Tag Archives: Meds

Question?: Adhd Symptoms

David asks…

If my little guy start taking meds for ADHD but hi TS tics still remain, what are the options?

Both my son and I have adhd symptoms (he’s diagnosed but I’m not). We both have tics and the people who diagnosed him said that this was just the ADHD but I do not think so. I was not too impulsive as a child yet I had tics, and my boy can call out something or screech even when he is in a relatively calm state (so it is not about regulating states of mind as I am told the cause is).

Any how, I am not getting excited about the prospect of giving him medication as I am not sure it will affect the tics and I wonder If they will be more noticeable then.
For example, he is happy being daft an making silly noises but he finds it easier to play the fool as he doesn’t have to explain outbursts. When he has to be sensible or is feeling sensible and something pops out he smiles and apologizes but in quite a shy way and sometimes looks embarrassed.

I would honestly let him keep being the class clown rather than him feel embarrassed. But are there other options that can work for TS and ADHD together?

admin answers:

I am not in favor of giving children medicine if there is any other options. I too would think that his problem is more likely explained by the TS and yes, the medicines can cause the Tics.

I would go for a second opinion, either from a psychiatrist or neurologists that has a reputation for dealing with children and TS. It may still mean he needs a medication, but maybe there is a more appropriate one.

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Question?: Pdd-nos Checklist

Mary asks…

Please: Any parents out their with children with adhd and autism?

I forgot to mention she is 5 yrs old in kindergarden
My sister has a child that has ADHD and symptoms of autism( the doc said she doesn’t have autism but has related symptoms) and i was wondering is there anything you did to really help out your child. My sister cries about it on a regular basis because her daughter is mean to other kids(doc said a side effect of kids with extreme adhd).

She did not want to put her on medication but it got to the point where she got kicked out of school every day. So now monday thru friday my sister puts her on meds but not on the weekends. She hates doing this and i really feel bad for her.

Please anybody out there with information to help us out it will be greatly appreciated.

admin answers:

In my experience vyvanese works the best for autistic spectrum kids who are ADD/HD as long as its not bipolar. I am wary of trying meds for my oldest, who is PDD.NOS (autistic features, atypical autism) and ADD. He is 8.5yrs.

My son is not aggressive and he is labile with an incongruent blunted mood, however, with our family history I believe him to be bipolar/PDD not ADD/PDD.

Fm hx:
my mother is bipolar and on a slew of meds
my SIL is bipolar and on a slew of meds
my MIL needs to be on meds (undx bipolar)
husband is bipolar-does not take meds. Has been dx extensively, has paradoxical effect to meds, and goes hypomanic cyclically and when he tries to take Wellbutrin (tricyclic anti-depressant) that is used to try to quit smoking.

I fear my son would go manic/psychotic on alot of the meds out there

A lot of PDD/ADD/HD kids do not fair well on stimulants do to the bipolar features and I can’t understand why so many parents allow their kids to go from 1 stimulant to another, honestly the definition of stupidity is to keep trying the same thing and expecting a different outcome. If a PDD/ADD kid goes psychotic on any one of these adderral, ritalin, concerta, dexedrine, vyvanese, then there is no point in doing a trial on all of them, move to a different class of drugs.

How much sensory integration is she getting? Could be her OT sucks.
Mom needs to carry OT strategies at home.

SPD checklist

Could be its the wrong med, could be the wrong dx.-she may be bipolar, could be the med dose is below therapeutic range.

Is she getting social skills training at school? She should, my son does. What kinds of accommodations does she have in her IEP? Does she have a break card, point card, weighted vest, pressure vest, core disc, preferential seating, a 1:1 paraprofessional to facilitate appropriate bx with peers?

Medications are totally beneficial and warranted for those that truly need them to function. Dosages are titrated up, this takes time, so they start low in order to adjust to the lowest effective dose.

