Does anyone else have a child with ADHD and on meds? — The Bump
School-Aged Children

Does anyone else have a child with ADHD and on meds?

My daughter was having behavior issues for the past 2 years and so we had her tested and evaluated in the school separately.  She is 5 and is in kindergarten.  She was put on a behavior chart where she had 11 periods where she could get stars.  She was only getting 4 stars a day and some days it would be 8 but she fell apart the rest of the week.  So we agreed to put her on medication.  Since then she is now all 10 or 11 days since about December.  The issue we see is she is very anxious in the mornings and evenings.  The doctor talked about changing her meds.  Does your child have this issue?  We tried everything to correct her behavior before the meds but nothing worked for more than a few days.  With her behavior now in check at school she has been placed in the focus classes and is doing great.  I am worried to change her meds right before the year end tests.  We just had her private assessment done and she is reading at an early 3rd grade level with match skills mid-2nd grade.  I just worry about the jumpiness she has and the over emotional reactions.

Re: Does anyone else have a child with ADHD and on meds?

  • Sometimes it just takes a slight adjustment of the meds to help with side effects like this.  Talk to her prescribing doctor about the side effects and see if there is a way to tweak the dosage so that side effects are minimized.  I have heard of doctors who will direct parents to give kids a half or quarter tablet, etc. 

    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
  • My DS started guanfacine at the end of last year (KG) for impulse control.  As his school work has become more involved, he's needed to start a stimulant to help him focus.  He is on ritalin, which is less than ideal.  But, we're not switching until this summer.  We have too many changes going on as it is and while his meds aren't ideal at home, they are causing him no problems at school.  I think school is so integral to his over-all well being, as his performance in the classroom and in school altogether directly relates to his self-esteem and social growth, so that I'm willing to put up with some erratic behavior at home for the time being.  I feel like changing things up at school right now would make things worse, not better, whereas waiting until summer will give us some time to adjust things without him suffering any/much social or academic consequences (he will still be in camp, but not with a class of 20 kids that he is with every.single.day for a year).

    HTH

    DS1 age 7, DD age 5 and DS2 born 4/3/12
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  • My 5, almost 6 year old has been on medication for her ADHD since the fall and it has been wonderful for her, such improvement.  WE luckily found a great med for her from the start but it only lasts 8 hours and we sometimes need something longer so we have been trying some 4 hour meds and some of the longer 10-12 hour meds with no luck.  The closest medication we found just does not work as well and when she takes it, she gets very axious and just doesn't want to be around anyone so its a no go.  For now we are sticking with what she has and hoping that as she grows, we will be able to go back and try some of the other meds.  What we have done when trying other meds is to use them on the weekends so they don't effect how she does at school.  It may be that her dose of her current med is not the right dose or she might need a totally different med.  Most of the meds are only effective while you are taking them so you can try new things on the weekend and when you find something that works, you can then try it at school.
    Jenni Mom to DD#1 - 6-16-06 DD#2 - 3-13-08 
  • My daughter is 8 and ADHD, she is NOT on meds and I hope to never resort to that.  We are in Stage One of the Feingold program (eliminating artificial colors/flavors/sweeteners from her food) and have added Omega 3 fatty acid supplements to her diet.  We have seen quite a change, although gradual.  Sometimes meds don't work or make things worse.  I always recommend the natural route if you can first.
    Lionyl Osborne "Lio" is here! May 23rd 2012 at 2:54am 8lbs 4oz 21inches Born at 37weeks 6days
    DD #1 born 9/3/2003 - 8 years old - 3rd grade!
    DD #2 born 3/22/2007 - 5 years old - in full time preschool

  • image-auntie-:

    I am a little offended by your tone. Resort to meds? That's insinuating that those of us who have made the thoughtful choice to incorporate medication into our overall tx plans are what? Lazy? Bad parents? What?

    I agree.  There is actually nothing lazy about having to put your DC on medication.  It requires monthly trips to the doctor and a lot of time, effort and money spent on medication and therapy.  I don't think I've ever seen a parent of a child with ADHD complain about this aspect of raising an ADHD child either.  It's not at all the easy way out and I wish it was as simple as changing DS's diet. 

    DS1 age 7, DD age 5 and DS2 born 4/3/12
  • image-auntie-:

    imagetheabbey5:
    My daughter is 8 and ADHD, she is NOT on meds and I hope to never resort to that.  

    Your DD has ADHD, she isn't ADHD.

    I am a little offended by your tone. Resort to meds? That's insinuating that those of us who have made the thoughtful choice to incorporate medication into our overall tx plans are what? Lazy? Bad parents? What?

    For the record, I resort to Synthroid for my hypothyroidism and glasses for my myopia.

     We are in Stage One of the Feingold program (eliminating artificial colors/flavors/sweeteners from her food) and have added Omega 3 fatty acid supplements to her diet.  We have seen quite a change, although gradual.  Sometimes meds don't work or make things worse.  I always recommend the natural route if you can first.

    I'm glad you are seeing some improvements. I don't find Feingold especially useful for my son. I grew up on Feingold and tend to be something of a foodie and scatch cook, so DS was pretty old before he got into articifically flavored and colored foods. Have you also eliminated foods high in phenols and salicylates? For some kids with ADHD this can have a huge benefit as well.

    I do hope you keep an open mind. Kids who would benefit from meds and don't get them have a nasty tendency to self medicate.

    http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/1868.html

    http://blogs.psychcentral.com/adhd-zoe/2010/04/sex-drugs-rock-roll-part-ii-drugs/

     

     

    Very well said and I am with you on being offended by the tone of this comment.  If your child had diabetes and needed medication, would you not treat that child.  For some kids, medication is needed so the child can live a normal life.  My DD was diagnosised at age 5 and I get a lot of feedback that she is too young and no way she can be diagnosised  at that age but yes, kids can be and kids are being treated that young.  For her, she has a sever case and has been watched since birth due to a brain injury at birth and it runs in the family.  She had a lot stacked against her as she has a sever speech disorder as well.  Thanks to a lot of speech therapy, behavioral therapy and her medication, she is doing amazingly well and while we held her back a year from starting kindergarten, she is doing excellent in her PreK class now - a totally different child.  If we had chosen to not medicate her, she would not be where she is now.  She has matured and the simple fact that with the medication, she can sit through a 30 min circle time at school just like the other kids goes so far.  My 17 year old nephew has been medicated since he was 7 and it has made a world of difference but he will most likely be on medication for life.  Changes in diet have not been proven to be helpful for all kids/adults with ADHD.  A complete treatment plan with therapy and behavioral modication and medication is what a lot of kids need to succeed.

    Jenni Mom to DD#1 - 6-16-06 DD#2 - 3-13-08 
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