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Does My DS Have ADHD?

(24 Posts)
Bickies Sat 23-Mar-13 12:01:17

My 4yr is impulsive, active, has diff staying focussed on a task, taking turns in pre-school and sitting still for more than 15 mins.
On the other hand, he sleeps well (10hrs straight), takes instruction, can focus on something he likes (playdough), can sit and watch a favourite prog for up to 45 mins and has a brill imagination and memory.
I have my suspicions but I would appreciate if anyone out there who is going through the same concerns might have any advice or experiences they could share with me.
I myself was a very active child, always climbing and jumping and my husband has a BIG personality so naturally, I am hoping that it is his character and not ADHD.
Am I fooling myself or has anyone any experience of thinking their child had ADHD and then it turning out not to be.
Many thanks for any advice or insights you might have.

beautifulgirls Sat 23-Mar-13 12:04:53

Hi Bickies - It is impossible to say to be honest, but certainly I can understand why you flag his behaviour as possibly beyond normal limits. I would suggest you go to your GP and ask for a referral to a developmental paediatrician for a full review and take it from there. They will probably want some information from his preschool about his behaviour there so might be worth having a chat with preschool if you haven't already to let them know your concerns, if only so that they can pay a bit more attention to how he is with them and be able to report back if asked.

Bickies Sat 23-Mar-13 12:12:29

Thank you Beautifulgirls. Yes, when I compare him to other children of his age (and I know I shouldn't..) he is more shall we say OUT THERE'...Have you personal experience of ADHD?

armani Sat 23-Mar-13 12:59:16

Hi bickies I am currently going through this with my dd (7). I feel that she has adhd tedancies but am scared I'm looking too much into it. I took dd to the gp who referred to peadiatric development centre. Was seen by a pead, occupational therapist and physio. Physio ruled out anything physical for her clumsiness, ie she isn't double jointed etc. OT carried out a sensory assert which she scored very low in sad pead identified with attention decifit symptoms and so we are waiting for some questionnaires to be sent to myself and school.

I have also been ref to the senco by dds school teacher who is referring us to an educational psychologist.

So now we are just waiting for these appointments. It's a very hard time. I have been researching a lot online about adhd and am all most certain this is what she has.

At home she is always on the go, fidgeting, singing, rushing. She runs out into roads, climbs anything and everything and is never occupied.

School are reporting that she has poor organisational skills, poor short term memory, can't focus, easily distracted etc.

Although she does sleep well this is due to strict routine and has taken until now to achieve. As a younger child she would keep us up half the night.

Good luck op x

Bickies Sat 23-Mar-13 14:33:08

Thank you OP for sharing that with me. It's all so worrying for you and emotional I know not to mention a bit on the slow side too. Don't you just wish that things could be done faster and that you would know one way or another.
I am in Ireland and I have a feeling that things will go even more slowly for us here once I put the wheels in motion.
It's tough having a strong willed child but sure could be worse. Found out that quite a few celebs have ADHD, if that what our two have??'' - Sir Richard Branson, Justin Timberlake, Phelps (swimmer) and Solange Knowles (Beyonce sister) to name but a few.

Keep smiling, Bickies x

BallyGoBackwards Sun 24-Mar-13 13:32:51

Hi Bickies, My DS has ADHD inattentive type. We were in Ireland when he was diagnoised and are now in England. In fairness I found things moved quite well in Ireland and found that consultants/CAMH's returned calls and were more accessible in Ireland.

Best of luck with the journey!!!!

MadameSin Sun 24-Mar-13 16:38:23

Bickies my ds is now 9 and had a formal dx for ADHD when he was 7. Without doubt I knew in my heart he was different from his peers when it cam to behaviour. He too sleeps really well and always has. Loves to watch dvd's for hours and play on the computer, ds etc. He'll spend ages doing stuff he loves. He plays sport, football, rugby, judo and loves all physical activity. Your description could have been my ds aged 4 ... but it could also be any 4 year old boy. Its very hard to tell what is age appropriate and what's not. It depends entirely on how much his behaviour is impairing his life at home and school

TICKLETUMBLE Tue 26-Mar-13 08:22:38

Your DC sounds a lot like mine (6). DS is being referred to look into ADHD but actually suspect more issues are caused by sensory processing and motor planning difficulties - its hard to self diagnose as the overlap on many (ADHD, Dyspraxia, SPD, ASD etc) conditions is so great, and of course a child can have more than one of these.

The best thing to do is ask for assessment, and get the issues identified, and a strategy for helping and supporting needs will come from that, regardless of actual 'name' of any condition.

Good luck.......and well done for taking action now, the sooner the better.

Bickies Tue 26-Mar-13 11:53:54

A huge thank you to everyone who responded to my post. I don't feel quite so alone now and I have a starting point. The frustrating thing is the not knowing but I will have to deal with that and let the professionals do the DX.

