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ADHD Parents Together
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Inattentive ADHD 9yr old struggling at school

Hello I am new here,

My 9yo boy has recently been diagnosed, he is not hyperactive and at first they thought it was a different issue. As the schooling advances and the studies become more advanced, he is struggling. The teacher is very accommodating but he loses a lot of information in the day through inattentiveness and has problem reading and writing (very slow) and although he is much better with mathematics problems that require more than one or two steps to work out are an issue. Does anyone have any advice, how can I help him? His self esteem is suffering and he has become disinterested with school and homework, often crying just at the thought of having to complete it. It is a shame as he is a creative and loving and gentle child with a lot to offer.

Currently he is not medicated but has been going to phsycotherapist for cognitive behaviour therapy.

Many thanks

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Absolutely ask he school for an evaluation so he can get a 504 plan or an IEP. Onthemove explains this better than me but a 504 plan provides accommodations like more time for tests and sitting in the front of the room. An IEP is a plan with the school that provides for other things and goals for the kids to reach. For example, my daughter's IEP has her pulled out of class for math. she goes to a smaller room with a different teacher for math. She also sits in the front of every class. She gets more time for her tests and projects if necessary. She has anxiety issues so she gets to use music during the day if she starts to have issues. There are many, many things that you can do with an IEP. My daughter started her IEP in January. Prior to that she had a D in math, a C in social studies and a C in science. This quarter she had all B's including math and an A. she is much happier and had much less anxiety! HUGS you are in the right place!

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Hi there, I myself have Inattentive ADHD and was not diagnosed until I was 25. I absolutely HATED school growing up because of how out of place I felt, how much extra time it took to complete the work, and because of not having enough sleep due to slow onset sleep (common Inattentive ADHD symptom). I was told for years that I was an extremely intelligent student, but was lazy and distracted. Thankfully after getting diagnosed, I was able to start taking medication for my condition and added a supplement/vitamin regime that dramatically changed my life for the better. I have researched and studied ADHD for about 4 years and am currently completing my Masters Degree in Psychology and plan to obtain my PhD. as a Clinical Psych. in order to be able to work more specifically with the ADHD community and share research.

For families who are concerned about their son or daughter taking stimulant medication, I highly recommend supplements. A strategy plan when it comes to supplements and ADHD, should include aiming to help the brain with the specific neurotransmitters that give people with ADHD the most trouble. The following neurotransmitters should be addressed.

Dopamine : A neurotransmitter in the brain that affects your levels of concentration, motivation, pleasure senses, and sense of pain.

Norepinephrine : A neurotransmitter and stress hormone that deals with attentiveness, emotions, impulse control, planning ahead, sleep, and interpreting actions of others.

Serotonin : A neurotransmitter that deals with mood regulation, sleep, nervousness, empathy, appetite, digestion, and sexual urges.

Acetylcholine : A neurotransmitter that deals with muscle contraction, pain responses, mood regulation, REM sleep, and coordination.

if you click my profile pic, it will take you to my profile, where in my bio you'll see theres a link of a google doc I made of every supplement I take that includes ones specifically to help those low neurotransmitters I mentioned above. It mentions what grocery stores and online stores (Amazon has all of these supplements a lot cheaper than markets like Sprouts and Whole Foods) sell these supplements, and some information about each of the supplements and how they help out people with ADHD, in case you're interested. I also have a video series on Inattentive ADHD on youtube of all the lifespan stages of development and the trouble Inattentive ADHD brings, as well as advice and solutions to certain matters. I also published a book on Inattentive ADHD to demonstrate to people the difficulty that comes with having the condition and how to manage, control, and organize your life to reach your full potential. Links to this are all in my bio if you're interested. Hope this helps.

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Thank you ,reading this has helped a lot. I will read and follow the you tube clips too. Do you think counselling or an ADHD coach would help? Hi

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I'm glad to hear. If parents are not as knowledgeable of the variety of struggles that ADHD brings, then getting counseling spefically for ADHD would be helpful in order to set up structure, goals, and most importantly follow up of those goals. In my book I explain the ADHD difficulties and introduce strategies and tactics for every stage of development from elementary school through adulthood, along with explaining the neurological basis for the problems during the stages. Nutrition and sleep are also of massive importance, which is why I included a helpful diet plan as well.

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I cannot open the links I’m not sure why?? I cannot copy and paste either. I am working with a parent whose son is ADHD the resources I am sure will be of great value to her. Thanks.

