If I were to generalize what I have seen from the years on this site - I would say that the communication with your doctor is perhaps the single most important factor. All kids are different. Those parents that gave the med to their child and then figured that their job was done, seemed to have more problems. Doctors will start the child off on the lowest dose and wait for the parental response. Communication is really important. And if your doc gives you the old " take the meds and I'll see you in two months" routine - find another doctor fast. In fact, sometimes it takes some trial and error to find the right med as they also do things differently. So having the courage to experiment is also important.
There are some interesting comments from both sides of the medication fence in this link - http://www.medhelp.org/posts/ADD---ADHD/How-long-before-seeing-meds-work-for-ADD-ADHD/show/1074551#post_7381430
Also this site has lots of good posts on the subject - http://www.additudemag.com/topic/adhd-treatment/better-adhd-treatment.html
And this is also a very helpful site - - http://www.help4adhd.org/en/treatment/treatmentoverview
I hope these help! Please feel free to post if you have any more questions. Best wishes.
Take a look at wikapedias site on ADHD. There are several subtypes and even a new thing called Slugish Cognative Tempo or SCT. Different meds work better on one subtype than another. You need to find out which on they have to start. Low dose Dexidrine I think works better on inattentive type ADD and SCT, where as Rittalin will drive them up the wall, overloading them causing mood swings mania etc. I have heard that Rittalin works best for ADHD. You will notice the effect within min of taking the meds if they are the right one for the individual. Better impulse control such as a decrease in motor mouthing for ADHD for example and they will calm down. Some one with SCT will do better with fuctioning in complex social situations like a room full of people having conversations. Their processing speed with will increase so they can keep up with whats going on and not feel so lost. If your child is not hyperactive, and seems slow and spacy in complex social situations, Type in SCT on Wikapedia and check it out. SCT is just starting to be recognized, is far less common and is mistaken for inattentive ADD . For all of these subtypes, take the smallest dose you can. Less is more in my opinion. I have SCT and low dose Dexedrine has almost no side affects at all. It works really well.
Excelllent post ! Thankyou. I had not come across SCT until I followed up on your link recommendations. Now, I need to go back to some of my regular resources and see if it has been mentioned and I missed it or they are just not up to date. Anyway, good info. Please keep posting!
Thank you for your response s! Nice links and some good info..I'm really looking for some personal. Stories from parents who have been dealing with there child with using the meds and if they've seen significant good or bad change! Thanks
I have a son who is 9 and has been on ADHD meds for a bit over a year. He was in second grade and was coming home with his book bag overflowing with unfinished work from class. I am Bipolar and also ADHD so I understand the concept of meds and the process one has to go through to find the right ones. I didn't know how to feel about putting him on meds. He was SO YOUNG! I did a lot of research.
We got him an appointment with a Psychiatrist. After much trepidation, we put him on Ritalin. We saw almost immediate results! He was actually able to focus! It was like he was a completely different kid. he started succeeding in school. He was actually reading and doing his homework! Then, after a little while, the Ritalin stopped working. Instead, he became irritable and started lashing out at his sister. It was pretty bad. They would bicker and he would hit her. Instead of talking it out. He also wasn't very hungry. He didn't want to eat and we had to encourage him to eat. I’ll try to make this a short story, but I want you to be able to understand that this isn't an easy process, nor is it fast or without risk.
Its now a year later. we changed his meds to adderall a few months ago and it worked for a little while, but it really wasn't very good for him. He was eating better, he was better focused, but also very aggressive and he wasn't in a very good mood. My son is usually a sweet, smart, mischievous boy who never holds still. He is thin, painfully so now. He can't sit without it hurting his butt. We have switched him to concerta and it seems to be OK. Its worth it to be able to have a conversation with him and know he is listening. I can give him a direction and he actually hears me. I still make him repeat my instructions, but I don't feel like he's always in la la land.
You must also bear in mind that medication alone won't do it. The child will also need therapy to deal with whatever else is going on with them. So, in our case yes, meds were helpful. We have now had 2 that worked for a little while and then stopped. For us, cost was also an issue for a bit. The kids were in between insurance agencies and the long acting medication is more expensive. The bottom line: Yes, meds can help, they can also be a problem. Always keep in close touch with your Dr and pharmacist. IMHO if a child starts new meds, the rd should want to do a follow up in 2 weeks. 4 at the most. Also read all product inserts. Talk to your pharmacist. Don't be afraid to ask the "silly questions" that pop up. Always weigh the risks vs the benefits!! I hope I have helped. I feel like I have just babbled and not given any helpful information.
Lots of really good info. Thankyou.
by the way, here is a link you might find helpful. Its about finding the right dose/or kind of meds. http://www.corepsych.com/2009/04/adhd-medications-use-the-therapeutic-window-corepsych-radio
Hope to hear from you again.