ADHD Parents Together
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Patience with 5 year old ADHD

Hello,

My patience is at an all time low. The new normal here is wake up at 4:30 am. By 5 am he is in full speed. Loud and zipping from activity to activity at the speed of light. We’ve tried making him stay in bed but he talks, yells, makes noises and then has a huge screaming fit. He is currently on 10mg Ritalin twice daily but it doesn’t seem to help him anymore and his pediatrician wants to increase the dose. Does anyone else have an “early bird”? What are some of your strategies to keep this little ones in bed? I work full time and can’t keep up this pace. Thanks!

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Kelly60-

Wow, sounds challanging... What is his daily routine like ( what time does he go to bed at night)? Did this just start? Do you have him in sports? Just curious why your pediatrician is giving him medication? Do you know if he is sleeping through the night? Hard to tell unless he comes to you in the middle of the night.

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He was diagnosed with adhd, odd, ocd and RAD at 4. He has been on Ritalin for a year. But it’s seems like his Adhd went into hyper overdrive the last few months. He is easily angered, keeps hitting other children at daycare, (I have to leave work frequently and pick him up), can’t remember household rules from day to day, cannot stay still and is difficult to get in bed. We start bedtime at 7:30 and it is usually 9:30-10:00 before he is asleep. No he doesn’t sleep all night. He climbs in bed with us most nights after midnight and lays there kicking and fidgeting, falls alsleep then he’s up early running around. He has his 90 day appt this week with his pediatrician and I pray I get some better answers. Lately I feel so angry at this little guy and am constantly beating myself up for feeling angry.

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From my parent opinion ( I am no doctor) it sounds like you really need to be seeing a pediatric psychiatrist. They need to dial in what type of medication is best for his personality, life style and what you hope to accomplish, this is the only Specialist that can handle the job. It may take a few medications at different times , long acting and short, impulse control and focus.

But the one thing I was told is medication should control %60 of the behavior when it is the right type. Behavior management handles the rest.

I know it is hard to imagine, but one day you will have close to a normal life with things dialed in when things are managed right.

There is hope.. right doctor... right medication.. right plan..

Big hugs right now, lots of ice cream..

It's a journey

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My son was an early riser until he was 5 years old. I set the rules for him. If you get up this early DO NOT wake me up. He’s pretty much on his own. My son is safe, doesn’t try to cook, or leave the house. He usually will get up and watch tv in his room until the rest of the House gets up. I did the same thing with my daughter (who doesn’t have adhd). I know it probably sounds a little mean or neglectful (to some people), but I was tired of getting up so early everyday. My house is very safe and he has never gotten himself into anything unsafe.

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My sister did the same with her son. And it worked great. He would entertain himself for a couple hours in his room. I think they had like an ‘8oclock wake up Mom ‘time on the weekend.

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We did something similar. Though we sometimes have to leave a reminder on our door, especially if I’m trying to squeeze in a nap during his quiet reading time. Otherwise he forgets (every time!)

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My 6 year old son is on the go from the minute he wakes up until he finally falls asleep. He is now on 5 mg Focalin XR and 3 mg Guanfacine ER. Both are taken in the morning. At night he gets Nordic naturals fish oil 1,120 mg in the minis and 200 mg magnesium glycinate. Look into the magnesium. It is supposed to help relax them and my understanding is a lot of ADHD kids are low on magnesium. I also bought him a weighted blanket on Amazon that he sleeps with every night. He loves it and it seems to help him sleep better.

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My son did this exact thing when he was 5-8. It was exhausting. I would take a pillow and blanket to the couch and lay down there and let him run around. It wasn’t a perfect solution but it was all I had.

My son is now 13, almost 14. He would sleep until noon or later everyday if I let him. So... it does get better as far as sleeping goes. Also, if he wants to be awake, he no longer needs an adult with him constantly.

We have other challenges now that he is a teenager, but in general I would say that it has gotten easier with maturity.

He still gets suspended from school at least once a month. And he argues with everything just for the fun of it.

I wish I had a magic trick for everyone to use. Hypnosis? Anyone tried that?

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I love the hypnosis idea... mine would even argue about cloud not being high in the sky... ha ha.., gota love them but HATE the arguing all the time.

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Omg! Mine would argue the sky isn’t blue. I’ve noticed many many of these kids are highly intelligent, so I have hope for his future.

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Lol - mine was literally arguing with me yesterday that a huge storm wasn’t rolling in (it was - very dark) and that the sky out the window looked blue (it did not.) Once it started raining, he conceded that I was right.

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Mine knows all and will argue that the grass is purple!

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Sorry to hear that! Sleeping issues I find the hardest - I can deal with all the rest of it if I can just get good sleep!

My first advice would just be to talk to your pediatrician or diagnosing / prescribing doctor (which you already seem to plan to do.)

Not sure how much this will help, but we’ve always found the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth to be very helpful for us. It’s largely aimed at infant sleep, but does go through the teen years, I believe. I haven’t referenced in a while, as both of our kids have become pretty awesome sleepers (once you run the gauntlet of getting them in bed.)

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