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To Medicate or Not to Medicate
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Mamaof3Angels posted:
I am new to this community but really need some input....
My husband and I have three children, two of whom were both adopted from same biological mother. The oldest was diagnosed w/ADHD at age 6 and went on Concerta. She has been pretty stable in regard to behaviors, etc. since that time. Our son has now been diagnosed as well with ADHD. He is only 4. His behaviors are more troubling to me as he becomes frustrated very easily, destructive when he is angry and very hard to calm once he is in that mindset. Our daughter's symptoms were more related to concentration and school performance. My husband and I both have hesitations about putting him on medication so young. I realize its only 2 years sooner before our daughter started meds but he is barely in preschool. Is this the right thing to do for him at this age?
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momuv4girls responded:
My best suggestion (since your son is quite young), would be to first have him evaluated by a top-notch, smart, board certified Child Psychiatrist.
Here is a helpful link to explore some:
http://www.aacap.org/cs/root/child_and_adolescent_psychiatrist_finder/child_and_adolescent_psychiatrist_finder

You want to make sure the diagnosis is correct and discuss med options at age 4 if the Dr. feels the need.

Since your son is so young, you will want to develop a relationship with a Dr. who can guide you, educate you and help you make informed, healthy decisions.

Hope this helps! Take care,
-Kathleen
 
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Brixter12 replied to momuv4girls's response:
Where can i find info on psychiatrists or psychologists for adults struggling with ADHD. I am on Strattera and i also was diagnosed with Aspergers.
 
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momuv4girls replied to Brixter12's response:
A good place to start is your insurance company. You can call them and ask for a list of providers in your area.

Another good place to look, is your local hospital. Ask for their Mental Health Dept. and talk to someone there regarding the Psychiatrist they have on staff.

I always make a phone appt. first and talk to the Dr. to make sure they are a good fit for you, and specialize in the care you need. You can also make an appt. to see them in person - - its really a good idea to first "interview" the Dr. so you don't waste anyone's time with one that may not be right for you.

Hope this was helpful!
-Kathleen
 
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Gina Pera responded:
You've probably seen the new guidelines regarding medications for children that young. Experts recognize that some children, however young, can benefit greatly from the medication. It's a case-by-case issue.

It could well be that your boy has more severe symptoms than your daughter. ADHD is highly individualistic, even among siblings. And there are other issues as well -- common "traveling companions" to ADHD that, again, don't always show up in each sibling.

Children with untreated ADHD are at higher risk for head injuries and accidents, from impulsive behavior. The destructive anger you mention could be part of the ADHD pattern of emotional dysregulation, or it could be something more. The brain is so complex.

In addition to talking with your physician about medications, I would also look into his diet, fragrance/chemicals in the house, and sleep schedule.

Children with such challenges often need multiple approaches to support their brain and nervous systems.

Good luck,
Gina Pera
 
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Mamaof3Angels replied to momuv4girls's response:
Thank you for your reply Kathleen! We did have an extensive assessment done by a board certified child psychiatrist. We've been at this for nearly a year. I wanted to make sure we knew everything there was to know before making the decision to turn to medication. We had an appt. w/yesterday and they put him on Adderall. I had huge hestitations about this drug because if things I've seen on t.v., etc. We discussed other alternatives for for 1.5 hours with the dr yesterday and learned that due to his age and the fact that he cannot swallow pills, Adderall was the best choice to start with. We will see how it goes. I hardly slept last night. I just want to do what's best for him. He is such a compassionate, loving little guy and I feel like some people don't get to see that about him and only witness the symptoms of his ADHD. It has been very hard. I appreciate your feedback greatly!
 
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Boyzmomee replied to Mamaof3Angels's response:
My son is 14 and he has been on Adderall since he was age 6. He's doing fine.


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