What Kathy is describing is NOT ADHD, and its commonly diagnosed as ADHD especially in this population. What she describes is CAPD, and it goes hand and hand with the autistic spectrum population. Yes, my son has been diagnosed CAPD too. CAPD is central auditory processing disorder, and the problem is differentiating between foreground and background noise. CAPD is described acutely by Dr. Temple Grandin, an accomplished published entrapreneur autistic woman who has CAPD and there is auditory retraining for this. Meds should not be used for CAPD. Now yes its possible to have an overlap and have CAPD with an attention disorder, but frequently the CAPD is misdiagnosed as an attention disorder.

What helps:
preferential seating, a corral around the desk, an FM system (son uses this too), headphones, testing done with breaks and individually (not just state testing, all testing).

Tomatis training for CAPD


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Question?: Adhd In Adults

Richard asks…

Is it possible to effectively manage adult ADHD without medication?

I’ve read several books about adult ADHD, and they all seem to emphasize the use of medication. I have nothing against the use of medication, but I can’t afford it right now. Is there any way for those of us who have ADHD and can’t afford medication to effectively manage our symptoms?

admin answers:

It’s possible in some ways, but it’s very difficult.

I would suggest speaking to your doctor about what your problem is. See if he or she can refer you to somewhere where you can get the medication you need.

My best friend has adult ADHD in the worst way. Most of the time, those of us who know her well recognize after about three or four minutes that she’s not taken her medication in a while. But, she doesn’t take it every day. Sometimes she’ll go weeks or months without taking it.

Most of the time, it means that she has to really cut back her case load at work. Naturally, the longer she has to concentrate, the harder it is for her to do it without her meds.

She is also married to a man who is her polar opposite, and who kind of keeps her in line. He does help her a lot in a mind-over-matter sense — he knows it’s difficult for her, but he does call her out on it when she is being extremely ADHD, and he’s really a soothing influence on her.

What she has done in the past was get her prescription, and use it when she needs it. Most doctors do reccommend with childhood ADHD that it be used in school hours or extreme circumstances only. It wears off around the time school lets out, so unless there is major studying to do, or some other activity that requires sustained focus, they reccommend you come off of it and start again the next day. Weekends, holidays and summers are often times they suggest you not be on meds.

Apply the same tactic in your situation. If you know there is a situation that will probably be difficult for you, take it that morning. If there are days when it’s a little less necessary to focus for a significant length of time, skip it. It can help make one refill go a long way.

I would also suggest talking to your doctor about generics (LOTS cheaper than name brands), samples (many doctors have them, and are more than happy to hand them out for just such an occasion) or changing the Rx altogether.

The normal non-drug-related suggestions are not as effective, but if you suffer from mild to moderate ADHD, they could help some. Make sure that you get enough good sleep, eat well, try to adhere to a schedule, cut out processed foods, allow yourself breaks to collect yourself (then either be disciplined enough to go back to your work or have someone to help keep you accountable), etc.

Something that helps some ADHD people is a bit of caffienne. For some reason, a lot of the time, the bodies of people with ADHD react differently to stimulants and depressants, so caffienne can be somewhat soothing, and Benadryl can cause excitability or hyperactivity. Go figure. After all, most of the drugs on the market today for ADHD are stimulants similar to speed.

But it’s always best to speak with your doctor before deciding to stop taking a drug you’ve been prescribed. If you have no other options, you could just try to help it on your own. But it’s possible there is something between shelling out the money to pay for your current Rx and taking nothing at all.

Good luck!

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Question?: Autism Signs 2 Year Old

Ruth asks…

Do you know a child with mild autism who has succeeded in a regular ed classroom?

