View Full Version : Seeking medication advice for 13-year-old son with ADHD and major ANGER issues

01-02-16, 10:52 PM
My son can be very sweet, thoughtful and caring, but certain people/situations can trigger major rage and he can't get out of it. He's been getting cognitive behavior therapy, and he understands--when he's calm--what he's supposed to do in these situations that trigger his rage. But when these triggers appear in "real life," he immediately goes into his rage mode and he can't slow himself down to think and apply what's he's been learning. Nobody can "catch" him before he escalates to his rage mode, since he gets there instantly under certain circumstances.

We're looking for medication that might help him to slow down or calm his ADHD brain enough for him to be able to think and respond to trigger situations in a more appropriate way than instantly reacting in anger. What scares me is that in one instance, he hit a boy (in my son's defense, this boy WAS bullying him...but still, this was not an appropriate action) with a stainless steel hydroflask and made him bleed!!!!

I feel like if he continues down this path, he'll end up in jail one day. No parent wants that!

We tried Intuniv for a full week, but at 1mg taken at night, he can't keep his eyes open during the day. Can't get him to wake up, and when we did, he seemed a sleepy child.

Starting Adderall now... not sure yet if this may aggravate his anger issues?

Any thoughts from experienced parents and/or ADHDers would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much.

01-03-16, 04:03 AM
How much does he exercise?

01-03-16, 05:08 AM
My daughter wasnt as severe as your son when she was that age but she went through rage periods. I have three kids, all adhd. Surprisingly the things that helped her were stimulants during the day and clonidine at night. She was on focalin for a while and also adderall. These were all used in conjunction with therapy- she needed to learn coping skills. The clonidine that she took at night helped her with her sleep and appetite. The first week she was really tired but after that she got used to it and it did its job. Its scary to see our kids like that but with adhd and the emotional regulation issues they have, its not uncommon for kids to go through what your son is going through. Good luck and keep your chin up.

01-03-16, 08:14 AM
Hugs to the OP :grouphug:

Just a word of caution - in some people the levo stuff in Adderall can trigger worse anger issues. It seems to make it worse somehow.

If it doesn't work something smoother like Dexedrine might be a better option.

Is there a chance he is trying to communicate something but is unable to?

When I was a kid and would get angry like that it was often because I wasn't being listened to or couldn't communicate my thoughts very well.

Not saying you aren't listening to him - you definitely sound like you are a caring and attentive parent - just wanted to bring that up in case it could be a possibility.

01-03-16, 01:48 PM
You could try L-theanine, inositol or magnesium (not oxide, citrate might give diarrhea). Zinc might help a bit?

Not really recommended for a kid his age but as far as exercise goes heavy compound lifts (deadlifts, squats, hang clean and press, etc...) that tax the central nervous system have been the only exercise I have found effective.

You could also look into intermittent explosive disorder to see what they do. Also the problem might not be your son but the people around him.

01-03-16, 07:43 PM
Not really recommended for a kid his age but as far as exercise goes heavy compound lifts...
In fact extremely inappropriate and 100% wrong for a kid his age, not just "not really recommended". Kids do need a lot of exercise, but heavy compound lifts is not remotely ever a useful part of it for a 13-year-old, especially not an immature ADHD 13-year-old.

01-03-16, 08:45 PM
We found a combination of stimulant (concerta) and non-stimulant (guanfacine) worked well. He takes the concerta in the morning with 1/2 of his daily dose of guanfacine, and then takes the other 1/2 dose of guanfacine at dinner time. When we tried the stimulant alone, it made him super angry and when we tried the quanfacine alone, it helped with the anger but not with focus. He was right around your son's age when we started. We also eliminate petro-chemicals from his diet (artificial colors, artificial flavors and certain perservatives)