Help with ADHD Kid on Adderall

Updated on November 25, 2008
L.A. asks from Farmington, MI
35 answers

My son, age 7, was diagnosed last year with ADHD after intense (and expensive) testing. He had been seeing a counselor weekly for his anger and defiance, and the testing helped in diagnosis and treating his impulsive behavior. The med has worked for awhile, but not without substantial side effects (hard to fall asleep, loss of appetite and weight). He has been on lowest dosage of Adderall (5 mg) and just bumped up to 10 mg, but now that does not even seem to be working. The teacher is at wit's end with him because he is such a distraction in class. We also tried the Daytrana patch, but that only worked for a short while too. Does the body build up a resistance with these meds that they work only for a short time? Has anyone tried giving coffee to their kid with any success? I really don't want a med that has such side effects, but it does not sound like there is anything else out there. Rage episodes still occurring at home and disruptiveness at school. Feel like we have made no progress after 1 year with a professional therapist.

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J.B.

answers from Lansing on

I know all kids react different to meds, however, my son is 11 and has been on 3 different meds since age 7. He has been taking vyvanse(sp?)for the past 1 1/2 years and has improved tremendously. He eats, sleeps and has even gained weight! Something to look into.....

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J.V.

answers from Grand Rapids on

Hi L.,
I have also adopted 2 wonderfull children, with lots of issiues, along with adhd, lots of diffrent disorders, difiancy,so on and so on!!!!! My kids are on Risperdal and it helps for adhd and the other issues. I hope this helps!!!
They have also been on many diffrent meds and this one is the one that worked the best.

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D.H.

answers from Detroit on

Hi L. ~
My son was on Ritalin (he's a little older, so med options were different..LOL). He started on 5mg @ breakfast, lunch & after school just before the beginning of the school year. By Christmas, they increased it to 10mg at those same times. I soon stopped the after school dose because he had trouble getting to sleep. A year later, he was increased again to 15mg at breakfast & lunch. But then he was never increased again.
In high school, he tried Concentra and it was a nightmare! He vomitted every morning, whether he ate breakfast or not. And after a month we stopped and went back to the Ritalin.
So I do think that the body adjusts to the medication, but he's also growing (at least some!), but after a short time you will reach the right dosage. And sometimes you have to try different medications. Each person reacts differently to different meds. My nephew tried 2 or 3 meds before they found the right one for him.
Good Luck!
D.

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J.H.

answers from Detroit on

L.,
I HIGHLY recommend reading the book "Healing the New Childhood Epidemics: Autism, ADHD, Asthma and Allergies" by Dr. Kenneth Bock. He has a healing program for kids with all four of these disorders that has worked wonders. Many posters below mentioned dietary changes and that is part of his program too (along with nutritional supplements). I've watched my nephew who was diagnosed on the autism spectrum recovered from autism and he's now just a quirky child. It's hard to believe that he's made this progress without medication but it's true. Dr. Bock gives many case studies in his book on how he's been able to help many kids with ADHD - most without the use of or with limited use of medications. Since it sounds like your son is no longer reacting to the meds, this may be a good route for you to try. Best of luck!

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D.C.

answers from Detroit on

If you are curious about how diet can help, you might want to watch a DVD of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. She was a neurosurgeon and then had a son who was diagnosed with autism. She went back to school to study nutrition and learned how diet can play a huge role in mental health. She wrote a book called the Gut and Psychology Syndrome: Natural Treatment For: Autism, ADD, ADHD, Depression, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Schizophrenia.

Here's the link to Gut and Psychology Syndrome book and DVD:
http://www.gutandpsychologysyndrome.com/

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R.W.

answers from Jackson on

Adderall XR was a nightmare for my 6yr old son. The major side effect of Adderall is Anxiety which manifests in children as defiance, meltdowns, mood swings, anger etc.

We have had MUCH more success with Focalin XR, he's calm, is able to listen and respond without melting down. He's on 20mg right now which gets him through the school day the evenings are a bit of a struggle but managable We have not had any sleep issues with him on this med. With Adderall it was a fight everynight to get him to bed.

Make sure you are not giving him any ADHD Trigger foods.

Food Dyes (especially red and orange)
High sugar (Look for hidden sugars too)
High caffiene (giving a child on stimulant medication MORE stimulants in the form of caffiene can be counter productive)

Do make sure he has a high protien high fiber breakfast, and check the school lunch or send lunch to school with him.

