ADD / ADHD Community
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Avatar universal

why don't doctors test for other things and not just put on medicine for add or adhd.

It seems these days that doctors teachers along with some parents .

Why do doctors put children on all these medicines with all the side effects.

Shouldn't they look at the hole picture and run blood work up, and check for other things that come
with children who have these problems to rule out things before given them medicines.

like   landow kleffner syndrome and lennox gastro syndrome and other  ones.

My son was on adderall and then concerta witch both have the side effects that can cause seizures.and we have been told he could have LKS  and then told it was more like to be LGS .

The medicine really changed my boy and now he is on medicines for his seizures since 2006 and they have not worked and on June 26th this year he had the VNS put in and still waiting to see if that helps with hopes to get him of some of his seizure medicine witch also has side effects.

I also added omega 3 and b6 to try and help him.

22 Responses
973741 tn?1342346373
Well that is a good question.  I'm sorry about your son's story----  that is terrible.  I think that the easy route is to try to put a band aid on everything and that is what these people are trying to do.  Often times such as situations like yours----  the consequences are far worse than the original problem.  I know that there are kids who benefit from medication but it is definately not the answer for everyone who presents a certain way (or don't) at school and in life.  I think I would have to be absolutely sure and believe in my heart that ADD/ADHD was the right diagnosis and even then I'd probably try other things first before I medicated.  I'm reading about natural remedies these days and it is amazing material.  I think every family has to make the choice for themselves and their children but they should arm themselves with information first.  There are no quick fixes or easy answers.

And I agree that there are different things that get lumped into ADD/ADHD that are very different.  Sensory is another one and my son has this.  I am proactive in addressing it because we've had such great results doing so.  But this doesn't include medication.  It includes all things that my child loves to do and feeds his nervous system (monkey bars, trampolines, etc.)  It's worked thus far but if he had been misdiagnosed as ADD/ADHD-----  he could have been on meds and then had side effects while still not addressing the problem and having the problematic behaviors.

I will say that teachers these days are overstressed in the classroom. Funding cuts everywhere means they are stretched very thin, classroom size is growing and resources are shrinking.  I think they are a valuable source of information comparing my child to those around them and judging where they are developmentally vs their peers (without my biased opinion as their parent).  But as far as making medical recommendations of medicating, that is too much.  Working as a team with them and coming up with strategies to make a child more comfortable in a classroom is beneficial.  And there are good teachers that want this and bad teachers that want it to be easy.  With shrinking resources/funding cuts----- I'm afraid there will be more teachers who want it to be easy.  That is when a parent must be the advocate for their child.  

All of this is just my opinion-----  no more valuable than any others.  Again, sorry for your situation and best of luck to you and your son.
189897 tn?1441130118
Very nicely said specialmom,  I agree with you completely.
757137 tn?1347200053
Some doctors think there is a pill for everything. It certainly is easier than practicing medicine or using common sense. On this forum I keep hearing of parents bullied into putting very young children on medication for ADD. It never occurs to these "specialists" to give the kids a chance to settle down and grow up. Drug them and keep them quiet. It certainly pleases the teachers who prefer quiet robots to healthy spirited children. We have to give up our worship of conformity, and our worship of academic excellence over the development of the whole child. I am very sorry for what happened to your son.
189897 tn?1441130118
   ok, I realize that your comments are in response to the original statement.  But as long as I am reading this forum (which I have been doing for almost 3 years now), I am not going to allow gross over generalizations to go unchallenged.    
   I agree, I have worked with (and worse, even had to principal over) teachers that could not stand a noise in their classroom.  But I have also worked with a lot of teachers, that at the end of the day would scrape the kid off the wall, smile sweetly, and say, ' ok sugar, tomorrow will be a better day."   Not ALL teachers want quiet robots.  Frankly they bored the heck out of me.  So please say, "some teachers". and recommend that the parents start looking for a teacher the next year that will be a better fit for their child.  And sometimes that won't happen.  Which is when dkpoto's ideas are pertinent.  The only thing I worry about is the socialization process and how  the child will adapt to the real world once they turn 18.  
  I guess my point is that ADHD is a hugely complicated subject with no one answer as every child and parent is different.  Over generalizing tends to lead to simple answers that may not be the best answer.
Avatar universal
Did you not notice that I said some.

