ADHD Parents Together
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The Ups & Downs of dealing with my son who has ADHD

Hello,

My name is Amanda and I’m a mother of 2. My son is 7 and my daughter is 4. My son was diagnosed with having ADHD when he was 3 although his doctor would not “clinically” diagnose him until he went into kindergarten and from the start he has always had concentration issues, completing tasks whether it be his homework, cleaning up his room, or simply getting dressed by himself. We have been on the medicine roller coaster for awhile: he was first prescribed adderall at the lowest dosage and that was horrible, he lost 10lbs in one week time span because it would knock him out after 20 minutes of it being in his body, or if he managed to stay awake he was in like a zombie state where he didn’t recognize his name. His appetite decreased as well being on that medicine so I stopped giving it to him. We then went to see a specialist in Columbia who ran a bunch of tests on my son and prescribed us the lowest dosage of Ritalin and that too was a disaster; my son was all over the place and could not sit still for 5 seconds, his appetite increased, and he was unable to focus to be able to carry on any type of conversation with me. His doctor finally re-evaluated my son and put him on the lowest dosage of Tenex and he started to be like his normal self but not so drastic to were he was like a zombie or asleep for hours at a time but my son was able to concentrate on his work at school, to be able to focus for a certain time frame but when he gets in the car from school he crashes... it is like this medicine keeps him going long enough to get through school and then his brain and body just shuts down for awhile. I have recently been doing some research in to finding other alternatives besides my son being dependent on medication to make him be able to focus and concentrate on what he needs to accomplish each and every day for the rest of his life, and It has proven to be somewhat difficult because I don’t know exactly what kind of alternative I want for my son and if it would be beneficial for my son.

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I'm sorry to hear the ups and downs you have gone through... I can really tell you care about your son and that you are a really good mother. Stay strong and also give yourself time and space - sometimes we just need to bawl our eyes out for 10 minutes and reset.

Last month we took our 8 year old to the Amen Clinic. Maybe you can look them up and see if that is something you would be interested in looking into. They look at brain scans to determine which medication is best for the patient.

My son was on amino supplements for 2 weeks because I really wanted to try the alternative route but we didn't see too much of an improvement in school. Now we are trying a new medication (same as your son, this is his second medication to try but the first after his brain scan) and I like it that it is not a stimulant. My son is not having the same side effect that you are describing though. At school he is still working on his challenges but we are slowly seeing improvements.

I liked that we were able to see the brain images to determine what medication would be the best fit v.s. just guessing and putting him through trial after trial.

We also started him on needless acupuncture and I do think that is helping a little.

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