Help with 7 Year Old and ADHD

Updated on September 30, 2009
D.E. asks from Midland, PA
20 answers

My DS just started the 2nd grade. He was diagnosed with ADHD in early 1st grade. He's been sent home with note after note, phone call after phone call about his behavior in class. Nick is a bright boy with good grades. He is generally a happy and outgoing child. The kids are alienating him and he doesn't seem to care about it. The teacher is having to deal with my son plus 21 other students and making it sound like nothing else goes on in the class except Nick's behaviors. The school staff are giving me the runaround about a wrap-around program that would benefit Nick's education. My hubby and I are VERY frustrated. We've gone through meds (Adderall, Ritalin, Metidate, Focalin... etc.). He experienced side effects from vomiting, lashing out, to impulsiveness to the extreme. Currently he is on Daytrana and his fears are so intense, he is terrified to leave the house, even to go to school. I have called the Dr. about all of this.
My question is what home/natural things can we do as a family to get him off meds and still lead a functional and HAPPY life? I don't want to pull him out of public school, but I will if need be. We have thought about Cyber schooling, homeschool and private school. What do I do? Our house is in turmoil. Thank you, moms.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

So far, Nick has to have a psych consult on Oct. 5th to get Wrap-Around in the school. My husband is fully onboard with diet changes. We're looking into Feingold's diet and info. We're willing to let Nick stay in the school system and try the wrap-around, it'll take about a month after the psych consult to get it set up. I went to the SAP (Student Assistance Program) for them to help out in the classroom. It went ok, no funding = no aide in class. So, overall, changes are happening. I guess it's a work in progress. We are not opposed to homeschooling/cyber schooling in the future. Thank you SO VERY much for all of the info! You have all been a great support in my mothering career!!

Featured Answers



answers from Philadelphia on

I would call the guidence office at school and request a meeting. Then ask about the behavioral plans that can be put in place for him. If that does not seem to work, call administration office and inquire about the special edu program that can help with behavioral issues. He might just need help controlling impulsive behaviors. The school will accomodate him, they have too!
Good luck!

More Answers



answers from Philadelphia on

Oh D., I hear you with such empathy!! My son is only 4 and we have been through hell already. My 15 year old was a handful, never diagnosed, but none the less a handful. He is now an incredible student and has found what works for him.

I pulled my 4 year old out of public school and tried a private school. He was kicked out this past week. The issues in class are not as bad as she made it out to be, but in a nut shell, my son and a full classroom environment does not = a positive learning environment. So, I am starting the journey of homeschooling him. There is a great co-op that I am part of, lots of socialization opportunities. He is very bright and will be doing a curriculum that is one year ahead of his age.

We just recently tried a homeopathic remedy called Calm Forte by Hylands. It was recommended by the compounding pharmacist in our area. It took the edge off...and he was better able to focus. I only gave it to him once because now he is battling a cold and I did not want to mix with cold medicine. Check it out.

I agree with advice about diet and supplements. We give our son Omega 3's and he responds really well to them. If we run out and I don't purchase a re-fill within 2 days, I notice a difference. We also watch very dye. He cannot handle food dye. He loses all focus and bounces off the walls. We also offer him Vitamin C, which is a natural detox as well as a good multivitamin. We had some lab work done to determine areas of which he was deficient and he came back deficient in calcium so we are supplementing with that too.

We are going to be using Calvert Curriculum. Google it. I am setting up a spare room as our "creativity center". This is where we will do all our work and creative projects. My son learns by being very involved and hands on.

If you decide to stay in the school, do you have an IEP? Have you requested a functional behavioral assessment at their expense? Have you requested a 1:1 aide? Does he get OT? Check out Have you ever read "the out of sync child?"

I opted to not use my energy to fight the district. I did not want my son's self esteem in the toilet because he did not fit into their "box". He may be a square peg, so I will use my energy to create a square hole instead of trying to cram a square peg into a round hole. He is brilliant and learns differently than others...and is ahead of the curve...

If you ever need to bounce information off someone, shoot me a message. I wish you all the best on your journey...


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Scranton on

I have heard that ADHD can be linked to food allergies or intolerances. Check out the book Mr Allergyhead (

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Saginaw on

I hate to say this, because it is SUCH a pain... but one of the things that I've known to work is massive dietary changes.

Have you tried omega3 oil supplements? They work really well for some people, but...

Most find that omega3 alone is not enough. They have to radically limit omega6 fats: sunflower oil, animal fats (dairy, lard, fat pork, lamb, beef fat, cheese) any kind of shortening or margarine (even the 'healthy' ones), corn oil.

I have also known people to have real success with a total elimination of grains (all of them, and all the stuff they're made from) which I think is just unbelievable. No pasta, no bread of any kind, no rice. Yikes! The people I've know who did it are all very happy with their choice, because the loss of favourite foods is nothing on the gain of calm, focused kids...

One friend and mother of 3 boys (which I think is ADHD all by itself!) followed what she called the 'caveman' diet: almost all meats, vegetables and fruits with very little dairy (mostly just as a condiment) with nothing made from grains of any kind. Her fibromyalgia cleared up as quickly as her boys' ADHD did.

