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ADHD & Concerta Rss

Hi there ladies,

My 9 year old son has ADHD & has been on concerta for 3 months now. Before this he was on dexamphetamine for 3 months. All seems to be going well as far as having no side effects, apart from him not being able to fall asleep at night. His bed time is 8.30-9pm, but most nights he is still awake at 11.30pm, coming out to us in the loungeroom making sure we are still awake. He now even turns his light off to try & get to sleep, which he never used to do.

His psychologist said that i could give him a small (5-10ml) dose of phenergan at about 7pm. Which i have done on occasion. But this cant be a good thing to do every night could it??? If you have any tips for me to help my son settle & sleep at night it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks!

DS 9, DD 7, DD 4


Hi there ladies,

My 9 year old son has ADHD & has been on concerta for 3 months now. Before this he was on dexamphetamine for 3 months. All seems to be going well as far as having no side effects, apart from him not being able to fall asleep at night. His bed time is 8.30-9pm, but most nights he is still awake at 11.30pm, coming out to us in the loungeroom making sure we are still awake. He now even turns his light off to try & get to sleep, which he never used to do.

His psychologist said that i could give him a small (5-10ml) dose of phenergan at about 7pm. Which i have done on occasion. But this cant be a good thing to do every night could it??? If you have any tips for me to help my son settle & sleep at night it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks!


Hi there,
I have a son who has ADHD and he was on Concerta for a short time, we found this wasn't suitable for him. He is now on Dexamphetamine (compounded, slow release, so not having to have several tablets throughout the day.) He also has catapress and Endep which are working for him otherwise he would only sleep for 3-4 hours and take forever to get to sleep. I found seeing a paediatrician every 6-12 months is beneficial for a review as well as a medication review. We had tried many medication and it has taken about 3 years to get the right medications and balance.
Good luck and I hope this helps.
Hi

I just spoke to my DH about this. He is ADD and has been on Dex since about 10years of age. He said when he first started the meds as a kid he could go days of hardly sleeping. He said the body adjusts. It was only an initial problem for him.

I guess its your decision if you try and help him sleep with phernagen ... personally I probably wouldn't. But if he's sleeping is not settling soon I would be asking for a second opinion as if it is keeping him awake longterm it sounds like he might not be on the medication or dosage for him

May I also ask how he was diagnosed ADHD (eg what testing was done)??

Good Luck
Hi there,

It all started when he was 7. He had a needle at the doctors surgery & well was that a day i wish i could forget. He went in there fine, not knowing he was getting a needle. Then as soon as the Dr started preparing the needle for him, he just went off his rocker, swearing (really badly) at the Dr & the nurses trying to help, kicking them, screaming, just beside himself. After that appointment my Dr asked me to make a follow up appointment with her to talk about the behavior. This is how he reacts to most situations like this. Otherwise he is a very quiet, shy little boy. His mood swings are so unpredictable, he's like a time bomb ticking 24/7. She put him on "mental health program" which meant that when i see pediatricians & psychologists for him i get a portion (about 50%) back from medicare. We were seeing the child psychologist for about 12 months when he was referred to a pediatrician in August 2011. It was him that diagnosed him with ADHD & put him on a 6 week trial of dexamphetamine. We then went back to him cause he was only put on 5mg & it was wearing off at about 2pm each day so when he got home from school he was just "off the wall" again. Thats when he was put on concerta, we were given a script for 6 months supply, which the chemist holds on file until we need it each month. At first when he was diagnosed, my heart just broke, i kept thinking "what did i do wrong" i blamed myself. But now the way i see it is, he is a child that just needs special attention & a lot of love. The medication also really helps him concentrate at school & his yearly report compared to his 1/2 yearly report is just proof in pudding. I was so amazed at his high results. Even in the state NAPLAN tests, he did better than kids in mainstream. His schooling is the main reason i wanted him to have the medication, cause he was really falling behind in year 2 & 3. Now that he starting year 4 this year i am very confident we are going to have a great year!

Sorry for the long post, but its just nice to speak to someone about this, there doesnt seem to be much out there for parents of kids with ADHD!

