Focalin 5mg QD for my 7 yo w ADHD - worried

Toni - posted on 03/31/2016 ( 2 moms have responded )

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Thankful to find the forum. My son is failing in school after his IEP he has been placed in SPED. We are in a wonderful district and feel very lucky to have the team there. I knew however it was time to get my head out of the sand I buried it in -- it was effecting Noahs self esteem too. To watch your child crying and begging not to be sent to school because there is a test in the morning he's certain he'll fail..💔 Time for medication management. I say that with tears in my eyes as the thought of altering brain chem in a 7 yo child scares me beyond logic. . He has been on Focalin 5mg daily for about 4 days. My child has no alpha in him at all. Compulsive, Restless, total inability to focus. But this kids heart and sense of humor are amazing. . Or were.. When asked after a few days of the Med, he says he doesn't feel any different. (I don't think he understands what I'm asking) I'm noticing a child who was never snarky, or angered now showing those tendencies often during the day. He also seems inpatient and emotional. Not all day but numerous times a day. I don't know how that will work at school next week. His usual inability to be still is still apparent. His focus however has improved . He's having trouble going to sleep at night when he never did before.
It concerns me and I need to know : do I continue and his body levels out? Do I call the dr with this (even though she said it may be a side effect)? Do I explain it to him, hold him accountable for the snarky while clearly it's the Med? Is this the price we pay to save school and is this my new medicated Noah?
I'm in medicine and I love science. I don't want anyone to think I'm judging the decisions we have all made. Thank god we have these choices. But I'm terrified that I'll end up with a shadow of the kid my son used to be-so that he can pass 2nd grade.
Anything - even if it's that I'm over reacting - any advice or words of wisdom would help my heart tonight.

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Toni - posted on 03/31/2016

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Sarah
Thank you so much for responding! 'Stick it out' was exactly what I needed to hear. I'll definitely take your advice on dealing with Noahs snarky moments. I'll also be trying the Melatonin tonight. His IEP does accommodate for testing with a reading of questions for assistance - the problem is its on computers (I-Ready etc) so he has difficulty with using his scratch paper then transferring to the computer screen for assimilation of process and answers. Too many steps in different pathways. His teacher allows for breaks, and movement during the day. I was a medical sales director but I have stopped working so I can focus on transition Noah to a better place socially and academically. I pray once he is able to focus and the act of schooling isn't so hard for him, his self esteem right-sides and he feels 'he can' at school -- everything will fall into a happier stride.
My sights are now set to 30 days from now. Thank again for the response and support.

Sarah - posted on 03/31/2016

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Focalin 5mg is a pretty low dose I see kids on 30mg with bump up doses of Ritalin during the afternoon. The side effects can be so frustrating, but if you really want to see if this med will help you gotta stick it out for a month. I'd try to be as patient as you can with the snaky behavior, but point it out to him; "I know you feel irritated and cranky, but it's not nice to snap at me" At night, try melatonin 3mg about 30 minutes before bed. This is very safe and helps kids make the shift to sleep. does his IEP accommodate for taking tests alone, unlimited time or not at all? What other provisions does your school provide for kids who need a break?

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