My 7yr old has been diagnosed with ADD. Today Ritalin was given. Does anyone have anything they can share about ADD and meds?

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Adrienne - posted on 02/20/2009

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My daughter was diagnosed with ADD about 4 or 5 years ago, when she was also about 7 and in the 1st grade. They started her on Ritalin at first too. She went from 10 mg to 15 to 20 over a period of around 4-6 months until they figured out the proper dosage for her. After her dosage levelled out, they prescribed her Concerta, which is a long-acting form of Ritalin and only needs to be given once a day (instead of 2-4 pills on short-acting Ritalin). Today she's in 6th grade and is doing wonderfully on Concerta. Of course, she's on a higher dose now than she was back then, but her school work is going really well and her personal relationships (family and friends) are great too. We still have our moments, especially since she's going through all those fun pre-teen hormone changes, but it's going pretty well overall.



I know the idea might be a little scary at first, putting your child on medication, but if the meds do their job, you should see a change within the first week or two. Some of our family balked at the suggestion of medication, but the way I explained it is this: If they had a heart condition, epilepsy, asthma, etc., you'd get them the treatment they needed, right? Why should something like ADD or ADHD be any different, as long as it's been properly diagnosed?



I wish you the best of luck with all this, and I hope I've been some help!

Heather - posted on 02/20/2009

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I totally agree with Dena. I though I could just work with her more, or quit my job and stay home or become president... none of that was going to fix her. She struggled from kindergarted until we started 3 rd grade. You notice I said "we" started 3rd grade!! It is a group effort, but the first A is so fabulous and you know they did it without your help!!

Sik - posted on 03/25/2015

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Your son is going to be smoking alot of marijuana in life to make up for the stupid bullshit you pushed upon him. You are a discrace of a parent.

Crystal - posted on 02/26/2009

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My daughter was diagnosed in the 3rd grade,  she was put on Daytrana 10 mg it is a patch.  I put it on her in the morning and it last 9 hours.  She has done really well on it going form C's and D's to Honor roll.  She still has to work harded because of it but it helps her get through it.  I like Daytrana because it gives me a little control over it.  Once the patch is removed the med wear off in about 2 hours.  She has done so well on it that over the summer she only gets half a patch.  I am trying to teach her to control her behavior as she gets older.  Next year she will be in the 6th grade.  I know that it will only get harder from here on.  We support her everyday with lots of praise.  I find that keeping her on a scedual has helped her alot.  I do not let her us her illness as an excuss.   

Heather - posted on 02/20/2009

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I spent 2-3 hours of one on one with my daughter from Kindergarden to last night. Her attention span is 7 minutes, no joke. With the medication she is able to hear instructions and carry them out in a reasonable amount of time.



It is not a diagnosis that most people take lightly. The meds can cause worsening of behavior not improvement. I always knew she had trouble concentraing, but so do I. No big deal. You explain that this is what they have to do and they do it right? After redirecting 43 times, setting the timer 5 times and feeling as though nothing you do helps it is nice to know that there is a medication that can make it easier for the child and the parents. I agree with a previous poster who said that you don't tell someone who has asthma to not take their meds. "Now sweetie, just take a deep breath and it will be all better. Imaging a nice beach somewhere and then you will be able to breath again. Your body needs oxygen. You can do it" It doesn't work that way. It is medical and psychological

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~♥Little Miss - posted on 03/25/2015

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John - posted on 05/22/2014

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Giving a child Ritalin ill literally rewire your child's brain, I am not exaggerating. These drugs are EXTREMELY powerful. They are amphetamines, which is what Cocain is. I am not saying that Ritalin is never a good option, there are people who may benefit from it, but it should be an absolute last resort after YEARS of struggling and only with SEVERE ADHD. Many people struggle in school, it does not mean you need to expose your child to a drug that will change them forever. US doctors dramatically oversubscribe Ritalin and Aderol as an easy fix, and teachers like it because it makes children easy to control, but don't you think it is unfair to your child to force them to take a drug that will affect them forever, likely for the worse, because you are unwilling to spend the extra time and make that extra effort to help them. You need to work with the schools, talk to your child and use therapy to help them, not take the easy rout and stuff them full of drugs so they are less trouble!