I have also known any number of families (more than 10) who have had a lot of success letting their ADHD kids 'be themselves' through homeschooling, particularly letting them be outside and 'making things' with tools and materials, so their ADHD isn't about not complying with other people's ideas about what kids should be doing with their time, and enabling them to find their own strengths through doind what they want to (even computer games --I know one young man who is now a programmer, he spent so much time messin' around with computers)...

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

I agree with mostly everything from the PP, all natural remedies seem like the most effective way to go when meds don't help. I also think you should get him off the meds ASAP, especially since they are causing him to be "terrified". That is no good!! Who knows what long term effects being petrified to leave the house will cause. He is still a little boy, and he needs to learn that the world is not always a scary place. I hope you and your husband come to a solution that works the best for all of you!! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

Dear D.,
A friend of mine help to start the homeschooling program in the Commonwealth when she believed that the school system did not have her son's best interests at heart. He was an excellent student graduating at 16 yrs. Do not hesitate on this. The homeschoolers meet and go on different outings together. I have seen them occasionally. I wish they gave me that opportunity for my child. The important thing is that you are and child are comfortable with the decision. The National Spelling Bees are many times won by homeschoolers and many ivy league colleges offer scholarships to homeschooled children. Investigate and be happy with your decision.
quote from "Green goes with everything." by Sloan Barnett":
"...even the EPA acknowledges that they (children) are 10X more vulnerable to chemicals, including carcinogens like those used on conventional crops." ..."Researchers have proven that children who eat conventially grovwn food have far higher levels of organophosphate pesticides in their systems than those who eat organic foodk and it's even been shown that simple switching to organic foods can lower perticide levels qauickly and dramatically."
Have your son tested for food sensitivities which can be causing a major number of behavioral problems. Food sensitivities can cause a titer build up in the blood. These food sensitivities will affect your child's behavior. An M.D. FAAP may be able to help you.
Sloan's book: "...One leading reserarch says that we are conducting avast tociology experiment on our kids with the tens of thousands of new chimacls that have recently come on the market, many of which are now even found in fetal blood."
I hope this helpls.



answers from York on

Hello, D.!
There is a group that you can google and it will pull up and find that may be a real help to you. It is "Christian ADHD". They have several different groups that are a support and help to one another and you may find beneficial. Many of them have been where you are. One group deals with natural supplements and another is about homeschooling: you would possibly find both something that could encourage you. Hope this helps!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Hi D.. I think it's great that you have decided to stay away from medications as much as possible. It's very true what others say that our doctors prescribe meds. and assure us that there are no risks or dangers in taking them, when in reality they don't know - no one does until people, years later, start to suffer the same side effects from the same meds. I think you'll be interested in checking out my website: I work for a wellness company which makes only products that are safe for our families and without all those harmful chemicals. These products are wonderful and can be very beneficial for your family. My friend's daughter was diagnosed with adhd, ocd, and depression at the age of 6. She went through much of the same problems as you with the school, doctors, etc. Thank God she has been able to avoid all those harmful and controversial medications by making some changes to her family's lifestyle - most importantly a healthy, balanced diet, getting rid of all the toxic chemicals in the household products we all use each day, maintaining a structured, disciplined lifestyle, and having her daughter take vitamins made by Melaleuca, which are proven to actually absorb into your body (not like the ones you find in the stores). I hope this information can be of help to you. Stay strong and don't give up. Remember God doesn't give us any burdens we can't carry! I'm sure you will find a natural and healthy way to get through this and bring out the best in your son!



answers from Philadelphia on

HI, I'm a nurse and it sounds to me that no medication is helping him and he's suffering from the side effects more than benefiting from the meds. I would stop meds and seek something from an herbal store. I would home school him until he can gain more control over his behavior and then try public school again.


answers from Allentown on

Hi, D.:

The organization called CHADD:

Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder.

They will be willing and able to assist you with ways to deal with your son's issues. They may have a chapter near where you live. Check the web.

Hope this helps. D.



answers from Philadelphia on

Good for you for seeking natural methods of relief. My daughter was a changed child when we removed all, yes, ALL, food dyes and preservatives from her diet. We discovered she had a severe allergy to red food dye after one red taffy several years ago. We avoid all food dyes and preservatives, and at age nine she knows to check all food labels and inquire before eating anything suspect. In addition maintaining blood sugar levels and avoiding caffeinated products is a must. Keep your fridge and pantry stocked with healthy, wholesome food and fresh fruits and vegetables and when that's all there is, they will eat it. Lead by example and make sure kids get plenty of sleep. Keep stress levels low and follow your common sense and good judgment as a mom. Persistence, perseverence and consistency are a good mother's mantra. In response to public or private school, we opted for private because in addition to academics, a strong moral education was as important to us. And I can say that her behavior is a reflection of the values taught at school and reinforced at home. Stay strong. You are your children's strongest advocate.



answers from Pittsburgh on

MY heart goes out to you and your family. I too am having to deal with a 7 year old with ADHD. Your story sounds like what happened to my daughter last year in first grade. A lot of fusteration with the school. I felt that my daughter was the "bad seed" and no one else in that class had trouble. Thank God she has a teacher this year that understands. The teacher's grandson has ADHD.

