternatives to medication? Like getting your son to drink something with a lot of caffeine in it in the mornings? I tried that with my godson and that seemed to help and it didn't affect his appetite like the ritalin did. He hated taking his medicine but didn't mind drinking a pop in the mornings :) It made things go a lot smoother! That's for sure!



    Many people in our little league know me as the Coke mommy because I'll give my son with ADHD a Coke before his late-starting games to help him focus, maybe once every 2 weeks. It helps A LOT! However, I would not recommend giving any child a morning soda on a daily basis. Some meds do have side effects that many parents don't want to inflict upon their child, but soda with caffeine has harmful effects too, some of which could affect a child for a long, long time. Personally, I don't want to set up my child for a caffeine addiction like I have. Regular sodas also have a lot of empty calories from sugar and the diet sodas have chemicals that you don't want to give any child, much less one whose brain chemistry is already off-balance. Sodas are also really bad for teeth. I am all for giving a child with ADHD the occasional caffeinated soda to help him cope with the symptoms. However, giving him soda on a regular basis may be more harmful than the side effects from meds. Please weigh all your options when deciding what's best for your child with ADHD.
    If I'm not supposed to do it, how come I can?
  • Chocoholic
    Posts: 2,013Member
    I cannot write much of what I want to say here, as I am cautious due to my job.

    First of all, it is absolutely NOT illegal for me to tell a parent my concerns. No I cannot call and say "hello ms. X, your son/daughter has trouble focusing in my class, please take them to the Dr. and put them on meds". That's ridiculous.

    I can (and should) call when a students behavior is affecting their performance and say "hello ms. x, I am concerned about your child's behavior- here is a list of what has been happening, do you have any suggestions". If things do not improve, I can also ask that a student be evaluated by the school psychologist (with parental consent).

    The answer is chocolate. I don't care what the question is.
  • sleevienickssleevienicks
    Posts: 45Member
    etheriel said:

    Have you considered alternatives to medication? Like getting your son to drink something with a lot of caffeine in it in the mornings? I tried that with my godson and that seemed to help and it didn't affect his appetite like the ritalin did. He hated taking his medicine but didn't mind drinking a pop in the mornings :) It made things go a lot smoother! That's for sure!



    Many people in our little league know me as the Coke mommy because I'll give my son with ADHD a Coke before his late-starting games to help him focus, maybe once every 2 weeks. It helps A LOT! However, I would not recommend giving any child a morning soda on a daily basis. Some meds do have side effects that many parents don't want to inflict upon their child, but soda with caffeine has harmful effects too, some of which could affect a child for a long, long time. Personally, I don't want to set up my child for a caffeine addiction like I have. Regular sodas also have a lot of empty calories from sugar and the diet sodas have chemicals that you don't want to give any child, much less one whose brain chemistry is already off-balance. Sodas are also really bad for teeth. I am all for giving a child with ADHD the occasional caffeinated soda to help him cope with the symptoms. However, giving him soda on a regular basis may be more harmful than the side effects from meds. Please weigh all your options when deciding what's best for your child with ADHD.


    I'll agree with you that pop is bad for teeth, and empty calories are not great either. That being said, my godson was horribly thin due to the ritalin he was on. He was never eating. The empty calories from the pop were really of no consequence...and the acidity from the pop on his teeth wasn't an issue either, since he always brushed right afterwards. 

    Personally, I would rather my child have a caffeine addiction (which they will most likely have anyway) than an addiction to a medication like ritalin - or worse - which happens in cases of ADHD. Just seeing how my godson and husband struggle to get through their days sometimes has pushed me to search out other ways to help them focus. Caffeine does help, although there are side-effect, just like with any other drug.

    Caffeine intake does need to be strictly monitored in all children as too much of it can cause an increase in blood pressure and headaches. If once every couple of weeks works for your little guy, that's great :) I don't want to say my godson had pop every day - he didn't. In fact, in the summer months he went completely off his meds and caffeine unless he really felt he needed it, to give his body a break and put on a little weight. During the school year though, he really needed the extra concentration. 