My three and a half year old son has mild autism. He would appear fairly normal to people except for his unclear speech, his over enthusiasm, and his tantrums when he doesn’t get his way. He can’t seem to sit still in his pre-K class.
I would love to hear some success stories from families dealing with a similar child. Did they learn how to speak well? Control their emotions? Graduate from college?
I’m looking for a little hope after a tough day.

admin answers:

Both my kids…one now in college at age 22..one in high school…had speech therapy but otherwise all “regular” classes. Anger was a big issue for both and we put their emotional learning needs before the didactic (book) learning. For instance, when the teachers wanted the boy to attend gifted and talented, we said no…he needed to stay with the kids he knew to keep learning how to be a good friend, so he could grow up to be a mentally-stable person. He would get very angry sometimes and we saw it as a warning sign. Our focus worked…he is a gentle, wonderful 16 year old now, and he takes honor courses in high school to help his educational needs. Now the older one really threw temper tantrums, and at the time, we were less experienced parents, and it shows. She still has anger problems. We hated all meds and did not use them long…they made things worse, as did almost every so-called professional we consulted. Eventually I learned what helps…I would highly recommend the exercises for children with PDD-nos (pervasive developmental delay disorder, non-specific). Get a hammock. Convert a room into an exercise and bounce around room if you can. If someone suggests something to try, and it does not work, try something else. Most important, be a strong force, together with your partner, in front of the child. Save all criticism for later, in privacy, and safeguard your marriage (partnership). Be a strong advocate for your child. If the teachers or others don’t want to help, find someone who will, and/or do it yourself. Provide the extra teaching at home. Keep him on a routine, but push his boundaries once in a while to get him used to change, and teach him how to deal with new situations. Mine liked to practice at home, away from others eyes, like how to throw a football. I love my 2 and would not trade them for anyone else’s life. And try not to worry if he goes into special ed. There are nice kids and families there.

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Question?: Adhd Medications

Betty asks…

Does anyone know the number of child deaths caused by adhd medications?

I am very concerned and would like to keep my child off any adhd medications.

admin answers:

There have been something like 14 deaths. This is a very low rate. And as far as researchers can tell, ALL DEATHS WERE IN CHILDREN WITH HEART PROBLEMS. So your child should have a physical exam before taking meds. If he doesn’t have a heart problem, there’s nothing to worry about. These medications have been used for 50 years with very little risk. Read the label on the medication – there is a warning about this.

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Question?: Schizophrenia Treatment

Mary asks…

What is the difference between the treatment of schizophrenia in 1960-1970 and today?

I watched “A Beautiful Mind” and I’d like to know how treatment of schizophrenia has changed over time.

admin answers:

The treatment with schizophrenia as with all mental illnesses has changed drastically over the years. They have more medications to treat mental illnesses today and quite effectively I might add. The problem is getting on the right mix of meds for U because everyone is different and you need to trial and error to get just the right mix.

There are a plethora of medications today that were not available back in the 1960s. Mental illness is a chemical imbalance in the brain and while it is not cureable, it is treatable.

Hope I answered your question.

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Question?: Schizophrenia Medication

Ruth asks…

Can schizophrenia medication cause these side effects?

My brother is on depokote and haldol, and is having weird side effects, such as feeling like his ankles aren’t there and as if his back is crooked and he can’t stand straight. I don’t know if this is a side effect from his medication or if it is a side effect of his illness. Anyone else experience this?
Another thing he has complained about is sleep paralysis

admin answers:

People can have weird side effects to any medication but if it is severe enough to cause him discomfort he should talk to his doctor about it. There are many choices of meds and some of the side effects related to antipsychotic use can end up irreversible. You can google AIMS if you like to see the list. (abnormal involuntary movement)

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Question?: Autism Symptoms In 7 Year Old

Jenny asks…

Why are some autistic kids fixated on pleasuring themselves?

My neighbor is upset because her 18 yo autistic son spends most of his time “touching himself”. She thought it was a phase that he’d go through, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. He’s probably too weird and spastic to get a girlfriend (she hopes he would). What can she do? Should she look for a paid “sex surrogate” or something? Maybe some meds?
@Rebecca: I don’t think calling them “retards” is very nice………

admin answers:

People with autism have a tendency to “stimulate” themselves because their sensory systems are not “wired” the same way as a neurotypical person’s are. Because autism is a spectrum disorder, no two cases of autism are the same – the autistic symptoms my 14-year-old daughter displays may be very different from someone else’s 18-year-old son or 7-year-old nephew, etc., etc. Some individuals with autism are hypersensitive to things like bright lights, loud noises, scratchy fabrics, etc., while others may be impervious to pain or gain pleasure from rubbing a piece of fabric over and over again, etc. The repetitive behavior of spinning, banging heads, rocking, flapping hands, or yes – even touching themselves – brings comfort by calming their nerves that are inflamed by living in a world that is not built to accommodate their particular sensitivities and which they don’t particularly even understand. And let’s face it – having “those parts” touched and fondled is something that is pleasurable to just about ALL 18-year-old boys – NOT just those with autism (although he probably gains more than just sexual arousal from it).

