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Inattentive ADHD - does medication help

(16 Posts)
Whowherewhywhat Wed 11-May-16 13:39:34

Hi ladies, wondering if you would share your stories and advice.
Currently going through assessment process for ADHD for ds10, who was diagnosed with Dysleix last year, for background.
Our assessment has been pushed for by his school , as it seems his behaviours around attentiveness , emotions etc are more pronounced than at home. Homework is a nightmare, attentiveness in playing his sport, emotionally a little immature though very emotional and increasing in the last few months. At school I think his inattentiveness and inability to concentrate are starting t to cause him problems, though he is 'bright' so has been able to get away with things I think until year 6 so is struggling academically, hence j think why School has called this out. Also always popular with friends but apparently had been losing his friends as his emotional outbursts have been getting worse , crying etc do school feels friends are being pushed away by his beahaviours. fFinslly he had already been diagnosed with very poor working memory, which also affects him in class as he cant keep up with all the instructions.
Does this sound like inattentive ADHD to you, and would medication benefit him if he's not in the hyperactive category, although he is impulsive and fidgets constantly.....,,any views much appreciated.

zzzzz Wed 11-May-16 20:08:41

I'm not sure but I know lots of people feel caffeine helps. What about a cup of tea with breakfast and just see if it takes the edge off?

knittingwithnettles Wed 11-May-16 22:15:01

google "sensory diet", if you want a different approach from medication.

That's really interesting about caffeine zzzz does that mean Coca cola might have benefits too?

The thing is, the school should be giving him more explicit step by step instructions and breaking things down if he has a poor working memory and they should be encouraging him to have movement breaks or fiddle toys, (chewing for example is a very useful thing to do if you are distractible, rather than a bad habit) Read Out of Synch Child. A lot of children that age get very tearful and emotional; it could be because he is feeling he cannot cope in class (back to the school making things clearer and more explicit and manageable for him, rather than medication being the answer)

Ds2 has inattentive ADHD as well as ASD and Dyspraxia; I don't think I would ever consider medication (apart from caffeine), just as I wouldn;t take anti depressants if I was feeling sad over something that was affecting me, I would try to deal in the best way with the issues that made me sad ifysim. I know that other people have found medication a help, so that is just my personal take on it. I would just be concerned that school would get the benefit of his "concentration" and you would get the tail end of the medication. But a diagnosis of ADHD is really helpful, if you can put the picture together properly, ie: know that he is not being lazy or stupid, just cannot process information or stimuli in certain ways or sit still for long periods without some feedback to his senses.

notapizzaeater Wed 11-May-16 22:29:46

My son is inattentive ADHD, we tried coffee and it made. A little difference. We went with the medication and the first day my son came home (13) telling me it was great he could understand (-and remember) what the teacher was asking him. The tablets last 8 hours so he's unmedicated at night and at weekends/ hols we just use it for school.

Whowherewhywhat Wed 11-May-16 22:30:20

That's for your replies, could caffeine really work?
Yes he has fiddle toys etc but it's the attention that's more the issue I think and your right, he is becoming more tearful and emotional, I was thinking it was changing hormones on top of aADHD but as you say, maybe it's all getting to much for him, I know the school is pushing him for 11+ exams in June and maybe it's too much pressure........
Thanks I will look into the diets to....
Anyone else have any experience of this? Many thanks for replying so far smile

TwoLeftSocks Wed 11-May-16 22:31:34

Meds work well for our DS1 (9, Yr 5), largely inattentive ADHD and also dyslexia. He sounds quite similar to your DS, has been having stronger reactions to emotional situations in recent months, though I wonder if that's more a growing up thing, not made any easier by the ADHD.

The dx has helped his teacher understand why he finds certain situations stressful and also how best to help him through things. The meds really help him focus and learn strategies to work on the dyslexia and goldfish-level working memory.

