What Age to Seek ADD Help?

Updated on August 04, 2009
K.C. asks from Indiana, PA
9 answers

I have just recently been diagnosed with ADD. Obviously I had it all my life, just was never diagnosed until now. It has been completely life changing for me- for the better!

My son turned 5 in July. We have always had a special connection, we just seem to understand each other. Now that I have been diagnosed with ADD and know what the signs and symptoms are, I am noticing them in my son.

It was difficult struggling all my life with ADD. If he has it, I would like to get him help as early as possible so he can avoid the struggles and frustration that I went thru.

My question is, at what age should you seek advice? I don't want to jump the gun and assume anything but like I said, I don't want him to struggle thru life like I did. I am going to talk to my dr about it when I return for my next appt in September, but just wondering if any of you have had any experience with this.



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

More Answers


answers from Williamsport on

Your understanding at his point puts him way ahead of where you were as a child.

I don't know your feelings on medicating and treating children etc, which would factor into your choice.

Our extended family has several children who definitely have ADD symptoms. They don't happen to believe in medication except in cases where the behavior is destroying the quality of life after all else fails-which for them it isn't. Everyone is different, I know, but if you want the natural approach. Here's what they do:

First of all, be sure "symptoms" aren't being mistaken for lifestyle issues. As a doctor put it, if the child has all their good nutrition, no toxins, sugars or junk, all their sleep, a calm orderly loving household, firm structure and discipline, lots of exercise, lots of love and attention, and they still can NEVER control their behavior or hold their attention, they may have ADD. But having a distracted child in a hectic lifestyle does not signify a disorder, and can be managed other ways with extra effort. Michael Phelps' mom threw her hyperactive kid in the pool. Some kids kids march to a different drummer and take MUCH more effort.

You don't want him to struggle, so wait until he struggles before you do anything potentially harmful like drugs. The long term effects are not known. I have an irregular heartbeat from a "harmless" anti depressant I took for one year as a teenager. Young children's bodies are small and vulnerable. Doctor's say everything they prescribe is safe, because that's what they're told. A year later, things can be yanked off the market for being unsafe.

Use your own experience to know what type of help you would have really needed as a child, and keep safety in mind.

Some symptoms can be allowed and understood, not repressed. For instance, people may strive to stop their child's fidgeting by any means, when the fidgeting is what helps the child focus. The moms I know with this issue homeschool, so they don't have to worry about keeping their child "still" for the school's convenience. They actually make sure they run around and extra amount during the day rather than sitting too long. Just an example, I don't know how severe your son's symptoms are.

Many artistic geniuses and functioning eccentric adults have ADD. The kids in our family with it are the wildest kids, with many challenges (and creative sparks) the rest don't have, but still amazing, happy, respectful and disciplined. It's not easy, but if understood, can often be managed. Some people say their kids need meds so they are more manageable to them and at school. It's your ethical choice. Continue to keep your child's best interest and safety first.

I would give your son all the above mentioned necessities (I'm sure you are already), and remain aware of his thought processes and needs (as you are) and have him evaluated by a high quality specialist. Then, if and only if you see your child struggling, act accordingly, being careful you are never putting your own convenience first. Best wishes, congratulations on your diagnosis being an eye opener and help, and best wishes for your son with your first hand wisdom! He's lucky!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Why wait any longer? As you see yourself, the sooner the better! Good luck.


answers from Allentown on

Hi K.,

It is never too young or old to see help.

CHADD is an organization that deals with ADD and ADHD.