My son doesn't like eggs so we do Ham and cheese sandwhich on whole grain toast, or Oatmeal mixed with powedered egg whites (for protien) add boiling water instead of cooking in the microwave... This gives them a good foundation for the day.

If your school doesn't have a snack time mid morning you may want to talk to the teacher/principal about giving your son a high protien snack between breakfast and lunch...we sent a cheese stick or cheese and crackers with our son.

Lunch should be a good balance of whole grain protien and fruit/veg. school lunches sometiems are...less than ideal. For instance yesterdays school lunch here was pizza, fruit cup, popcicle, and milk...carbs/sugar fest. not much fiber, not much protien.

HTH

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S.R.

answers from Detroit on

I have two boys age 9 and 11 and they are both ADHD/ODD, with my youngest son also being Aspergar's(autism). Both my sons were diagnosed at around 3 1/2 y/o, with behavioral therapy being our first treatment method. As background, we have tried almost all the medications on the market, baring the patch and the new medication.

As your son grows, the dosage will need to be changed. Unfortunately, there is no one pill and it is a matter trying one and than another. Right now, Concerta has been working for both of my boys for the last 3 1/2 years. I also give the boys an anti-depressant at night (one is on Trazadone and the other Seroquel) to help them "turn off their brains". For my ODS, we also have the ceiling fan on for a white noise as it would take him almost 2 hours to fall asleep. Neither boy has sleep completely through the night and in that I mean their sleep is so restless that they "travel" the bed.

A lot of kids who are diagnosed with ADHD, have other diagnosis in that I watch two other ADHD boys and one is also diagnosed with bi-polar/anger issues, while the other boys is also diagnosed with Non-Verbal Learning Disability (NVLD). A lot of kids with ADHD, also have Tourette's type behavior, but not necessarily the swearing but a constant repetition of verbal or physical cues. My ODS is also dyslexic and I found that a lot of ADD/ADHD kids are also diagnosed.

We went through the huge expense of obtaining our own diagnosis because we couldn't find any help anywhere else. Now that both boys are in the school system, we are able to obtain additional help, especially with the issues dealing with school. Both my boys are attending school in Redford at a Elementary Day Treatment facility. Redford also has a Day Treatment facility for high school. Even if your District does not have a localized program, they should be able to help you help your son with his disruptiveness at school. I would contact the school Social Worker and found out the programs that can be offered to your son.

I actually could type longer than this, so if you need any information, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. I have been researching anything and everything I can to help both my sons, as I am their only advocate.

Just remember that God only gives you what you can handle and only Special Parents get Special Kids ... keep repeating that to yourself :)

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B.M.

answers from Detroit on

I have a few ideas...
First is diet... I have been to conferences of a Dr. Natascha Campbell McBride who has done extensive research and healed children of these disorders through monitoring and changing their diet. Her book is gut and psychology syndrome... you can find here... http://www.behealthy.org.uk/books.htm - or do online search to find more info or find elsewhere. I do not have personal experience with this as I haven't encountered the disorders myself, but her research and the success stories are compelling.

I would secondly recommend a website called Hand in Hand parenting. www.handinhandparenting.org
They have many articles free, and some for purchase, on methods of creating connection with your child, and helping with a whole host of behavior issues. They may not speak directly to ADHD, but you might choose to read articles that resemble some of the common difficulties and see if the methods help reduce incidence of them.
I instruct their method at workshops around Metro Detroit, so if you find it is helpful, I'll be happy to share info about my future classes with you also.

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A.H.

answers from Detroit on

It has been my understanding that nutrition plays a big role here. I have also read in my studies that some alternative therapies work for this. I would recommend Reflexology before anything else (I do not really trust 'stand alone' energy sessions unless they are incorporated into the work - it seems to do better that way anyhow.).

In reflexology, all organs and body systems are addressed. There should be enough of a chemical reaction from the brain released to give some desired effects, as well as helping him learn to breathe when feeling stressed. Many children react and take to this very well. Not all therapists will work on children (they are less time, less money.). Check around if you are interested.

I hope all works out for you!

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C.S.

answers from Detroit on

My son is also on Adderall though he is nearly 14. We have had no side effects and he's been on it for 2 years. He is on the XR form. I found that to work the best because it stays in his system longer then the regular adderall. Is your son struggling the whole school day or just toward the end? Are you using the XR?