DS 9, DD 7, DD 4

Thanks for sharing your story

I 100% believe ADHD/ADD is a very real neurological condition. I also however worry it is overdiagnosed when it is not the real problem.

OUr 6yr old was diagnosed as ADD last year by a learning and behavioural paed after recommendations we get him looked at by his teachers. He based the diagnosis on a psych's report, a speech and language assessment and an OT report ... as well as a few one-on-one assessment appointments of his own. I am just not sure what to do re. the medication yet. My DH got full brain studies etc done to confirm ADD before he was medicated. OUr son's paed pretty much said come back to us when you find DS' behaviour and schooling is spiralling and we will start him on meds. I just don't want to med him though without a full and definite diagnosis, thus why I am trying everything in my power to keep him up to speed at school to prevent having to make this decision. I've heard cases where some behaviours can mimic ADD/ADHD. Kids are put on meds without full proper assessment and it can be something entirely else ... so of course the meds don't actually work and only create more problems.

One thing I've heard is if the medication doesn't show drastic improvement then you can say your child doesn't have it. Given you said your son's report card changed so significantly in the time he was medicated this sounds volumes. People I know now who are going through the debate to medicate or not, it always comes down to their schooling and that they are significantly falling behind.

Its such a tough decision ... and it doesn't help either when there are so many people out there still so judgemental about the condition either sad
Yes i totally agree with RYJAYD you on many of your comments. When he was "diagnosed", i too said to my husband isnt there some sort of brain scan or something that they could do to prove this diagnosis.

Also when his behavior is spiraling out of control, i think to myself is this "just him being naughty & defiant" or is it the ADHD making him do this??? therefore we struggle with how to discipline the behavior. I also have 3 & 7 year old daughters, who compared to my son, are absolute little angels. There are times that i feel i am failing him as a mother, i know i shouldnt but thats just how i feel. I have been a stay at home mum since he was born & never been back to work since. I have been told that i need to "let go" a little, by giving him more responsibility & freedom. Which i find so hard to do. Because with my son, he does alot of things before he thinks about it, which is another ADHD characteristic.

I spoke to the chemist guy tonight & he said that i am giving him the concerta too late in the morning, cause its school hols, he is waking up at 9am & not having it til 9.30am, instead of when he is at school, he would have the concerta at 7am. So i guess that makes sense really, so tomorrow i will make sure he has it at least by 7.30-8am. Thanks again for listening.

DS 9, DD 7, DD 4

Hi there,

Wow! It is nice to finally read the views and experiences of other Australian parents who are grappling with ADHD and medication issue; so nice in fact that I have just signed up to this forum so I can contribute. I hope you don't mind me sharing my story with you.

My eldest has ADHD and he is 7. He was first diagnosed when he was 5 and I had a pretty strong reaction to it at the time - "there is no way I want to medicate him so what can I do?" there is a long and convoluted couple of years which I won't go into and then last year I took him back for another assessment. This time, when it came out as clear as day that he was ADHD, I said that I was ready to look at medication. He was in year 2 and just not able to pay attention and despite being very bright, was not getting through any of his work.

I started him on Ritalin for the first few weeks but then when we went in for a review we switched him to Concerta. Initially it worked like a dream but after a few weeks I started to notice his moodiness was increasing, particularly between 4 and 5pm as the Concerta wore off and his anxiety would accelerate. I would feel like I was walking around on tip-toes and it was very difficult to manage around my other 2 kids who are 4 and 16mths. He didn't turn into a zombie but he did lose that spark that he has and he didn't seem to enjoy life as much as without the mess.

I continued on with the Concerta till Jan 1 this year when I stopped to give him a break. The idea was also to try fatten him up as he definitely ate less on Concerta. I went to see the paed again last week and we have made the decision to keep him off medication entirely for this term and see how he goes. If he struggles with his school work then we will try the non-stimulant, Strattera. The paed. seems to think that he doesn't really gel with medication so this year I wil be going to see a psych to get some help for dealing with a kid with no brakes (ADHD), anxiety disorder and oppositional defiance behaviour.