Decimus - posted on 04/22/2014

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You stupid fucks. DO YOU UNDERSTAND YOU ARE GIVING YOUR KIDS AMPHETAMINES??? Dumb fucks. All amphetamines work by destroying the dopamine transporter in the brain so that the synapse gets flooded with dopamine. Which fries the fucking synapse. Amphetamines will cause irreversible brain damage:

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/ritalin-m...

http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v39/n2...

http://www.jneurosci.org/content/27/27/7...

http://www.mclean.harvard.edu/news/press...

http://www.jneurosci.org/content/22/16/7...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/200...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...

http://www.cchrint.org/2010/07/05/hidden...

http://breggin.com/index.php?option=com_...

Amphetamines permanently disrupt the dopamine pathways in the brain. Leaving people who take them with a permanent dopamine deficiency. That causes life long chronic lethargy, heightened response to anxiety, lack of self control, lowered response to pleasure. The damage to the brain can be measured by the total milligrams of amphetamine taken during a lifetime. The effect is cumulative. It doesn't matter whether its methylphenidate, methamphetamine, or lisdexamfetamine they all work by the same mechanism of action. Did any of you think to ask the doctor what kind of shit he wanted to put into your preteen son? Or did you just 'trust' the good doctor? Stupid fucks. Its a goddamn amphetamine. Ask your doctor if he can switch from ritalin to desoxyn. He will say yes, sure. Then look up desoxyn. Its methamphetamine. Not similar to. Is. Your 10 year old son looks out the window and daydreams and doesn't pay attention in class? Yeah, because he's 10 fucking years old. Have some common fucking sense before you turn your son's brain into swiss cheese. "But my doctor said it was okay". Oh yeah? He said it was okay? So did doctors who gave kids lobotomies in the 40s. Stupid fucking goddamn people.

Terry - posted on 02/26/2009

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My oldest child has adhd, I'm not really thrilled about giving her the meds for it.....but since she is unable to control that herself it really helps her focus and stay clam. the only problem I've had with the meds is she gets ammune to them and we had to try other one's. she's been on concerta now for a while and it seems to be the one that has worked the longest. my main concern is none of the doctors know what the meds do to the childern in the long run. I only hope it doesn't do any damage to her when she gets older. her doctor told me he thinks she growing out of it, I only hope she does. I really don't want her on meds for the rest of her life.

Diane_de_oliveira - posted on 02/26/2009

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I'm on the fence about this. My sister, who is now 19 years old, has ADHD. She was diagnosed when she was I think 9 years old. Although the meds made her calmer, she now has a heart murmur, which could be a result of the long term use of the meds. We hoped that she would outgrow it, but she hasn't yet. She no longer takes the meds and sometimes she's gets out of control. If you have exhausted every possible solution, then what else should you do? I hope it works out for you and your daughter.

Tammy - posted on 02/26/2009

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My daughter who is 18 was diagnosed with ADD/ADHD at the age of 10 and put on Meds and come to find out it was a wrong diagnoses she had a hormone imbalence and lacked certain Vits.  I would highly recommend having those checked first before putting that child on Ritalin  if they are it is ADD then requist  ADDERALL  NOT Ritalin.



 



I wish you all the LUCK in the world!!!!!!!!

Tina - posted on 02/26/2009

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My oldest was on it and we had rough periods when he was coming off the ritalin. Once they make sure they are not going to have any reactions they can try a time release that they only need to take once a day. My son has gotten to the point that he can focus in school and we were able to take him off of it. It will be some trial and error until they find a proper doses and possible medication. My son has a high metabolism so his would wear off after about 2 hours and we were dealing with rebound effect. Just make sure you are relaying all effects you see from the medication so they can make proper determination and don't be afraid to stand up to the doctor if you do not like the effects you are seeing.

Denise - posted on 02/26/2009

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Concerta is a form of ridalin and is a controlled substance in Canada...so controlled that if I order my daughters concerta (and she is on a very small dose) even 1 day early the pharmacy refuses to full the perscription.   Concerta is a slow, long acting stimulate that controls certain neurons in the brain so that your thought processes are more controlled.



If I "normal" person were to take concerta they would act like a person with ADD/ADHD and could actually die from an overdose! It would be like taking speed.

Denise - posted on 02/26/2009

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Quoting Amber:



I'm going through something similar with my 7 year old . .  and just starting something new too tomorrow a.m.  (not Ritalin though - Concerta which is not a stimulant I was told) to help him concentrate at school, hopefully ward off the anxiety that comes with school and "filter messages" so that he can focus better and keep from getting so distracted and upset about it when he gets in "trouble" for it . . as it breaks his heart and he's very self concious . . also to pin point if it is in fact ADD or just school related stress . . 






