HELP! My 11 year old daughter has GAD and now her dr. feels that she has ADHD-inattentive type as well.

Angela D - posted on 03/20/2013 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I have been so conflicted about starting my 11 year old (while 10 at the time) on an anti-anxiety drug but as a nurse I knew the reasons why the DR. felt that she needed it. Then I could really see how the med had helped with the anxiety so much but she was still having some issues. After another session with her child psychiatrist she had her do a series of drawings and asked her many questions pertaining to her life; then just like that she looks up all bright-eyed and says,"Wait! I think that I have been missing an important piece of the puzzle!!" Then she asks me many questions and she says with certainty," I REALLY feel like this is going to make all of the difference-once we get her on the appropriate dose. I am starting her on a really low dose for now." She put her on Focalin XR and she was up until almost 3am the first 2 nights of trying it. Not to mention her appetite, which is already like that of a bird, was decreased to the point that I had to practically FORCE her to eat!! I then skipped the next day and called her psychiatrist to alert her. She told me that I need to give it earlier in the morning and then see how she does. She gets so distracted about things that she can't focus on things like schoolwork and can't sit still longer than 5 min in the grocery store and just keeps begging to "Hurry up!" Does anyone out there have a child on Prozac and a ritalin-type stimulant like Focalin XR?

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Diana - posted on 03/25/2013

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I also stop giving it to my son for the summer and, I don't give it too him on weekends or winter/Spring break. :)

User - posted on 03/25/2013

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Thank you ladies for your input. It helps me so much when I can talk to other moms that have children going through the same situation with their kids! Especially Roxanne, thank you for sharing about your daughter taking the same combo of meds. My daughter also does well on the Prozac; in fact it has made an amazing difference!! Huge! So even though I was nervous about starting the Focalin XR, hearing that you only give it when she is going to be expected to be attentive is exactly what I want to do with my child! Taking off the summer is smart too. Then they can eat, sleep, and give their bodies a break. If you have any advice or tips for me, I welcomed them with open ears. Thanks!!!!

Diana - posted on 03/21/2013

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My 12 yr old son takes Focalin XR 20mg. We started with 10mg three years ago and worked our way up to 20mg which he is on his 2nd school year and doing pretty well with it. I give it to him just before school around 7:30 every morning and it wears off by around 1pm according to the teacher. She says that is when she notices his attention start to deteriorate. When my son starts a new dosage it can take up to two weeks for us to notice a difference or change in his attention span. We have not been prescribed anything other then Focalin so far.

Enna - posted on 03/21/2013

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Yes, my daughter is 13 is on exactly the same thing. She's been taking this combination for almost a year now. It took a lot of adjusting until we had her on the right medicine at the right dosage. The medicine helps her a lot. She does not take the Focalin on the weekend, unless we're going to be doing something that requires her to pay attention. And she will not be taking it over the summer. I've found that taking breaks from it allows my daughter to eat more so she doesn't lose weight. She also had trouble sleeping at the beginning and we had her taking Melatonin at bedtime, but she doesn't need it anymore.

We haven't noticed any side effects from the Prozac, and she does take that every day.

My big problem is that because she's doing so well, my daughter sometimes gets it in her head that she doesn't need to take her medicine anymore. She was really sneaky and was putting it in her coat pocket instead of swallowing it in the morning. She's not that sneaky though because I stuck my hand in her pocket and found it. There were about 8 pills. Imagine if one of her school teachers had found it! She would have been in huge trouble because Focalin is a controlled substance. So now I watch her take it every day. No more problems!

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