I have a 7 year old son that was diagnosed ADHD over a year ago. He has been on meds since he was diagnosed. While the meds seem to help his focus they have not helped with his chewing on any and everything he can. I have taken him back to the Dr. and she switched his meds, still didn't help. He started biting holes in his shirt collar and sleeves. Now he also chews on the WII controller, PSP games and charger, and the Xbox controller. I am at my wits end. I don't know what to do and I hate that I get angry at him for it. I read some other comments and people said they grow out of it, but could someone give me some ideas on how to deal with this.....I can't afford to keep replacing things he chews up.
My son is 7 and was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 3. He was on adderall for 3 years until my medical stopped covering it. Now he is on Methylin ER. He also chews on things, especially the coller around his jacket, if he doesn't have that on its his shirts, he will also chew on his fingernails, or the skin around his nails, his toys etc..so I know what you mean. I don't know why they do this, it could be part of the disorder or an affect from the meds. I don't get mad at him anymore because then he does it more. Instead everytime I see him to it I tell him to stop, I constantly remind him to stop chewing, hoping eventually he'll get sick of hearing me tell him and stop lol. If he chews on toys etc, I take them away. Hope this helped at least a little lol. Good luck.
Here's another option.- your son might not have ADHD at all but instead be suffering from anxiety. Google the phrase "anxiety and children" or "anxiety behaviors in children" and see if the descriptions are similar to those of your child. Anxiety is sometimes misdiagnosed as ADD/ADHD as many of the behaviours are similar. If you think this might be the case, then discuss this possibility with your child's doctor. Chewing on anyting is a huge red flag for anxiety. Just wondering ....
I have worked with people with special needs for many years. The first thing that comes to mind when you described your sons excessive chewing is a sensory processing (or sensory integration) disorder. I put a link bellow that describes what it is. I would suggest getting an assessment by an occupational therapist. If he does have these issues they can help to develop a sensory diet for him that can help. Sensory processing disorder are many times mistaken for ADHD because they both can cause attention problems. However, it is quite possible that both are going on at the same time. It can be difficult to figure these things out, and I would suggest always getting a second opinion. Best of luck.
My son has sensory integration disorder and is a chewer. It is common with sensory but also adhd. Some kids soothe themselves orally. It is far more common than you may realize. They have whole sections in sensory catelogues and therapy sources for oral soothing. For an older child, offering a coffee stirer can work. They can chew on that in class. They make these nifty things that go on the back of pencils (like where the eraser is) that are to be chewed (some even vibrate). They make beads for the wrist of a necklace that can be chewed. For younger kids, they have a slew of toys to be chewed which offering at home is fine for an older child. All of this may sound strange---------- but it is providing comfort to a child. A way for them to self calm.
I have found that by addressing my son's sensory issues, his need to chew his shirt sleeve or collar is virtually gone. So looking at the underlying problem can solve a lot. If your child has adhd---------- do look into sensory because it can often really be that. But even if he is strictly adhd, his nervous system is over active. So, introducing activities that calm it may help. Swimming is the perfect exercise. Soccer is good. Rock climbing is great! Tumbling and gymnastics are awesome. Google "sensory integration disorder and heavy work" for many ideas of things to calm the nervous system that also work for an adhd child. (Michael Phelps is a famous adhd person that found swimming quite valuable in his ability to cope).
The web site given above is excellent. Look this up. good luck
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