Really cannot help I guess, but it helps me to know that I'm not "alone" out there!  One suggestion though . . our Dr. highly recommended a daily Omega-3 supplement (ProOmega Junior by Nordic Naturals)(sold at The Vitamin Shoppe) as he said it will naturally help because kids don't eat enough of the foods that provide these (particular fishes, walnuts, etc) within all the processed, school, fast, etc. foods that they do consume.






So, the idea is to get him going on the vitamins which will help naturally over time (not a "quick fix") and start on the other med to help more quickly along the way with the school stuff that's going on now . .  there are some other meds he explained too (not Ritalin though) that also help, but take a little longer to get in their system and show signs of improvement.  The one we've been given needs to be taken with breakfast, on school days and wears off by evening so he can sleep.  We were very concerned about it affecting our son in BIG ways, that he'd be "doped" up or like a zombie, etc.






We don't have problems, even attention stuff, at home, it's just at school, so we're hoping by Summer he'll be doing much better and may not need the meds anymore at all with the vitamins . .  we'll have to see I guess?  Anyway,  maybe this did help you, I hope?  It's hard and scary to think about putting your baby on a med, I know . .  we've tried all the natural stuff, counseling, the Feingold diet, etc. along the way for other natural alternatives.  I believe though that they're not bad kids of course and if there's something else we can do to help them (I don't want him to end up hating school or get a bad reputation from it or keep getting bullied as he has been by some boys:( that we owe it to them to at least give it a chance . .  and if it doesn't work then no harm in trying which my Dr. confirmed.






Again, hopefully maybe this did help?  My prayers are with your family also!  :)





 

Denise - posted on 02/26/2009

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My oldest child is ADD as well as having mild developmental delays.  My brother is ADD and didn't go on meds till he was an adult.  I have a mild form of ADD which is prominent when my anxiety issues are not under control.  So that being said:  ADD comes in many forms.  Some can be diet triggered (allergies), genetics, a symptom of developmental delays, environment and high intelligents.  Not only have I lived with different forms of ADD ADHD I have worked with many children with the same issues. 



Ridalin comes in many forms and not one form works the same on an individual as another.  My daughter actually takes 3 forms of a ridalin based med however the major one is Concerta and it is our wonder drug (she takes 2 other at bed time for anxiety and sleeping issues).  The meds are great but I think it is best to find out the underlying reason for the issues or if there is some extra relief when eliminating things from the child's diet.  And yes sugar based and foods that are high in preservatives do affect ADD/ADHD children and adults as well as the environment (including mould in home).  It is also good, if you don't already have one established, to have a good behaviour modification plan in place.  One that rewards good behaviour but also corrects bad behaviours and is followed through with on ALWAYS! With clear expectations. 



The drugs, unfortunately are a playing game.  My daughter was 7 when I finally made that decision but just like meds for depression/anxiety it is all trial and error.  It is good to remember that ADD/ADHD loves structure. 



Good luck



PS document her daily's good, bad or other wise with school and at home so that you are going in with accurate information for the doctor to keep track with as well.

Eve - posted on 02/26/2009

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I grew up with a brother that had ADHD. He took Ritalin for almost 10 years. Be very aware of the side affects and long-term affects. I would check out alternative ways to treat it and only resort to Ritalin if it is not able to be controlled.  Take a very active role in your child's education. Make sure your husband and you both understand all of the symptoms and problems that ADHD kids can have now and in the future. I only mention this because I don't feel my parents worked together enough to understand my brother's condition and he had a very hard time once he became an adult. He is only now learning to deal with his ADHD.

Natalie - posted on 02/26/2009

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Our son was diagnosed when he was 5. I know, it seems hard to believe a child at 5 can be diagnosed with this, but he was. He was having a horrible time in school! He was constantly in other kids faces and could not control his behavior at all. My husband was against giving him medication at first but we had tried everything. We ended up taking him to the dr. and he is now on Adderall 15mg time released. He only takes it once a day, right away in the morning. It lasts almost until school is done, but then you can tell that its wearing off. We try not to give it to him on the weekends and summer because I believe kids w/ this still have to learn to behave and not use not having his/her medication as an excuse.

