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Should I medicate my daughter?

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Old 04-11-2017, 12:16 PM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2016
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VicLF HB User
Should I medicate my daughter?

Hi all! I have a 9-year old daughter that was diagnosed with ADHD when she was 7. We held off on meds for a year, then tried them for all of last school year, but none of them ever seemed to be quite right. Some affected her appetite too much, some had a horrible "coming down" period in the evening and my daughter hated taking them all. We did neurofeedback for almost a year and it definitely seemed to work some while we were doing it, but the effects have worn off since stopping and it is too expensive to continue indefinitely. We have a well-child visit coming up and I am thinking of talking to the doc about meds again. We only tried stimulants (Vyvanse, Focalin and Concerta - many different doses of each). I know you are adults and I would love some input about meds. They seem so scary and my daughter never seemed to like taking them, although we did see some improvements with focus, etc.

She is extremely emotional and emotionally volatile. She also has all of the classic ADHD symptoms (she scored off the charts for most of these and also scored high for oppositional defiance disorder.) She doesn't lash out physically, but she gets upset by what seem like the simplest things and it takes her a while to recover. She will become very upset, very quickly and can't get control of herself. The reaction doesn't always match the thing that upset her (for example, if she stubs her toe, she gets very angry and will yell and scream and act like it is somehow someone's fault and this might go on for 30 minutes or longer.) The worst time is when this happens in public and we never know what will set her off. We can handle the hyperactivity and the not-so-great grades in school, but it's the emotional dysregulation that affects us all the most. Does medication help with this? We did see somewhat of a difference when she was on meds, but not enough.

Any thoughts, suggestions or advice is appreciated. Thanks in advance!

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Old 04-11-2017, 04:52 PM   #2
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Re: Should I medicate my daughter?

Hi VicLF,

My daughter was diagnosed with ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder(O.D.D.), Sensory Integration Disorder, and depression. She was diagnosed the summer before starting second grade --- she is now 25. I understand you concerns and your daughter's difficulties.

Does she see a Psychiatrist for her ADHD and O.D.D. if not that might be something you, as her parent, may want to consider. The medications for ADD and O.D.D is their specialty.

The problems you are seeing with the ADHD medications are very normal....unfortunately. One possibility is a medication used for depression but is also helpful for ADHD ---- Wellbutrin. Wellbutrin can also be used in conjunction with ADHD medications.

One of the best non-medication options we chose for our daughter was Occupational Therapy(OT). The OT my daughter went to only worked with children and her office was geared towards children. This can help with many of the problems that come with ADHD including school work, Sensory Integration, mood, and how to interact with others.
Dx RRMS 1985
5/9/13/ Secondary Progressive without Progression

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Old 05-29-2017, 04:42 PM   #3
Join Date: May 2017
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amandax53 HB User
Re: Should I medicate my daughter?

As a successful now-adult, who was just DX'd two years ago---please give it a chance. I did very well in school as a child/teen/young adult but I had no focus, no long standing interest in anything. Now I am almost finished with second bachelors to transition to IT from social work as I will be much happier with that career. I would have never been interested in IT to stay focused long enough if I was not on the needed meds.

The worst that can happen is the meds are not effective. You can always discontinue them. I wish I was given meds as a kid--but then were seen as only something for the bad kids. Something negative. Negative is not achieving your potential when there is an easy solution.

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