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My 7 year old

I am a single mother of an almost 8 year old in October. My son was diagnosed April 2013 with combined type hyper activity and inattention. He gets good grades in school, has accommodations that seem to work but there is still concern for me. His dad is adamant he does not want him on medicine. For the first year I did not want my son on medicine either but I now see that it would help him focus better. He was prescribed Adderall. On the medicine he was mean, irritable, anti-social, and short tempered. After the medicine was out his system he was back to his normal, happy, polite, social, funny, silly self. We took him off the Adderall after three days of the negative side effects mentioned above. The doctor now wants him to try clonidine. Is clonidine a good medicine? Does it have negative side effects on health and personality?

Thank You

Replies

Clonidine is not a stimulant; the doc is likely thinking that your son didn’t respond well
To stimulants. Our doc started my daughter on Clonidine and it was far too sedating for her even at a small dose. She has since switched to Quillivant, which seems to be working relatively well.

Posted by Les_Etoiles on Jul 23, 2014 at 12:19am

It’s just going to depend on your child. We tried clonodine (my son is 8) and did not help with inattention at all and made him sluggish, tired and very emotional. We’ve tried lots of meds - he currently takes Vyvanse and it does help with attention but has its own set of side effects. My son cannot attend in school without it - his inattention is so severe that before medication he was getting zero work done. Not able to focus long enough to hear the directions and/or complete the assignments. If his grades were good without it I wouldn’t be medicating.

Posted by brlk13 on Jul 23, 2014 at 1:01am

Has your child been diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder or just AHDH? If he has the first condition, which often accompanies ADHD, Clonidine should improve his symptoms. Be sure that the doc starts him on the lowest dose possible. The webinar I attended last month, which you can stream right on this site, suggests that you should see results within a week, dramatic results. If you do not, the expert suggests trying another drug such as a very low dose atypical antipsychotic such as risperidol.

As far as your son’s father is concerned, my question is who is the one caring for your child on a daily basis and meeting the majority of his needs, you or him? If its you that cares for your son, you are the one who absorbs the majority of his abusive negative behavior. So, in a sense, its non of the dad’s business. Unless he is psychiatrist or pediatrician, he is not an expert and should not be making medical decisions for your child. I’m sure there is a nicer way to put that, but I just get so angry when people make decisions based on something other than sound medical knowledge.

Hope my rant isn’t to offensive for you.
Sue H in PC, Ohio

Posted by SueH on Jul 23, 2014 at 2:53am

Has your child been diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder or just AHDH? If he has the first condition, which often accompanies ADHD, Clonidine should improve his symptoms. Be sure that the doc starts him on the lowest dose possible. The webinar I attended last month, which you can stream right on this site, suggests that you should see results within a week, dramatic results. If you do not, the expert suggests trying another drug such as a very low dose atypical antipsychotic such as risperidol.

As far as your son’s father is concerned, my question is who is the one caring for your child on a daily basis and meeting the majority of his needs, you or him? If its you that cares for your son, you are the one who absorbs the majority of his abusive negative behavior. So, in a sense, its non of the dad’s business. Unless he is psychiatrist or pediatrician, he is not an expert and should not be making medical decisions for your child. I’m sure there is a nicer way to put that, but I just get so angry when people make decisions based on something other than sound medical knowledge.

Hope my rant isn’t to offensive for you.
Sue H in PC, Ohio

Posted by SueH on Jul 23, 2014 at 2:53am

Thank You all…. My son was not diagnosed with ODD. He is well behaved, not defiant, and even though he has to be redirected to stay on task, he is not a problem at all. He was just diagnosed with the ADHD.

I am the parent that is with him most. His dad sees him once a week and I have told him the same thing. He does not have to deal with the motions of this disorder with our son like he does. When he is with his dad there’s no real reason to be structured because its Sunday and no homework, no bath time at night, no putting to sleep, its just fun fun fun. So yes, I have told his dad he has no say in this because he isn’t even an active parent.

My son has an appointment today with the doctor about the clonidine. I get so upset having to keep trying these new medicines with my son when one doesn’t work. Its very upsetting to even have to put my son on medication and even more upsetting when one doesn’t work and we have to try something else. I don’t want my son to feel like a guinea pig trying new medicines.

Posted by Lowerys1211 on Jul 23, 2014 at 1:19pm

Hi Lowerys!

My son had the same reaction to Adderall (and Vyvanse, which are both amphetamines)—they turned my sweet little boy into a raging monster. But he does very well on Concerta (a methylphenidate). Many individuals can only tolerate one of the two classes of stimulants (http://www.myadhd.com/treatment_tools/medicationchart.html). Sometimes a change in medication is in order (http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/741.html).

I know full well the momma guilt you feel about medications, especially when it’s tough to find the right one. My son is super-sensitive to meds and it took us two years to find the right doctor and the right meds and dosages. But the end result is well worth the journey (http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/6581.html). My son never felt like a guinea pig either—I always explained that we were looking for the right medicine to help him feel good about himself and accomplish what he’d like to. When a medication was not going well, like you described, my son was all too happy to try something different (he was 6 when first prescribed meds).

Keep working at it and you’ll find the right treatment for your son’s success and happiness.

Penny
ADDconnect Moderator, Author & Mom to Tween Boy with ADHD and LDs

Posted by adhdmomma on Jul 23, 2014 at 1:38pm

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