Desiree - posted on 02/26/2009

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My son was diagnosed ADHD when he was 7 (he's now 8) and I was VERY skeptical about putting him on meds. I just didn't like the thought of "drugging" him. The doctor prescribed Ritalin and I waited 3 days before I even filled it! I finally cracked and tried it and it has been wonderful! He's on the lowest dose (10mg) that he takes 3 times a day and there has been a tremendous change. It's different for everyone though, my friends son took it for 2 days and became suicidal, my son is just a "normal" 8 year old now. Just watch your child the first few weeks and see how he/she reacts to it. Some people have to try several different meds before they find the one that works. The doctor swithced my son to Vyvanse a few months ago and it was a nightmare! He crashed daily and had frequent crying fits, very aggresive/combative.... like he wasn't taking anything so I had him switched back to the Ritalin. Just remember to be patient and keep an eye on the reaction to the meds. Good Luck!

[deleted account]

my son is ADHD he use to have trouble in school he faild  two years  he now is taking concerta and it has done the world of good he is making better grades in school to me he has had no side affects from it he has been on it for almost 7yrs now

Katie - posted on 02/26/2009

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Just be very observant in his/her behavior!! Watch for ANY changes. Not all changes may be good, there are side effects and you really need to look at everything. My son went through 4 different meds before we found one that worked for him. Yes, he did have suicidal issues on one med. Scared the crap out of me. Worst part was the doctor didn't think it was the meds, however, as soon as I stopped the med, the suicidal stuff stopped too. I know it was the drug. I also notified the med company so they were aware. They really didn't want to hear it. Any way, just be VERY careful and watch for everything.

Jacqueline - posted on 02/25/2009

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My daughter is 8yrs old and she has ADHD....she has been on meds she was in 1grade.. And she is doing fine with it.....she takes in the mourning and one after lunch at school.....

Lauren - posted on 02/25/2009

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I was an elementary school teacher for 9 years (now I am a stay at home mom).  I can honestly tell you I could tell when kids were on and off their meds.  In some cases it was like night and day.  Meds really do make a difference.  I would not hestiate to give medication.  I have seen the positive side of meds and the improvements it can make. 

MaryLynn - posted on 02/25/2009

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You do what you have to do.   You will know soon if ritalin is the best choice or if something else will work better.  I have a son who has been diagnosed with AD/HD.  We have tried different meds with him but nothing has worked.  He also has a disability so this makes it more difficult.   At present, he is not taking anything.  It is trying but go with your gut.  Watch for emotional struggles at the end of the day when the meds are wearing off.  It might not but watch for it.  There are many differing kinds so it might take time to find one that works.  But I will say, don't beat yourself up over it. 

Tanya - posted on 02/25/2009

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normally ritalin is for adhd not add, who knows what doctors are up to now in days, my daughter is 11 years old she is on focalin, but your daugher isnt old enough for it yet, if its not working i would get him to put her on another med for it.

Amanda - posted on 02/25/2009

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We went to see a Pediatrician who specialized with ADD children. He had diagnosed my son with ADD at the age of 12! We did not want to use any medication. Before we had the chance to express our views to the doctor, he told us to use Omega 3 pills (follow the daily recommended amount on the bottle). As well, he was told to read for 30 minutes a day! While on the Omega 3's/Flaxseed, he is a completely different child, happy; responsive and more obedient; non comabtive and not so much in your face...but when he doesn't take it even for a day you can tell. Remember you are the parent and know what is best for your child; God can supply all your needs. Just pray and in faith respond as he tells you. Personally I have seen the result that meds can do to children with ADD and a host of other problems that have been diagnosed, as a school teacher and meds are definitely not the answer or solution. When using meds you are putting foreign substances into their bodies and that is only going to magnify the problem; it may seem at a moment like the drugs are doing what they are supposed to but then in the long run it has done so much more damage! I hope this helps!!

Stephanie - posted on 02/25/2009

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I have two boys with different degrees of ADHD. Our youngest needed it first and went from Concerta to Focalin. He maxed out on the Focalin so we went back to Concerta. A couple years later our oldest son was asking for medicine like his brother "to be good in school". We love Concerta. Our boys are still our boys. It is fast acting. Our youngest started showing improvement in school the very next day. His teacher sent home his work to show us the difference in his hand writing. It was amazing! It helps to have good comunication with their teacher.



Hope this helps.

