anyone else dealing with autistic child getting almost violent when scolded

Nikki - posted on 03/24/2011 ( 26 moms have responded )

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My son is 20 with PDD:NOS he functions emotionally at about 12-13 range. Lately he's gotten really bad with a couple of things that seem to come in conjunction with each other. He has always thought annoying someone is funny so now at his school(MI allows him to go to school until 26) he is always poking and teasing thinking it's funny and now he is getting almost violent when he is told to stop. Hubby is on his way now to pick him up because he is so out of control. He is throwing things screaming and threatening staff.Right now we are only seeing a regular GP for meds but am trying to decide if we need a psychiatrist for him. Are any of you dealing with this and how are you handling it. I am at my wits end .

Nikki

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Sarah - posted on 03/31/2011

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@Christa--we had issues with the risperdal turning my son into a zombie too--he was only on like 2mg in the evening, but within the hour he was nodding off, and he was just as violent. When they wanted to add more, I said no and they changed him to abilify ( it isn't as sedating). My son has been on Tenex for his motor tics for about 4 years, and it also helps with his ADHD--just recently I found out that Tenex and Intuniv are the same thing ( intuniv is the extended release version)

Christa - posted on 03/31/2011

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Karen, we've also had bad experiences with medications. At 5, my son was put on Procentra for ADHD. In less than a week he was in the hospital for a three day & night headache. Risperdal initially made him much more socially appropriate, but then the neurologist upped the dose & he turned into a zombie. I wasn't nuts about putting a 5 yr. old on an antipsychotic anyway, so we took him off. Concerta sent his oral facial tics into overdrive & Ritalin had no effect whatsoever. I recently heard Dr. Temple Grandin speak at the Mississippia Autism & Asperger's conference & she said that when using meds. if there is no "wow" effect (a good wow), then don't use them. I think this is a great rule of thumb.

Karen - posted on 03/30/2011

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I think there is a lot to be said in using meds to take his mood down a level, but the therapy has to be present too. Practicing quiet, practicing calm down activities(drawing, walking, music, whatever works) Ultimately, he needs to self soothe, think things through and make a better decision. This is a long term goal. Teasing an explosive young man should be addressed also. Use environmental aids(move his chair away from other students, have him walk 2 arms lengths away from others, Put hands in pockets when walking, etc) Talk with the dr about meds for calming and to the teachers about behaviour analysis-when it happens, how to correct him in a nonthreatening way(notes, whistle tone, etc instead of words, physical intervention), notice time of day it occurs(right before lunch may mean he needs a mid morning snack of some kind of protein). Using biomedical intervention with a DAN dr can make a world of difference as well. good luck!

Christa - posted on 03/30/2011

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I always recommend seeing a specialist such as a psychologist or psychiatrist when considering the use of psychotropic medications. Even the best general practitioners & pediatricians are usually out of their league with these issues. If you are truly blessed in your community, a psych. who specializes in autism is the most ideal (Good luck with that!).

Joana - posted on 03/30/2011

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My sons, both with ASD, are seeing a DAN! practioner who has ordered urine pyrrole tests for them. Pyroluria can cause all of the above and for those with it, psych meds will work for short periods and then need constant re-adjustment which can be hard on people - best to treat the cause 1st. see link: http://www.integrativepsychiatry.net/pyr...

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Breanna - posted on 02/14/2012

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Nikki! Thank you so much for writing this post! For a second there I thought you were writing about my life. I would like to write more to you later...I am off to my son's school...But, I would love to hear more about your life with your son...Happy Valentine's Day!

Nikki - posted on 04/05/2011

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I'll have to see if we can find a good psch doc. I may talk to his school pschologist. We are already having him do weekly talk sessions with the school pschologist. So far two days back after spring break and no problems. School is wondering about the Abilify. I may schedule an appointment with a regular psch doc instead of GP soon.

Tara - posted on 04/01/2011

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Nikki my son was on Adderall for ADHD and is caused his anger to just fly off the handle.....maybe try another med for ADHD.

Christa - posted on 04/01/2011

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Thanks Sarah! I'll definitely remember Intuniv for our next trial of drugs. Started Omega 3 supplements at the recommendation of my son's psychologist & neurologist. First tried the gummy ones but evidently they tasted horrible (I did not try them myself). My son gagged & cried, so we switched to the soft gel type that he can just swallow. I'll let you all know how that works out.