Before the adderall he was on Concerta. It worked really well, he just got to big for it, our doctor wasn't comfortable going any higher on the dose. Maybe that is a possible med for your son? My doctor told me when the whole ADHD thing with my son started that it might take a few tries to get the right med for him. We were luck and hit the mark right off with the concerta and then the adderall XR.

With my son, I have found that if he is doing something productive his behavior in school and at home is much better. He does football from Aug. until halloween. He get a few days off and wrestling starts up until Christmas break. The break is always rough. In January basketball starts and he does that until track starts. Last year he didn't make the basketball team and it was a really bad few months! I really think that the hormones his body produces during exercise help him stay grounded. I know your son is much younger but maybe putting him in a sports program will help him. There are alot of churches that do "Upward" sports. Basketball sign up is right now. www.upward.org for info in your area. I just signed my 6 year old up and we don't attend the church that is hosting it, it's open to anybody that's interested.
That's all of my ideas for you!
I hope this helps you some!
Good luck!

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B.J.

answers from Detroit on

My son started out with Adderall and we switched him to Concerta which helped him better with less side affects. My son had alot of rage and he was put on Risperdall for that. Works very good with counseling. We adjust his meds as he grows.

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B.G.

answers from Detroit on

There are a choice of medications for ADHD. Adderall is not the only one. Your pediatrician should be suggesting that you try a different kind. My daughter started on Ritalin, went to Adderall, which also had a bad affect on her personality (she became very quiet, which is not at all her normal personality) and was then switched to Strattera, which she is still taking.

Starting any medication is a crapshoot, because you don't know if it will work until you've been on it for awhile, and then you are unsure of the dose needed. That could take a little time to get that right, and you only know for sure by experimenting...! If it doesn't seem to be doing anything, it may be too low. If you are getting negative affects, it could be too high. Be prepared for this. AND, if it doesn't seem to be helping, TRY a different one.

Speak with your Pediatrician.

Good luck.

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S.H.

answers from Detroit on

I have a 6 year old with ADHD finally diagnosed after 2 years of OT for sensory prosessing disorder. My son is on Focalin we give it to him before 9am so he can sleep at nite, but he has lost about 10lbs due to loss of appitite. We try to get in a glass of ovaltine in the morning with breakfast, and as many calories as we can at dinner time (for him). We have found that lunch is a loosing battle,but His teacher does let him eat a snack at the end of the day before last recess,after 3pm is usually when his appitite comes back. Every child is different on how their bodies process these medications. Unfortunatly or kids are like guina pigs until we can find the right meds for them. Focalin has worked the best for us, it works almost instantly and wears off slowly. My son only seems to have the H in ADHD last year he was bouncing off the walls could not physically sit still for anything. Now he is not the class distraction, and kids are not coming up to me saying that he was being mean to them. This year he finally has friends (yea!!)last year thats all he wanted,he just had difficult time behaving appropriatly. I hope this helps in some small way, it is very frustrating when you keep trying all these different methods that the doctors,psychologists, ocupational therapists, and everyone else suggests and your still at square one. Good Luck to you and your family.

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L.H.

answers from Detroit on

Hi L.,
I agree with a couple of others here who has linked nutrition as probably a major help here. I know of a great nutritionist who has helped many children with ADD/ADHD with success. If you're interested, I can give you her info.
L.

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M.W.

answers from Detroit on

L., you have received many excellent responses and I can hear the heartfelt sharing from the other moms to you.

From my work in the health and wellness industry ...
I will add some comments to the nutrition approach you may be investigating and also to the relationship between ADHD and toxins in the child's environment.

Nutrition:
What's his diet like? Lots of vegies and lean protein or non-animal protein? Or does he only want fast food, convenience packaged food, carbs (our world is so full of breads, crackers, pre-made high glycemic foods).

Nutrition affects: mood swings, poor mental focus, poor memory, enviromental sensitivities, digestion and absorption issues, ...

Also, even children get candida overgrowth because of too high of sugar and carb foods, antibiotics, etc that impact the good healthy, essential friendly bacteria that are supposed to inhabit the lower intestines (critical to supporting our immune function) is out of balance or killed off. Acidophilus/bifidus is what you see in yogurt at manufacturing but is also mostly destroyed when eaten by the highly acidic environment in the stomach. (yes I have a high delivery probiotic - little tiny pearl so easy to swallow)

A good diet rich in all the B vitamins - Bs are essential for brain function, mood swings, carb/sugar cravings. If he can swallow tablets, some extra Bs in a B Complex.