Adrienne - posted on 02/25/2009

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I just wanted to throw in one tibit on the caffeine subject: if you do decide to let your child have caffeine, make sure it's NOT while they're on any kind of ADD/ADHD meds. Certain ones can cause heart palpitations and other scary heart-related side effects when combined with caffeine. My 2 older kids are not allowed to have caffeine because of the type of meds they're on (my 11-yr-old daughter takes Concerta for ADD, and my 8-yr-old son takes Adderall XR for ADHD). Even before this info came out they weren't much into caffeinated drinks anyway, but we're just that much more careful about it now.






Also, Brandi's suggestion about getting an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) in place for your child is a great idea. Both my school-age kids have them, and it helps a lot to be on the same page with all their teachers. It's especially important for us now that my daughter's in middle school and has 6 or 7 different teachers each day.






So there's my 2 cents! Hope it helps!



User - posted on 02/21/2009

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oh yeah !! i did forget to mention. i agree with comment #1.. Get a 504/IEP plan in play as soon as you can. in my area we have to do it within the first 45 days from when school starts. I cannot emphasize enough how important this is. here is a link for general information and how to get started. I had no idea what this was until my sons pediatrician advised this will help him out tremendously in school.

here is a helpful link that will tell you about both and how to get started.

http://specialchildren.about.com/od/504s...

User - posted on 02/21/2009

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Michelle, my son was diagnosed with ADD and my son's dr (pediatrician) was not keen on ritalin at all. we went with a safer choice with not as many HARD side effects that ritalin users may have ( anorexia; nausea; dizzines; palpitations; headache; dyskinesia; drowsiness; blood pressure and pulse changes, both up and down; tachycardia; angina; cardiac arrhythmia; abdominal pain; weight loss) My son is on Adderall XR(extended release)He has been on this drug since he was diagnised at the age of 6. He's now 10. Also we only give this to him monday through friday or when he needs to focus or consentrate on something. Usually we take him off during the summers with the exception of once or twice a week. This drug does not get rid of the syptoms but gives your child a break from himself/herself. Mine gets frustrated so easily without the medication. When he's on it it gives him that extra 15-30 minutes to work on the problem before getting frustrated. I dont know your childs medical history so there may be a reason behind your dr's choice. The only advise i can give to you is if your not completely comfortable with the type of medication your dr is prescribing.. get a second opinon. listen to the flags in your head. Good luck.. let us know how it all turns out.

Heather - posted on 02/21/2009

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I completely agree with the coffee thing. My 10 year old can now make her own coffee. It seems wrong to me, but on weekends when she doesn't take meds it really helps her. I would like to learn more about the supplements that someone mentioned earlier. And I am definitely getting that book that was mentioned previously. I only joined this site yesterday, but I am so glad I did. It is so somforting toknow that I am not the only one dealing with this. I love what Tamara had to say about the school organization. We are having so much trouble with that. We have the binders and the folders and the calendars. Problem: She forgets to turn in the papers or write down the assignments!!!! Any suggestions on that one?

Stacey - posted on 02/20/2009

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I am sorry if I sound abrasive to anyone. I feel so strongly about ADD meds because I had horrible life altering experience with them. Being a parent is hard and being a parent with a child that has ADD is even tougher. I can understand how frustrating it is and I wish the best for you and your family.

Tamara - posted on 02/20/2009

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Oh, I forgot. Ritalin is a stimulant so his appetite may go down. Keep LOTS of healthy snacks around and remind him to eat so he won't drop any weight.

Tamara - posted on 02/20/2009

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I have ADHD, combined type. This basically means that I'm hyper and can't pay attention worth squat. Currently, I take Adderall XR and avoid Red Dye #40 as I found that when I have something with that particular dye in it, it exacerbates my symptoms.

The main advice I can give you is establish a routine. Visual reminders are very important to us ADD/ADHD people. For example. I have 2 calendars. 1 is my main calendar. Birthdays, appointments, etc. are all put into it with reminders being emailed to me the day before. The 2nd is my school calendar where I have everything I have to do for that week broken down into sections and when each thing is due.

Speaking of school, when I was in HS, I had a system for my school work there as well. My binder was divided by subject. Each subject had its own folder. On the left hand side of the folder was work that had to be done and papers that needed to be brought home. On the right hand side, I'd place the finished work and any papers that needed to go back to school.

Next, I keep constant list and break down directions into numbered lists instead of paragraphs. My husband also reminds me to stay on task and keep my poo in a group when I'm tempted to wander off and do something else.

I often liken the experience of my ADHD to being in a room with 1000 different TVs with each on a different channel while I'm trying to watch all of them at once.

