im about to put my son on meds..Im freakng out what to use.

Kerry - posted on 03/27/2010 ( 26 moms have responded )

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He has just 5.He goes to fulltime early invention 5 days are week..We have discovered through going there he may also have add..He has been dianosed with autism since he was 3 but i know that there was something different with him by the time he was 18months..He is also a twin, his brother is very healthy with no disibilites. His meltdowns were under control for while (6months) till now he has been quite full on and regular.1 to 2 a week lasting anything from 10mins to a hour.So ive been lookin into meds which i have been putting off for years.Im a bit scared about about it all.Im hearing alot of autistic children use Risperdal for there meltdowns and anxiety..Ive done some research and i have read the sideeffects and i would prefer to put him on something else...Hearing that it can cause tics in children is extremely worring to me.And then stay with them for months after even if thet arent on the meds anymore..Is there anything safer anybodies used????????????? Next question is. Do i get meds for the add instead...He is having trouble concentrating on some instructions in the class room. So we are putting it down to add or is it because he has speech delays.?????we are still uncertain..I think i would rather put him on meds for concentration first so everything else might level out..What do you guys think???? Kerry

26 Comments

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Kerry - posted on 04/23/2010

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thks guys...Very touching reading all the stories...And yes Judi i have done absolutely everything for my son except cut off my left arm.. He doesnt eat any dairy and the only wheat he eats is a sandwich (BREAD)...He has iron problems so i need to keep him up with right diet for that so im very aware of my sons health...I have 5 children and that certainly doesnt mean i live in filth and do not clean everyday to get rid of dust ect...Do you have children with asd yourself and know what we are all going through?????Im not judging you judi its great a fantastic lifestyle and may help some children.. But in our case as you can see with the posts of support life isnt that easy and black and white...To all my mums on here keep up the great work and only a mum knows whats best for her child..Us other mums need help with other mums experience so we can learn more for our own kids going through this journey..thank u every1..lv Kerry

Lisa - posted on 04/16/2010

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Hi Kerry, It is a really tough thing to try med after med after med, although you may find one that helps. I had my son tested for hearing deficit. Do some research. I discovered that meds don't cure this because it is nuerological. They don't really know waht children have cuz the tests are not 100% conclusive. My son does have tics and we stopped the medication rollercoaster...in January . Read why in my other posts. The Schools are putting more stress on kids than ever, no 5 or 6 year old has a whole lot of patience. So take that into consideration. Also my Brother became addicted to self medication and they gave him Risperdal...which is an anti psychotic med which doen't really help with hearing deficit disorder, ADD, ADHD, and now we have to take him to a therapist. Hope this helps. One of the best things I did was homeschool my son. Even he got extra help in school... we knew the teachers still would single him out, have no compassion, and the BULLIES were not being repremended!!!

Danielle - posted on 04/15/2010

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For me, it was a tough decision to put my son on meds, it was discussed when he was 5 but i didn't go forth until the beginning of this school year age 6. He started on risperdal but that didn't help with his focus nor his erratic behavior. He was switched to Intuntiv and it has really helped him to be able to focus on his lessons, to work on his speech, and to relax and not bounce of the wall constantly. Yes, I still worry at times if it was the right decision but when he missed a few days he went back to his old ways and it was very apparent that the medicine really is helping him.

Mandee - posted on 04/14/2010

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Each child is different. DO NOT put a child on a drug simply because it has worked for others. As someone who specializes in the mental health field, I cannot stress enough how important this is. I am not opposed to medication if it is truly needed. Our 4 year old took depakote and remeron for a while but is now on topamax. She has benefitted greatly, but it has not gotten rid of the outbursts entirely. She used to have an outburst every 15 minutes. Now it is 1 or 2 a day. But the real improvement has been because of changes we made in parenting and in therapies she gets in conjunction with her medication. With that said, it is extremely important to have a Pediatric Psychiatrist monitor these meds and NOT a family physician or pediatrician. If you have a good psychiatrist, they will see you every month or so at first and then every couple of months as time goes on to montior meds.

Geraldine - posted on 04/11/2010

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Hiya to all you lovely hard working brilliant Mums~~~

Im so shocked when i read most of the stories to do with wobblers/meltdowns.. I have a little boy who is 6, and my god his wobblers are horrendous,and I feel awful describing it like that but u will understand later when I explain it all....

he was diagnosed with Autism @4.. and we have had loads of support to help us with his speech... his poor co-ordination. and various other things that were goin on for him... I work with a group called PEAT.. parents education for Autistic therapy..

and they r my lifeline.. even with the wobblers, but i can never bring stephen round or reach him when he goes into one.. hes gone.. and we could be sitting with him for 3 hours.