    We took him to Orlando (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Etc.) one year and he was off his meds, my husband had not been diagnosed yet. So I was the only one without any "issues" lol. THAT was a fun trip! After our day at Epcot, we locked ourselves in the bedroom and left my godson to his own devices...I was so pissed at the way he behaved. Woke up the next morning and he had eaten a box of donuts, pack of chips, a Coke and passed out watching Hannah Montana. I took pictures to blackmail him with later :) But he did wake up and say he wanted to take his meds that next day. Thank God for small favors!
  • skooshkaskooshka
    Posts: 228Member
    I don't get it. what is the big deal with a kid having ADD?  Or ADHD?  My brother had it and my husband was diagnosed when they were little.  they turned out just fine.  I feel like it is just another thing they can medicate someone for.  Big money that drug industry....
  • Quietmom
    Posts: 2,986Member
    @skooshka it was a big deal to my child. He was struggling in school and at home. He was constantly angry at himself and even said he "couldn't" calm down and wanted to know why he "couldn't" be like the other kids. We tried every route... Change in diet (which we kept up anyways even though it didn't work since it was overall healthier), a consistent schedule and discipline and every other intervention I could find. We finally broke down 6 weeks ago and started him on a non stimulant ADHD medication, Intuniv, and he is literally a different child! I mean, I'm thrilled that it is not a stimulant or habit forming.. He still has his appetite. He sleeps better than he has in years and is like a different child in school. And we continued the other interventions which continue to help... So maybe your brother and husband were fine without medication, but my child's medication has changed the dynamic of our household for the better, and I certainly will pay the $20/month for the kind of change that we've seen. Each ADHD child is different and reactions to non medication/medication interventions differently.
    Like a river and a waterfall, a strong person channels their own path...
  • MorganD
    Posts: 3,436Member
    My SO has Adult ADHD. It's much worse when he *doesn't* take the medicine. We went to a dinner with his boss and co-workers, but forgot to take his meds that day, and I had to stay on top of everything he said, because he would just start spouting nonsense and random stuff. There's nothing *wrong* with him. He just needs a little extra help to focus. He takes this stuff called welbutrin. It's non-addictive and it works very effectively for him. Every child is different, but believe me, your son might do much better with the medicine. You'll see a big, obvious change. *hugs* Good luck.
  • My DS now 10 has struggled since kindergarten in school.  Every year he got further and further behind. I knew something was wrong but they kept passing him and refused to give him special help.  He even failed the Istep in 4th grade but they passed him because he had no attendance or discipline problems.  His Dr. told me to take him to a specialist.  It took 4 months to get in and they just wanted to try therapy, 3 months was their first available. I cried to his 5th grade teacher and she also has 2 boys with this obstacle.  She helped tailor a program for him and recommended I go back to the doctor.  I went to the doctor, begged for medication, received it...So long story short my son, upset and struggling since kindergarten, homework til 9pm only breaking for supper and still getting c, d, f's, is now a honor roll student this year off of 6 weeks of concerta and an excellent god sent teacher.  He is happy to take his medicine.  Happy to go to school, pays attention, loving, doesnt torment his brother constantly.  Some parents are strictly against meds but me and my child are extremely happy.  No bad side effects what so ever, just takes about an hour to kick in.  Im crying as I type this because there is hope and until this teacher came I was literally lost, confused and giving up.  I knew of nothing else to do.  If the school refused the 504 help, talk to the teacher, talk to the doctor, no one wants to see a child struggle and cry everyday because they just cant understand.  Theres HOPE!
  • SherryK76
    Posts: 11Member
    I have a boy 10 with ADHD,a boy 7 add,a boy 6 with ADHD.I have all them on Concerta 27mg ER..I just want to tell you that it was the HARDEST thing I had to do but,I was having problems with anger.My 10yr old has been on it for 2yrs now.We have seen only one side effect.It takes their hunger away and being that our boys are skinny we have had to make some changes.Now I want to say as soon as the Concerta has been in their system for about 8 hrs their hunger comes back full blown.So I keep healthy food and snacks in the house.We have tried other stuff before this but nothing worked so when my 7yr old hit his teacher and had to leave school the last 2 weeks of school Not to come back We had to do something.I will say that we are very open with our kids and I talk to them about what the Concerta can do for them and I tell them that if they don't like the way they feel then we will try something else.So I said to them that they had to give me 2 weeks and then we did a med review with the doctor and they got to tell the Dr how they feel and so.So I made it seam like they are choosing what they can do.I started them taking the Med.on a weekend so I could see if there was any problems and I was asking them through out the day how they feel and what they thought.The first day they kinda don't know what to do with them self because it calms them down.I could sit and talk with them and they could sit through a tv show.I hate to say it but it was nice.I am happy that they like to take their meds and are doing Great in school.Their grades have gone up and are a Joy to have at school.So remember the meds are not all bad.I wish you luck and I understand what you are going through and you are not alone.Please if you have any ?'s let me know.
  • alexsmommy
    Posts: 62Member