There are a few studies that also recommend getting your child outside into a green area (and not just painted green but real grass, trees, etc) which helps reduce the impact of the symptoms.

You should also see about getting your child an IEP so the teacher can help accommodate them in the classroom. I'm sorry if this got a bit long. Hope that some of this helps you out.

Michelle - posted on 02/20/2009

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the internet can be really good. I am a disabled carer and have done heaps of research on ADD. i've found some great info on meds and how some foods can help the behaviour as well. just type ADD/ADHD into the google Browser.

Stacey - posted on 02/20/2009

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There are ways to work around ADD. Take lots of breaks while working on home work so he doesn’t get frustrated. Try to explain things in many different ways to find what makes sense to him. I remember when I was young I could not understand division. Finally when I related it to addition ( 1.5 + 1.5 = 3 )and it made sense. My parents and teacher tried so hard to get me to understand it but not one of them tried to explain it differently. Use the things he already understands as a tool to explain new things. ADD can be managed without meds. It took me until I got to college to receive the accommodations that I needed. The biggest thing that will help your son at this age is extended testing time in a quiet room and one on one education. You have the right to demand accommodations for your child. Be an active participant when they develop his IEP.

Stacey - posted on 02/20/2009

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Ritalin is a powerful stimulant. I hate to compare it to cocaine but, it is strong stuff especially for a small child. I am a juvenile addiction studies major working on my BA and I have ADD. I am against ADD meds they have many bad side affects including addiction. You could try some caffeine instead of meds. I know it sounds crazy to give your child caffeine but, it is in the same category as Ritalin. Before I take a test I have a cup of coffee or a coca-cola and that is plenty for me to stay focused and am an adult that probable weights 3-4 times that of your child.

User - posted on 02/20/2009

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I'm amazed that I haven't read any posts about caffein. Has any body tried coffee? No joke!! Adults drink it all the time to give them a boost. (I couldn't survive parenthood without it.) Patricia Godfree pointed out that the "synapses in the brain actually move slower than normal in the part of the brain that affects focus and motivation. This is why they give a stimulant to slow down the child's hyperactivity." I have a parent I work with that has a 2nd grader and a 4th grader with ADHD. She gives the boys coffee (sweetened of course) before school every morning and they are doing beautifully. Now - I also understand that the caffein in coffee works differently than soda, probably because of all the other junk in it. Sometimes there just are no other options than the medications, and they do wonders. A child can't learn if their brain is unavailable.

Maria - posted on 02/20/2009

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I know what you are going through.  My little boy (who will be 7) has was diagnosed with ADD at the end of his Kindergarten year.  He has a very SHORT attention span and he really, really struggled during Kindergarten.  It got really tiring every day getting an email from his teacher that he wasn't listening and had to continue to be re-directed (my reaction was - he's only a 6year old little boy, that is how boys are).  I knew he was like this at home, but guess I was in denial.  I remember when I was in Kindergarten, simply learning how to socialize with other children whereas now my child last year had Spanish, Computer, Math and had to try to sit through an almost 1.5 hour mass with his class once (sometimes twice per week).  I think the expectations on children are much different nowadays.  After having my son evaluated by 1 Dr/ 2 Psychologists and having assessments done by all of his teachers he was diagnosed with ADD.  My Dr. prescribed Vyvanse for him.  It was so difficult for me at first to give him medicines - I just felt guilty, but OMG I noticed a change witiin the first few days.  You do have to be careful and sometimes it takes a while to get the dosage just right (my son takes a very small dose of Vyvanse) so that he is able to focus during the day at school but he is also still happy and social (and not a little zombie).  Teachers have noticed a huge improvement.  He is much happier and enjoys school.  I have another Mom who has a child that is on Aderal and that works for them.  I was very lucky to have Vyvanse work so well right away for my son, but different meds interact differently with different children so it might take a little while to get the right meds/dosage.  It has helped him tremendously.  Good Luck - I hope this helps.  If you need to talk about this anymore, I am here to help :)

Jamie - posted on 02/20/2009

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MY 8 YEAR OLD SON HAS ADHD I WAS ALL AGAINST MED FOR ABOUT A YEAR AND I HALF I TRIED EVERYTHING NOT GIVING HIM RED DYE, HOMAPATHIC MEDS AND IT REALLY DIDNT SEEM TO WORK SO HE STARTED ON STETARIA ABOUT A YEAR AGO N IT SEEMED TO WORK BUT EVERY FEW MONTHS THEY HAD TO UP THE MILAGRAMS 3 MONTHS AGO THE DR STARTED HIM ON RITALIN BUT THE SAME THING IS HAPPENING IT HAS TO BE UPPED BUT I FEEL LIKE IM GONNA HAVE THE DR CHANGE HIM BACK TO STETRIA IT HAS LESS SIDE AFFECTS

