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ADHD

(21 Posts)
amelieanne Sun 17-Jul-11 19:29:37

Hi,
DS (8) is going for an assessment in August to see if he has ADHD. What can I expect from this meeting? I haven't told ds anything about it, but was planning to tell him that the doctor wants to help him with his concentration.
What do schools normally do for children with ADHD?
Not sure I like the idea of medication, so has anyone managed to ease the behavior with a change in diet, alternative therapies etc.
Sorry for all the questions, but I'm very new to all this.

greatescape Sun 17-Jul-11 20:25:29

Usually for ADHD to be dx they will send out a questionaire to parents and school for them to fill in this is because for dx it has to affect ds in more than one setting. School will be able to give ds extra help in the classroom to keep him on task and to cut down on the impulsive behaviour. I would talk to your ds about it first so he sees it as a positive thing. Using diet to control symptoms can be hit and miss it works for some but not others. We tried removing all additives cutting sugar out but it made no differance. Our ds became so dangerous we had to medicate him for his own safety.

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 20:41:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

amelieanne Sun 17-Jul-11 20:55:20

Thanks for the replies. Can I just ask what they do that is so dangerous? (Sorry if I am being thick). Did you get the questionnaire to fill in before the meeting with the pediatrician?
His behaviour is not making our home life unhappy - yes we get fed up with having to repeat ourselves 100's of times, the constant noises/random shouting, climbing, fidgeting etc. But to be honest, that is all we have known of him since he was a toddler and accepted that was who he was!!!
He has been diagnosed as dyslexic, so school is not fun for him. (He spends a lot of time under the table according to his teachers)!

greatescape Sun 17-Jul-11 21:02:59

It does depend on severity are ds was supervised every waking minute but this didnt stop him climbing and jumping off everything. We had to have crash mats down in his room so that we at least he had one area were he could just play without us having to keep grabbing off the furniture he was standing on . We had to bolt furniture and shelves to the walls so they wouldnt pull over on him. He couldnt understand the danger he put himself in. One year he bit throw the chritmas lights while they were switched on. He had no sense of danger when out and if he got the chance would run off. He had no road sense and would just run across. He couldnt socialise with other kids because he was so impulsive. So to make him safe and give him a better chance to make friends we choose to medicate him. Now he is safer and has been able to concentrate enough to learn some road sense . He has also been able to make friends.

amelieanne Sun 17-Jul-11 21:12:12

Yes, we have screwed his bookshelf to his wall so that it would not fall on him when he climbs it!! His road sense does also scare me, although he is getting better and if I felt he was a real danger to himself then I would not hesitate to medicate him.
His social skills are definitely not the same as his peers, but this does not seem to be affecting his friendships. It does seem to be affecting his school work though and in turn affecting his self esteem.
Lots to think about....

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:16:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

greatescape Sun 17-Jul-11 21:19:58

On the subject of self eteem before my ds was medicated he use to think he was rubbish at everything now he can concentrate he relises that there are things that he is really good at and the other things he may just have to work harder at. Now my son is older we have given him the choice of weather he feels he needs medication and he has said that he would rather have it because he gets in to trouble without it. He says he likes it better when hes not in trouble.

amelieanne Sun 17-Jul-11 21:22:53

I also think self esteem is really important and I don't think the dyslexia helps at all! Luckily, my son has a fantastic senco teacher that helps him out and will give him a signal if he needs to sit still - in assembly for example.
He also has a tutor who helps him with his dyslexia and when she seems him lose concentration etc, she makes him hop around the room!! I think his class teachers now know there is a problem and are understanding - however, I'm not sure the first few years at school were easy for him.

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:25:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

greatescape Sun 17-Jul-11 21:31:58

justaboutwillfinisherthesis How old is your child ? Does he manage in school?
Is he getting enough help ?

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:34:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

amelieanne Sun 17-Jul-11 21:34:47

Thank you for your replies greatescape and justaboutWILLfinishherthesis, they have been really helpful. justaboutWILLfinishherthesis will you let us know how you get on with your appointment.

It's nice to chat to people who know what you are going through, a lot of my friends seem to think that he is a 'normal' 8 year old and don't see what the problem is!

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:37:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

greatescape Sun 17-Jul-11 21:55:17

I have always let my ds know about his dx he has ADHD, Autism and Dyspraxia I think it helps him to see that he can do things but he might find it a bit harder because of his dx. He knows though he will get there in the end. It also helps his self esteem cause he knows he isnt stupid.