    I cannot write much of what I want to say here, as I am cautious due to my job.

    First of all, it is absolutely NOT illegal for me to tell a parent my concerns. No I cannot call and say "hello ms. X, your son/daughter has trouble focusing in my class, please take them to the Dr. and put them on meds". That's ridiculous.

    I can (and should) call when a students behavior is affecting their performance and say "hello ms. x, I am concerned about your child's behavior- here is a list of what has been happening, do you have any suggestions". If things do not improve, I can also ask that a student be evaluated by the school psychologist (with parental consent).



    Yes, maybe what I had said came across wrong? It's illegal (at least here) to say "your son/daughter has to be seen by a doctor...etc." but to call with concerns is a whole other thing. As long as doctors and meds aren't brought into the equation. And we don't have school psychologists in public schools around here so that may be different where you are from here. Maybe that is why there difference there? We had to pay to see one through our insurance.
  • Emmie
    Posts: 277Member
    mommaof3 said:

    What makes it even worse is that my son is 9 and very aware of what is going on and He has already refused to take the medicine because he thinks "something is wrong with him" :/ Do you have a child with Add? How does the medicine effect them? Did you even give them the medicine? Any and all suggestions are welcome here!



    I treated my ADHD kid with medications.  To me, the medications are like glasses for a kid who doesn't see well.  It isn't to "fix" a kid who is broken.  It is to help his brain be able to focus in on one thing at a time.  To help him be able to succeed at what he wants to succeed at.

    I also have ADD, diagnosed as an adult.  The medication helps me focus and organize.  But the main thing that I like about it is that it seems to settle my brain, so my thoughts aren't bouncing all over the place.

    Just FYI, my kid never saw the benefit from his meds.  He quit them in 11th grade, and only attended 1 yr of college.  I saw huge benefit, his grades were better, his teachers saw benefit.  Sometimes as a parent we have to make the decision for them.  With that said, meds aren't appropriate for everyone, but it can make life a lot easier for many of us with attention difficulties.
  • GarrettsmamaGarrettsmama
    Posts: 106Member

    Hi,

    My nephew is ADHD and has it really severe. He was diagnosed at the age of 6. He has been on different kinds of medicine. He is on adderal salts now. He is doing well on them and has been on them for awhile. He does not like to eat much when hes taking them and is tall and skinny. Not too skinny but thin. He has been on ritalin but it made him a zombie, and he also had depression issues. So you may not find the right kind of medicine right away. Be sure to watch his appetite and his moods and make sure he is alright. My nephew has it pretty bad compared to some other children he is able to out play all kids, and its hard to ware him out lol. He needs his medicine, and it helps him alot. He is a teenager now and mellowing out more but still has a hard time focusing, and still will get spurts or restlessness. He is becoming sensitive to caffeine now too. If he drinks a soda, or an energy drink it will make him more calm and mellow. I have heard of people not doing soda but just giving their children caffeine tabs from over the counter for their kids ADHD, or if their medicine is not on time. With having this medicine they do have to go in and get checked every few scripts before getting a new one so my sil would have a few days once in awhile with no medicine and would do that till she got more. He also takes benadryl at night to slow his heart beat, and help him be able to go to sleep at night. Some children can go without the medication and some cannot it is up to you to decide. It has really helped my nephew to live a more relaxed life. We have talked about it since last year he made a big deal about it and hated taking the pills. I spoke with him and told him that I notice his life is better with them since he does better in school, and at home. He doesnt get in as much trouble for being so hyper and out of control. School work and other things are easier for him as well. Just like some people need help to control their bodies from going into panic mode they need medicine to help anxiety, well he needs this to help him concentrate. He is in 8th grade and still taking them, and doing well. He is mellowing out a little more since he is a teen now. I do want to point out something though with him I do notice that being on a routine, and schedule does help him. He does not do well with changes, and one change in his day can mess him up. Or change in plans can also make his whole day fall apart. He works so hard to remember to do things and if they change it is hard on him. We make sure to let him know any changes in the day ahead of time so hes ready, and have a routine, and schedule for him so things are easier for him to do and remember. Maybe this might also help your child as well. I wish you the best and hope that things work out well, and you find the best solution for you and your family. All children are different but from my expereince with my nephew I do notice that deciding to give him the medication has greatly helped him. We went through the same choices, questions as you when he was younger; it is a big decision and I wish you the best!

