View Full Version : First time medication - What do we tell our 6 yr old?

01-22-16, 06:32 PM
What is recommended to say to your child as far as why we are giving him this new medication? He already is suffering from low self esteem and so the last thing I want to do is to make him feel like something is wrong with him by what we tell him.

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

01-22-16, 08:50 PM
I think you have many options ...

You can tell him the pill is for helping him to concentrate and not have his mind jump around.

The med is to help him focus ...

The med is to slow down his mind from jumping from thought to thought ...

The med also is to help him sit longer and do his work in school a bit better without getting bored.

You can keep it simple ... and the funny thing is that all the above are all true! ... and then over time, as he grows, you can explain more as he asks questions about the medicine.

I'm an adult who has been taking ADHD medications for 8 years, and I largely think of the reason as the answers I gave you above. I now use the term "executive function"--the meds strengthen and improve my executive function--which simply means the planning and carrying out of my life. The medications help me make decisions and carry out decisions and to follow through and complete tasks and to plan and to prioritize. They help me remember things better. Of course the good reactions required some tinkering with dosages and trial-and-error with various stimulants. I don't want to make it seem like they perform magic.

The ADHD meds are called "stimulants." If they were new to the market today, the pharmo companies would market them as "focus" pills.

01-26-16, 04:01 AM
When kids are that young its best to keep it really really simple. Forget explaining adhd or anything like that. Just tell him they are to help him. If he says what they will help him with tell him everything. Less is more with young kids.

02-09-16, 02:05 PM
We've been pretty frank about ADHD with my son (age 7). My husband has it along with a bunch of other relatives. His school also teaches about the parts of the brain and what they do (as part of a mindfulness class).

He calls his medicine a stop light for his thoughts.

02-11-16, 10:28 PM
We told ours it was a vitamin. I don't recommend that. If I had it to do over again I would say it is to help him pay attention to whatever he needs to pay attention to at the time, both play/fun/toys and also at school when he needs to learn. This covers concentration, following instructions, etc. without saying "because you don't" ... (follow instructions, can't sit still, etc)