My son was just diagnosed with ADHD, but he is just ADD, he is not hyperactive. however his behavior isn't bad. He just can't seem to get his work done, and when asked simple questions he tends to zone out. It is affecting his self esteem. I have not given him the medicene they perscribed because one he is not that bad and two I was hoping to find some alternatives to medicene. does anyone have any suggestions?
08-28-04, 02:01 AM
How can it be "not that bad" if it's effecting his self esteem?
There are alternatives to medication - intensive psychotherapy, when maintained, has been shown to help - although the most effective treatment, according to studies, is medication combined with therapy.
Has he tried the medication yet? What have his teachers said about his behavior with medication?
Why are you resistant to the use of medication? If your son had an infection, you would give him the antibiotics the Dr prescribed, wouldn't you? Why should ADD medication be any different - it is all very safe, effective, and the results can sometimes be astonishing.
08-28-04, 07:16 AM
I can appreciate your wanting to check out things besides just medication, but ruling out medication doesn't always work. As my first born was diagnosed ADHD/ODD I also said, I'll do anything, but I'm not going to "drug" him. We started with individual therapy and physical therapy, but after one year of this it was clear that he was not improving. Starting the meds opened a door that made it possible to finally communicate with him.
In general, I think the best approach is always start small and build up. Changing diet, therapy, learning new parenting techniques, etc. is always a good place to get started, but don't rule out medications. They can make the impossible possible in certain cases.
My second son, is ADD and has developed super coping mechanisms through therapy and has never required medication. Just goes to show that each case is different.
When people attack me for medicating my son I make it clear that Ritalin for him is no different than insulin for a diabetic. With it he is able to lead a relatively normal, healthy life. Without it he wouldn't survive - no friends, no social skills, no education.
08-29-04, 09:29 AM
Your post is a very good one and so are the responses. It's such a difficult decision to make whenever medication is involved.Understanding that ADHD is a very real chemical imbalance helps with the idea of medication as one part of a total treatment plan.
Often times the Inattentive type child (the old ADD ) gets overlooked because they are quieter and better behaved. My experience has been (meaning I have no research to base this on right this second) is that they are also (possibly) more likely to become depressed over time.As school gets progressively more difficult each year it is possible for them to eventually become depressed because they can see that they're not keeping up with their classmates. In this sense, individual & family therapy make construcutve additions to your overall treatment plan.
The US Surgeon General's Report on Mental Health, Chapter3 - Disorders of Infancy, Childhood and Adolescence, has one of the best and most definitive background references on the history and efficacy of medication use that I know of.Please check it out when you get a chance and welcome to the Forum.Good luck.
Individual mentoring can be very helpful for schoolwork and self esteem. Another person to help with this probably... at school or a sports coach or someone that can really help support & back him up. Also read all you can about how ADD works 'cause it's confusing & takes a while to 'get'.
You didn't say how old he is?
PS that's OK to take it slow with the meds until you understand better & know what to expect.