A diet rich in high quality and purity Omega 3s (fish oil) - Omega 3s are critical for brain.

A good multi for kids that gives the cells of the organs of the body what it needs ... especially if eating nutritionally rich foods is a challenge.
(yes, I also have a great multi-vitamin/mineral for kids, chewable, high quality 23 essential nutrients, tooth-friendly, without preservatives/artificial colorings, flavors, sweeteners, without sugar or alcohol.)

Start the day with protein (and vegies) instead of wheat, breads, sweets. Kids love protein shakes - even add a little banana, or other fruit of choice.
(Soy and Whey based - Meal Shakes or Energizing Soy Protein Shakes)

Snack on protein - especially if having a carb (for example: have an apple with almond butter to dip it into; dip non-wheat chip in humus; etc)

Lean meat and poultry - pesticide and antibiotic free -
Lots of fresh or frozen vegies and fruits - organic, pesticide free.

Toxins:
Remove toxins from his home and enviroment. Non-toxic cleaners (an added plus is that they are also green/biodegradable). We are all so conditioned that clean has to smell like bleach etc. It's critical to kids especially (their smaller bodies that are growing at faster rates and their being closer or on the ground much of the time) - it's critical to them to not put down more harm than we are trying to clean up. They breath sprays, touch everything, spend hours sleeping on sheets and in PJs with residues from toxins in laundry products. Even the government recognizes ingredients in common products as harmful to humans.
(non-toxic, green cleaners ... even one of Oprah's favorite things ... but more importantly, they work, they're safe, they're economical, and they are good for the environment along with being good for us)

We need to provide environments for children that are as toxin–free as possible .. whether at home or at school. Recent studies indicate dozens of toxic chemicals are showing up in the blood streams of American children. Some can be traced to household cleaning products and others to pesticides and preservatives from non-organic food.

Two great books: "Green Goes With Everything" and "Gorgeously Green". They both discuss products, ingredients, harmful to humans and to the environment. They both recommend ways to make changes small and big.

The ADD/ADHD Page
http://www.chiro.org/pediatrics/ADD.shtml

Well, I didn't mean to go on and on. But I've heard the stories of changes that occurred when parents, grandparents changed the nutrition and removed the toxins and how the kids' teachers have asked "what are you doing differently?"

Am I passionate, yes I am - I've lived through my own challenges with environmental sensitivities and nutritional issues.

Chiropractors are amazing at opening up the body's natural communication between the organs and the brain. Naturopathic doctors have great knowledge. There's a lot to be said for modern medicine and a place for it absolutely and we should always consult our doctor's. There's a lot to be said for the more ancient sciences that have also worked for hundreds of years.

All we can do is collect information and decide for ourselves.

This may not eliminate your son's challenges. I believe it won't hurt ... Keep trying ... keep searching ...

If you'd like to chat more, contact me ... I'll be happy to give you more information in your search for solutions.

~M.

Together Live Well, LLC
Independent Shaklee Distributor
Listed and reviewed on Mamasource

Healthy Tips for Children:
Nutritionally Rich Foods
Exercise
Plenty of Sleep
Lots of Pure Water (soda pop prevents the body from detoxifying)
And ...
Lots of Love and Laughter

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N.O.

answers from Detroit on

I heard alot of great things about concerta. My sister's daughter has adhd and it took her almost 3 years to find the right medication and dose. Lots of trial and error. It does sound like the adderal is not helping much. My son also has adhd but we dont have him on meds yet. He's still young yet. But from all the reserch that I've done, once you have the child on the right medication they really are a truly different child.
As far as the coffee thing goes, my sister's doctor told her to give her daughter a half a glass of mountain dew before dinner, because it would take her forever to fall asleep and stay asleep. It worked like a charm. Hope that helps and good luck. I know how hard this is for you.

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B.C.

answers from Grand Rapids on

Hello L.,

The wonderful moms on here have all given you such great advice! I just wanted to add my personal experience as a mother of a 16 year old who was diagnosed at age 7. We initially tried the ritalin and adderall. We weren't personally happy with the results of these two meds. They seemed to work wonderfully for other children, but our son would have mood swings, irritability, and he had to take meds at school. I started looking into natural alternatives along with modern medicine. I found that adding a good multi-vitamin and eventually hearing about concerta from a friend with two children with adhd. He has been taking concerta for 5 years now and we are very happy with the results. Our son only takes the concerta on school days. He takes a good multi-vitamin and I make sure he eats a well balanced diet with lots of fruits and veggies, and most importantly that he drinks lots of water. I always tell all of our 3 boys that they must drink lots of water in order for their brain to work properly.

