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Primary & Secondary Education This forum is for parents to discuss issues related to their children's education and AD/HD.

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  #1  
Old 11-02-10, 08:46 AM
tebb tebb is offline
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School doctor advice

Hi

I am hoping you can help, please bear with me.

During P1, the school doctor suggested that my adopted daughter has ADHD.

This was based on poor concentration in her open plan class of 30. My daughter at present gets help from the classroom assistant (she helps 2 others) and from P2 which she started in August, a pupil support teacher twice a week.

The Doctor on the first appointment suggested drugs straight away, although my daughter is in no way 'hyper' nor does she run around etc. She can however be impulsive, and can find it hard to sit still, especially in assemblies. She can also shout when wanting attention, or if there is chaos around her eg cloakroom time.

We do a sticker chart at school, and there has been a vast improvement with the help of the support staff, and she is reaching her milestones with this. She is very bright with maths, drawing and reading in particular.

My question is, would she be making progress with this if she had ADHD? I have felt so far, the support staff and Ed Psych have been very supportive, and are not sure if it is ADHD or immaturity coupled with a troubled past (She was the youngest, and still is for P2).

I have felt previously the school Dr has not been willing to consider anything else, and she has made a rash judgement based on a 10 min session at the end of day, and to me, she seems determined to put her on drugs, perhaps to make things 'easier' for the teacher.

I have no issue with drugs if I thought they would help, but your advice on how to prepare my daughter (and me) for this next appointment would be most helpful as I do not know what to expect.

Sorry for the rant, and thank you!

Tebb
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  #2  
Old 11-02-10, 09:09 AM
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Re: School doctor advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by tebb View Post
Hi

I am hoping you can help, please bear with me.

During P1, the school doctor suggested that my adopted daughter has ADHD.

This was based on poor concentration in her open plan class of 30. My daughter at present gets help from the classroom assistant (she helps 2 others) and from P2 which she started in August, a pupil support teacher twice a week.

The Doctor on the first appointment suggested drugs straight away, although my daughter is in no way 'hyper' nor does she run around etc. She can however be impulsive, and can find it hard to sit still, especially in assemblies. She can also shout when wanting attention, or if there is chaos around her eg cloakroom time.

We do a sticker chart at school, and there has been a vast improvement with the help of the support staff, and she is reaching her milestones with this. She is very bright with maths, drawing and reading in particular.

My question is, would she be making progress with this if she had ADHD? I have felt so far, the support staff and Ed Psych have been very supportive, and are not sure if it is ADHD or immaturity coupled with a troubled past (She was the youngest, and still is for P2).

I have felt previously the school Dr has not been willing to consider anything else, and she has made a rash judgement based on a 10 min session at the end of day, and to me, she seems determined to put her on drugs, perhaps to make things 'easier' for the teacher.

I have no issue with drugs if I thought they would help, but your advice on how to prepare my daughter (and me) for this next appointment would be most helpful as I do not know what to expect.

Sorry for the rant, and thank you!

Tebb
Hello and welcome to the forums.

The info at Dizfriz's Corner has been very helpful for many of us parents, and grandparents.

I understand being skeptical about the reasons the teachers might want a child to be medicated - but sometimes it really is because they're seen the difference it makes for the child. I do wish we'd begun meds sooner for my granddaughter instead of waiting until she was 10 years old. We've seen that big a difference for the better since she started on meds.

But even without meds, if there is a diagnosis the school will be more willing to allow accomodations. Once our school accepted the liklihood of Autism for my youngest granddaughter, before we had a definitive diagnosis, they were able to use better strategies and there was a vast improvement with her coming much closer to meeting her benchmarks. Without the accomodations she didn't have an aide to help her in 1st grade and it was a disaster. In 2nd grade she was given her own aide and other accomodations and she made great strides in catching up to goals. This year in 3rd grade she has an aide only part time and is still doing very well with the other accomodations.
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ADD is not a problem of knowing what to do; it is a problem of doing what you know.
-RUSSELL A. BARKLEY, PH.D.


As far as I know, there is nothing positive about ADHD that people can't have w out ADHD. ~ ADD me
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Old 11-02-10, 09:27 AM
tebb tebb is offline
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Re: School doctor advice

Thank you, that link is certainly helpful.

We have seen a huge difference in P2, because she is getting a lot of 1-1 in the class. Although I am happy for that to continue as long as she needs it, like most parents, we would like to see her reaching her potential independently.