The big question here is how to teach him that there is a time and a place for that type of behavior. Stimming behavior (as those types of repetitive behaviors are called in the autism world) is actually beneficial to helping those with autism to stay calm. Without it, they’d probably be a lot more prone to extreme meltdowns than they already are. So your neighbor just needs to teach her son when and where it’s appropriate. If she wants to say that it’s only OK in his room, with the door shut, at bedtime, then once he learns that’s the rule, he will follow it. The rest of the time, she needs to teach him a “command word” like “hands” or something like that, that means hands need to be out of his pockets, or on the table, or something like that. Every time he goes back to the undesireable behavior, say the command and remove his hands. When he goes the whole day, or the whole morning, or whatever (keep a chart!) without engaging in the inappropriate behavior, he gets a reward. Gradually, you can extend the length of time he has to go without engaging in the problematic behavior in order to achieve the desired reward (maybe having an hour of “alone time” in his room each night, can be the reward for abstaining from it all day!).

This really is not all that unusual of a problem in the autism world. I urge your neighbor to contact an autism support group to get some input from other parents who have faced similar problems. Also, there are lots of books out there that address similar issues, as well: http://www.autism-resources.com/nonfictiontopics/adolescent.html

It’s not the end of the world – she’ll teach him and he’ll come around. It just might take a while, is all. Hope this helps.

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Question?: Autistic Behavior

Robert asks…

The Autism Behavior Consultant won’t work with my son. What do we do now?

My 20 year old son has Aspergers and severe depression. We had a consultation with a consultant that seemed promising to me but we got the word today that he won’t work with my son until we get the depression under control. My son has strange reactions to antidepressants so I am nervous about putting him back on one. How do we help him with the depression so we can work on the Autistic behaviors that are causing so much trouble for him (and contributing to the depression)? Help!!!!

admin answers:

Hi Jayne,
*I would check with your physician/psychiatrist: Is it depression? Or is it anxiety?
Perhaps the strange reaction is because that isn’t what he is experiencing.
*Dr. Amen’s website and books list meds that have been used and are used to treat people experiencing a range of needs. Tony Atwood is the guru on the topic too. Or maybe try an herbal, holistic med.??
*Have you tried calm down techniques? A squeeze ball, a rabbit’s foot to rub, velcro on the inside of the pocket, gum, special smells..Lavender ??
*Music therapy or teaching yoga or meditation might be helpful too. It has worked with some of my students, as did the aforementioned.
*In PA we have case managers? Is this resource available for you? They can help find resources for you and be an advocate. Also we have behavioral services with a consulting psychologist and a behavioral intervention support team (Mobile Therapist and Therapeutic Support Staff).
Hope this helps.
Best wishes.

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Question?: Schizophrenia Treatment

Susan asks…

Do people have different personalities after schizophrenia treatment ?

I believe I have undifferentiated schizophrenia. I am seeking help and I want to know how much will my personality change.
I mean is there a significant effect on the way in which they interact with other people and how others communicate. Are they better at socializing and expressing themselves.

admin answers:

First of all have you been properly diagnosed or is it just a self diagnosis ? Go to a properly trained mental health Doctor and talk to them . They will be able to advise you on treatments and meds that are individually diagnosed for you. If you have schizophrenia , your personality will not change but you will be a healthier happier version of you . But get diagnosed..Don’t self diagnose by listening to others or searching on Internet. That can be dangerous. That’s why they have Dr’s who go to school and are trained to do this Good Luck………………KB

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