Remember I am speaking from our experience. Every child is unique. I do feel that there is a need for more studies on ADD and ADHD. As I do feel that allergies, vaccinations, and enviromental issues have an effect on the well being and are related to those who have ADD or ADHD. Best of Luck!

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D.M.

answers from Detroit on

I see that someone else recommended Focalin XR. That's what we switched to after the Adderall lost it's effectiveness after a short time. Where my son would have absolutely NO appetite with the Adderall, he eats fairly well with the Focalin XR. Trial and error is a big part of easing ADHD symptoms. And when you find that something works, it could definitely lose its effectiveness sometime in the future, forcing you to look elsewhere. We deal with behavior issues seperately. The medication is to help with focus and concentration. We tell our son that HE is in control of his behavior and can either make good choices or bad choices, but HE will have to deal with the consequences when he makes a bad decision. Good luck to you.

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D.P.

answers from Detroit on

I have a 6 year old who after intense testing was diagnosed with ODD, he has been taking vyvance since March of last year. We have seen remarkable results. He is currently taking 50 mg, he does suffer from appetite loss however. We can get him to eat a great breakfast, notso much lunch and a great dinner. So all in all for us/him the meds work. We did go thru the food sensory issues as well, but for us/him we did not see an improvement. I have given the coffee to him on weeke-ends when we try to delete the meds, but it does not make a difference. I give him his multi vit every day, and as far as being healthy he is doing great. Good luck to you. I live thru the challenge daily.

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C.E.

answers from Detroit on

I just skimmed all the other responses. There was only one response that addressed the fact that your children are adopted. My children are also adopted (ages 14 and 13 now) and were diagnosed early on with ADD/ADHD. I have tried multiple things, first without medication and then with meds. Even though some of these things helped or helped for a little time, I wasn't seeing the results that I expected. I began to really question whether I was simply a failure as a parent. I knew that wasn't really true so I kept searching for answers.

One of the things I have learned so far is that adopted children have unique issues!! Often things that occur in utero don't manifest themselves until about age 7. My son defiantly had attachment issues (there's LOTS of information available on Reactive Attachment Disorder-RAD) that caused him to transfer his suppressed anger against his birth mother to me, his adoptive mother and primary care giver. Little things that don't merit much attention would spark an active, explosive rage in him. My daughter actually has neurological issues most likely caused by a heavy drug using birth father. Her rage, although manifested in a totally different way, is just as explosive.

My advice to you is to first look at a website that has questions for you to answer about whether your child has RAD. If you suspect he does, there is an excellent book available called, When Love Is Not Enough. Next, I would seriously consider looking into getting another counselor. You should never feel like you've made no progress after a year's time. If you are a Christian, make sure you see a Christian counselor. If you can narrow down the suspected problem (neurological, RAD, ODD, diet, etc.), it will help you find a fit as far as a therapist is concerned. Different people specialize in different issues.

As far as the medication is concerned, there are so many choices out there that there is no way the side effects should come even close to outweighing the benefits. This is hard too--because it sometimes feels close to playing Russian Roulette with your children's meds. The best thing you can do is TRY to find a doctor/pediatric psychiatrist you can trust who won't just pull out the Medical Journal and pick the next drug on the list for your child to try.

Unfortunately, I have no recommendation as far as saving money. Whereas there is a lot of free information available, actual help always costs $$$. At least know that you aren't the only one that has spent, in my case, anyway, thousands upon thousands of dollars, trying to help my children get to the best place they possibly can while they are still under my roof.

Feel free to write me if you'd like to discuss any of this further. I'm not out of the thick of it yet, myself, but I've been where you are and have a heart for what you're going through.

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A.M.

answers from Saginaw on

I feel for you. My son has been on medication for over 10 years now for ADHD. All kids are different. One medication may work great for years or just a few months. It has alot to do with how fast they are growing. You just have to keep trying until you find the correct medication and dosage for your son. Do not put up with side effects that you feel are too severe. Try something else. My son has used Concerta sucessfully for about 4 years now. Maybe that would be something your doctor could try. It is a much more level medication that doesn't have the highs and lows like Ritalin does. My son was not able to take Adderall. It made him very mean. Good luck.

