How do u deal with a Adhd/bipolar child?

Tonya - posted on 06/21/2009 ( 24 moms have responded )

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I have a 11 year old son who has adhd and bipolar. He is very hard to deal with, and I have been trying to find out answers and can't get anyone to help.

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Leigh - posted on 08/01/2013

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Very Common Symptoms of Childhood Bipolar Disorder

Separation anxiety
Rages & explosive temper tantrums (lasting up to several hours)
Marked irritability
Oppositional behavior
Frequent mood swings
Distractibility
Hyperactivity
Impulsivity
Restlessness/ fidgetiness
Silliness, goofiness, giddiness
Racing thoughts
Aggressive behavior
Grandiosity
Carbohydrate cravings
Risk-taking behaviors
Depressed mood
Lethargy
Low self-esteem
Difficulty getting up in the morning
Social anxiety
Oversensitivity to emotional or environmental triggers

Leigh - posted on 06/25/2013

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Hi Tonya,
I have a ADHD /bipolar 12 year old Daughter its so hard at times and she trys to take over our home I feel very alone at times shes on Med's 1 mg Risperidone twice a day and 90 mg Adderal XR pretty crazy I Know but it takes every bit of the 90 mg to even slow her down a little :( Shes Still so Mean and very mean to Animals :( she use to see things garbing out at her when she was 5 then we took her to a couple of Drs and found out she had ADHD and B/P Times are hard at times but we are Blessed !!! Always looking for all Natural things to add for the evenings as her Med's are not still working in the late afternoon :( so any time after 3;00 PM gets tough :( But we keep trying as we sure can't give up now God Bless you And your Son and all your Family~

Debbie - posted on 06/21/2009

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Unfortunatly a trial of medication may help. I did not want to put my child on any and have taken him off a few times and have found him worse.Mine is now 13 and uses, clonidine and vyvanse, getting you child into a good child psychologist who tends to children and a psycologist who can help work with you and him through consiquences of the action. There is help and do not feel your the only one and you did not make him this way. I have 3 total and he is the middle child the other 2 do not have adhd. Good luck.

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Heather - posted on 09/09/2013

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I can completely relate to your question... I have. 12 yr old daughter (2 actually! Twins)
My husband frequently travels for business leaving me alone to deal with her. She was diagnosed with ADHD, aspergers (social), anxiety and mood swings (bipolar). Her 1st diagnosis of ADHD was at the age of 5. I took her to a behavioral therapist for years to no avail. It's difficult to use reward and consequences on a child that repeats behavior no matter what the outcome .. Her hormones are in full swing, that definitely doesn't help matters!!
And to add to all of that she inherited all of that from me! We are a hot mess when we get into it :(
Then there's her twin sister who besides having a bad (preteen attitude) is witness to all of the behaviors.... The anger, the fights...
I am going to sleep off the days events and maybe tomorrow will be better. Probably not but one can always hope....

Leigh - posted on 08/01/2013

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Hi Tonya.

we also have a pipolar 12 year old Daughter and believe me your not alone !!! symptoms,of bipolar our daughter is on meds as she has adhd and bipolar!I hope this helps God Bless you and your Daughter ,

Because the current diagnostic manual of mental disorders doesn't recognize childhood bipolar disorder, there is no official symptom criteria. However, researchers have used criteria similar to that of adult bipolar disorder, requiring a child or teen to meet at least four or more of the following:

an expansive or irritable mood
extreme sadness or lack of interest in play
rapidly changing moods lasting a few hours to a few days
explosive, lengthy, and often destructive rages
separation anxiety
defiance of authority
hyperactivity, agitation, and distractibility
sleeping little or, alternatively, sleeping too much
bed wetting and night terrors
strong and frequent cravings, often for carbohydrates and sweets
excessive involvement in multiple projects and activities
impaired judgment, impulsivity, racing thoughts, and pressure to keep talking
dare-devil behaviors (such as jumping out of moving cars or off roofs)
inappropriate or precocious sexual behavior
grandiose belief in own abilities that defy the laws of logic (ability to fly, for example)
Keep in mind that many of these behaviors, in and of themselves, are not indicative of a possible disorder and are characteristic of normal childhood development. For instance, separation anxiety, by itself, is a normal fear of being separated from one or both of the parents (for instance, attending the first day of first grade or if the parents want to go out for a night).

Childhood bipolar disorder is characterized by many of these symptoms, taken together, and marked by rapid mood swings and hyperactivity. These symptoms must also cause significant distress in the child or teen, occur in more than just one setting (e.g., at school and at home), and last for at least 2 weeks.

Because the existing diagnostic manual doesn’t recognize pediatric bipolar disorder, and there is still debate within the professional community about the validity of this diagnosis, insurance companies may not reimburse for treatment of this disorder. In addition, some professionals may not recognize the disorder and misdiagnose the child or teen with attention deficit disorder or depression.

