Number of kids: 4
Ages of kids: 18, 13, 12, 10
Problem: Attention Deficit Disorder without hyperactivity. Should I even consider having my child medicated to help concentration? No behavioral problems but cannot focus, stay on task, remember things and is very disorganized. What are the different medications and their advantages and disadvantages?
Solution posted by "Simlife" from Northstreet, MI: I would read the articles posted by doctor Thomas Armstrong, PhD in the "Parent Talk newsletter: Preteen Discovering Your Childs Learning Strengths"
Another solution submitted by Pam K from Federal Way, WA: I am a teacher of preschool students some with ADD and also the aunt of a 13 year old girl with ADHD. I believe that the decision of whether to medicate or not should be up to the parents, doctors and your child's teacher. I suggest that you meet with the teacher and doctor and talk about all your options before you medicate. The most frequently used medication for ADD is ritalin and the one I am most familiar with. Both my niece and a child in my class take it. It works well when the medication if in their system. When it wears off they are very distractable etc. Both sets of parents are happy with their decision to medicate their child. It is important if you do decide to medicate that the medication be given on time and at the correct intervals. Also, ask your doctor or school counselor for names of support groups in your area. Parents who have children with ADD can be your greatest resource. Also, see about taking some parenting classes that will give you specific ways to work with your child. Don't forget to be consistent. My sister in law uses a check sheet to keep my niece on track at home. It tells her exactly what she should be doing. This helps remind her child what her job is and keeps my sister in law from being a nag. Good Luck.
Another solution submitted by Rosaria from Portugal: I am a Portuguese mother with 2 children (6 and 13 years old); I thinj the youngest has problems related to ADD. Here in Portugal, doctors never told me what he had; he was a normal baby until 1 year old, where he became aggressive, and his behavior did not have the development that I expected. There were no physical reasons in the basis of this problem (birth complications, or others). When he was 3 years old, I went to a psychologist who told me that he had a serious problem of development (he didn't mention the name or causes) and there were no causes, prognosis or solutions in the future. Upon his suggestion, my child went to a therapy for about 1 year; I quit the therapy because I didn't see any results and I spent too much time on it (my work was affected so I had to get home later). When he was 5 years old, I went to a neurologist who told me that he had no physical problems, apparently, related to deficiencies; he suggested Ritalin to help concentration in school, later. No one never mentioned ADD. On the Web, in the IRSC site, I found some pages related to ADD/ADHD; regarding the symptoms, I realized he has ADD (with no ADHD). I found that a new hope for these cases has been achieving successes in the US, with Pycnogenol a natural compound. I suggest you read those pages. I am trying this with my child since May 1997; it has no secondary effects, so, it doesn't do any harm. He is much more calm now, he can stay longer focused on tasks, and he he's interested in a much wider variety of subjects. I don t know if this is a solution - it is a hope, so I am trying to help him and my whole family life. I plan to keep you informed upon the results.