G.M.

answers from Detroit on

Hello L.,

One of the products our company makes is an unusual fruit drink made from the Durain fruit. Durian is very high in amino acids and tryptophan. It naturally raises the serotonin levels in the brain. We have several moms who have said it's help their children with ADHD and also a mom who has two autistic children. Kids like the flavor. It has a mango orangy flavor so it's easy for them to take. It has mango fruit in it as well and is all fruit juice. It's 100% guaranteed so if it doesn't work for him you'll get a full refund. Just keep the receipt. Let me know if you'd like to try it. I can also send you more health information about it if you like.

G.

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A.R.

answers from Boise on

Good for you for getting your son tested and going through what sounds like all the right channels to get a real diagnosis. I think many of the parents out there who hear ADHD don't always realize what "real" ADHD looks and feels like when its in your own home and its your child who is struggling.

Different people are going to react differently to medications, which is why there are so many on the market. Don't give up just yet and work with your psychiatrist to find the right one for your child - it will take work and will likely change as he does (god bless puberty!). I would STRONGLY discourage you from trying a do it at home stimulant, like coffee, as it is short acting and has a "crash" effect afterward which is likely to be worse then the symptoms unmediated.

Couple other suggestions - sounds like more than just ADHD. Have you considered Oppositional Defiant Disorder, or some other similar issues with your therapist? Often children who have one problem have another, just something to consider. Secondly, consider asking your therapist what progress s/he sees in your child and when you should expect a change. Ask them when you should consider finding a new therapist if you are not making progress. Finally, I would recomend looking into the work of Dr. Barkely http://www.russellbarkley.org/adhd-facts.htm who is amazing and might provide a few ideas of things you can do to help yourself, your family and your son.

Good luck!

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L.H.

answers from Detroit on

Try ATTEND. It is an all natural product that was recommended to my co-worker by the ladies at Vim & Vigor vitamin store. Worked like nothing else for my co-workers son who is 12. Their number is ###-###-#### if you would like to ask about it.

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J.T.

answers from Grand Rapids on

Mollie Tamminga, a Certified Naturopath, could help you learn about some alternatives that do not include such harsh medications with side effects. She herself was diagnosed as ADD when she was younger, and now through natural health practices helps other overcome ADD and ADHD by diet changes, and perhaps herbal supplements and homeopathic remedies. I would definitely call her. Her number is ###-###-####. She works at the Healthy for Life Clinic in Cascade.

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S.S.

answers from Detroit on

If you are interested, I have access to a natural dietary supplement that has been shown in studies at University of California Berkley to impact ADHD in powerful ways. I would love to tell you all about it, but according to the rules here, you have to ask me.

I take the stuff as it is good for me too!

Good luck!

S.
[email protected]____.com

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T.M.

answers from Detroit on

Hi L.,

My son is 6 years old and he also has ADHD. We have been treating him with meds and counseling since June. He started off taking 10 mg. of Metadate CD and that seemed to work well for about 2 weeks. I contacted the doctor after the first month on 10 mg and the doctors bumped his dose up to 20 mg of Metadate CD. My son has been doing very well on this med with no side effects. He never had a great appetite so it is hard to tell if the med has any effects on that. He had horrible distraction and focus problems when he was in Kindergarten and now that he is in first grade his teacher say that she has not experienced ANY behavior problems. We still have our challenges in the morning and after school at home (when he is no longer on the meds) but I am so happy that school is not a problem. Maybe you might want to mention this med to your doctor and see what he or she thinks. Good luck to you and I hope this helps a little bit.

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J.B.

answers from Detroit on

My heart goes out to you. My daughter was diagnoised in 2nd grade. Getting the right medicine is a nonstop struggle. They tried all of them with her, some helped a little. When focalin came out they tried it, and it really helped. That whole process took 3 years!!! We still had problems, so after additional testing/consulting with the child psychiatrist, she was diagnoised with a mood disorder and put on risperdal. What a difference!!!! Educate yourself on all the medicines. Keep on your doctor to try a different one, there are many that are slightly different from each other. My daughter is on 3 med's. While I hate to do that, it has made a HUGE difference. Even she will comment now that she is on the right meds.

Good luck and God bless.