I would hate to think she would only get any other support only if an ADD diagnosis is made. I hope you don't mind me asking, but you said meds helped your grandaughter- In what way? It is the school doctor suggesting meds, not the teachers.

Look forward to hearing from you.

Tebb
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Old 11-02-10, 09:53 AM
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Re: School doctor advice

ADHD is only one possible diagnosis, there are also learning disorders that can qualify a child for accomodations in school. You can ask the school to do an evaluation to determine if she needs some accomodations. That might help you decide whether to see a doctor for an independent diagnosis.

My oldest granddaughter is 12 now, very bright, but very scattered. Every year we'd express our concern to her teachers and every one said she was "bright and fun and helpful" and they just didn't see it.

In the 4th grade, she'd get off the school bus and I'd ask if she had any homework - and she'd get this panicky look. So we'd have to jump in the car and dash back to school so she could pick up the homework or books that she had forgotten. This happened 2 or 3 times a week, every week that year.

Finally towards the end of the year, the teachers and other staff noticed what was happening and they were willing to fill out evaluation forms for the doctor to assess, along with similar forms from us parents. The doctor said she had the highest scores (indicitative of ADHD) that he had ever seen.

We started her on Concerta right away, and what a difference. She was much less scattered, much less hyper. Her grades, which had been very inconsistent, became more consistent. She still struggles with remembering to turn in her homework at the start of class, but she is able to get the homework done without a meltdown and a 4 hour struggle. She does it on her own, sometimes with help from a classmate. But no more of those horrible sessions at the dining room table that too often ended with both mother and daughter in tears.

Unfortunately, after a year the Concerta wasn't lasting long enough to finish the school day, much less do any homework. She tried Vyvanse but had terrible side effects. She's currently taking Strattera and seems to be doing very well again. She is a little louder and more hyper than on the Concerta, but it's not like it was before meds.

Her mom sits down with her once a week and goes through her binder - putting finished/graded papers into a storage box, and seeing what homework still needs to be done or still needs to be turned in for credit. Otherwise it becomes such a rat's nest it's no wonder she can't keep track of anything in it or find anything. It would be lovely if she could be fully independent, but she has a very real disibility and she's always going to need help with managing some executive functions.
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As far as I know, there is nothing positive about ADHD that people can't have w out ADHD. ~ ADD me
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Old 11-02-10, 10:25 AM
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Re: School doctor advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by tebb View Post
Hi


We do a sticker chart at school, and there has been a vast improvement with the help of the support staff, and she is reaching her milestones with this. She is very bright with maths, drawing and reading in particular.

My question is, would she be making progress with this if she had ADHD? I have felt so far, the support staff and Ed Psych have been very supportive, and are not sure if it is ADHD or immaturity coupled with a troubled past (She was the youngest, and still is for P2).

I have felt previously the school Dr has not been willing to consider anything else, and she has made a rash judgement based on a 10 min session at the end of day, and to me, she seems determined to put her on drugs, perhaps to make thi, gs 'easier' for the teacher.

I have no issue with drugs if I thought they would help, but your advice on how to prepare my daughter (and me) for this next appointment would be most helpful as I do not know what to expect.

Sorry for the rant, and thank you!

Tebb
The choice to medicate or not, is yours, not the Dr.'s. Yes, she could have ADHD and still be progressing well in school at her age.

If she does well in school and at home, has friends and is not disrupting the classroom excessively IMO you probably could wait a bit. Have you discussed her behavior with her teacher?

I am in a similar situation, in that my son does well at home and in school, so I am waiting to medicate until I see the signs that he is not functioning well or is becoming disruptive at home and school. I do feel that it's likely that in the future he will need to be medicated in order to maintain the focus in school that will be needed with higher level work, but for now, we are taking it week by week.

Check out the link that Lunacie provided to Dizfriz's Corner. Some great info there about what makes ADHD kids 'tick', and how to motivate them, and how to cope with behavior issues.
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Old 11-02-10, 01:54 PM
jrigone jrigone is offline
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Re: School doctor advice

My daughter is 8 1/2 now and has ADHD inatentiveness she is not very hyper. My wife and I decided to put her on the meds, because she had a major focus issue she would either not be able to focus at all, or be so in focuss the she was like a horse with blinders on. as others mentioned it is up to you if you decide to give the meds. if your daughter is doing fine at this point at home and school I would hold off for now, and just reevaluate that desicion every few months or so, untill you decide that she is not functioninnnnng/ focussing at school or home like she ought to and then discuss it with your family dr. to see what their take is.
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