Check the web site and see what resource people are near you. Hope this helps. Good luck. D.



answers from York on

Hi K.. A friend of mine, her son just turned 2 recently. She has been having some concerns with him already at this young age with things she deems not just normal "boy" behavior... but possibly something more. She asked his pediatrician at his 2 year old check up. And after the Doctor asked some questions about his lack of communicating, not talking, not listening, ect... and observed his behavior at this check up... they are sending someone out who is with some sort of ADHD diagnosis place. I apologize I don't know the specific name, but they called her right away to set something up. They are coming to her house to observe him for a few hours and really meet with her and get all of her questioned answered and see if this could be something that he may possible have. Perhaps you could ask your son's pediatrician as well and they could recommend someone experienced to do the same for you. I wish you the best of luck in finding answers out that work for you and your son as well. take care.



answers from Pittsburgh on

My daughter was diagnosed when she just turned 7. I truly wish I would have caught it sooner. It was very hard for her in Kindergarten and a lot of anxiety for her and me both.
If you see signs in your son I would say to get him diagnosed soon. School will be a lot less stressful on both of you. There is a good possibility that he may have it. It does run in the family. My husband has it.
Good luck



answers from Sharon on

Not to sound disparaging here, but I think you ought to just leave your son be unless he really is suffering, if he's happy leave him alone. The reason I say this is because it happens all the time: a mother or her child gets diagnosed with something, and suddenly she sees it everywhere - particularly in children, whether the child actually has it or not.
The same happened with many mothers I knew growing up, their kid got diagnosed with something, then they'd "see some of the symptoms" in me and tell my mother that she should take me to a professional for guidance.
One of my friends at age 7 was put on Ritalin needlessly from this kind of hype (because her mother had ADHD and was always saying "maybe so-and-so has ADHD too") and ended up committing suicide from the imbalance in her brain this caused!
So as I said, unless he really IS suffering, let him alone.

ADDED: Something I posted on another request for all of you to think about.
"We seem to live in an age where every little thing indicates a disorder. It's like every measly deviant behavior or quirk has to be diagnosed and analyzed, or means that there MUST be something medically and/or psychologically not right with the child.
Some people just can't accept the fact that their kid is just plain naughty, or defiant, or stubborn, or lazy, or strange in some way. Just because they aren't your perfect paper-doll cut-out child doesn't mean you need to diagnose and drug them to death!
Some of my colleagues would take umbrage with my little rant here, but don't be fooled, not all doctors or med profs truly have your best interests at heart. In my career I've seen far more than my fair share of those who got into the field just for the large sums of money they can make, not for the service to the public good. They make me sick at heart and I try not to associate with them if I can help it. They also tend to not bother with education beyond what they got in college and whatever's new, fashionable, and/or profitable. :P""



answers from Philadelphia on

I would be starting now. Contact your school districts IU, and start there, thye can help you or point you in the direction of someone that can. good luck



answers from Scranton on

I found out that my first son had it when he was about 1 and 1/2 years old, when I took my second son to the doctors. Five years old is not to early to have him checked for it. The way I found out he had it was funny. I thought there was something wrong with my second son because he slept all night at just a month old and he would lay and play be himself when he was awake. I took him to the doctor to find out what was wrong with him, and I had to take my first one with me because I didn't have a babysitter. While the doctor was examining my baby, my first don was doing his normal climbing all over everything including me, and getting into everything. When the doctor was done with the baby she got out her pad and told me she was giving me a script for the other one, because he was Hyperactive, the baby was normal. With it being my first, I just thought it was normal for him to be so active and not to sleep more than 2-3 hours at a time. Oh what a difference it made after he got the medication. I got to sleep all night for the first time in over a year.



answers from Harrisburg on

Talk to your pediatrician. My son was diagnosed at 9 - though we pretty much knew before the diagnosis. It depends...what are you going to do about it? We didn't medicate our son until a year later - when the stresses of school became too much for him to handle. He also saw a psychologist then as well. Some kids cope with behavior modification, others need to be medicated. I suppose the sooner the better.

I hear you on the connection. My husband was diagnosed about the same time as my son. They have a special connection because their brains function in the same manner. My highly organized daughter and I just don't "get" them sometimes, but we really try! Counseling has helped for all of us.

Good luck!

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches