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ADHD symptoms - where to start?

(12 Posts)
Ohforfucksake Mon 16-Dec-13 17:46:43

Hi there, I wonder if you wonderful Ladies may be able to help me at all? I suspect my 5yo DS may have ADHD.

I spoke to his teacher about it very briefly this afternoon.

She said 'oh no he's the opposite of ADHD - we wish we could put a rocket up his bum, as he never focuses'. She also said her own child has ADHD and its not like this.

However, I thought ADHD was often presented as an inability to focus?!

Basically he's very very hyper at home, cannot sit on a chair to eat without wriggling and jiggling, jumps and shouts CONSTANTLY, almost as if he's manic sometimes. He doesn't listen even when talking directly to him eye to eye. He doesn't seem to understand emotion in myself or DH, or his wee brother. He struggles keeping his own emotions in check, and breaks down at the slightest thing.

At school apparently he is vacant and doesn't engage in anything.

It's two very extreme behaviours, very strange.

For the record I don't give him sweets or much tv, and lots of love and attention. His 3yo brother is not like this at all, and seems to have a much steadier spectrum of behaviours.

Can any of you advise whether I'm right to suspect, or way off the mark?

And where should I go to seek advice?!

I'm so worried about him and strain on our wee family sad

Many thanks in advance

MariaNoMoreLurking Mon 16-Dec-13 20:24:55

Ah yes, the 'I know all about medical condition X' teacher-type [sigh]

It doesn't really matter whether she (or you, for that matter) are sure about the presence or absence of various ADHD symptoms. Your job is to decide whether or not the concerns are enough to seek medical attention for, and hers is to give you a picture of what he is like at school.

When/if you get to a doctor, the main thing is to give them plenty of information to help them work out what, if anything, is going on. The other option at 5 is to see if your local occupational therapy service will take self-referrals. Even though they can't formally diagnose most conditions, they're often very observant and OTs are usually very good at working out the best ways to assist dc who have difficulties.

This can help you and the teacher look at the 'right' sort of areas

beautifulgirls Mon 16-Dec-13 21:57:57

We went via the school nurse for a paed referral for Dd, who like your son doesn't disrupt the class. Numerous questions on multiple occasions to us and school and the decision was in attentive ADHD. She is also hyperactive at home but not in any great way in school. It is the tuning out of her work is the issue in school.

veryconfused2 Tue 17-Dec-13 23:11:02

Hi, this sounds quite like my DS although he is hyper at school as well unless medicated. Frankly, I would not trust the teacher's opinion. My DS was in a special school and the teacher told the behavioural therapist she was adamant he did not have ADHD. When DS saw the psychiatrist, he took one look at him and said "if he doesn't have ADHD I'm a banana.". Having experienced that, ie teachers who supposedly taught ADHD kids every day but failed to spot it in my son in a class of 12 children, that reduced my faith in teachers! However, his mainstream school spotted the ADHD on his first induction day. I think that sometimes if ADHD is in someone's face the whole time (ie with your DS's teacher having a child of her own with it) they think they know best and fail to look at something afresh. That is what I found anyway - having not met him before my son's psychiatrist and new school spotted it straight away

Trigglesx Wed 18-Dec-13 07:58:29

Ignore the teacher's quite frankly ridiculous attempt to diagnose, as she is not a medical professional that is qualified to be making these types of comments.

DS1 (7yo) struggles to focus on many many things and then on a few things he will literally hyperfocus. But he is active, all over the place, can't sit still, and presents a lot of the same behaviours you're describing (the at home behaviour not the zoning out behaviour though).

Get a referral either through school nurse or GP to take your DS to a paediatrician and they will assess him further. It may or may not be ADHD, but if he's struggling, it's a good idea to get him assessed.

BallyGoBackwards Wed 18-Dec-13 11:24:13

Oh for the love of Jesus!!!!! Comments like this from teachers tip me over the edge.

My DS has ADHD (inattentive type). Shows no hyperactivity at all. The teacher has obviously never heard or come across this. My sister who is also a teacher still tilts her head to one side and looks confused when speaking about my son. AAARRRGGGHHHH.... smile

I would do as Trigglesx suggests.........