Again, many thanks
Bickies, x

BertramBertram Tue 26-Mar-13 12:53:24


My DS is slightly older than yours (reception). He was like your DS in pre-school but I put it down to his age and thought he would calm down in school. He hasn't. He's worse!! When he is in to something he 'hyperfocuses' to the point you can't get his attention! He goes to bed easily of an evening and sleeps straight through. He wakes between 5.000 - 6.00 regardless of bedtime and is like the duracell bunny from the second his eyes open.

His teacher said earlier this year she thought it was a maturity issue but has now said she would like DS observed in class. The usual rewards/sanctions/punishments etc have no effect on him at all. His teacher told him that if he didn't stop doing something she would send him to the head. DS walked out of the classroom to the heads office.

Been to the GP and are being referred to a children's centre so watch this space. I think a lot of people are wary of the label ADHD as there has been a lot of negativity about it in the press in that the kids are out of control etc. DS is one of the loveliest (not that I'm biased wink) and kindest children, he just can't sit still for 2 minutes together.

I would visit your GP and get the ball rolling. Either he does have issues which you get help for sooner or you have your mind put at rest! Good luck x

Bickies Tue 26-Mar-13 17:00:01

Thank you. I know very little about ADHD but I have found out that there are some benefits to it too.

People with ADHD have: Compassion
People with ADHD have a tremendous power to connect with other people. But it goes a step further than that. They also have an advanced ability to empathize with others, and to see many different perspectives. It’s easy for them to put themselves “in someone else’s shoes” and to understand where they’re coming from.

Most ADHDers are creative! Writers, painters, musicians, film makers, designers, sculptors, comedians – the list goes on! Artistic talents are abundant. Composers Mozart and Beethoven are believed to have had ADHD*.

When an ADHDer is bored with a task, completing it can seem like torture. But give us an interesting project to work on and watch out! When they want to succeed, and have the necessary tools to do so, there is no stopping them! Look at Sir Richard Branson, he has ADHD.

Problem Solving Ability
ADHDers thrive on solving problems and puzzles. Give them an interesting problem to solve and they won’t be able to drop it until they have found the solution! Inventor Thomas Edison is believed to have had ADHD.*

The ability to hyper-focus is something that ADHDers can use to their advantage. When kept under control and directed towards productive tasks, like accomplishing goals and living dreams, it can be an incredible asset that allows them to get the job done, and done well!

Sense of Humor/Comedic Flair
Most ADHDers love to laugh, and many also have a knack for making others laugh! Famous comedians such as Whoopi Goldberg and Robin Williams are rumored to have ADHD.* And, Will Smith has openly said he has ADHD.

There’s no denying that even though there are many great qualities that come along with ADHD, there are also challenges. But ADHDers have an incredible ability to bounce back from those challenges and to keep moving forward.

ADHDers have a sharp sense of intuition. This may be due to highly tuned levels of perception, or great insight into the human mind, or something else that we have yet to understand. Whatever the reason, it’s a very useful gift!

Idea Generating
ADHDers are wonderful idea generators. They don’t usually like to be bothered with details, but they can come up with ideas at lightning speed!

That “Special Something”
Many ADHDers feel that they have a unique way of looking at the world, a perspective that others just don’t understand. That is, until the ADHDer meets other people with ADHD! You might say that they're on their own wavelength!

MadameSin Tue 26-Mar-13 19:06:16

Bickies That list is spot on! My son is all of the above and me to some extent, although I never went on to become a stand up comdian grin One of my son's teachers described him as alomost physic hmm

Trigglesx Tue 26-Mar-13 19:26:09

Please please don't rely on a "typical ADHD" list. All children are different, and 2 children with the same disability may present in two completely different ways. My DS2 (6yo) has ADHD, and believe me, he is so far from some of the things on that list that it's unbelievable.

Best thing to do is get him assessed by paediatrician and go from there. If he is having difficulties at school, then meet with them (senco/teacher) and see what support he specifically needs and make sure they provide it.

Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 16:42:43

I have just been trawling' the internet on this subject and I found that some parents give their ADHD child coffee or coke to calm them down. I find this amazing but in a completely non judgemental way, really. I am interested to know if any of you out there have ever tried it and what your experiences of it have been. Also, if you have any food plans that you could share with me I would be very grateful.
Thank you

alwayslateforwork Tue 02-Apr-13 17:03:06

A lot of people find life is easier with decent omegas, zinc supplements and Epsom salts baths.

Fwiw, my son with ADHD isn't in the slightest bit compassionate. I would categorize him as extremely selfish, tbh. Life pretty much revolves around him.

I find that list a bit creepy. Hyperfocus can be a great thing, but it can be a total pita, too. I've lost count of the number of times that I have to tell ds to do x. Heaven forbid he is involved when it is time for dinner. He gets completely obsessive and can't let things go. I love that he gets fired up by things, but I hate that he is then unable to concentrate on anything else - like everything else. It makes living with him time consuming, exhausting, and difficult. I'm sick of the sound of my own nagging, tbh. And it makes no difference. He can't 'hear' me.

I know a fair few people who try to medicate with caffeine in place of prescription stimulants. Some give their children red bull in the mornings. They swear by it. It's an interesting experiment.

