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Old 10-11-04, 06:33 PM
missy185 missy185 is offline
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Unhappy Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it...


Hello, I am new here. My son is 5 and a half years old. He just started Kindergarden recently. He has always been a live one. He is on the go from the time he wakes to the time he goes to bed. He talk constantly..he cannot concentrate. He is always running around and just being VERY hyper. When he started Kindergarden in September..I immediately got complaints from the teachers and after care teachers. They all said he seemed like a child with ADHD. I got all the necessary paperwork to take him to the docs..and I did today. He agreed my son was overly active and he prescribed him Concerta 18mg tablets. In one Month he will go back and have his dosage increased. I am supposed to start the meds tommorrow. I am worried though. He has never been on any meds before for hyperactivity before and I have been reading tons of websites about Rittalin and Concerta and side effects and even DEATH! I dont want to hurt my son just to have him act "normal". Any advice would really help. My sons doctor just said that watch out for weight loss and lack of sleep. He said this will help calm my son down and help him concentrate. Should I give this to my son? Everything I have read seems to tell me NO. I read about the deaths of kids that have been on this for extended periods of time and it really has me worried. Any advice would help me greatly.
Thanks
Melissa
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Old 10-11-04, 07:17 PM
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Melissa,

First, welcome to the forums!

Secondly; it is natural to have doubts about giving medication to children...btu a lot of the websites you are referring to are written by people who don't understand exactly what is going on.

Yes, sometimes there can be side effects from Ritalin use. However, Ritalin has been proven to be safe for even longterm use. It has proven to be non-habit forming, and it is proven safe. If it wasn't safe, it wouldn't be approved to be used.

Every day, hundreds of drugs are developed. Only a few hit the market. These prescription drugs on the market are all safe, provided they are used correctly! The incidence of death from stimulants is very, very rare, and only occurs in extreme overdoses. The side effects are, normally, fleeting.

If your doctor has prescribed your child medication, it is safe to give that medication to your child. If there are going to be any negative reactions, you will see them almost immediately: stimulants take effect right away.

Weight loss and lack of sleep happen because the stimulants sometimes cause reduced appetite and they are, after all, stimulants. These side effects go away pretty quickly, however. It took me about 2 weeks to regain my appetite when I started Ritalin, but it did come back.

Furthermore, if Concerta doesn't work for your child, you can work with your doctor to find one that does.

Remember that these websites saying people taking ADD meds will die are normally very biased and very wrong. There are millions of people in the US alone who take prescription Stimulants, and none have ever died as a result when taking them properly.

If you are still worried, call your doctor and ask for more information. You can also get the pharmacological reports online, which include all the statistical studies and information!

Remember, these drugs are safe when used correctly. In the cases of adverse reaction, they are normally mild, and if there are major adverse reactions, you can discontinue the drug.

In the end, my personal opinion is to trust your. He's been trained to do this, and he knows what the drugs do and how they are to be used. He won't lead you astray.

Yours,
Keith
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Old 10-11-04, 09:10 PM
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Well only you can make this choice.

Since the school was the one who pointed out that your son may have AD/HD what are they doing on their side now? Is he on a 504 or an IEP? Legaly they are required to give him accomdations to help him learn.

I don't blame you for feeling hesitant. It doesn't sound like your son was given a proper disganosis or evaluation for AD/HD. I'm not saying that he doesn't have AD/HD but it doesn't seem as though the docotor spent enough time with him.

Was there any type of testing to rule out other conditions? How much time did this MD actually spend with your child before he sent you out the door with a prescription? he an ADD Specialist?

I say listen to you motherly instinct!! Also research AD/HD and medication throroughly so that you can make your own educated informed choice.
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Old 10-11-04, 10:30 PM
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Melissa,
Keith and Livingwithadd are both right. It is important that you educate yourself as your son can't make these types of decisions on his own yet.

The one thing that you rarely hear is how incredibly helpful medication can be for some children and adults. I only found out because an acquaintence talked openly about her children and I realized that she was describing my daughter to a T. Before that I had never heard anything positive about medication. I now know that it doesn't work for everyone and many people have to try different dosages or medications before finding the one that works best. Read through the sections of this forum that deal with medication. You will find many personal stories regarding the pros and cons. My daughter and I have now been on meds for a year and it has been life-changing for the whole family.