Patricia - posted on 02/20/2009

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If you do nothing else, be sure to read "The Gift Of ADHD: How To Transform Your Child's Problems Into Strengths" by Lara Honos-Webb



My son is very aware of his shortcomings and it seems that everyone is always pointing them out. We have made a point of teaching him the strengths that come from AHDH and it allows him to understand the whats and whys.



When asked at age 10 what the best thing and worse thing about him was he responded with "my ADHD and the best is my ADHD".



Good luck and have patience.

Patricia - posted on 02/20/2009

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ADD and ADHD are diagnosed by extensive questaires given to teachers (school), parents (home) and other care givers (all other) to determine where the issues are and how extensive they are. It is not a matter of not being developed. The snapses in the brain actually move slower than normal in the part of the brain that affects focus and motivation. This is why they give a stimulant to slow down the child's hyperactivity. They are actually speeding up the snapses to allow the child to focus better.



I've lived with a husband with ADD and a child with ADHD for over 11 years. We have been through a lot of trail and error meds. It is well worth the time and effort because when you find the right one for your child and combine it with behavior modification (for the whole family) your child will excel.

User - posted on 02/20/2009

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My 7 year old is on Focalin XR and my 5 year old just started on Focalin. It is a constant balancing act b/c as they grow, their meds will need to be adjusted. Be aware of side effects, which your doctor should have passed along when prescribing. If they are on the correct medicine, you will be thrilled and amazed at how well they do. It will confirm your decision to go with meds. It is a hard decision, but the benefits can be worth it. It is a grea feeling for them to feel "normal" at school and not be the kid who is always getting in trouble and having to stay in from recess b/c their work isn't done. Best of luck to you.

Cindy - posted on 02/20/2009

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It is important that the doctors prescribe the correct dosage, a friends son was being given to much and now has developed a facial tic from it.

Lorie - posted on 02/20/2009

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My now 19 year old was diagnosed with ADD & Dyslexia at the age of 11. We tried SEVERAL medications before we found one that worked. We also found that meds were not the complete answer...It was a combination of her eating the right foods, getting enough exercise and sleep as well as finding the meds that worked for her. I found ALOT of information out there on the internet. She went from being a C-D student to being and honors student and a BETA Club member in High School. She's now a Freshman in College.



 



Don't give up!

Dena - posted on 02/20/2009

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Silvia I am a teacher and a counselor by trade BUT a mom first and foremost! ADD is a medical condition! It is not us lacking parenting skills or a child being developmentally young. Those comments are hurtful to those of us that had to make the hard choice of putting our children on meds. My son is gifted, talented, extremely bright, gorgeous, and I have all the patience in the world! Unfortunatly my guidance and patience as well as my husbands and teacehrs WAS NOT enough! e no one was able to keep him focused so he could acheive the grades he needed to lead to his feeling proud of himself! Erik needs the meds at this point in his life just like a child with diabetics would need insulin. Your responds is so unsympathetic! It is hard as hell to find any PROBLEMS in your child! We all want our children to be perfect and  to have perfect carefree lives. BUT, the reality is no one is perfect (I am not and I am sure you are not either!) and some people need medications to stay focused so they can be successful and confident!I DI DNOT SP CECK SO IGNORE MISTAKES PLEASE LOL!

Joanna - posted on 02/20/2009

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We have a son that was dx about 11 yrs ago. Our son is mentally retarded so it was hard to make a decision. We finally found Concerta. It is a timed released form of ritalin but it last all day and doesnt give them the spurts of meds.

Gigliola - posted on 02/20/2009

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I work with children with ADD and ADHD and as I read the posts I felt like I was listening to many of the parents I interview with! I have seen both sides of the coin, children that can manage with psychotherapy and those that really need the meds! I always recommendo to try psych first and then the meds if it doesn't help. I personally like ritalin, and now concerta but their is no sure thing for every child! It usually takes a while getting the right dosage and trying to avoid side affects. The biggest side affect is that they lose their appetite eventhough again, not every child is the same and some take meds and eat just fine!



