please help: i am a mommy to a 5yo... - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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please help


i am a mommy to a 5yo daughter recently dx with severe combined adhd & odd.. possible sensory issues (among other things).. it was also recently explained that, due to complications at birth, her brain is not creating enough (if any) dopamine ("she needs meds").. due to a blood disorder, her hematologist reccommends adderall.. extremely scared

13 Replies

Try the medication you will know quickly if it works. Get her an occupational therapist it really helps.

Welcome to the group. Was your child seen by a mental health doctor? Psychologist or psychiatrist? These are the people that can help you. Many Children with ADHD benefit from taking a stimulant medication.

We were all scared starting medication, but we have learned how much better life is when our children take medication.

When it is the correct type, dose and timing it can help so much.

Good luck!

I'd recommend you research broad spectrum micronutrients to see if they may be a possibility for her. They were recommended by my son's psychiatrist. There are two companies, True Hope and Hardy Nutritionals.

Your daughter sounds like she has similar issues to mine...she was diagnosed at 4.5 Yrs old and is now 7. Medication was a game changer for our family in a very positive way. We started on adderall as well with guanfacin at night to help with onset/offset rage.

It was great until she hit a growth spurt coincident with the start of first grade and it made her super moody and zoned out at school. We took her off meds all together for two months and then started Focalin extended release with a short release booster after lunch to get her to dinner/bed time. It has been amazing...she’s done better in school than ever before.

I also recommend OT as well as a Behavioral therapist (ABA). Get her on an IEP at the school asap.

You’re doing great! She will be much better off on’s like giving a child glasses if they have blurry vision. They don’t know what a “clear picture” looks like until they put the glasses on and go “oh! That’s what you look like!” Medication teaches your child what “focus” feels like. Before medicine, they aren’t able to filter out all the “noise” going on around them in order to focus on a primary task.

Last piece of your village...we have a Behavioral neurologist from Boston Children’s Hospital, and pediatric psychiatrist from Dartmouth Hitcock Medical Center and a child psychologist from University of VT medical took a couple years (and a myriad of medical institutions) to find the right fit for Ella but it’s been smooth sailing ⛵️ once we did!

My daughter was diagnosed with ADHD when she was 7 y/o. I was very afraid of starting medication, thinking she is just too young for it. I finally agreed to have her evaluated by a psychiatrist 7 months later. I knew this psychiatrist and trusted his judgment. He recommended Adderall XR 5mg. It has improved her focus greatly, especially when we had to school her at home during the pandemic. Like someone else said, it's like a person with blurry vision given glasses. She would take her meds in the morning, then an hour later, she was ready and motivated to do her schoolwork, which trust me, NEVER happened with her homework. We are still struggling, but she has fewer meltdowns and less anxiety than before.

Find providers that you trust. Do your research. And do what works best for your family.

Also, my cousin posted this video awhile back. Really touched my heart.

What if you're unable to find the right medicine on the first try. We just started this journey and are starting to believe our first medicine isn't working. Is it usual to try different ones before finding the right fit?

Unfortunately, with any illness, you sometimes have to try a few before something works. I know it's frustrating and it's a scary thought to give kids meds. I think many parents here would say it could take a couple of tries.

How quickly can you change meds? Pretty sure this one isn’t working. We’ve been trying for 4 weeks now and just increased to 4mls. It’s Quillivant. Doesn’t seem to be the “magic bullet” people are describing. He’s wild and moody and angry. Of course we’ll follow the doctors instructions but how quickly can you change meds when it’s a stimulant? Don’t you know right away if they’re working? I don’t want to rush but I don’t want to waste time either on something that isn’t working.

Definitely communicate with your doctor all of your concerns. I'm not a doctor, so I don't know how often you can change meds. But, they know, and a good doctor will sit down and provide education regarding medication, symptoms, side effects, etc. If your doctor doesn't do this, definitely find another one.

Thank you

While you are waiting on the medication, which can take time to get jus right, here are some helpful techniques you can use at home:

Pax Tools intro

Working from home

The first (and I think may be one of most common) Med that my daughter was put in was adderall xr. I was originally so against meds, I tried everything possible to avoid them. Then one day we were camping and my daughter said I don’t understand, I hate myself, I just can’t be good and I really try to be. She also told me she had no friends. It was then I finally decided to give meds a try.

Also, with stimulants you can stop without weaning down, at least adderall and you will know almost right away if it is working or not, etc.

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