Ryjayd, I sympathies with your debate about whether or not to medicate as it was the toughest decision I had to make. I will say that the Concerta definitely worked for my son. He was instantly able to concentrate more and finish his work and even his writing became neater. But the side affects for him outweigh the benefits at this stage. Medication affects each kid differently and I wil say that if you decide to try it out, take comfort in the fact that these drugs do not stay in their system for a long time. So if you try and feel that it is not right for your child thenh you take him off and you have not lost anything - nor have you done any damage.

Bubba27, you are quite right in that there are many other conditions out there which share features of ADHD including giftedness and anxiety .. However also know that it is extremely unusual for someone to have ADHD and absolutely no othe other comorbidities .. So it is a real mess really. I don't know if there is a brain scan available that will give you a definite diagnosis - my understanding is that there isn't - it is just a big mess really where you have to sift through the observations and assessments to arrive at where your kid is exactly. At least that is my experience wink

Again, I hope it was ok to share my story and my thoughts. I have left a lot out (believe it or not) as it has been a long journey over the last 3 years or so but I know I found it helpful to read of your experiences and thoughts, h ope mine are helpful to you too
X
HI Distracted

Thanks for sharing your story. Yes I personally took a lot from reading your experience

I found it really interesting how you have decided to give your son a break from meds. It is also reassuring to hear too that if you decide to stop meds that it leaves the body relatively quickly too smile

All the best with your son and I will be interested to hear how he goes off the meds this term. Is he Year 2 or 3 this year?

xxx
Hi Ryjayd, thanks for your response. I'm glad my posting was helpful to you. My son is starting year 3 next week. I am a bit worried as to how he will go concentration-wise given this is the year that Naplan etc starts but we will just have to see how he goes. He is a very bright kid but very easily distracted. Hopefully the psychologist visits will also make a big difference. It will be nice to get some strategies under my belt : ) ..

Good luck with making your decision. We can have all the information in the world in front of us but it doesnt make the decision any easier, does it?


x
Hi
Its been so great reading these posts..my daughter is going through these problems.
She was diagnosed with adhd last year after she was having problems in school..she is a very bright girl ,yet she struggles with all aspects of learning..reading writing etc..
We decided after a lot of thought to put her on Ritalin,she was on it for around 5 months and although i didnt see much improvement at home,infact i found she was worse as she was unhappy and unsettled in the evenings after the Ritalin had worn off..but her school saw a big difference..
We decided after having her home during easter holidays on no medication,and her behavior and mood being so much better that we would stop the meds and see how she went at school.she done well for a good few weeks,until just last week when i was called into school 3 days in a row as she was acting up so badly and not able 2 do her work...
So now we have to decide what to do? I really feel like we have to start meds again so my little girl has a chance to learn to be accepted and feel the same as the rest of her class..
Really hard..i feel for all parents in the same position..
Thank you so much for this forum...
Hi
Its been so great reading these posts..my daughter is going through these problems.
She was diagnosed with adhd last year after she was having problems in school..she is a very bright girl ,yet she struggles with all aspects of learning..reading writing etc..
We decided after a lot of thought to put her on Ritalin,she was on it for around 5 months and although i didn't see much improvement at home,in fact i found she was worse as she was unhappy and unsettled in the evenings after the Ritalin had worn off..but her school saw a big difference..
We decided after having her home during easter holidays on no medication,and her behavior and mood being so much better that we would stop the meds and see how she went at school.she done well for a good few weeks,until just last week when i was called into school 3 days in a row as she was acting up so badly and not able 2 do her work...
So now we have to decide what to do? I really feel like we have to start meds again so my little girl has a chance to learn to be accepted and feel the same as the rest of her class..
Really hard..i feel for all parents in the same position..
Thank you so much for this forum...
Hi,

My son is 7 and was diagnosed with Adhd when he was 5. The time has come to making a decision about medication and i'm not coping with this at all. He is an anxious child and I just think that a stimulant medication will only make this worse. He also doesn't like food very muvh and has no appetite to already which causes so much stress, i can't imagine his appetite being any worse. I need some advice please.
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