.its really frightening now cos I feel like im not in control ... i mean where I cant get stephen to listen to me, and when he starts hitting his sister, he really hurts her badly, nipping,, biting and punching.

.when hes calmed down eventually he will be soo placid and keeps apologising for what he has done, i wont bore you will all the stuff that you all know that comes with the wobblers, but I dont really want to put him on meds to see if we can work the behavioural therapy with him first.

My daughter is 9 and she has ADHD quite bad, shes on Ritalin, and its amazing the effect it has on her, omg within 10 mins of taking her tablet she is the most kindest lovable child who listens and responds immediately to what ever youre saying to her,

but off the meds, she is angry ,,not wanting to do anything at all, and very low in her attitude and curses unbelievably at us all. its a constant battle in our house but this is what comes with children with a diagnosis and you have to find out wot works best for you and your children, after all we all deserve some quality of life including the children that we are trying to help through this awful time.. God Im off on one again !!!!! :) Thanks for listening to me.. xo

Heidi - posted on 04/07/2010

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Judi... Nothing personal but some of us have made dietary changes, seen behavioral therapists etc and they didnt work. Meds arent good for long periods of time for anyone but in my opinion if I had an infection I would take the meds. If I had cancer I would certainly take the meds. Sometimes meds are the best course of action and if they are needed then they are needed. It goes without saying that you have to include other therapies.

Heidi - posted on 04/07/2010

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Risperadol was suggested for my son with Autism and ADHD (diagnosed mild/moderate at almost 3) but we opted for different meds. We use Tenex for the hyperactivity and Abilify for the aggression. We noticed an almost immediate change. There was no sedation problems and he was able to calm down enough to go from almost non-verbal to verbal. He is still on the hyper side and still has some aggressive behaviors but nothing like he was. I personally didnt like the idea of a medication that was soo sedating, I wanted my son but just some the problems brought down to a manageable level I like the idea that he still has some of the issues he had before because it gives us an opportunity to teach him how to deal with them but they arent so overwhelming that he feels out of control :)

Kim - posted on 04/07/2010

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Hi Kerry, hard choices aren't they? My first suggestion is see a child psychatrist. You need advice from someone who has experience prescribing these meds. I have 5 kids on various meds like these for different reasons including my son with aspies. Then my next suggestion is go online and research the meds yourself. Also, find a good pharmacist they know more about side affects. Another thing I do is find classes or books to help. Talk to other parents and their experiences. But, remember EVERY med including over the counter meds have side effects. I always ask myself is there ANYTHING I can do without meds to help. Including the way I run my household to help. In house therapy is another answer. Ask yourself the quality of life question. If you find you have changed everything you can without meds and your child is still not doing well. Move ahead with the meds. Hope this helps! Thinking of you! Kim

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As I read through these posts, there is so much more Ican say about the body and health...To many meds sre not good for anyone... I wonder if anyone has thought of changing the childs diet??? All this is linked to what the child takes in. If the child eats a diet rich in sugars, juices & soda pop, carborhydrates and wheat products, milk products, you will have a child that is like you descibed and more so. Another area you need to check is the childs Enviroment & Allergies.... is he/she around a moldy house... Could your house have mold in it? Mold spores travel on dust.. is your house dusty? Billions of mold spores float in the air and in vents and ducts in your home, whether that is heating or air conditioning, Is mold in the childs bathroom or bedroom? do you have a humidfier in your home? Check it to see if mold is growing inside it... A vaporizer is safeter but still can grow mold if not kept clean regurally. This cause many restpitory issues that need antibiotics with cause fungus in the body.. which cause many things to go wrong in the body also,
Try taking out sugars.. It is a huge issue for children with ADD and ADHD, So is wheat. Some childrens bodies can not tolerate even a small amount of these. Their auto immune system fight 24/7 against foods they have senitivies to and intolerences to. The brain can not handle this and there fore the child will act these ways. If you take this out of their diet, and it will take some time. and give the child probiotics, to build back the correct flora in the stomch, things will start to change. Anitbiotics kill off all the good bacteria in the body, so you become depleted of the right things that make the body function correctly. The body wants to work correctly, it can't if it is not given the right things.'
Anti biotics are Fungus based.. that cause cancer and many other disease's..and the Drugs you are talking about here, are Nero toxins, and given to a child with Autism is dangerous. You will not know the damage till days, weeks , months, or maybe years down the road... It is a risk you are taking with your child and should be concidered greatly. Please think anout; what is the end result? And can I get the same result only with out the side effects with the naturals and changing the childs diet? Yes you can,,, but it is easier to do the drugs for mom and dads peace..But think about your child folks,.. not what is good for you.... My heart goes out to these little ones that don't have a choice and depend on you to make the best choice FOR THEM.
Learn everything you can...never stop just because a Doctor told you that this way (drugs) is safe! It's not.... There will be consequences. are you ready for that?
(Just my little opinion).