As it goes, we'd heard of the caffeine thing too and occasionally get him a can of cola to see how he does (when he's off meds - only takes them for school hours). I think it might well have a slight effect but I may just be looking for it more.

notapizzaeater Wed 11-May-16 22:35:00

Before trying meds we tried the coffee and also energy drinks - he thought all,his birthdays had come at once as he's never been allowed them before !

He's ASD and dyspraxia as well so sounds similar

Whowherewhywhat Wed 11-May-16 22:37:41

Wow notapizzaester that's great news! My son is very capable as we are told by the school but his conentration, and easy distraction and fidgeting stop him from "hearing" instructions properly and knowing what he has to do, and his memory also causes him major problems. Would you mind telling me a little more about symptoms pre treatment , and hss it allowed your son to concentrate on homework for longer and not get distracted? Also did it make any difference to his friendships ?

Whowherewhywhat Wed 11-May-16 22:40:56

Thanks teoleftsocks they do sound similar smile has the school noticed big cheated in his ability to concentrate? Had it helped him with his emotions? Thanks again smile

Whowherewhywhat Wed 11-May-16 22:42:40

Sorry more questions smile has it made a difference to your son in terms of revising and performing in exams?
My DS wants to get better results for his self esteem as he knows what's in his head but can't get it out / access it in time!!!

TwoLeftSocks Wed 11-May-16 22:58:36

He started the meds in yr4 and his teacher saw an instant effect - she came out nearly in tears after school that he'd written a whole paragraph without any additional prompting. It's helped too with things like legibility of his handwriting, he's no longer in a rush to get thoughts down before they fly away again, and he now has he ability to take his time a little more.

I've noticed it with homework too - we do it in the morning before school, after he's taken his tablet, and he'll get done twenty minutes what it would take hours to do before. Any homework was a major stress before, to the point that we stopped as it was counter-productive.

All of that's definitely helped his self esteem, he's proud of his work in class and while he knows it's hard work, he'll keep at it.

Emotionally, I think he's actually more aware of what others are feeling. He's really quite highly sensitive though, to emotions and noise, and I do wonder if that's a little bit more acute on his meds. Flip side is it's easier to have full conversations about how to cope with things when he's on.

TwoLeftSocks Wed 11-May-16 23:02:18

He still gets tailored help in class from his teacher but as much as anything it's helping him learn little strategies.

There have been things like appetite to navigate (barely eats lunch, eats like a horse at dinner) but that's been manageable and worth it for him overall.

Whowherewhywhat Thu 12-May-16 00:00:14

Thanks twoleftsocks that's really encouraging, he gets a lot of homework and it takes him hours during week and the weekend, and I don't think it's really fair on him but he doesn't want to fall behind and wants to do really well, just being able to do his homework more quickly and write a paragraph in class without it taking him the whole time will be so much of a benefit for him. Has it improved his dyslexia / reading in any way?

zzzzz Thu 12-May-16 07:09:29

For us yes the caffeine thing does work and I'm sure you can deliver it in coke if that would go down better. Certainly the days he has tea for breakfast he doesn't have emotional rollercoaster at school, and so far has always come home saying he concentrated well (this is relative). His father is and equally active chap and definitely self medicates with coffee throughout the day (without understanding what he's doing). He says coffee helps him concentrate smile

I have told ds now why he has tea and I hope that we can manage things that way for now. He is tic-ing less too but I think that is because he is less anxious as he is managing to get some work done.

LyndaNotLinda Thu 12-May-16 09:34:38

Interesting thread. DS has just been reassessed and the paediatrician said he thinks it's very likely that he has inattentive ADHD.

He doesn't like fizzy drinks but I've just looked online and Monster is a still caffeinated drink. I might try that and see how he gets on smile

TwoLeftSocks Thu 12-May-16 15:41:53

His ADHD dx and trying meds came before his dyslexia dx. I actually don't think he'd have been assessed for it so soon as the traits for him have been really similar. He ticks all the boxes that overlap the two conditions but does have extra traits for each too, it just took removing his distractibility to fully see what was going on.

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