Good luck
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Old 10-11-04, 11:39 PM
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Question reply

I was at the docs at 2:00pm and talked to him for only about 10 minutes after he had read reports from his teachers and after care teachers.plus reading a conners test. He said said he believed my son should be started on it. I am also working with a behavior specialist for my son from this place called applewood centers. She strongly believes my son is ADHD..this lady also has a son that is ADHD..so I kinda trust her judgement. The behavior specialist and I talked this evening and she said that it could do alot of good for my son and if I dont like the results or I am not seeing any that I could stop it or try another type of drug to help him. I dunno...I think I might try it out for the next month till his next doc appointment which is November 8th. I hope this will help my son.It would be nice to see him calm down for once..lol. Has anyone had any problems with concerta regarding your children?
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Old 10-12-04, 03:36 PM
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I strongly recommend having your child tested by a child psychologist. I did when my son was in Kindergarden last year. It is a 3 hr test they gave him given in 1 hour increments on 3 separate days. So he will be able to complete each to the best of his ability. The tests they gave resulted in my son having poor fine visual motor skills along with hyperactivity and inability to stay focused. Along with other things too. On the flip side he scored extremely high is all other areas with the psychologist saying he is almost in the genesuis range. And recommended I start him on Concerta as well. When I got the test results back and spoke to the psychologist my son only had one week left of school. So the psychologist said to hold off on the meds till about a month into the new school year. So I did and his teachers let me know that he was causing disruption in the class and not staying on task, and so on and so on.

So I mad an appt with his peditrician and she read over the test results along with what I told her his teachers said. She agreed I went thru all the proper channels and agreed to prescribe him Concerta. Well it has been 3 wks or so and he is doing great on it. He likes it how he can stay focused and do better on his school work. He is 6 and half, be 7 in February. I wish you all the luck and I know what you are going thru if you read my previous post I was asking the same questions your are and went to the same scary sites. I decided that for my son, I should at least give it a try, I want him to have the best possible life and reach his full potential. If it does not work out then I know at least I gave it a try. But that is my decision, you have to find out what feels right for you. Good luck.

Mcihelle
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Old 10-25-04, 03:21 PM
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I so feel your pain Missy....I too have started my 6yr on Concerta after a 20min appointment with the Ped. I am getting refferals for a psychologist in my area to rule out all other possibilities. Good luck and keep us posted on your sons progress!
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Old 10-26-04, 09:41 AM
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Missy,
Welcome to the Forums! The responses you've already received are excellent.Here's a couple of references that you might want to check out when you have time. First, the US Surgeon General's Report on Mental Health :Chapter 3isorders of Infancy, Childhood and Adolescence has great info on the history of stimulant use and in particular, methylphenidate (generic Ritalin). In addition, Taking Charge of ADHD by Russell Barkley is my favorite resource.Good luck.
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Old 10-26-04, 09:41 AM
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lol.... I keep doing that. That should read disorders, Sorry.
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Old 09-22-08, 07:41 AM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

J went on meds after teacher's reports, psychologists, and a Dr all confirmed the dx separately.
He is on 18mg concerta too, he is like a new person. Still J just able to focus.

That being said, go with what youu feel is right, I am not advocating with/ without meds for anyone, I believe we all know our own kids and know what is right for them.
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Old 01-29-09, 05:53 PM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

Quote:
Originally Posted by missy185 View Post

Hello, I am new here. My son is 5 and a half years old. He just started Kindergarden recently. He has always been a live one. He is on the go from the time he wakes to the time he goes to bed. He talk constantly..he cannot concentrate. He is always running around and just being VERY hyper. When he started Kindergarden in September..I immediately got complaints from the teachers and after care teachers. They all said he seemed like a child with ADHD. I got all the necessary paperwork to take him to the docs..and I did today. He agreed my son was overly active and he prescribed him Concerta 18mg tablets. In one Month he will go back and have his dosage increased. I am supposed to start the meds tommorrow. I am worried though. He has never been on any meds before for hyperactivity before and I have been reading tons of websites about Rittalin and Concerta and side effects and even DEATH! I dont want to hurt my son just to have him act "normal". Any advice would really help. My sons doctor just said that watch out for weight loss and lack of sleep. He said this will help calm my son down and help him concentrate. Should I give this to my son? Everything I have read seems to tell me NO. I read about the deaths of kids that have been on this for extended periods of time and it really has me worried. Any advice would help me greatly.
Thanks
Melissa
Melissa
I am the father of a boy who is now 15 and was put on first ritilin and (then later concerta) in grade 1. it was in kindergarten when it came up although we alswyas knew he was "different". It is a very specific diagnosis and not just a matter of calming someone down . We went to have him tested by an educational specialist.

