Well I have ADD and I've found Green Tea Helpful. Usually they treat ADD with a stimulant and Green Tea seems to have the right amount of caffine. I would make sure that you try age appropriate remedies though. I've also heard Omega-3, and B vitamins help. I haven't had much success with those personally. Maybe you could try aroma-therapy. Try burning some essential oil in the background while he is trying to do his homework. Does he have homework? Lavender works well. Or make a room mist with peppermint oil, which is very volatile. I buy my essential oils at the health market at my grocery store. "Young Living" is a good brand. Make sure they say 100% pure, or theraputic grade, they also should not have the same price on different oils. You don't want the synthetic fragrance you want the real thing. It helps when I am in a pleasant environment that is well organized and distraction free. Something else you might try is, tokens. I don't suggest this but, I used to use cigarettes as a type of motivation to focus and get work done. I quit smoking so now I just give myself a pat on the back. Maybe you could use some type of reward system for good behavior. Something I wish I would have worked on when I was younger was goals and motivating factors. It's really a struggle when you are always battling your ADD and it can cause alot more problems down the road especially if you make it a big issue for him. It's a constant batttle and it's hereditary, I'm sure youve realized. So positive reinforcment is always good and what better way to teach that then goal setting and achieving.
Hope I helped.
For myself problems with my blood sugar have cause bad problems with my ability to control my impulses and to focus. You might try cutting out sugar from his diet. Avoid anything refined, and cut down on fruit. To see much of a difference you'll need to really keep an eye on it and make sure he's getting other sources of energy. For times when I really need to focus standing on my head for a few minutes at a time seems to help too. Sounds weird, but it works.
Supplement wise... caffiene without the sugar is good. So like janesez suggested Green Tea is great for that, but black tea is better. The regular lipton tea bags are loaded with caffeine, so is Earl Grey. You can sweeten it with Stevia (which is great stuff BTW). Essentially you want to stimulate his mind, not his body, hence the reason to avoid the sugars. You can also try L-carnitine. It helps with converting cellular energy and metabolizing fats. This page: http://www.evitamins.com/healthnotes.asp?ContentID=1004008 has some info on that and diets too.
Cognitive therapy is going to go a long ways too. Maybe get him into a martial arts program, it would give him a place to burn off his energy while teaching him to focus. Of course, you don't have to tell him that, he'll probably just think it's cool.
Thank you so much for your helpful advice! I am going to try everything you have suggested. A friend of mine suggested Mt. Dew, but I have been afraid to give that to him because of the sugar. I don't allow my kids to drink sodas, mainly water and milk only, with the occassional juice (capri sun roaring water, if that's ever really a juice?) in their lunch for school. I know it has to be hard on him, and I really try to keep that in mind when he does something he isn't supposed to do. But he can only use that excuse so many times before I realize it's just an "excuse" I was not aware that ADD is hereditary, although I have suspected my husband has it..LOL!
Thanks again, and please keep the suggestions coming! I need ALL the help I can get right now!
SPEAR THE ROD SPIOL THE CHILD.............................
I have a little boy who has ADHD and Asperguer's and believe me when I tell you that there is no drug that can deal with that.
It is very challenging to rise and live with a child who is always mad, aggressive and has explanations for everything, it can be so, so frustrating.
My son is 9 now and he has been on meds forever, but it did not work and he was more lunatic that anything while drugged, also very depressed.
Now we areworking with Homeopathic medicine and it is working very well. (Also 9 years of behavioral training are paying off, finally!)
I know how you feel, and how this affects your marriage, I walked the road too. But if you love your husband you must try to love the kid as your own and do something for him, that his mother will not. Love him, and bear him. Now, there is no rest stop on this highway, it is high speed all the way, but you can manage, look out for support groups, you need to cry out your anxiety, if you crash he crashes too and so does your husband.
There are many places that you can go for help, ask in Public Health office or talk to the school's social worker. Go and ask for a non-profit organization in your area that provides Mental Health services, they normally have "scale fees" based in your income, most people do not pay at this organizations, or pay just 10 bucks or so for each visit. They can also help with meds... but this is a dangerous path that you must be aware of.
My heart goes to you, keep strong, good luck.
Before we tried medicine for my son who has ADHD I heard that if u take all gluten and caseins (a milk by product) out of your child's diet that can help with the ADHD (these people say ADHD is just a different kind of allergic reaction to certain things in our diet). I did not have any success with it. But I do know parents that have had success with it. I think it just depends on the child. My son does very well with his medicines. I feel with the focalin xr (15 mg) he is on and Clonidine he does a lot better than before on his work in school (and listening to me). Good Luck!