Leigh - posted on 08/01/2013

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HI MELISSA,
I'M SO SAD TAT YOUR GOING THROUGH THIS WITH OUT ANY HELP ! AT TIMES OUR DAUGHTER GETS SO OUT OF CONTROL I FEEL THE SAME AS YOU AND SHES ON MED :( SHE THROWS THINGS AT ME TELS ME SHE HATES ME AND OTHER THINGS I FEEL LIKE I'M AT MY WITS END SOMETIMES ! ITS NOT EASY THAT'S FOR SURE, I'M HERE ANYTIME YOU WOULD LIKE TO CHAT OR ASK QUESTIONS I SURE COULD USE A FRIEND !!!!

Melissa - posted on 07/31/2013

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I FEEL LIKE OUR CHILDREN ARE EXACTLY ALIKE ! I HAVE NOT MEDICATED YET BUT I CAN'T IMAGINE OUR PLAN B TO NOT HELP!! IM AT THE END OF MY ROPE! I CANNOT COPE WITH THIS ANY LONGER !! YOU ARE NOT ALONE TRUST ME

Melissa - posted on 07/30/2013

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My 9 year old has not been diagnosed with bipolar disorder but has ADHD . I believe she may have bp disorder . I never medicated her for her ADHD but now I feel like I can't control the situation any longer. She has crying spells that last hours long, she lashes out and hits her younger sister to the point my daughter had to be separated from her. Her grades were so low this last report card and teacher commented that she is tired in school. she has extreme insomnia , I have no tv computer in her room and she still cannot fall asleep .....idk what to think can anyone describe bi polar symptoms
I already made an appointment to see her dr. But I'm worried that this will continue and possibly harm my relationships with my other children .

Leigh - posted on 07/24/2013

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I was searching the web for all Natural things to help Our Daughter she just turned 12 yesterday July 23rd ~ I found a link and its all about a Mom that has a Son then 8 years old when whe started searching the web as well because her Son was on meds but out of control :( well I tried it and it seems to be working Praise God here it is Niacin Flush Free type She started her son on 500 mgs then upped the dose every 24 hrs up to 2,500 mg and it worked !!!!! I think hes about 12 now and is taking 4,000 mgs a day with other vitia c and Fish oil 2,500 a day and her son is still doing awesome she still has him on adhd 20mg I think you can go search out her story by goggle Just put does Niacin help with adhd and bipolar and you should see it its on hub Moms its a long story But worth reading and don't be afraid to give the high dose of Niacin it won't hurt your child as you ca bet I searched it out for about a week before trying it and I'm here to tell you it Does !!! our Daughter was out of control Bipolar is very hard to deal with in it self !!! and then adhd,ocd,odd ,add them on top of the bipolar you have like Wow over the Top uncontrolled Child :( but Go read this Moms Story and feel free to email me I'm always here to listen or chat our Daughter is still taking her Meds for Now but we will take her off them Slowly as shes been on them for 7 years !! and shes home schooled as she was not going to do well with teachers telling her to be quite or sit down she has a Mouth for sure even at age 5 and this all started at age 18 Months :( she has pit holes in walls knocked off TVS I mean her list goes on so to find that Niacin B-3 Helped that much Wow !!!! OK I hope this helped in some way !!! God Bless all the Parents that is dealing with adhd bipolar,ODD,and other things with their Children ! My Heart goes out to you all I feel your pain !

Jeanell - posted on 07/23/2013

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My 7 year old daughter has not officially been diagnosed BP, but I feel that's what it is! We have done many test( with doctors) and see a Psych, they said it's anxiety and depression w/ ADHD! We started out hoping for ADHD, those meds made her worse!! Then Prozac, wired her up of course, then Lexapro, at a a very small dose we saw small improvement. We had to take her out of public school, and put her in Montessori( which worked out very well ). So, now it's summer, and she is out of routine, and totally off the charts crazy. She has been super hyper, lashing out at me and her sister, saying mean things to us, not listening, saying hateful words..
she will go out of her head, and act giddy, can't keep her eyes straight, do destructive things, ect.. Then act totally sweet 2 hrs later. I have seen this behavior since she was 2 years old.Told her Psych, so today we changed her Lexapro to a small dose of Paxil, per doc rec.. This was the worst day we have had in years, almost ever! It was like she was a different child, so out of control that I felt like she was going to hurt myself or her sister, almost possesed!! I know SSRI's trigger mania in BP kids.. The problem is, I feel like I am the only one who sees that she clearly has a major mood disorder, she meets all the criteria..My husband is against any drug that has to do w/ BP, and does not believe it) and I understand they are scary) but I can't watch her live ths way anymore!! The LAST thing I ever wanted to do was medicate her, but after years of counseling, it was the last resort. I feel like I am a one person army, and it sucks!! Has anyone had any issues like this?!? Pls help!!

