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Avatar universal


I read the post from SueNYC.  I am curious about the Tenex for emotional kids.  My 7 yr grandson has been diagnosed with ADD.  He is taking Stratera.  He has been for about 1yr.  His dose is 25 mg a day.  It helps with some things.  His main problem is his mouth(back talking), irritates to point she cries his sister,  just plain defies  you some days, and cries at the drop of a hat(sometimes for no reason and others when not getting his way).   His mom is almost to her breaking point with his behavior.  They live with us.  His mom and dad are divorced.  Which I blame some of it on that. His dad just walked out when he was 4yrs old.  He sees no reason for the medicine.  He seems to let him do and get by with what he wants to when he is with him and his other grandma.  My daughter doesn't want to give up on him.  She has also tried, time outs, taking things away, and spanking.  He just screams louder sometimes.  She has talked about letting him live with his dad.  BIG mistake I feel, he is part of the reason now.  He will be 10x worse.  or not.  
So what does the Tenex do.
9 Responses
Avatar universal
I am curious whether your grandson tried other medications before using Stratera?  If he is formally diagnosed with ADD or ADHD, the first medication that the doctor tries is a stimulant such as Ritalin or Metadate (assuming no medical reasons to avoid the stimulant such as heart disease).  Did your daughter try one of the stimulants? Stratera is not a stimulant. It usually is given to ADD children that tried the stimulant route, but the stimulant did not work.  Tenex is not a stimulant either. It is my understanding that it is harder to get Tenex and Stratera dosages right and the probability of these medications working to control ADD is lower than the stimulant. I assume your daughter has a psychiatrist or "child development" pediatrician that takes care if your granchild. If they did not try the stimulant, talk to the doctor about trying Metadate CD if there is no other medical reasons to avoid Metadate.
Good luck.
Avatar universal
They did try 2 other medicines before the Strattera.  One of them was Ritalin and he was worse.  He gets things taken away from him for his behavior.  The spanking never worked, made it worse.  Her doctor told her to try putting a dab of vinegar on his tongue when sassing back.  That is what he did with his daughter and it worked.  That does seem to work sometimes.  Has to be apple cider vinegar.  He knows when he has gone too far and will apologize when I mention getting the vinegar.  He seems to know which buttons to push.  One day he can be good all day and the next one or 2 be a little tyrant on wheels.  He has a cousin on his dad's side who was diaganosed with ADD as a kid.  The behavioral issues is our biggest concern right now.  He does good in school-A's and B's in subjects.  His attitude and conduct sometime is lower.  I do not want him on any medicines that will make him lethargic all the time.
Avatar universal
You should post your behavior questions under the other Forum called "Child Behavior" under the expert Forums. There is a doctor in the other forum that responds to these type of questions and he is very good. Please try to post again under that forum.
I am not a doctor but I do not think that your punishment with spankings or vinegar on the tongue is a good idea. The experts say that you never should spank or do body punishment to a child, most of all if the child has ADHD. You need to use time-outs and positive discipline. The doctor that I mentioned in the other forum recommends a book called SOS for Parents by an author called Lynn. Try to buy  this book and use the approaches that he teaches.  Your grandson seems to be a good academic student. Do his teachers complain of his behavior at school? If not, the issue could be the way you and your daughter are handling the discipline at home. Try to reward him for good behavior and give him time outs for bad behavior based on the book that I mentioned. Never spank a child or give him vinegar (unless it is in a salad dressing). If his doctor sugested such a method, I would find a new doctor.  Make sure that he gets lots of sleep, lots of outside exercise, vitamins and Omega 3 fish oil.  Also make sure that his diet is good and clean: No sugar, no preservatives in his food and no food coloring (read the Feingold diet).  Regarding his medicine, how much Ritalin did he take?  Maybe it was too much or too little.  Maybe Metadate CD is better. It takes a while to find the right medicine and dosage. You also need a good doctor.  Please post your questions in the other expert forum.  You are very lucky to have an ADHD child with such good grades.  Look at his positive qualities. Was he formally diagnosed as having ADHD by a child psychiatrist or ADHD child development doctor?  Make sure that you have a good doctor who is an expert in children and ADHD. Your pediatrician is not qualified to manage ADHD or even to perform the tests for ADHD. It takes a specialist. Good luck.
Avatar universal
The complete name of the book that I mentioned is: SOS Help for Parents by Lynn Clark. You could check it out from your library before you buy it. It is also not very expensive.  It is the best discipline book that I read and very easy to implement. You have to be consistent when using his recommended methods.
Avatar universal
First of all, we tried many different medications before we went on Tenex - and dosing was hard but I had a child psychiatrist who was also a pharmapsychologist.  Be prepared, a pharmapsychologist charges about $400/hr and most insurances don't cover all of it.  Actually, after he went to a special ed school for ADHD he is now medication free.

I wish "sassing" was our problem.  I can handle the "sassing" - my kid has ADHD off the charts - his executive dysfunction was in the single digits.  "Sassing" is more of an ODD issue and there really isn't  a drug for that - sorry to disappoint you.  What Tenex does is it can control emotional impulsivity - such as sudden rages that were more due to his inflexibility and his inability to transition.  In the end it was still an issue because he was very sleepy on the doses that worked but it did allow him to go to his new school until their behavioral techniques set in. Both his school and I were on a set methodology - so combined it was very powerful.  Funny thing, was his ADHD psychologist (an expert in the field) didn't like the methodology but agreed it was clinically proven for some of the hardcore cases.  

we use Dr. Greene's "The Explosive Child" which you probably wouldn't like from the sounds of your post.  You sound like a Dr, Barkley type  "he is the grandma rule - no dessert before your dinner"- the preferred method of NYU.  that is not a personal judgement - as I said, even the experts disagree.    Having said all that, boys react much more strongly to divorce than girls do - they are emotionally more fragile.  