Brynfan Wed 18-Dec-13 19:53:33

My son has just been diagnosed with ADHD. He's in year 6 and I've been back and fore to the school at least fortnightly for the last 3 years. He doesn't have the hyperactive, climbing the walls and causing chaos type either, but ADD and his school work suffers badly. Having said that he is fidgety at home and once he starts to get a bit boisterous with his brother it's hard to calm him down - it's as if the part of the brain that other people use to calm themselves down actually stops working for a while.

The school have been absolutely useless, making out that he's just not trying hard enough with his work and implying that I should be doing more to help him. This is despite an assessment 2 years ago, suggesting possible ADHD and stating a further test in 6 months would be needed, which never happened. A couple of months ago, at the end of my tether, I took him to the GP who referred him to CAMHS. The therapist there immediately spotted ADHD traits. After further meetings, the school are now putting him on the ADHD pathway, so at last we're getting somewhere.

I would urge any mother to trust their instincts and seek out help themselves, not listen to so-called professionals who don't know enough about specific medical conditions.

I too have lost all faith in schools.

anothermadamebutterfly Wed 18-Dec-13 20:27:33

This is sooo frustrating, so many people, even ones who ought to know better, simply have absolutely no idea about how ADHD can manifest. The school nurse (who had never actually met me or my DD at the time) told me on the phone 10 minutes into our first ever conversation that clearly my DD was 'picking up on my anxiety and angst' and was playing up to us at home because she 'wasn't given clear boundaries' and 'we had to show her who was boss'...

DD is diagnosed with combined type ADHD, and possible associated anxiety, and the verdict is out on dyslexia. She has always been extremely manic at home, but at school has tended to manage OK-ish overall. She was not really disruptive, but is the type who, when everybody was supposed to be getting on with a task, would get up to go to the toilet, then sit down again, get up again to sharpen her pencil, sit down again, start gently tipping the chair until it fell over, get up again and drop her pencil when doing so, crawl under the table to fetch it, and then bang her head on the table, etc etc. Or she would just completely zone out and have no idea what was going on around her in class. But it all looked very innocent, if slightly silly, if that makes sense. She struggles to complete even the most basic task unless an adult is sitting with her.

Teachers over the years have called her a 'doer' rather than a 'thinker', a 'kinetic' learner, a chatterbox, a fidget, a tomboy, a daydreamer, - none of these things are unusual, bad or odd in themselves, but they add up, and the thing that they always were consistent on was that they thought she underperformed badly and they couldn't really understand why.

I hope you manage to find some more insightful people to talk to. I found the SENCO at DD's school were great, but that is not always the case. Have you talked to your GP? I was recommended the ADDISS website (but never really looked at it much), but maybe some will give you some pointers: www.addiss.co.uk/.

Jacksterbear Wed 18-Dec-13 20:53:29

Just wondering if you have also looked into sensory processing and/or autistic spectrum disorders, as well as ADHD? Sensory processing problems can also manifest themselves as fidgetiness/hyperactivity and lack of concentration, and cause impulsive/explosive behaviour and anxiety. Not trying to suggest that that is the correct dx and ADHD is incorrect, just that it might be useful to be aware of the different possibilities, and it could help you form a list of atypical behaviours, to give the professionals a better picture.

Mahesh6464 Thu 10-Nov-16 11:15:26

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

incogKNEEto Wed 16-Nov-16 12:24:23

Have you asked the teacher if she knows what the AD in ADHD stand for? Don't you just love these people who know one person with a condition, so assume they know it all?! I would go to the GP with your concerns and try and get a referral to a Paediatrician and see what they say.

On a side note Bryn your post made me smile as you could have been describing my dd who has ADHD, despite her teacher 'knowing' she had no SEN and that her behaviour was purely down to laziness and poor parenting... (we moved school...)

incogKNEEto Wed 16-Nov-16 12:25:31

Oops, didn't realise this was a zombie thread, sorry!

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