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Vanessa,

I am brand new to this website, however I have a child with ADHD. My oldest son (he is 9 1/2), has been on Ritalin and Concerta since he was 5. He was so hyper, in preschool I received a phone call from the teacher the very first week he attended. It got worse in kindergarten. He was interupting the other students and was extremely impulsive. Now he is doing okay in school (4th grade) as far as grades go (mostly B's). He is on 36 mg of Concerta a day. He is very small for his age and slim. My husband and I are both tall people and our other children are at or above average size for their ages. His behavior in school has gotten worse. Last year and this year he has gotten in trouble in class, talking out of turn, blurting answers out, smarting off to the teacher..etc.. and is about to get suspended from school. I spoke with his Ped. and she told me not to worry, we'll check into it more on the next visit (next year). I said no, and began to ask around for additional testing to be done for my son, to find out if he really only has ADHD or other issues that may need to be addressed. Luckily, I found a Neuropsychologist (there aren't very many practicing in our area) that did extensive testing on my son and made some other recommendations. She said that his self esteem was very low and he had alot of bottled up anger. Probably caused by the lack of people understanding him, he feels dumb and stupid and gets frustrated easily. She suggested trying Straterra and also an anti-depressant to take at night (he also has a hard time winding down at night). We will be trying this in the next few weeks and I'm hopeful he can get off the Concerta. I'm also hopeful that his weight will pick up and he will not feel so mis-understood. He's been on the other medications for as long as he's not been on medication. I think they worked for a little while, but the side effects (not eating, shakiness and depression) almost seem worse than the actual ADHD. I know these meds aren't for everyone, and I'm not even sure Straterra will be the answer, but I'm hopeful. I'll let you know what happens in the next few weeks once we start him on the Straterra and the anti-depressant. Also, we are going to start therapy (mostly one on one discussions with the dr. and my son) so that he has a "safe" person (not mom & dad) to talk to someone about his feelings. She said that alot of his behavior problems started when he was first diagnosed with the ADHD, but were never dealt with, and that talking about them will really help him.

Let us know how you journey is going too!
Sincerely,
Laurie :wave:

[QUOTE=Coopersmom]My son is 7 and has been on "meds" for eight months, first Adderall, then Concerta and now back to Adderall. My question is has anyone had a child stay on meds all through school? 1st through 12th?

I am so worried about the long term effect of these medicines. I have read stories from other parents that are glad they put their kids on meds, but, most of those kids were diagnosed when they were teenagers.

I am working on alternatives to give him, but am wondering if anyone has a story they can share about this journey we are all on with ourselves and our children.

Many thanks,
Vanessa :)[/QUOTE]
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