I have decided against medication (maybe some day that decision will change, but not right now). I have her on a natural remedy and it has helped. I give her Omega-3 with DHA. It is made by Dr. SEARS. I also have her on herbs called Bright sparks. I make sure that her diet does not contain too much sugar and added stuff. I try to make sure she gets a lot of protien in her diet.
I have just recently purchased a motivator for her. It is a small, pager like, device that vibrates. Each time it vibrates it reminds her to pay attention and focus. This has helped to reduce the number of times the teacher has to tell her to pay attention.
There is a magazine website that I read all the time. It is They have a lot of advice about natural remedies.
Good luck, I know how you and your family feels.


answers from Philadelphia on

Looking for natural and dietary remedies is a wonderful idea. My question is about the teacher. What is she doing when your son is being "disruptive?" Children with ADHD sometimes learn differently or in different ways. For example he may need to stand at his desk to concentrate instead of sitting. Your son could be given jobs to keep him moving during longer periods of sitting. When he does need to sit having a squishy ball or bean bag. See if you can have a sit down with the teacher and maybe a higher up if you feel you need more help. Get a game-plan together.

I would love to hear how it all turns out,

B. Davis
Child And Family Coaching
Because nothing is more important than family



answers from Philadelphia on

Go to the school superintendent or tell them you are going to if they do not give you some answers. I know it is hard dealing with a kid who has adhd. my best friends younger son has adhd and the older one just add. May be check into some holisitic approaches to medicine if the traditional ones do not work. have him some type of sports and see if that helps dissipate some of the energy. God bless and good luck.



answers from Scranton on

Check out the Feingold (sp?) diet. It's basically eliminating all altificial food colorings and preservatives, MSG, caffeine, greatly reducing sugar. I had one patient who did this for her son and said it compeletely resolved his problems - and made her skin look years younger. It can be more labor intensive since it requires you to cook with fresh veggies, no packets/bottled sauces or marinades, etc. Overall it is a much healthier way for your whole family to eat, but more time consuming to make meals.

Hope this helps.



answers from Harrisburg on

I have an ADHD son as well. I don't think anyone else has mentioned counseling, but it has greatly helped our family...both for him (alone) and for my husband and me to develop parenting strategies for this challenging child. Most health insurance plans cover it, and there are some wonderful counselors who deal with ADHD kids.

Good luck. It really is a daily challenge for me, but I just take 1 day at a time...



answers from Dallas on

Look up some information regarding foods that your son should or should not be eating to help him with hyperactivity or inattentiveness. You may be surprised at what you find! I have been told that this alone can make a world of difference with ADHD sufferers.



answers from Altoona on

D., I'm sorry about the frustration you and your family are going through! Definitely pay attention to how particular foods, preservatives, and colorings affect Nick. It's easy to realize that what we put into our bodies affects our behavior, but what about what we breathe? What chemicals are present in your home and in the school? Even when cleaners and the like are stored, there is outgassing from the containers.



answers from York on

Reading the responses so far seem to be what you need to do; get out of the conventional and go in a different direction. Change the food, change the environment and change to home schooling. Even though you are 4 hours away, the York area has not only great homeschooling resources for parents and kids, but has a special group and resources for special needs kids. I am sure there are groups in your area. Read the YHSA web site at for info on home education in PA.


answers from Pittsburgh on

HI D., Just because you son has been diagnosed with ADHD doesn't mean he has to be on meds...there are other alternatives that you can try. I know two different families in two different states (they don't even know one another) with boys a bit older than yours that are treating ADHD with diet and excersize very successfully. the first thing they both did was remove as much sugar as possible from his diet. This includes the hidden sugars in fruit juices! Both boys only drink milk or water except on special occiasions. They both eat one banana a day, take a good multi-vitimine (one takes a vitimine called brainiac that his Gram's buys at GNC I think) and both do 3-4 physical activities after school each week. These include swimming, martial arts, dance (tap and/or hip hop), and a 20 minute kids cardo viedo (great for bad weather days), biking, soccer etc. The changes in behavior started slowly...and there were battles about snacks...but once on the program for a few weeks the change was dramatic and after a time treats were allowed with planning. Now after a couple of years both boys are doing very well. Sure they are both still high energy! But the control they have and their success they both enjoy was worth every moment according to their families.

Don't pull him out of school, meet face-to-face with his principal and teacher and counslor and present your game plan! Tell them what kind of disipline works for you at home, discuss all the options available! Don't give up or give in! Maybe a different class with a different teacher may be a good solution for now if you feel the teacher won't work with you or is overly sensitive to every thing your son does in class. Make sure you go into the meeting with notes! Be professional, be your son's advocate! He deserves the best from you and your school district! Don't let them blind you or baffel you with educational jargon and tons of bs! Don't forget to include your doctor in on your meds should be discontinued without proper supervision since some meds if stopped wrong can result in death (like Ridalin). I hope this helps or at least gives you some hope! Hang in the end of the day it will all be worth the effort! Best wishes.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches