My 7 year old chews on everything ALL the time, she is on meds for ADHD and she has also been said to have anxiety problems, She also has other compulsive behaviors. Is this a sign of a bigger problem when it is this sever. A few doctors have said that she could have a mild form of autisum. I just don't know what to think anymore, Please help!
The compulsive chewing can actually be a side effect of stimulant medications employed to treat ADHD. Was she engaging in the chewing prior to commencing treatment with the medication? If so, it may well be that she has an anxiety disorder alongside her ADHD. This will require further evaluation by her menatl health providers. Some of the ADHD medications can exacerbate anxiety, so it's a variable that needs to be considered in treating the ADHD. If it looks like either (a) her medication may cause the chewing, or (b) the medication is exacerbating her anxiety, it would be sensible to switch to a non-stimulant treatment (such as Strattera) for the ADHD. Talk to her providers about all this. Also, ask them if she thinks she might display a PDD-spectrum disorder. Compulsive chewing is not typical of such disorders except in the more severe categories.
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