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G.K.

answers from Detroit on

I used the concerta route with my son and found when it wore off the control and emotional response was awful and after 2 weeks he had huge temper tantrums trying to do homework at night. Then we used Adderal XR and it did suppress his appetite and made him not want to go to sleep. It was best when we ate breakfast and had some sort of caffine product - coffee, tea, pop then took it before 7am. Some day on the way to the school bus in the car. This way it was still working after sohool a little, but was pretty much done before bedtime. NO caffine after school and never after dinner helped too. The DR. told us a high protein milk shake about 9 would add extra calories and stop or slow down the weight loss as well as the milk helping him sleep. Omega 3 fish oil caplets also help with some of the ADHD symptoms and also add to the nuturion intake of my son. He is 18 and is still taking the Adderall XR on school days to help with the focus and college learning and life. Hope this helps
G.

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M.G.

answers from Jackson on

Hi L.!

Sounds like a rough couple of years! While we worked thru ADD and Ritalin we didn't have to deal with the rage. My heart goes out to you and your son.

Has anyone talked with you about the increased need for certain nutrients with ADD and the prescriptions given for that? That made all the difference for us. I have a couple of very good CDs that talk about that. Would you like to listen to them?

warmly, M.

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J.H.

answers from Detroit on

Hi L.,
Are you willing to look at alternative methods to help your son. If so, I know of something that I think will help him. It is not a medicine and has no side effects.
Please contact me and I will tell you about it.
Julie H

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C.M.

answers from Detroit on

Believe it or not, it could be something he is eating. Food allergies can play havoc on every part of your body, including the brain. I believe too many doctors are quick to medicate, with little or short term results. Go to www.ahccenter.com.
This is a group of chiropractors and nutritionists who heal all sorts of things naturally through diet and whole food supplements. Check out the testimonials or give them a call and ask about it. It could be life changing for you and your son. Good luck!

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L.S.

answers from Detroit on

My adult son who now has children of his own was diagnosed with ADD when he was about 11 years old. He was on Ritalin for about two years, all the while not responding as expected. In retrospect, and in light of the recent studies showing a marked rise in heart problems among early Ritalin users, I wish I'd went the route for allergy-testing instead. Anyone with allergies (he was just recently diagnosed with bronchial athsma) knows how confused, distracted, and agitated you can become when exposed to specific allergens.
Before increasing the dosage I'd seriously look into holistic or natural treatments.
Coffee is great for athsma..caffiene has a chemical make-up similar to ephedrine, I've read; both act as bronchodialators.

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C.H.

answers from Grand Rapids on

A friend of mine is a psychologist and her son is on ritalin. She says that she keeps him off it on the weekend because the body does habituate to the meds. We do not keep our daughter off her meds on the weekend because she feels better with it. My daughter is on Concerta and it made all the difference in the world. She was on ritalin twice a day and it would simply wear out. The Concerta stays more constant. We have made wonderful gains over the past 2 years, but you can tell the days she missed her meds. My daughter is in 2nd grade and has only had a discipline incident once all year. Kindergarten she was labeled a behavior 3, which is as bad as it gets.

Hang in there. Each year gets a little better and we have tried some different meds, different reward/punishment systems, but I have found that meds and maturity have made a huge difference for us.

C.

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S.C.

answers from Detroit on

I have three special needs boys all of whom have ADHD as one of their symptoms. We went the Adderall route, the Straterra route, the Ridalin route and finally went to Concerta which is doing great with all of them. As your son grows the dose may not be high enough for him and yes, he can grow accustom to it and develope a resistance to it. Keep going with your professional but I would ask for a change in meds. Everything except the Staterra is a stimulant so they will all have the lack of apetite aspect and possibly the sleep problems. I found that on Straterra my son was even more aggressive but every child is different. All three of my boys also take something to help them sleep. The body naturally produces Melatonin to help with sleep. Your son may not be producing enough. You might want to try some of that to help him out. If he sleeps better his behavior will improve. You want to get the Melatonin that is "Sublingular" as that form doesn't go through the body's organs. You can get it at most health food stores in 1mg, 2.5mg, and 5 mg doses either in no flavor, orange or peppermint. You let it dissolve under the tounge when he lays down for the night. My 7 year old is the size of a 5 year old and takes 2mg every night. My oldest is a big 14 year old and only needs 5mg a night. Every child is different. Start small and increase every few days if needed till you find the dose that works. You can even cut them in half to go up slower. I'd be happy to chat with you if you have any other questions.

Good luck - S.

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