    I am your mother 1st, and your friend 2nd! I will always love you, but it is my responsibilty to make you a decent man for when you get older. You will thank me once your married, and will understand why I did the things I did while raising you!
  • escapedmom
    Posts: 8Member

    Medication for a child with ADHD or ADD is a very personal decision.  You need to carefully weigh the risk and benfit.  I have a son who will be 9 years old tomorrow with ADHD.  I have know from the time he was 3 years old that he was different than most children.  I have 2 older sons and a daughter, and my youngest is so very different from them.  Before everyone jumps in and says every child is different, I know this, but with my little guy, his symptoms got to where they were dangerous.  His inability to focus started to impact his safety. ADHD isn't just all about focus in school and hyperactivity.  Another huge symptom is impusivity.  I know that all kids act impulsive from time to time, but my son would endanger his life wherever he went.  All that being said, it was still a difficult decision to put him on medication.  We finally made the medicaiton decision when he was 6 years old, and while it isn't a miracle drug, it does make his symptoms much more manageable.  I agree with Garrettsmama that routine is crucial!  The only side effect from medicaiton we have ever struggled with is a lack of appetite.  My son's school is aware of this issue, and we work together to make sure he gets enough  nutrition.  This includes a daily large breakfast before we give him any medication. 

    There is no right or wrong answer here,  The only thing you can do is think about what is best for your child.  I have been criticized in the past for making the choice to medicate my son, but I know in my heart and soul that it is what's best for him.  It gave him a fighting chance in school. He went from not being able to complete a single assignment without tears, anger and frustration to having almost perfect grades in math.  He still struggles with writing, but his reading level jumped up 3 levels after a week on medication.  He is in the right place.  Medicaiton isn't the solution for everyone.  Don't jump in before you are sure.

  • etherieletheriel
    Posts: 790Member

    @escapedmom Your DS sounds a lot like mine. My DS's impulsivity led to a fire in the trash can in his bedroom at 3:30 am. Scariest moment of my life!!!!!! Since being put on meds, he can stop and think for a moment before doing something dangerous and schoolwork is so much less of a struggle. Chores at home go much easier too.

    So glad we made the decision to medicate. You're right though, it isn't for everybody, but it was definitely the right decision for my son.

    If I'm not supposed to do it, how come I can?
  • BreakOutQueenBreakOutQueen
    Posts: 457Member

    i wish i would have seen this earlier!! my ds8 was diagnosed with adhd, sensory issues and so much more.  we have tried different meds and nothing worked long term until we went to and amazing therapist who told us we should treat his anxiety before any adhd meds would work.  2 weeks later his anxiety is under control and now his adhd is getting there.

    many kids have this underlying anxiety issue that makes the adhd drugs not be effective, in our case without dealing with the anxiety his adhd was so much worst.

    good luck mama,  it sometimes gets worst before better.




    This is the case with my youngest. Finally got someone to address his anxiety and now that is better, the adhd and meltdowns are more under control.
    What is the prescription you have? Try it on the weekend.if it is a stimulant medication. you will know I right away how it affects him.
    I have three adhd boys! Its been trial and error. Hang in there and look up the special education laws/ rights in your state. Demand some accomodations for him, he needs more than just meds, they all need extra help too.