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Sometimes links do not work on certain phones (usually iphones). They should be able to open on a comp/laptomp. Just double checked and was able to open them on my comp. Sounds good, you're welcome

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What supplements help with like dopamine or do u mean prescription drugs,

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N-Acetyl Tyrosine is great for Dopamine and Norepinephrine. All the supplements on the list are available over the counter, no prescription needed

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He sounds very similar to my daughter. She’s 11 now and in 6th grade. For several years in elementary school we had tearful nights and homework that took hours. She wasn’t officially diagnosed with ADHD until I really pushed her psychiatrists to look into it because, like your son, she’s inattentive not hyperactive. I believe the inattentive cases tend to be overlooked because the kids tend to be less disruptive in school.

I will say that medication has helped immensely. I was skeptical to try meds but, in hindsight, I wish we had started earlier. School work is much easier for my daughter now but organization is still a challenge, especially in middle school.

Best of luck to you.

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We didn't want to medicate either but we're so afraid that all the problems in school were destroying my grandson's selfesteem. Getting on medication and behavioral therapy has helped him be successful. He is still on medication and was just accepted into a collegiate program in high school.

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Hello, CONGRATULATIONS!!!! How old was your son when he was first diagnosed? Did he have a 504 or IEP? I constantly worry that my son will not be successful and will not get to go to college.

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Congratulations!! That’s huge! 😊

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Hello, my ADHD son went through these same things. He is now almost 12 yo and making slight progress. I would recommend that you request a 504 plan or IEP through your son's school. They will be required to offer educational supports for your son (occupational therapy, speech/language therapy and other accommodations he may need). Be sure to have a list of the concerns you mentioned at your first meeting. A medication trial may be helpful to keep his attention on point in class. You can always change medications if the first one does not work. Sometimes it can take several different tries with medications to find the right one. You are a great parent to be an advocate for your son. Glad you are trying to get him on the right course while he is still young.

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He was diagnosed in kindergarten. 6th grade was a bit of a disaster as the focalin XR he had been on in grade school suddenly stopped working. It was trial-and-error for awhile until we got him on his current medication.

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I’m sorry to hear about your struggles - it’s definitely rough for our kids with ADHD.

I’m pretty much seconding what others have said: seek out an IEP / 504 from the school. Tlalking with the school psychologist really helped me a lot in the early days. Talk to a counselor who specializes in ADHD for parent training to help you on your path. Consider a medication trial - the side effects are generally short term, so if side effects become problematic, you can always stop the medication and the typically go away fairly quickly.

My son was diagnosed when he turned 6 (we had done a previous evaluation when he turned 5, but he didn’t meet enough requirements yet.) My husband was SUPER resistant to treatment, particularly medication. Now a year later, my husband is hesitant to take our son to the movies or something if my son HASNT taken his medication yet. Once we found a medication that is a good fit, we’ve seen a lot of positive changes.

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Yes get the 504. It’s hard to watch Your child hurting. I know. self esteem is everything in my book. Do the things he is good at at home. Push the positives. We finally found a good swim class for him (private sessions). If other kids were around he would get silly and splashed and doesn’t / can’t focus. The swimming is making him feel strong. And I saw a big change recently. He is proud for once. It melts my heart. Find your version of swim class. Something he can excel at. There is so much more to kids And adults with ADHD. They think outside the box. Come up with creative solutions to problem solving. Also start emphasizing empathy a lot. “I wonder how so and so felt when that happened. What do you think?” Try to get him to think of others. I found as an adult with adhd that I was completely self absorbed. People thru my life either accepted me and took all my other good stuff (great with spiritual, philosophical and psychological advice). And others let me go. Internally all I ever thought was “I can barely keep up with myself. I am barely surviving here”. I am grateful to the friends who stuck by me and don’t resent those who had no patience. I get it. But I keep trying to do better. And be a focused Mom for him. Good luck and know you are not in this alone.

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Thank you.

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Thank you to all for sharing your fantastic advice, it really helps to know we are not alone!

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I would consider a conversation with your child's doctor around medication. I do not suggest this lightly, but my experience as an ADHD coach has shown that all the strategies and counseling in the world are not much help if your child's inability to attend is biochemical in nature. By addressing the neurochemistry in your child's brain, you are giving him a better chance to attend and follow through with therapies and coaching in an effective manner. As I'm sure you've seen by the posts on this forum medication can be very trial and error. When you land on the right one it can be incredibly effective, however, it is not always an easy journey. Its a personal decision for you and your family to make.

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