The teacher my son was a special Ed Teacher and in my mine she shouldn't have been teaching. Every thing that went wrong was my son thou my son would tell his teacher and me if he did something wrong and I had told her that and she new the first time he did he told her right away it was him. And he was in her class because he needed the help.I only wish I had fought for my son a little harder.he had this same teacher for two years and I said by the end of the second year there was know way I wanted my son in her class or even the school.

If I where to see this lady today I would tell her what I think of her,old lady or not.
there was two teachers in the room and with 8 kids and she couldn't handle and teach my son and she was not the only school that couldn't handle a child who had a hard time learning  and had to use the t owlet a lot.
189897 tn?1441130118
Actually dolly, I wasn't referring to your post.  In fact, I agree with it.

I was referring to allmymarbles post when she said, "It certainly pleases the teachers who prefer quiet robots to healthy spirited children."  And actually in reading that again she says "the teachers".  My bad.  And she is right, since I do know of teachers that didn't want to hear a sound in the classroom - hard to believe.  
Avatar universal
Hi Guys, I think you are all touching on something that is dear to my heart.. and that is, that although kids need to know boundaries to be safe and to be able to socialize in the real world after leaving school, we can not continue as a society to put kids in a box where they are to be seen and not heard. The need to make kids conform to a standard that does not work for them is futile in my opinion... especially with a defiant like me.

I'm a big advocate for freedom for kids... this is not to say let them run wild, but if you as a parent who knows your child the best, offers rewards and consequences with regard to the child's actions, then what better set of boundaries can we give them? These rewards and consequences are something tangible that the child can then associate with in the future and helps with memory in regards to behavior.

Granted, before anybody gets mad, I'm not a mom. Unfortunately for me, I haven't been blessed with a life of my own to care for, except me that is... But I have over the years helped out numerous families through babysitting, taking an interest in kids and being a nanny to two kids one of which was just like me, an Extroverted ADHD'r. So not being the "parent" has it's advantages I suppose, but one thing I've been successful at is setting boundaries, rewards and consequences in regards to behavior. Something that I put into practice first with myself and then branched off when working with troubled kids.

Both good and bad behavior that is... I celebrate the small victories and reward overcoming the hard ones. The boundaries are simple... find what means the most to the child and reward or set a consequence regarding that particular thing. Don't punish, hit or scream and I'm finding out with an ADHD Slow Cognitive Husband that talking too much, or reasoning, doesn't work very well in all circumstances either.

I guess it's all a big puzzle and the doctors are only doing what they've been taught to do. Find the symptoms and treat them with hope that they will lead to a cause and effect. Teachers, although some of them can care less because of their own issues, yep teachers have issues too, there are many out there now like me (I'm not a teacher, couldn't make it through school) that look at the child, the inner child and try to locate common ground in which they can reach and teach. I have one particular friend that got her masters in that way of teaching simply because she watched her own family torn apart by her brother who was unmanageable by the old standards and this was before medications were even available for kids, let alone a diagnosis of ADHD.

I think most of the people who are not ADHD, have no clue as to how smart we really are and that if we are reached in the world we live in, not the one that we are forced to fit into, that we really can be a successful part of society and in fact are a key factor in our society as it is now. There are tons of examples if you really look at them...

In regards to teachers, could it be possible that many who work in a particular field chose that field long ago and have forgotten the passion they once had doing it? And if so, then why is it that parents assume that all teachers should just do what their job is regardless of their own personal issues? What ever happened to parents teaching the kids as well, working with the teachers, helping the teachers and being there for them as well? I'm not saying that all parents abandon their kids on the school house steps, but in our busy lives that depend on a two income household, what are the real consequences of Mom or Dad not being there more for their kids due to work schedules, meetings and business trips?

