My Little Cyclone: An ADHD Story

This is my son. He was diagnosed with ADHD about 2 years ago. This is our story. 

Mys son has always been a very "busy" boy. Even as a young toddler, we had our suspicions. 

However, we were first time parents and the information we were getting from everyone was so conflicting. Some would say, "oh he is just a boy, let him play", others would be like, "wow, he is REALLY busy", and still others were somewhere in the middle. 

My mother, who used to work with children as a PSR, kept noticing things that she had observed in her clients with diagnosed ADHD. For the longest time, I really tried to rationalize everything he was doing. As time went on though, we started realizing that we really needed to at least explore the possibility of and ADD and/or ADHD diagnosis. 

We finally took him to see the ADHD specialist at our pediatricians office in November of 2013, right after he began Kindergarten. 

To begin the diagnosis process, both us (as parents) and his teacher filled out questionnaires that focused on behavior. We took these to our appointment and discussed the results with his doctor. She did a full physical examination, I imagine to look for other medical issues that may be mimicking ADHD. Finally, we did a lot of telling of stories of incidents that concerned us, and answered several questions. It was all very... subjective... to say the least, but, I still felt ok with the diagnosis.

Then we started talking about how to "treat" it. We were offered medication and/or counseling.

One thing the doctor mentioned several times was that medicating was not a one stop shop. We would have to increase doses, sometimes try new medications once the old one wore off and that it was something that would  have to be followed pretty closely to make sure it was helping the best it could. 

We decided to try some medication. I would love to have him do some counseling, and hopefully at some point in the future, we can do that for him. 

The first medication we tried was Ritalin. I will be honest, I've always heard horror stories about this drug, and so has my husband. I was really reluctant, but the doctor told us she really likes to try it out to see how it works. So... we gave it a try. 

It took a while to really notice the changes. But after about a month of giving it, we noticed it was helping him focus on his homework, sit at the dinner table without bouncing up and down on the chair and keep his hands to himself around his little brother. After about 3 months, we had to increase the dose. And then we had to increase it again. At that point, we decided to try another medication. 

We moved on to Intuniv. However, when given the first dose, he was literally on the floor after about 15 minutes complaining of a massive stomach ache. At first, I thought it was because he hadn't eaten much, so we gave it one more try. The second time, I made sure he had eaten and he did the same thing. Needless to say, we did not give that again! 

Since that we are now taking the medication Dextroamphitamine.  So far, I'm not loving it, but I'll be honest, we haven't been very good at giving it on schedule, so bad on us. 

What we have learned is that we must be very vigilant at giving the medicine at the correct times, everyday to see maximum results. 

We are pretty new to dealing with the diagnosis of ADHD, but, so this is our story so far... 

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