Leigh - posted on 07/03/2013

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Wow so many Heart Breaking Stories :( we have a adhd/bipolar and wow I thought I was alone :( all the stories seems the same as ours and its not easy at all our Daughter Tells me everyday she hates me Just because I ask her to do something I cry a lot for sure because I try so hard to keep her happy but she talks so mean and hateful and everyone else is wrong shes Right !!! Well she thinks she is !! she yells throws things at me sometimes calls me names you name it same stories as I see here so I feel your pain and really wish I had a Friend on here to talk to ??? it seems these are all older post :( God Bless you all !!!

Lisa - posted on 11/03/2012

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My daughter is 10 and she seems to be regressing! She throws tantrums at school! She is on aderall and vyvanse in am mid day 5mg of aderall and them 30mg of intuit at night! I am at my wits end it seems to be getting worse than better! I sont like being around her and i feel terrible as a mother! Help

Tammy - posted on 09/05/2012

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I have a daughter she is 13 now ,she has adhd /bipolar too. Does your son have trouble sleeping at night waking up to bad dreams or hearing ,seeing things , My husband thinks she is putting on an act.I do not know what to do either!

Melinda - posted on 05/15/2012

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I am the same way. I have an 11 year old that is impossible, ADHD and possin=ble bipolay or anxiety NOS. It is so hard to discern what he can control and what he cannot; when the medicine is working and when his mind is on fire and there is nothing you can do or say to put out his raging fire of anger and distorted feelings. You have to set good limits and have good boundaries in your home and wuth yourself, that is the most important thing first to model!

Lisa - posted on 09/14/2011

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my son is 20 and is bipolar and has severe ADHD he is having lots of trouble dealing with things he has a son with his ex and it just seem hard to say anything to him at times he gets so angry we are taking him to therapy getting him on meds but getting him to his appointments can be terrible he throws a fit and you just have to take things one day at a time

Bernadette - posted on 07/15/2009

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Try taking him off meat for awhile, it sounds nuts but they pump hormones into the meat so it only exacerbates the issue. feed him only healthy foods, turkey has a calming effect as well.

Sarah - posted on 07/14/2009

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Just wanted to say I almostt cried reading these posts. I have a 10 yr daughter who has BP and ADHD and is hitting puberty! My family and friends don't truly get it - but you guys seem too! Thanks - BTW I also have a 12 yr old son who suffers some neglect on my part cause his sister can be high maintanence. I try to give him lots of time during a stable period.

Bonita - posted on 07/14/2009

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One of my twins was ADHD, ODD, and mild CP. Time, patience, love, acceptance, and counseling are the only answers. Try not to change his routine too suddenly. You might try teaching him the importance of baskets A, B, and C. In basket A are the things that have to be taken care of immediately, in basket B goes those things that have to be taken care of soon and basket C is those things that don't really matter. This keeps him from becomming overwhelmed. Write me at shadowdancer0076@yahoo.com if you need more assistance. I will try to help.

Angie - posted on 07/14/2009

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GOD bless you! My mother is BP and I belive my 11yr old son is ADD(about to go thruogh testing) I could not imagine both in 1 person.You will be in my prayers,Don't give up there is an answer out there,sorry I couldn't be of any help!

Kristine - posted on 07/01/2009

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First of all, breath! Then pray! I have a 13 yr old son who is BP, ADHD and ODD! I know what ur going threw! I have taken him 2 all of the therapist, Dr. OT's ect... he don't think he has a problem, if you son will go and do what he has 2 then i would suggest 2 take him 2 an OT and get him some cognitive behavior therapy as well as a counseling along with a good Child Psychiatrist for him 2 work with . Sometimes it takes yrs 2 b able 2 find the right meds. I would suggest that u keep a log of all his moods( mood chart) as well as ur son if he will do it! I had 2 tell my son"if u don't want 2 help urself then there is nothing i can do! I wish u well and keep u in my prayers!
Good Luck,
Kristine

Jamie - posted on 06/24/2009

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Pray and pray hard. My 13 year old son takes vyvanse and it helps with the adhd, but he has an IQ of 140 and faliled the 7th grade, AARGGGGG! He is in summer school now and making a's but the mood swings wear me out.

Ebonie - posted on 06/21/2009

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Bipolar Disorder is very hard to deal with. It is a lifetime struggle of management. I suggest (If you have not) keep the child in constistent therapy, and make sure the child is taking their medication. As the child gets older ( because they are not within reason) will believe that something is wrong with everyone else but them and will stop taking their medication, unless they are supervised. They are dangerous to themselves and others. You need a lot of family support. My mother has it and right now after trying to get her help with no success ( due to her refusal and the law honors her rights to not get help) now she decided to live in a shelter.

Barb - posted on 06/21/2009

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It is very difficult to deal with a child with both of these disorders. I have a 15 year old with the same diagnosis's & keeping medication in her is almost impossible. I have admitted her a couple of times to straighten her out, which has helped. I hated doing it but like you I also was at my wits end.

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