My kindergartner is being evaluated for ADHD on Thursday. He struggles greatly at school to be attentive and is extremely impulsive, to the point he has gotten hurt. Just last Friday he took off during recess and fell on some pavement in a roped off area and got a concussion. He cannot sit still, he always needs to be fidgeting or changing postitions. Academically he is showing improvements, but he needs an aide to help him stay on task and to follow instructions, he has an awful time paying attention, etc. He is such a love, very outgoing and happy, has a great time at school, but he struggles both at school and at home with following directions and impulsiveness, and unfortunately its hard on all of us, especially him.
Long story short is, I mentioned casually to my sister that he was going for the eval on Thursday, and her immediate reaction was, "YOU CANNOT GIVE HIM MEDS!!". She went on to say they are bad for kids, they dont help, and that it is sad that parents medicate their kids. She doesnt even have kids.
Wtf? I dont even know for sure if he does have ADHD yet (even though our doctor said she would be amazed if it was negative), and she's freaking out over giving him medications, without even asking what kind of a plan we might even have for him! DH and I have already discussed trying dietary changes and behavioral changes if we can help, and we are not opposed at all to giving him a medication that might help him thrive. The point is we dont want to hold him back by not helping him, kwim? And she all of a sudden is breathing down my neck about it being "bad"...
Grrrrr. Whats your take on ADHD meds? Did you decide to give them? Did you decide against them?
EDIT**** I just wanted to say thank you to all the moms here who had something helpful to say, whether they chose to medicate or not. Its not a decision we face lightly, and we want to be prepared for the eventuality of having to choose what to do.
To the people (few) who had nothing nice to say- well, take your rudeness elsewhere. I need constructive ideas and thoughts to decide how to help my child thrive. Criticizing my parenting when you are a complete inernet stranger does absolutely nothing and is not helpful at all.. (;
Also, a little info I forgot to include in my OP:
DS is seven, he turned 7 in December. He repeated preschool before moving up to prek and was not ready for kindergarten until this year. He has been on an IEP since his second year of preschool. He has received OT and has had a classroom aide since his IEP began and he attends summer sessions as well. He has always received evals that include his inability to attend (that means can not pay attention), impulsiveness, and inability to sit still when appropriate. Without the teachers he has had I dont even want to know where we would be, they have been amazing and have helped him/us tremendously, so this isnt a situation where he has teachers or parents who "just dont want to deal with him".
At this point, with proper evaluation of course, medication is on the table as a possibility. DS is impulsive to the point he has gotten hurt, he gets in trouble on the bus and it has become a safety issue. and we dont want to see him fall further and further behind- the grades will only get more and more challenging. Some people may think a kindergartner is too young for this, but with his age and the consideration of the fact that school will only get more and more challenging, we want to be proactive. We dont want to hold back on doing something that will only help DS be more of the amazing little boy he is.
Hope that all makes sense, sorry this got really long!!!
I am completely blown away with all the responses I have gotten about this! Thank you to everyone who has responded, whatever choice you have made or would make about how to treat your child for this. I know its a very personal decision and it is not one we are making lightly. I'm fortunate to have a great pediatrician for our son who is helping us down this road and his eval went very well, considering the fact that DS couldnt even bear to sit still while we were in the Ped's office! Our ped actually has ADD himself, which was a huge plus for our DH to hear. He is not quick to prescribe medication, all though in our case we are ahead of many of the steps he would usually suggest first (like, IEP or 504 plans at school, responsibility charts, etc, to help him through the day, etc etc). I just wanted to say thank you and I am very encouraged to hear how many of your children have truly thrived either because of their ADHD medication or that they have thrived without it as well. THANK YOU EVERYONE!!!!!!
by Anonymous 1 - Original PosterApril 1, 2014 at 12:51 PM
by Anonymous 2April 1, 2014 at 12:52 PMMy five year old daughter starts school in August. We started her on Focalin this past December, right after her 5th birthday. BEST THING I HAVE EVER DONE FOR HER.
Talk to your doctor. If the parents and doctor are agreeable and on the same page as far as a regimen, it's no one else's business.
by Anonymous 3April 1, 2014 at 12:52 PMI think they are fine as an absolute last resort. But I don't believe in giving meds unless you have already tried changing his diet, upping his exercise and implementing a proper rewards system. Which most people don't.
by Anonymous 4April 1, 2014 at 12:52 PM
My opinion is your sister should mind her own business.
by Anonymous 5April 1, 2014 at 12:53 PMADHD meds are horrible and makes the kid seem like a zombie. I wouldn't let them such a young kid.
by Anonymous 1 - Original PosterApril 1, 2014 at 12:55 PM
Thanks. I am not against meds, I want to do what he needs. He is 7 years old and in kindergarten, so in the number of years we have tried other changes with no luck, I do forsee him being put on meds. It just totally threw me that she was so dead set against them, I may as well have been telling her I was planning on giving him Meth or something. So glad it helped your daughter!! (:
Quoting Anonymous: My five year old daughter starts school in August. We started her on Focalin this past December, right after her 5th birthday. BEST THING I HAVE EVER DONE FOR HER. Talk to your doctor. If the parents and doctor are agreeable and on the same page as far as a regimen, it's no one else's business.