Christa - posted on 03/31/2011

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Hi Dawn. I'm no doctor, but I agree that your son is on a ridiculous cocktail of drugs - then throw in those wonderful pubescent hormones & no good can come of it. I think that as moms we should follow our gut instincts even in the face of doctors & professionals giving us a different opinion. Also, if your doctors aren't listening to you then it's time to move on. Keep up the good fight and hang in there.

Sarah - posted on 03/31/2011

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My 15 year old is diagnosed PDD-NOS and mood disorder-NOS. His rages/meltdowns include screaming in your face ( some cussing) and launching himself at you in an effort to do as much damage as possible. We now have to roll him to his belly when we do a "take down" because he started biting a few years ago ( in addition to hitting and kicking). I still have a mark on my leg where he bit me the first week in February during a rage--I am pretty sure it is permanent damage. I started taking cell pictures of my injuries to protect myself... We did get CPS involved last year when he had scratches on his face from having to be taken down in a snow drift--they interviewed everyone and closed the case.

the medication combination that seems to be the best for my 110lb son is 7.5mg abilify, 20 mg prozac, 1mg tenex in the morning and 5mg abilify and 1mg tenex in the evening. He was having rages about once a month at home and screaming in someone's face at school like once a week until we got this combination worked out.

I would definitely see a psychiatrist about his meds. GPs are great, but they don't have the additional education to *know* what psychotropics are OK to combine, or they may hesitate to know how high they can safely go. My son's psychiatrist says that many kids with autism need higher levels of medication that neurotypical kids because they seem to process it quicker!

Julie - posted on 03/30/2011

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With my now 19 yr. old...we do the medications but we also have him in therapy....My son has more that Autism/ADHD and his other behavior issues...he has Severe Combined Immunodeficiency(SIC) with Complete T-Cell Dysfunction...he has NO functioning Immune System...He has been in and out of the hospital all of his life. But His Autism is NOT from this...We were told when he survived his Premature birth of 1lb. 6oz., he would have lotsof behavior issues that go along with the Micropremature birth. He does. I handle it the best I can....He can't go to many places in public but we have lots of things we CAN do....not just Dr.s offices and Hospital...we do Homebound studies as well as homeschool....we call places like the museum. We go to the library during the day around 11:00am ...less activity going on and less stressful. We go to plays at teh local theatre..he just saw Annie,Jr that the local children put on for the community..but we went the oening night when just the parents and grandparents go....(School night....place was packed the weekend). At home I limit hisuse of the playstation and TV. he only has ONE gaming system(I know several folks have several) he has his set shows he watches. so I let him do that....he is a time worrier...he does things in his timing and gets upset when a wrench is thrown in there...he can not handle change at all...but we have learned to manage. Hope this helps a little
TheTherapy for an Autisitc/ADHD child is very very important!!!!

Karen - posted on 03/30/2011

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My son is only 6 and seems to be an exact same way. Since my son has started on his meds, his behavior has gotten worse. I am at my wits end too. Good luck.

Becky - posted on 03/30/2011

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You really should see a psychiatrist. My oldest, 23, has Asperger's and has had some angry tantrums, but not on this level. If your son is throwing things and threatening I can't imagine why you would want to wait to see a psychiatrist. He sounds dangerous.

Linda - posted on 03/30/2011

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Hi! I'm a physician assistant in family practice and the mother of an 8 yr old with Asperger's. I have learned through my job and with my son that the stimulants will tend to cause autistic kids/people to have meltdowns. My son had been on Focalin and is now on Straterra. He is becoming more social with others and his meltdowns have lessened in intensity and number. You might want to take him to see a neurologist or a neuropsych if one is available. Andrew is on clonidine for the stimming (lessens it) and to help him sleep. Good luck.

Julie - posted on 03/30/2011

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I have a 19 yr. old who is Autistic and has ADHD/OCD/ODD...WHen he took adderal it caused his behavior to go eradic....we swhtiched him to Concerta 72 mg(twice the reccomended doesage) it made a world of difference. Sometimes also they become immune to teh amt. that is first perscribed or even the medicine it's self. My 19 yr. old take risperadal instead of abilify. The abilify made him go psychotic. It is really NOT for kids/folks with sdhd...it can inhance the problems and mae it worse for mom or dad to help the child. We do give clonidine at night along with trazadone.....we have ambien on board for these "we nned sleep".