Stucture and patience........my 23 yr is ADHD and was never on meds. We used behavior contracts, rewards and concrete immediate consequences that mattered to him. Every time he came home without homework....we went back to school, got it then no TV, video games, etc for that night. We did this from k-middle school....by HS he didn't need that anymore. We had strict curfews especially when he started driving and enforced them. Including the time I went to the "party" house in my PJ's when he was late.
In HS....we continued with the contract but also paid for grades......he graduated as an honor student and recently grad from college.
It was not east and still isn't. ADHD kids are less mature than their peers, tend to be impulsive and don't see the consequences of their actions. If you can create a positive structure with consistent consequences that matter to your son....you can get great results.
BTW....because of my son's high energy level we very seldom grounded him and we never took away sports. I had to come up with creative alternatives....some were a little "out" there. Today we laugh about some of them.
My daughter has adhd and I chose to stop the meds. We have since tried l-theanine capsules (from green tea) twice daily, vitamin b, omega 3 and homeopathic remedies icluding sepia or veratrum(sp?). It is not as effective as meds but helps in a huge way. With nothing her behaviour at school is a 2 out of 10. On all this it is a 6-7 according to the teachers. Hope it helps and good luck.
How strange that I have not been on medhealth for a while and then lo and behold I find you in the ADD area. I guess we have some strange connection going on. I wish I could help you with home remedies but s you can see from my letter, I am struggling with both my husband and 19 year old son. I read all the responses to your letter and I am happy to hear that some of these things have worked. I guess it couldn't hurt to try them. Good luck with this. I hope it never goes in the direction that my sons problem is going in.
Well, I am sure you have it all taken care of by now but I thought that I will still give my advice for others that may have this same problem.
I have dealt with ADD issues for my whole life and still have them as an adult. I also have been in contact with many children with severe ADD symptoms. So my advice is as follows:
For school work:
1. Children with ADD hate school. They will do anything to avoid doing homework because it is hard, they don't get it, and it takes a long time (people with ADD tend to take about twice as long to do the same work as someone without it)
a. Keep in constant contact with the teachers. i.e. Have them sign an assignment notebook that the child wrote down their assignment in (in pen because they will surely erase the assignments in pencil after the teacher has signed it), or have the teacher send you a daily email with the assignments for the day.
b. When studying, mix it up. And mix it up often. People with ADD get bored very easily when doing things they are not interested in. Make flash cards, have them read it out loud, you read it out loud to them, quiz them, make homemade worksheets.
c. Have an area set aside with NO distractions. Some students can study with music in the backround, the TV on, or with a view of the outside world, but students with ADD can't handle that and still be productive. They already battle the distractions in their head about EVERYTHING else, outside distractions should be minimal, if not, nonexistant.
d. Take lots of breaks. People with ADD get frusterated and a feeling of their "brain being full". Every 20 or 30 minutes let them get up for a few minutes and walk around.
2. At home
a. Structure! I can't express how important structure is. Everyday should be very close to the same. Study time, dinner time, bed time, tv time...they should all be at the same time everyday. It reduces frustration and provides comfort in knowing what is going to happen and when. Behavior problems will decrease drastically once the child gets used to this one small step.
b. Take everything away. Most parents give their children everything and take things away when they do things the parents don't approve of. In my experience this teaches children to find ways around it. (Don't get caught and nothing will happen). It teaches to hide poor behavior as opposed to showing off good behavior. By taking everything away from the beginning and allowing priveledges for studying, or chores it gives a feeling of accomplishment and pride in what they have done. This is particularly helpful in kids with ADD since they have very low self esteem. Think about it, you don't get cable if you don't go to work and make the money to pay for it. You earned your TV time.
c. Provide immediate concequences for actions. For children with ADD a great one to try is physical activity. This helps relieve frustration, burn off energy, and also promotes physical activity. The amount should reflect the issue. For example, your child back-talks you - 10 push ups, your child takes TV time without earning it - 50 push ups, your childs hits his kid sister, 100 jumping jacks. Do the same thing, EVERYTIME.
d. Put it in writing. Put house rules in writing. That way, there is no forgetting and no mistaking.
Good Luck. I hope this advice works. Teaching children how to cope with ADD is something that will follow them their whole life. ADD doesn't go away but if you can learn how to deal with your individual problems you can overcome it!
If anyone has any questions please feel free to contact me at
Entitle it: ADD Posting
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brandi.minor is my user name for my email
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Thank you for everyone's input! We finally got his mother to give us his insurance card (a copy of it anyway) and we got him on the proper medication. He's on metadate 20 mg once a day. It has helped tremendously with his school work and grades. He has went from being a "C" (report card) student, to an A and B student. I also have him on Fish Oil (to support healthy heart since he has heart murmurs) and Melatonin to promote brain function.
Now if only there were a "behavior" pill...LOL! J/K!