That said, I get that you are in the research phase. grin

If you want a food plan, try the GAPS diet. <innocent whistle>

I'm not being snarky - I just think you are way ahead of yourself. For a child to get an ADHD dx at 4, the symptoms have to be pretty undeniable, and you started off, before your research project, just thinking he had a big personality like yourself and dh. Docs don't usually medicate before 6 or 7 (unless the symptoms are causing extreme difficulty in at least two settings - ie home and pre-school). Having trouble sitting still and maintaining concentration isn't a huge issue for a 4 yo boy - but it is worth keeping an eye on. By yr 1, it is usually possible for borderline cases to be flagged - but not unusual for the ds to get to yr 3 before it becomes completely obvious that they are different from their peer group.

Dr google is great, but there is a tendency for people to symptom-spot and then evangelize. At 4, with a 'may-be' that isn't causing any real bother, you are better off adopting more of a 'wait and see'. (I'm assuming that pre-school haven't approached you, and discussed developmental paediatric assessment?)

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. And all that.

Sure, ask for an assessment if you and pre-school are concerned, but it seems more like you were wondering, and have been convinced by the glamorous sounding possibilities of having a will-smith-a-like...

Even with an ADHD dx, there is little support available, save medication, which is unlikely at this point.

Dinkysmummy Tue 02-Apr-13 18:08:57

Carrying the point from always

I had one GP get the complete wrong end of the stick when I went about dinky back in nov when the school (and a few others) thought dinky needed CAMHS. Dinky was 4 and had just started reception, the GP thought I wanted an ADHD diagnosis and to have dinky medicated shock I was angry!!
The point to this is she pretty much laughed at the possibility that anyone, especially CAMHS or paed, would take a referral for ADHD seriously for a 4 year old, and they wouldn't medicate until she was much older anyway... (big argument erupted because that wasn't what I was saying)... From what she said it is hard to get anywhere at such a young age with ADHD as it can also be 'typical' preschool boisterous behaviour.

But then again she might just be a crap GP... Who knows... you could talk to the preschool and find out if they are worried, and your GP, it might allay your fears or give you a starting point for dx. Either way you won't know unless you ask the relevant people.

Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 18:17:46

Thank you for your response and I agree with everything you are saying except for your second last paragraph. I really do not think there is anything at all glamorous about ADHD. Believe me I would rather have my loving DS than some will-smith-a-like. Good luck to you, Alwayslateforwork'.

Dinkysmummy Tue 02-Apr-13 18:24:19

Ok I didn't mean to agree with all of what always said...I also don't think that ADHD is glamorous or that bickies does... And I wasn't aware will smith had ADHD (shows how much I know!).

My point was merely my point that it will be very hard to get ADHD dx at 4 from what the GP said to me.

Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 18:34:35

I know Dinkysmummy. It's a tough one coz people are saying good on ya' for spotting it early and addressing it and on the other hand, ..too early for a dx. I will move on with it anyway.

tallulah Tue 02-Apr-13 19:16:44

We have a 23 yo who has ADHD, and a 6 yo going through the referrals procedure who almost certainly has ADHD. Their symptoms/ issues are completely different. DS is loud and impulsive. DD moves constantly and won't stop talking, but is no more impulsive than her friends.

DD appeared NT until she was 3. DS kept saying she was definitely affected but we couldn't decide whether we were seeing it because we were looking for it, IYSWIM. We called out BIBIC and they said that unfortunately there were signs.

At 4yo she saw the community paed who said no she didn't have it. By Reception everyone was saying was she SEN. Saw a different paed just before she turned 6 yo who said yes she was affected. Just waiting for the Official dx.

Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 20:08:13

Thanks Tallulah. It's tough the wait and not knowing.

Dinkysmummy Tue 02-Apr-13 20:33:45

I re read my message and wasn't very helpful sorry... blush

Wondering if your child has SN is a hard time. I still don't know about dinky and go through the is she/ isn't she... She defo is, maybe she isn't. Having people in your ear all the time isn't easy either. (I have a friend who seems to reel off ASD traits she has seen in dinky when ever we meet and then sent a sensory list which or course indicate sensory issues).

The problem with ADHD is that you might have to wait longer than most for the dx process to even start. Which can't be easy.

It may not have sounded like it but I do sympathise.


Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 21:25:45

Oh, I didn't think that at all. All replies are helpful. Yes, it is tough the not knowing and praying that he/she is just a strong willed child but kinda knowing there is something more to it.
Your friend means well I'm sure and she probably doesn't realise what an impact stuff like that has on you, I know I would be upset.
You seem like a grounded positive person though and you will get through what ever the outcome is. She is a lucky girl to have a Mammy like you!

Bickies Tue 02-Apr-13 21:34:04

Oh, I didn't think that at all. All replies are helpful. Yes, it is tough the not knowing and praying that he/she is just a strong willed child but kinda knowing there is something more to it.
Your friend means well I'm sure and she probably doesn't realise what an impact stuff like that has on you, I know I would be upset.
You seem like a grounded positive person though and you will get through what ever the outcome is. She is a lucky girl to have a Mammy like you!

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