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My son is now 11 and has been on Riserdal since August (big improvement). The meltdowns will improve as he gets older but he may still need some medical intervention. He was also diagnosed with innatentive ADHD last year and the doctor didn't want to start him on any meds for it until we saw if the Risperdal would help. She started him on Tenex this year and he has improved tremendously! He also has anxiety so she will never put him on a stimulant (so watch out for that). Hope this helps.

Lisa - posted on 04/06/2010

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Well, my son had focusing problems in kindergaten, First grade, second grade. Also in 2nd grade his teacher smacked him on his head with a roll of papers. I tried 3rd grade and we had bully isues and a teacher who called him a liar and bully! Although 2 kids talked in front of him about plotting to kill him. He was upset to go to school! He hated changing his card for having to go to the bathroom. I had him tested for learning disorders, although he was a "Gate" student. I was not told till this untill I had him tested for learning problems. Then before 4th grade The school psychologist told me to have his auditory processing tested. We discovered he has an auditory deficiet. School said...sorry we can't help him unless he falls behind 2 grades, which was exactly happening! Kaiser said he was ADHD put him on Focalin(caused tics hallucinations) then Concerta(same thing) lastly Methodyne(suicidal thoughts!) ...he wanted to chop off his finger cuz he thought it was on fire! Also he has developed a mouth moving tic! Before he breathed loud(not such a big tic) when he was anxious. The Dr. said his hallucinations were not from the meds! Yea, right they occurred 2 days once after the meds! I'm telling everyone this cuz, I don't think giving kids psychotic meds is a very good idea, and I feel it is a way for the Insurace companies to make MORE money from us! Cuz once they start meds, it goes on and on cuz taking them off is risky as well! I just have to warn others what they may encounter. I believe my son is Autistic and may have Asbergers. The Drs. said, "No, he looks at us when we talk to him, so ,no he doesn't." I disagee. There are so many conditions out there and some are combined or tripled. Some can not be cured with meds or otherwise. I'm doing the best I can homeschooling him. I know that my son is a visual learner, he is gifted and recently wrote 3 songs. He is taking a song writting class with piano composition, a spy class, and karate. Which, in kindergarten the teacher said he was terrible at rhyming! Hope all this helps! Also check out the bio on Albert Einstien...very interesting

Kerry - posted on 04/06/2010

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What meds were they Lisa ???1 of my biggest worries was getting tics..My peado told me that in most cases children already have tic and the meds bring them out.He is talking with experience as his own son has them... Im very sorry to hear about your sons situation Lisa..My heart does go out to you as a mother firstly and your family.. You are very brave and a strong women and mother...thank you so much for the advise Kerry xx

Lisa - posted on 04/06/2010

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We tried meds with my son, and it was a rollercoaster ride of nightmares...3 various meds, and trying to find one that worked was very nerve racking, he has a tic and may even be from the meds. I stopped them after my son was talking suicide thoughts at age 9. So I give him special vitamins and now homeschool him, Teachers, and the OT and bullies all excalated the situation. He is still upsett from incidences from the school experience. If anyone is contiplating meds...I've got some med names I would stay away from!

Michelle - posted on 04/05/2010

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Hi Kerry. I feel your pain. My son was 61/2 when we finally made the decision to medicated. It was the most pain full decision eva. I now wish I had started when my specialists(pediatrician & Clinical Psyc) had told my husband & i we needed to try. My son was very aggressive and hypo. He goes to an autism specific school and he was even having trouble there. My biggest problem was that rittalin was the drug. I was in meltdown myself. I always had said I would never medicate. But the problem was that we have done and still do OT, speech and thats why all involved had said they believed my son had developed ADHD which 65% of ASD children can develope after the age of 6. They all believed we just needed to give it ago. Let me say he is a different child. ON the second day of him taking it he called to me and said "mum I sit". He had noticed himself that he slowed down. His meltdowns and aggression have lessoned, and he is very very settled at school. It is a very very personal decission. Good luck and you know your child best.

Kim - posted on 04/05/2010

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I am also at the same point in our journey. My son has Fragile X, Autism and is very hyper and has focusing problems. He just turned 6. I have always been against meds myself and believe that it is a societal issue (we are trying to fit everyone into one mould). However, now that my son struggles so much and will be going to school, I am also struggling with the same issue. People keep telling me that he won't be able to learn because he can't focus, the psychologist and pediatrician seems pro-meds and it really doesn't sit right with me but I know, my son likely needs them. aaarrrg.
Still undecided.