  • roobear8408roobear8408
    Posts: 59Member
    They told me that my daughter was ADHD. I knew that she had some behavior problems, but I couldn't make myself believe that she was ADHD. So they put her on Medication, she was a complete holy terror. Much worse then before. I talked and talked to Doctors. They told me this medication takes time to work. Well the longer she was on the meds, I noticed other ticks that came along with this. Chewing and crying a lot. I finally had my fill and talk again with her Doctor I asked her if I could take my daughter off her meds to see what happens. Since then my child has been a lot better she is totally off her meds and living a very happy life. No more chewing or crying, she is an A and B students. Please make sure that before you start any meds that you are 100% sure that is what he needs.Do a lot of reading about the medication and it side effects. It could make things a lot worse. Best of luck to you!
  • dmgokey
    Posts: 53Member
    My daughter takes Vyvanse & its been a godsend. You'd never know she was medicated.
  • dadof3
    Posts: 53Member
    my granddaughter has it, she takes concerta.  It helps her out amazingly. She has improved so much in school its a miracle.  her mom used to get calls home every day but now it's like once or twice a month if that
  • breetheredheadbreetheredhead
    Posts: 53Member

    I am a little late on adding to this thread.....

    My son is 5 and I KNEW he had ADHD way before he was actually diagnosed. There are just those telltale signs, you know? His pre-k year was so rough...always getting red lights and whatnot, so it was not suprise to me that kindergarten was no different. His first month was hell on earth and I felt horrible for him. He couldn't focus on anything and the teacher tried everything (behavior mod, moving him next to her, etc.).

    I had a huge issue with meds..and I couldn't even tell you exactly WHY. I guess because we are fed the idea that putting your kid on meds is "bad" or "lazy". He is on the lowest dose (10mg) of adderall and is flourishing in school. He has had NO negative side affects...he eats..he sleeps..he isn't overly emotional. It has been a complete Godsend and I would highly recommend considering ADHD meds to any child that is struggling with ADD/ADHD. With the right dosage, your child will not only succeed in his/her education but he/she will also thrive socially.

     

  • Sultry
    Posts: 97Member
    My DD 7 is adhd. i was really aprehensive about medicating her, so I put her on Strattera. it was ok on the basic dose, until we put on a higher one, then she became moody and aggressive. we took her off it. she was unmedicated for a further 9 months and her schooling was terrible. she wouldn't do any work at all, and just doodled or whatever. I changed her pead and he recommended Ritalin. I umm and ahh-ed about ti for ages and finally caved (after crying that i was doping my child) but what a difference it has made! She's like a different person. her marks are up her handwriting is improving dramatically. She does boring dictionary work without complaining.

    but its only short acting, so I get her coming down at home. tears a lot, upset tummies. im speaking to her pead asap because the tummy pains are getting worse and she's only on a basic dosage. poor chook.
  • cassiemaude
    Posts: 51Member
    My son is 6 and was diagnosed about 2 months ago. We had him evaluated last year during school but it came back that he was right on the line of yes and no. I chose to just watch him and see if things got worse, which they did. We noticed a change in him right away. He is now on a dose of Concerta in the morning and a small dose of Ritalin when he gets home from school. It was the best decision my husband and I have ever made.
  • Kenb
    Posts: 84Member
    I have a son with ADHD and I am still researching info on it. Whatever medication they prescribe your son, I suggest you research it because majority of them have bad side effects. Dont let his teacher pressure you to do something you feel in your heart is not for him.
  • JustJulia
    Posts: 86Member
    This is not an attack on anyone, please don't take it as one.
    This is just my experience with children with ADHD/ADD, 2 have ADHD the other has ADD.
    I do know some children need extra help then others and yes some may need medication.
    But this is my experience.

    But have you noticed ADHD,ADD is a very recent thing for children to be diagnosed with ?

    My sisters 3 boys have been diagnosed with ADHD/ADD and Autism, all 3 are being medicated when at home,
    when going to school and when going to our mothers.
    When they go to our mothers they stay indoors all the time, when they are at home they are indoors almost all the time.
    At school the same except for lunch break. The boys are never outdoors, they have no way to burn off excess energy
    as we all did when we were children.
    Well we got to look after all 3 boys together for a few weeks straight on different occasions.