As far as "sassing" goes - and trust me - this is almost impossible for me to do do my husband is the disciplinarian - but the punishments must be known ahead of time.

Avatar universal
The other thing is to start playing gems that increase compliancy.  One of our favorites was the coloring game.  It could be Lego, or whatever, but coloring was the least messy.  You start by making two rules - they must sit at the table and not throw any toys off of it.  If they leave the table then you turn around in your chair and shumn them (15 minute for the whole exercise).  They start by coloring - you do not comment on the picture or ask any questions - just compliment them.  Oh, I love the blue you chose.  Wow, what a great bird, tree, etc.  We are talking a compliment every 5 seconds.  Big surprise - the kid starts to talk to you.

After about two weeks you put in simple commands - like "use the yellow crayon".  You are not allowed to ask nicely - like "I would like you to use the yellow crayon".  If they don't comply - you shun.  We divided a paper into 4 quadrants.  $ requests.  If he accomplished them all he received a small prize.  But as far as getting the siblings to stop fighting - good luck.
Avatar universal
I also took Straterra - made me into a total B**TCH.  Husband said he would rather have a messy house.  these medications affect mental states - creating emotionally unstable states.  that is why my son couldn't take most of them.  

Also, Buspar has worked in some children.  It is an anti-anxiety drug.  Just don't go for the Prozac.  It made my son diinhibited (may be a sympton of bi-polar as they don't do well on many of these meds).  It may also explain that he can be pretty focused with schoolwork.

If he is not sleeping you can give him up to 10 mg of melantonin.  My son never slept and that helped alot.  Also, some kids are very food sensitive.  Cut out the artificial stuff for awhile (again harder because they love their snack food) and see if that works.  Or easier, give him some orange soda and see how he is acting an hour after he takes it.  My son always had terrible allergies (he had alot of ezcema) and we found out he was gluten intolerant.  The Celiac Center in NY did a big study (in which he was included) of children who had ADHD and carried the Celiac genes.  Though there rate of celiac was the same as the regular population - 75% of them were gluten intolerant and had antigliadins over a threshold of 20.  We are talking the real clinical definition.  Especially if you are of Irish descent - and if he has any skin problems, bathroom issues, behavioral problems, cavities - just have your pediatrician run a simple blood test on the next visit.  Does he love gluten laden snacks to other ones - that is a good hint that he may be affected.

Again, some of this is due to genetics but I am sure (whatever you think of his dad) it is probably having some affect.  My son listens to his dad far more than me.  On the other side, dads hate their kids getting medicated and labeled.  I remembered talking do his doctors at NYU about this - and though it never worked for Sam, the adderall was amazing for his sister.  She went from low grades to straight A's.
Avatar universal
I am a single mother my son his 12 and he adhd real bad he has been on adderal,and now he is on concerta which works great,but he also cries over the little things,has a very short temper and screams and yells at me for everything. We are currently in family counclin, but its not goin so well either. We live in cali which is 3200 miles away from any of my fam we moved out here cause of my work, so i have no help with him at all. Im loosin my mind due to all the meds they want to put my son on, concerta makes him not wanna eat, i have him in everything possible to keep him busy tae kwondo,soccer,and basketball. but at the end of the night nothing changes,if he is told to do something he pulls his hair and screams all the time,i dont know what to do anymore,pls if u have any suggestions for me i am willin to put them into effect or at least try.. I just dont want my son on meds for sleep.eating,anger,and adhd. pls email me  ***@****, u r the only one on here that seems to b able to give me some good advice other than just ,let someone else deal with it.He his my son I love  him with everything in my body ,mind,heart,and soul,and i will never give up but i do need help..
189897 tn?1441126518
        First, get the book - "The ADD/ ADHD Answer book," by Susan Ashley.   There is a lot there that will you both you and him - now and in the future.
       Second, I would think that the move you have made was not easy on either you or him.  However, you (hopefully) have gone off to a workplace that accepts you - he has moved into a new school with no friends.  And at his age, thats tough.  So there are several things going on here.   If the school situation or your response to the school situation improves.  That will help.  What I mean by that is  - what do his teachers say?  How is he doing at school?  Does he come home wiped out from the day?   He spends most of his day at school and it can have a big effect on the rest of his day.
     Not eating is a normal side effect and your prescribing doctor should have some ideas on this.  Does make me wonder though if you are going just through a pediatrician or a doctor that specializes in ADHD?
    Finally, the pulling hair and screaming is something that can be dealt with - but not easily.  I think he has learned that it works and thats why he continues to do it.  I bet he doesn't do that at school (and they are probably a lot stricter than you).  The standard is when he does this - its a timeout  (short).  Then try talking to him.  If he persists - repeat the timeout.  Nothing happens until he has calmed down and is ready to talk about it.  A great book that completely explains this system is,  "SOS Help for Parents," by Lynn Clark.   Hope this helps!  please post if you have any more questions.
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