View Full Version : Help with Medication, on Focalin XR but having a hard time

04-24-17, 04:09 PM
Hello All,
I am new to the group. I'd love to hear any suggestions about which way to go with my son's medication. The doctor is good, but in the end she gives us options and let's us decide which way to go and I'm confused.

DS is 6.5 and has had ADHD diagnosis since he was 4. He's hyper, has trouble focusing and following directions, and definitely has some anxiety. We have had him on Focalin XR 10mg for 5 months and it is going ok. When the medication is working in his system (morning until early afternoon) he's great. But we are really struggling with the other hours of the day. In the morning he's bouncing off the walls, sometimes irritable, but usually just high high energy. In the afternoon, he goes through a pretty unpleasant cycle of being tired and whiny, to being angry and irritable, to then being crazy hyper. He does eat fine and sleeps pretty well too, so I guess that's something.

I know that rebound is part of the medication experience, but the meltdowns during the angry/irritable stage are sometimes really traumatic. He punches, curses, and can't calm down. This doesn't happen every day- more like once or twice a week, but still. I feel bad for him because he feels awful after, and for his sister, and for us, his parents!

The doctor suggested trying guanfacine, or possibly an anti-anxiety like Prozac/Zoloft to help with rebound and anxiety. I want to get this med combo right, but I'm feeling so gun-shy about trying new things. I feel so on edge already, and adding new side effects just seems impossible. Anyone BTDT? How do we muster the courage to keep trying new meds when it's already so hard? We tried guanfacine before trying Focalin and stopped using after 5 days. He was tired and depressed. Maybe we could try again? Has anyone tried just giving a single dose of Tenex/Guanfacine in the evenings to get their child used to the drug and then slowly increased to two doses or possibly long acting Guanfacine (Intuniv)?

Thanks for listening!

04-25-17, 04:24 AM
I would suggest an IR booster for after school. This way it would be out of his system by bedtime and it would be the same class of medication as the focalin.

04-25-17, 10:51 AM
Thanks! Yes, we started giving him just 1.25 mg of IR focalin. I think it's helping. When I gave him more than that (2.5) it just prolonged the crash until 7/7:30. With the miniscule dose it does seem to help a bit with the afternoon.