4 year old - signs of ADHD/ADD

(17 Posts)
AirieFairy Sun 15-Jun-14 22:08:11

Hi I'm just looking to see if anyone thinks this is normal pre-schooler behaviour.
My Daughter is 4 in July and I'm struggling with her behaviour She can't sit still ever, she talks incessantly and is constantly demanding attention. She is sometimes so hyperactive just runs all over the house shouting. She seems to have unending amounts of energy. She is terrible at playing independently and will only play with other children or adults. Even when she watches tv she has to do something (normally eating) just to keep her hands busy. She literally can not stop moving.

I've spoken to her nursery and they says she behaves this way because she is really bright and needs constant challenging. (Her speech is excellent and she can talk to you like an adult.) They say that I have to be careful when she starts school to make sure that the teachers challenger her or she will be labeled as a naughty child. I'm still not convinced theres not more to it than that. She has no interest in drawing or crafts, puzzles, building, playing with any toys. She likes to leap about, dance talk and sing. She is a happy child and in no way aggressive but she is incredibly high maintenance and very demanding. I find her exhausting to be around She is my eldest and I have a 2 year old very easy going boy and I'm not sure if this is just normal 4 year old behaviour or something more. Thanks. x

Ohhelpohnoitsa Sun 15-Jun-14 22:17:23

I am no expert on this but whay you describe sounds like my ds at thay age. No adhd or similar, just tonnes of energy and even a little wappy at times. Isnt there research to show adhd and coeliacs disease are often combined? Maybe cut her gluten right down for a few weeks and see if you notice a change.

Ohhelpohnoitsa Sun 15-Jun-14 22:18:34

Ps do some research first as I may be wrong!

AirieFairy Sun 15-Jun-14 22:20:48

Interesting, I'd not considered that... will look into it. thanks.

Kerryp Sun 15-Jun-14 22:28:34

Hi I've had it and some of that sounds like ADHD. Particularly the sitting watching TV thing. I still have to be doing something most of the time with my hands. (Usually playing iPad or eating food I don't really need) don't know why she wouldn't want to play though. I don't think they can diagnose it until they are around 8? Please try to be understanding with her op. If it is ADHD her mind is probably working at a different speed from her body. Don't worry about her though. People with ADHD, while on the hyper side are generally just as clever as others of their age group. Try and find something she likes to do and encourage it. For me it was reading or arts and crafts, for her it may be something completely different. If she is draining you try to monitor her diet. Cola used to send me nuts. I remember getting told some children would react differently with sugary drinks, some with sweets etc. hope this helps xx

BikeRunSki Sun 15-Jun-14 22:32:29

DS is 5.8 and a year ago I could have written the OP. He is now coming towards the end of Reception, and has been referred for ASD/ADHD/asperger's assessment.

AirieFairy Sun 15-Jun-14 22:47:06

Do I have to wait until she starts school for a referral or should I be proactive. Dh is very reluctant about this as he doesn't want her "unnecessarily labelled" and thinks we should just wait till she starts school and see how she gets on.

Kerryp Sun 15-Jun-14 22:48:50

Have to agree with dh. I've wondered it with one of my own kids but don't want it to get checked out, after all the only thing they can offer is medication and I wouldn't want to put them on it it's horrible.

AirieFairy Sun 15-Jun-14 23:08:13

The last thing I would want to do is put her on any drugs. I just want to know what to do and how to manage her and if she's going to need extra help at school. I think knowing it's something will make me more tolerant of her behaviour.

MissDuke Mon 16-Jun-14 07:34:49

My now 9 year old was always like this. Though there were many other problems too. Her pre-school were concerned as they couldn't get her to sit down at all, and she would only play with dolls, nothing else. In our scrapbook from pre-school, she is carrying a doll in every single pic, even when sitting on santa's knee and going on nature walks. In P1, she did start to settle down, but her concentration was still very poor. She had lots of issues with her social skills and had tantrums often, she still cries when getting her hair washed and brushed. She was always funny about foods, clothing and routines. She was referred last year for an autism assessment, and they instead diagnosed ADHD, with autistic traits. She is now finally getting the help she needs, and I am so glad I did finally ask for the referral. I have no regrets waiting for so long though, as many children behave as she did at age 4-5 but mature when they start school. Dd is doing so much better now that she is understood. I got the referral through the GP. It is impossible to say whether your daughter may have ADHD, but if you continue to be concerned over the next year or two, then I would consider pushing for a referral.

naturalbaby Mon 16-Jun-14 15:54:15

I have a 4yr old who is very similar, however he will sit for long periods of time doing puzzles or looking at books so we did think about some sort of hyperactivity disorder but it was never enough to flag up concerns with health visitors or a GP.
Another difference for us is that he went to a very structured nursery attached to an outstanding school and it suited him very well. His teachers saw no hyperactivity or any other problems we have at home, and he was one of the highest achievers despite being the youngest. He is now in a very different environment and is back to leaping about and making bizarre noises a lot because there is a lot less structure and routine.

AirieFairy Mon 16-Jun-14 18:08:28

We have our home visits with DDs new school teacher in July so should I raise my concerns with the teacher or keep quiet and see if they notice anything out of the ordinary?

TwoLeftSocks Tue 17-Jun-14 11:13:35

Do have a chat with the teacher on the home visit - they'll find it useful to know all about her and can let you know how she does in class and help with any concerns.

I don't really know about early diagnosis but our DS1 was diagnosed when he was 7, first suggested by school when he was 5. I should think if you were to ask your GP about it now, they'd probably suggest you see how she gets on at school anyway.

And as far as the 'label' goes, I totally understand your reluctance, however DS getting his diagnosis really, really helped, especially with tailored help at school and in our understanding of why he does the things he does.

There's alot that can be done in managing behaviour, including things you can do as a parent to help, and you don't have to go down the medication route. We have in the end (hardest decision ever) and I think it's helping, but it's entirely up to you.

Ohhelpohnoitsa Tue 17-Jun-14 20:28:14

I am interested in this home visit idea. where do you live - nothing like that in my local authority or the one I teach in. Sound like a good idea.

AirieFairy Tue 17-Jun-14 22:03:03

Thanks twoLeftSocks. Thats reassuring. I've taken her to the drs before about her oral fixation and they said they wouldn't do anything until she's older. (any suggestions welcome) I guess I will just have to hang tight for a while.
Ohhelponnoitsa- I'm in North London. All the schools offer a home visit where your child's teacher will come to meet them on a one to one basis where they're comfortable. (The conspiracy theorist in me thinks its because they want to see what your home it like!)

Ohhelpohnoitsa Wed 18-Jun-14 00:23:42

Wow can you imagine how time consuming that must be. Great idea for the child I think and yes, I agree they will certainly form some opinions from seeing how you live. In one of my jobs, part of our induction was being driven around the (very mixed) catchment area with a less than politically correct commentary by the deputy head. No home visits around here though except for safeguarding concerns or.persistent absentees. Sounds like your area is a bit more proactive.

TwoLeftSocks Wed 18-Jun-14 11:24:05

DS2 starts reception in Sept and he's getting a home visit - DS1 did in our old town too. They're doing the home visits here in the first week of school, so the new starters start a week late.

They explained that it helps the children trust the new teachers by seeing them as friends with their mum & dad and the children love showing them round their home. One teacher told us they've ended up helping to feed the pet rabbit, jump on trampolines, build lego spaceships and all sorts. Gives parents a chance to go through any concerns too, though I'm sure it must be interesting to see peoples homes too!

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