To all be patient, it is difficult but you have been given the opportunity to raise some wonderful children! These kids are the greatest, brightest, sweetest most talented children, they just need some help!



A good point: I know many college kids that used medsand start to self regulate and learn to manage their attention deficit and get off meds!

Rebecca - posted on 02/20/2009

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1 of my sons have add 1 has adhd. we have been through several  medications with steven but he is on concerta now and it works well as he grows i work with our family dr. to adjust the dosage. my other son daniel was diagosed recently and is now on vyvanse and quanifacine. the work really well. his grades went from d's to a's. he is doing alot better at school. he still has some problems at home, anger outbursts but we try to deal with it. i understand where you might be concerned about reaction, the side effects can be scary but the benifits are worth it. neither of the medications have altered either of their personalities at all, steven is not near as obnoxious as he used to, and i dont have to fight daniel to read. my parents were totaally against the idea of meds. but my husband and i thought for a long time before we made our decision. you have to do what is best for your family.

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I'm wondering how you can tell if a child has ADD ? What do they do that makes you diagnose them with ADD? I think some kids are just immature and don't listen. Or they haven't developed enough in their little brains. I'd give them time and close guidedence, alot of one on one, and talk to them in a very mature and adult like way.

Amy - posted on 02/20/2009

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My son was diagnosed with ADHD at 5. We tried both Focalin and Adderall because it was what his psychologist and pediatrician recommended. After being on both drugs for about 2 weeks at the lowest dosage we decided to take him off completely. He had terrible emotional side effects from both drugs including panic attacks, anxiety attacks, and depression. We found what worked best for us is a very strict, rigid schedule as well as consistency in discipline. ADHD and ADD are tough and medications work for some and not others. I wish you luck!

Shantel - posted on 02/20/2009

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My 9yr old has ADHD with a mood disorder. She was given Ritalin as her first med. I did not like it. It stopped her growth. She had a hard time eating. She is 9 and only 47 pounds. When we moved to Colorado we had her revaluated and they put her on Focalin. I like this medication although at the higher dose they can be zombie-like. It does help her concentreate in school. It's a tough decision to decide to give meds or not.. Make sure that the person prescribing the meds is a psychologist and you know the side effects of it.

Amber - posted on 02/20/2009

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I totally agree with Dena & Heather above . .  also quit my job to be home more and work part-time around his schooling, swore off drugs, etc, etc.  It's just not something that I alone can fix . .  it's hard to accept though because you love your child and will do anything for them and the nasty comments (as someone mentioned) don't make you feel any better for even considering what 'might' be helpful . .



My son also is extremely intelligent and gifted . .  he's an incredibly advanced artist, was reading at a 3rd grade level when he started 1st grade, excellent at spelling, etc. but transitions at school and focusing are very difficult for him and it's affecting him in other ways as mentioned above and he's in 2nd grade now struggling with those consequences.



Adrienne, I'm so glad to know that your daughter has done well on Concerta and you've made be feel so much better about our decision to try this!  Thanks everyone!  :)

Lourdine - posted on 02/20/2009

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My son has ADD, but has always been on Adderall.  He has been taking the meds since about 4th grade, he is now 16 and a Junior in high school.  He just takes a small dose in the a.m. He has had no side effects, and seems to be doing fine. It helps him to focus and he can tell when he doesn't take the meds.  Hope this is of some help..

Dawn - posted on 02/20/2009

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MICHELE:

MY SON WAS ALSO DX'D W/ ADD...WE FOUND THAT THE RIDALYN AND HAVING HIS EYES TESTED WAS A MIRACLE...HE ALSO HAD THE SAME TEACHER FOR CONSISTENCY FOR TWO YEARS IN A ROW...4TH AND 5TH GRADE MATH...ITMADE A HUGE DIFF. IN IS LIFE AND ALSO WITH HIS GRADES...ONCE HE GETS TO THE POINT THAT STUDYING IS MORE CALM...THIS IS WHEN WE TOOK HIM OFF OF THE MED. HE IS NOW STUDYING BUSINESS AT THEUNIV. OF NORTHERN COLORADO...DON'T LET THE MED PUBLICITY SCARE YOU, AS MY SON WAS ALSO DX'D W/EPILEPSY AND WITH THE MED BEING A STIM. COULD HAVE TRIGGERED ANOTHER SEIZURE...ACTUALLY THEY BECAME EXSTINCT AFTER THAT POINT...GOOD LUCK DAWN

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