Kerry - posted on 04/04/2010

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Renee did you immunize your children i was just interested because you are anti meds...????Im not judging you at all just the interest in autism?? My friend doesnt beleive in immunization i was just wanting to see where you stand on that issue..thanks Kerry

Kerry - posted on 04/04/2010

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thanks guys for all this advise..Its such a tough subjuct to deal with but so is autism. Every child is different and it's up to us as parents and families to decide what is best for our kids...Our peado is reveiwing my son in 3 months with support from his teachers and everything involved before medicating.....Stattera,ritalin and risperodone is the meds we will be looking at in the future.....(not all at once)Kerry

Dawn - posted on 03/28/2010

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I'm not pro or anti drug. I do know that my son and I are missing chemicals in our bodies that can be replaced or adjusted. In my case I suffer from severe depression. That is a seratonin problem and I take medication to fix that chemical imbalance. Without it I know that I cannot function in a positive way around others.

My son needs a medication to calm his brain so he can focus on school work during the day. It makes his day easier for him and more productive. I know that without it he is unable to settle enough to focus on schoolwork and curb the impulses that rule his life.

Maybe because I was forced to face taking medication myself I understand its need. I went on it, and then off for a while, to test the difference in me myself. I saw huge difference in my behaviour. I have been on the medication ever since.

The biggest thing to remember is to remain vigilant in its effects. Does it continue to do what it is supposed to do? Talk to your doctor about any changes and make sure to get regular check ups.

As the mom you have to learn to be the advocate and trust in your instincts. I don't know how, but somehow you will know what is the best course of action is for your child. I know that I have listened to lots of advice, and in the end the best bits come through to help.

Renee - posted on 03/28/2010

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Kerry I noticed when my son was younger like around 4 to 6 his meltdowns were much worse than they are now, he is 8 now. He is much more in control of himself now because he learned to control himself and make choices rather than blowing up at the slightest thing. Also, 5 years old there are alot of changes going on for him, his therapy is intense at that point so he's going to have meltdowns, because you are chellenging him to be in our world. Remember anytime we get our kids to be in our world it's going to be difficult for them and they are going to show it. I would use some social stories about not hitting anyone, especially his siblings those worked with my son and we hasven't even used those in over 2 years. Also, teaching your other children to learn what sets him off is a great idea as well so they can learn how to live with him.

Kerry - posted on 03/28/2010

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yes he does have a aide and she is wonderful but he never has meltdowns there he loves going and feels very comfortable around his class of 6 other children with autism :0)

Kerry - posted on 03/28/2010

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Yes he does hurt me when having meltdowns and his sibblings...His sister is not even 2 and i would hate 2 see her get hurt or her faced scratched due to him having a meltdown..Kerry

Renee - posted on 03/27/2010

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Since I am an anti- drug mom I cannot advise you to do this. They put 5 year olds on meds? Wow, our developmental pediatrician recommends against any drugs for all children UNLESS they are hurting themselves or others. Otherwise, no drugs. Meltdowns are commons for most typical 5 year olds but especially for a child of 5 with autism. Does he have an aide in the classrom who can redirect him and/or deal with the outburst when it is occurring? Again, typical 5 year olds have trouble folloiwng directions sometimes, so sometimes our kids need directions repeated in a different way for them to understand them. My vote is work without using drugs unless you have violent behavriors. Good luck to you.

Kerry - posted on 03/27/2010

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thanks ladies you have been a great help..Put me at ease.My son doesnt have sleeping problems so hopefully being on meds that wont change ..Kerry x:)

Dawn - posted on 03/27/2010

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My son is 11 and has been on medication since he was 6. I was lucky enough to have the support of a specialized service through the school board and the city to have professionals work with him and test meds in a school setting. We found Adderall XR for the school day and Risperidal for the evening worked well for him. He stayed on that for a few years and then I took him off the Risperidal. His sleep suffered, so the doctor suggested Melatonin, a natural sleep aid. This has been working.

I would not stop the Adderall XR. It makes his day so much more productive for him.

I had concerns about meds. When I questionned a professional involved in his case, she responded that diabetics need insulin to correct a chemical problem in the body. In my son's case the meds correct his chemical imbalance. So if insulin is necessary for diabetics, then meds are necessary for my son.

This logic made sense to me. I hope this helps you.

Melissa - posted on 03/27/2010

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My daughter is also 5 and has been on risperdal for 9 months now and i have noticed major improvements all the way around both at home and at school...we have had no problems with any sideeffects on it...we did try the meds for her add but they didn't really do anything i chose to take her off of them...i did try other one other medication but had too many sideeffects with it...

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