Sally - posted on 03/30/2011

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Yes, my 10yr PPD/NOS + IED can be very aggro and hostile, he has hurt me physically occasionally and hurts his brother regularly. Things at home have improved A LOT since I read the Book: The Explosive Child. School is not good though, expelled from After School Care 2weeks ago and,if it wasnt for School Counseller he wld have been suspended from School last Tues.He has frequent explosions at school,It's not easy but at least it's getting better. Not going down the meds route at this stage as there has been massive improvement at home and fingers crossed thngs get better at school for him nxt term when his routine settles a bit.
I wish us all: Peace, strength and luck

Karen - posted on 03/30/2011

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i have to say from reading above my son has choked me twice and i got turned in and investigated for it the first time it happen because i bite him to get his hands off me i was in a seated rap with him and it got flipped so i was in a bad place and he got me in a choke i bite his hand and he turned me in it was unfounded and self defence but you realy ahve to watch that stuff my son is very violent at times and he is on a lot of meds he is on depakot and seraquel and risperdal and colonidine all for mood and zoloft for anxiety and they just added a new mood and i cant remember it off the top of my head but he is a head banger and would run into wallscement walls till be bleed or even blacked out he has stopped that now but he is having issues with his heart rate and they thought it was concerta they took him off and still having the problem i have no clue what i am going to do it thye take him off the meds if he is still like this on them ...... Karen

Karen - posted on 03/30/2011

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my son is 15 and also PDD NOS and he makes sounds to annoy the kids he is in a special school for mr/dd kids ans ther is alot of verbal non verbal very low functioning kids he is high functioning and very aggressive he has been arrested for beating staff but he has also came home with lack eys from the students becaue they cant deal with his noises... i do have a psyc for him we have had for yrs the problem is they tell me anyways there is no med for this they are using meds for like bipolar and like that we have had him on meds sence 8 and they still cant get any that work right very flustrating... Karen

Kathy - posted on 03/29/2011

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My son is 15 and was diagnosed with PDD-NOS at age 6. Tonight, he decided to do the unthinkable: he put hs hands on me in anger. I kept my cool, was more surprosed than anything else, and he didn't hurt me. My 10 yr old son grabbed my cameraphone and taped the incident, well, at least part of it. When my husband got home, he watched the tape, but blamed me bec I did nothing to stop my son (i.e.: knock him out). We're not violent people, but we do believe in spanking them when it's necessary. However, spanking has never worked with either of them. We've asked for help from our state, and got it, but it's not enough. Meds were never an option, and I've got more gray hair than I care to count. Thanks for listening.

Dawn - posted on 03/29/2011

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Hi...I have a 16 year old diagnosed the same as your son. Lately we have been experiencing more aggressive behavior he was just suspended for a week for flipping out in school over the way he should wear his id. He has never gotten physical with anyone but like your words flowing out his mouth are not pleasant ones. We also had to visit the ER because he was grounded for getting suspended and he decided to hit a brick wall. I will say the wall won. He is currently taking strattera for his ADHD...welbutrin for depression and impulsivity focalin also for ADHD guanfacine for his oppositional defiance and they currently added Trileptal for moods. I'm currently looking for another dr because as his mother I feel they have him on way to many meds and I feel they are not listening to what I have to say. I believe the trileptal has helped his mood a bit though.

Nikki - posted on 03/28/2011

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Never a dull moment. Mine was suspended twice in a week. We're on Spring break here and today was an uphil battle. I scolded him about teasing his sisters and well he let the curse words fly. No violence but boy does he know all the 4 letter words.

Mary - posted on 03/28/2011

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Hi. an update. i Did see a marked improvement at home when he is on intuniv but i have just found out that he has over 10 write-ups IN school in the last 2 weeks due to inappropriate behaviors.I do Not know if it is the intuniv, but think it may be possible. just wanted to let you know.

Nikki - posted on 03/28/2011

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I may have to talk to the doc about the meds. Currently he is on Adderall(adhd), Fluoxetine for his moods,Clonodine for his moods and Abilify to help him sleep along with Melatonin.

I don't know if ABA is availible here as our town is very small.

Katherine - posted on 03/28/2011

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another thing (non-medicinal) you can try is ABA and RDI.



Applied Behavioral Analysis and Relationship Development Intervention.

Mary - posted on 03/27/2011

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Hi. I have the opposite problem but think the solution may help you also. My 12 y/o pdd-nos son gets teased Alot even within his sp. ed school. His MANY outbursts and meltdowns caused a the teachers to submit Many referrals to the school psychiatrist. After several visits he is now on intuniv (adhd), zoloft to calm him and his mood swings and seroquel at nite to sleep.
After the 1st day of 2mg of intuniv there was a marked difference in him. He became calmer and less outbursts even tho he still gets teased. He is learning "appropriate" responses and ways of handling his anger in school. It is not Perfect or an all answer to everything but it has helped a bit. I hope this helps you. if you like you can reach me on face book under this same name.

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