It has changed his life and for the better. He went from being a kid who was in trouble ,getting told all the time to stop dong that , and asked why he did things-when he didnt know why he did them and gradually getting ostrasized to some one with a really healthy self image who is now starting to excelle academically.The concerta has been way easier to manage than ritilin and with no side effects I can see. I notice a big difference when he is on it or not and it helps the familly relationships as he is less disruptive. As to the medical issues that is always a worry and I cant comment on that.
My son is also very bight so I spent alot of time on his strengths as well as the weakenesses,talked to his teachers about what else to do to help him , gave them copies of the report on his strengths and weakness , explained it to him . I never used it as an excuse for not doing something and told him it's like wearing glasses .. no bodies fault or anything to be ashamed of it just is.

He is senative about people knowing so if you get the long release type you dont have the stigma of anyone at school having to call him into the office to take a pill. The literature I have read says by the time they go through teenagehood those who have add or adhd and dont use medication self medicate with other drugs to a higher degree.They are also more likey to committ crimes because I believe - not of the condition - but because people tell them they are bad their whole lives and they come to believe it by grade 6 or 7. It becomes an identity.
I went from skeptic to convert.

I only signed on to this site to reply to you comment when I was scaneding so I may not come back on but good luck.

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Old 01-30-09, 11:10 PM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

Hi Melissa,

Wow, I can really feel your dilemma and my heart goes out to you. I have to tell you, I am by no means an expert, but I always say, follow your instincts. As a woman and as a mother, your instincts are to be honored. If you're not ready yet, I say give it some more time until you are ready.

Also, I just wanted to let you know in case you are interested, I'm interviewing someone named Jennifer on Hough on Tuesday (Feb, 3, 2009) on "Parenting Children With ADD" She will talk about medication and how children are different now than they were 20 years ago and why.

You can find out more about it here: If interested, PM member

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Old 01-31-09, 06:49 PM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

Quote:
Originally Posted by KMiller View Post


Yes, sometimes there can be side effects from Ritalin use. However, Ritalin has been proven to be safe for even longterm use. It has proven to be non-habit forming, and it is proven safe. If it wasn't safe, it wouldn't be approved to be used.
I had to reply to your post Keith as what people say can be taken literally by others. As you say, there are side effects. We do not know how someone will react to the drug. E.g side effects of ritalin include hepatic disorders (liver) and angina (heart). Whilst rare, these need to be considered by a parent and you cannot categorically say that if it wasn't safe then it wouldn't be approved.

You also mention if a drug is prescribed by a Dr then it is safe to give it a child. I disagree. See above. Also you say side effects will appear straight away. From personal experience, this is not the case. Sorry to pick your post apart but I hope you understand why?

Melissa, I would suggest you read as much as possible before deciding to give your child medication to ensure you are making an informed decision. It is a very hard decision to make but it becomes easier if you know as much as you can about the advantages and disadvantages. Don't be rushed!

Is the option of slow release methylphenidate a possibilty to begin with? We decided on this option because there is less time for it to leave the system whilst we gaged our son's reaction to it. His side effects are a reduced appetite at lunchtime and a very small rash in the crook of his arm which didn't appear for a few weeks. The progress he is making in school far outweigh these minor side effects for the time being.

Good luck

x
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Old 01-31-09, 06:56 PM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

Wow, at that young?? I never knew that was even possible.
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Old 02-01-09, 12:50 PM
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Re: Help, son just prescribed Concerta for ADHD...having doubts about giving him it..

Um, well this was posted in 2004 so ... why do you all think she hasn't made up her mind yet?
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