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:58:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

justaboutWILLfinishherthesis Sun 17-Jul-11 21:58:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

runningonmt Sun 17-Jul-11 23:33:06

Evening people (trying not to put my socially inept foot in it by saying "evening ladies" just incase I am being un-pc)

My DS is 11. Was dx aged 7. Dx came as huge relief that there was a reason behind his difficult behaviour but was also the start of a period of grief when I realised that it wasnt just going to go away.

You can expect the appointment to last a couple of hours. The specialist will want to see your DS at his best (first 10 mins) and worst (last 10 mins) to get a good idea of his usual behaviour. Mine was an angel for the first 10 mins, about mid-point continued the appointment from under his chair (DS not Dr) and in the last 10mins tried to climb out of the window !!!! We came out with a firm DX of typical ADHD unsupprisingly.

School is a huge hit or miss affair - if they are good it can work wonders for your ds, if they are not good they can cause a huge amount of damage.

It is your job to become an expert on your ds's condition and teach everyone what they need to be doing - You will be the expert as you have spent 8 years with him and no-one can possibly understand his needs better than you do.

Research as much as you can with regard to diet and behavioural techniques but be aware that most of the stuff on the general internet relates to USA way of doing things (they are at least 20 years ahead of us on ADHD stuff). My personal experience is that diet has little effect on my DS but he personally gravitates towards junk and high energy foods but that may just be him and nothing to do with his ADHD.

Be aware that the headings of 1) impulsive 2) hyperactive and 3) inattentive can be a bit misleading ...... my ds can be anything but inattentive when it comes to something he is interested in - if fact you cannot prise him off the xbox when you want him to do something else. Look into what it really means under the context of ADHD not what you think it means from your general understanding of the english language.

ADHD is rarely found on its own. It is usually found with at least one other conditions such as Dyslexia, Autism, Oppositional Defience Disorder.

The older they get (usually) the more obvious the 'deficits' become (ie. there are more noticable differences between them and their class mates) which is why it can be difficult to formally recognise the younger they are - When a six year old is looning about like a toddler you are told (ah, they will grow out of it, or "its just a stage they are going through") - when they are still doing it when they are 11 years old it becomes more obvious and a bit more of a problem for you and your DS.

Expect a lot of resistance from friends and family - you will be amazed how many people "dont believe in ADHD" and will tell you to your face that in their "expert" opinion it is all down to bad parenting or something you have been doing (or feeding him).

There are as many good things about having ADHD as there are bad things - If you do get a formal dx then be honest with your DS - It is a reason but it is not an excuse. Mine is regularly told by me that "having ADHD is not an excuse to behave like that ... it is the reason that it requires more effort from you not to".

Understand why the symptoms are making it hard for your DS then you feel more empowered to put things into place to make it better for him to help him out where he needs help.

Try not to worry ...... there are several of us mums out here to help you out when you need it ..... just yell and we will come running ....... {hugs}

amelieanne Mon 18-Jul-11 08:06:35

Thanks again for your replies. I suppose the reason I haven't told my son that he could have ADHD is that to me he still seems really immature for his age and completely socially unaware. (I don't mean that negatively towards him, just how it is). How did you explain it to them and did they understand? Can anyone recommend any good books on the subject, especially ones aimed at children to help them understand?

On the whole both families are very supportive - just not the other mums at school!

Also, like you say we have been dealing with this since he was a toddler so certain things we have always done or not done - ie, not meet family in a posh restaurant, anywhere he has to be quiet, sit still, not given e numbers/junk food etc. We know his limits as to what he will behave like.

Our first visit to the doctor was also conducted with my son hanging upside down backwards on the chair!!!

greatescape Mon 18-Jul-11 08:56:13

My first appointment at the doctors my son went through her desk draws threw every thing all over jumped on scales, window sill and then attempted to run off. I always talked to my son about his problems since he was very young so there wasnt a one big sit down chat about it. I know there are books to help you may be able to get one from the library. It does get better taking them places as they get older. My ds is on the whole quite good when I take him out.

runningonmt Mon 18-Jul-11 21:15:18

"All dogs have AHDH" - A lovely book which doesnt really explain things but kinda lists they symptoms with lovely pictures of Dogs (great for kids as it is short and snappy and can lead into a conversation of ...... I do that dont I mum?).

As for books for adults ..... um, not really sure but will look through my extensive library later and let you know which one stood out for me.x

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