Now this is something we have
Hi, and welcome
It's good that you have had an evaluation with a qualified specialist, but what do they say about meds?
A child may HAVE ADHD, but it is not what they ARE. Never tell a child they ARE ADHD.
Our son also started treatment at a young age. We started seeking medical help at age three just before he was kicked out of preschool for impulsive and aggressive behavior. We tried the tips from a child psychologist and behavioral therapist first, but what made all the difference in the world was medication. It was life changing for our entire family when our son went on Ritalin. He was the same child -- still bright, energetic, creative, spirited -- but his behavior was normal. No more running out of circle time, no more hitting other kids, no more wearing out his teachers and us, no more defiance, no more "incident reports." Just the same boy, but fitting within society's norms. Our son is now getting praise from teachers for his great behavior and they're noticing just how bright he is overall, not just the negatives associated with ADHD.
What's reassuring about Ritalin is that it's been used for decades. They've studied it well and people who've taken it are now adults and doing fine. In fact, kids with ADHD who take medications are less likely to have drug problems as teens (kids with ADHD are at very high risk for drug use) because they don't need to turn to illegal drugs to feel "normal."
Our son currently takes Concerta, a long-acting form of Ritalin, and we couldn't be happier. It makes me tear up sometimes thinking about what he went through before medication. Now that he's six, he was able to explain things to me when his medication dosage was too low and he was getting in trouble again (he went through a growth spurt, which threw things off with the medication): "Mom, I feel like I can't control my body." It broke my heart. As soon as we adjusted the medication, he said he felt so much better and he was thriving again at school and at home.
The only side effect we noticed was a decrease in appetite when he first started and when we've had to increase dosage. However, this goes away over time and we balance things out with bigger meals and snacks when the medication isn't active.
The decision to try medication is a scary and difficult one, but I think you'll find everyone here who's made the leap of faith and done it has not regretted the decision.
Best of luck,Michelle
Thanks so much for your lengthy and informative post! You seem like you could write a book on the topic. I really appreciate the food for thought!
I rarely post but I wanted to respond.
My son started Adderal XR 2 months after he turned 4.
We had struggled with him, from say, 9 months old with behavioural issues.
Darting, pica (eating things that aren't food, it was impulse control for him (this included chewing, biting furniture etc, but also eating things (dirt, mud, elastics, hairballs UGH!), misbehaving, climbing, no regard for danger, did not appear to feel pain, verbally perseverating obsessively, running