    We live at the beach and had a swimming pool when they stayed with us, we also had a big back yard and
    pet chooks.
    So when they came to our place we went to the beach, we went fishing, they swam in the pool, played with the chooks,
    which they were terrified of until i held one and made them pat it,( How ? by daring them, they are boys after all ) they seriously
    thought it was going to bite their fingers off until then. Where did they get such an idea ?
    I did not give them the medication, because my sister did not leave any with me ( I think she wanted us to see what it was like for her )
    and i would not have given it unless it was a last resort.
    By that i mean if i felt the earge to smack them, i think we only smacked our own children twice each maybe 3 times in their lives.
    So like that would have ever happened anyway.

    My point here is after the 2nd day of them being active running around playing outdoors in the fresh air swimming having a throw
    of the Frisbee playing a game of soccer like all children should be able to do, then making sure they had a nice warm bath with
    a little bit of lavender oil in it and then straight into a filling dinner, then they got to watch a movie then bed by 8:30pm.

    They slept well and behaved as children should full of energy and spent the day burning it off playing outdoors.

    My sister asked me if i was sick of them when she came to pick them up, i said why they are perfectly normal from what i can tell.
    Funny thing is they were fine for a few days when they got home then they started to as she said act up again.

    Yes our children were annoying at times too ( all kids are ) but ours had go karts, bikes, pets, fishing, ballgames, kites,
    heck anything to keep them outdoors where they could wear themselves out.
    If they are outside they automatically burn energy. Children today have no outlet, no way to burn that energy and i think that
    is why they become so annoying. You have heard of adults getting cabin fever, well that's what this is but in children,
    they are bored out of their brains with no outlet for any of their energy. And no, one or two games of soccer or baseball or basketball
    or whatever a week does not cut it, they need a daily outlet. I know living in the cities, it would be hard to do, but that is why i
    will never live in one. Ok that's my 2 cents worth on that subject and my experience with 3 ADHD/ADD boys.

    So i gather you can see in my mind ADHD/ADD is cabin fever in children.
    I am sorry if i offend anyone i don't mean to.

  • AAA08
    Posts: 427Member

    @JustJulia. Mmmmm, it's not always cabin fever, although I do see your point. We need to eat better, get more exercise, etc. However,  my oldest son plays outside as much as possible(all seasons) with all the neighbor kids(we have a half acre, they run from yard to yard, one of the neighbors has a trampoline, they ride bikes, play basketball, football, tag, we walk to school- you get the picture), is in a sport a season(3 times a week), has limited time on the T.V and computer, we don't eat processed or fast food, he goes to bed at the same time, and he still  has problems in school. Not mean or nasty, but serious focus issues that affect his ability to learn(and all his teachers have stated he has the ability. I also am a teacher myself, so homework and reading are top priorities in our household). They have gym class and recess each day. His teacher is amazing and integrates movement in her daily lessons. He gets art, music, and other "specials" that keep a child from getting "bored". In  We are starting counseling to help him learn to focus better, he takes vitamins. Anything to help him focus and use up his energy, we are trying. Day to day life with him can be frustrating and immensely exhausting. He is a loveable kid and makes his presence known(in mostly a good way) no matter where we go. However, no one is "surprised" when they find out he is ADHD. 

     His father, who grew up in rural Alaska doing all the typical "Alaska things"(hunting, fishing, construction, walking for miles, camping, etc.) has had his life destroyed by his untreated ADHD(he was formally diagnosed). I'm not being dramatic either. His IQ is 140 and he can't keep a job or even manage a simple bank account due to lack of focus and organization. He lives in a tent.  Being his wife was exhausting. I used to think his parents failed him, but now I understand much better.  I'm trying not to medicate, but who knows what the future will hold. I do not want that life for my son. His behavior is dramatically different from that of my youngest, also a boy. My parents, who also raised boys on a large plot of land(and my mom grew up on a farm with no running water or electricity, so claiming "boredom" in our home quickly found you doing something active), also find him more than exhausting.

    I know you're not trying to be judgmental or offend anyone, but spending a few days with a child doesn't tell the whole picture. I have worked with both special needs and mentally ill children and adults for YEARS and I have learned there is a honeymoon period at times, and behaviors do not always present themselves at first. This is true for even some of the most severe cases. It is also not always the "fault" of the parent or care giver. It is very easy to form an opinion from the outside.