I also feel that for the older teachers who have been in the system a long time, they are burnt out and tired of dealing with irresponsible parents let alone someone like me who couldn't sit still, popped bubble gum, talked incessantly, asked tons of questions, was too smart to be in the grade I was, but couldn't do well on tests to move me up a level simply because I'd get bored with having to prove myself all the time and so would randomly pick answers to get it over with so I could do out and play...

All this to say that I don't have all the answers either, but I do have an inside track as to what it's like to be ADHD, non medicated, and pretty much ignored most of my years in school. I passed because the teachers knew I knew what the answers were, how could they not when I never raised my hand but always blurted out the answer in class? But try and put me in a box without a book and you had trouble on your hands... A natural born leader is what they said I was because I was able to get everybody else going on my energy alone... could you imagine what a catalyst I was back then? And how now as an adult with ADHD I can use that same energy to help kids who have the same ability, to learn to channel it properly without binding them with labels and expectations?

Sometimes I feel that in order for a society to grow, we have to look to the past and see the errors of our ways. Some one really smart once said, that you can't continue to do the same thing over and over in the same way and expect a different answer, unless you change the way you do it....
535822 tn?1443980380
Great  centwiz great post... speaks for how I feel about it ..
770551 tn?1305582501
I was lucky and found a group of great people to help my little guy and although we agreed on medication it is not the long term plan.  We are using an attachment therapy called the Nurtured Heart approach so that the medication can be eliminated or kept to a minimum as time goes on.  If you google nurturing greatness you will come across this wonderful program.  It all comes down to strong safe relationships in a child's life and giving kids a way to begin a positive self dialog.  
757137 tn?1347200053
Since you are a person with a moderate, careful approach, you might look to your child's diet. If he is heavy on sweets - sodas, candy, rich desserts and snacks, sweetened fruit drinks instead of fruit - you just might solve your problem by taking him off those things gradually. Sugar makes children hyper and irritable. If he is not, then that is not where the problem lies.
973741 tn?1342346373
I think diet is really interesting concerning kids.  My kids don't really get too much sugery stuff other than some juice and an occasional popsicle or fruit chews.  They eat tons of fruit that they consider their sweet thing.  Last year at Halloween, my two boys who were 3 and 4 at the time went bonkers for their candy.  Before my husband and I could get it from them (or really realized how much they were consuming) they had wolfed down more candy than I think they had had their whole life!  For the next hour and a half----  they flew around the house in circles like true maniacs-----  they were just a blur as they wized past my husband and I.  Finally, they just kind of passed out with little chocolate grins.  I've never seen anything like it and my husband and I still laugh about it . . . although we have a divide and conquer the candy plan already set up for this year.  If I ever wondered if sugar can make a kid hyper, I got my answer!  Funny, it doesn't have that effect on me . . .irritable maybe, but that just might be my disposition.  Anyway, the thing I am trying to see if it has an effect is processed foods.  I wonder about this and am doing my own test.  We'll see how it goes.
203342 tn?1328740807
You make a good point in that it's a good idea to check all avenues before accepting any kind of diagnosis. I speak from experience. Our daughter was finally diagnosed, by accident, with having Auditory Processing Disorder (APD), which greatly mimics ADD. She would pass a normal hearing test. I knew something was wrong but it wasn't until I saw an audiologist for my son (who had ringing in his ears) and was talking to the doctor and mentioned my daughter's difficulties in school. He said he would be glad to test her as he suspected APD from what I told him. Well, sure enough, she did very poorly on that part of the hearing test. The doctor explained to me that many parents put their kids on Ritalin, thinking they have ADD when they actually have APD and he recommends getting that checked first before any kind of diagnosis.
With APD kids have a hard time blocking out background noises and therefore get distracted easily.
It took a long time for us to find out what was going on with her but now we at least know and were able to get an IEP on her to help her in school.
Just something to think about. Check all options before assuming your child has ADD. You never know, it could be something else.
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