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GingerAle, I have tried some of the same things that you are using. I have been giving my son a multivitamin, omega-3, and magnesium everyday for the past four months. I have also added cod liver oil, a multimineral, and vitamin c.

I would really like to get him off of the stimulant. He is normally such a happy carefree boy. However, after he started kindergarten he would have an enormous meltdown everyday when he got home. He would have another meltdown, every night, right before bed where he would cry and scream for over twenty minutes repeating over and over "I am so stupid. I am such an idiot." It was heart breaking. He was doing so well at school, and even though he was sitting in his seat, paying attention, and doing his work it was just too stressful for him. When his adhd was causing [I]me[/I] anxiety that was one thing, but when it began making my happy guy so miserable it was time to intervene. Concerta has been wonderful.

However, I am hopeful that we can find the right biomedical treatments for him that will make using stimulants unnecessary. Right now I considering using digestive enzymes.

While your son is so young you might consider a dietary approach to settling his behavior. Look up dietary interventions for adhd on the internet and see what you can find. If he can be helped by a special diet it will be so much easier to implement while he is a toddler. My experience with my autistic son has convinced me of what a powerful effect diet can have on behavior. He has been on a milk free diet (this includes eliminating everything with even trace amounts of milk in it) and the changes in him are remarkable. He can [U]sleep for the first time in his life[/U], he speaks more, has better eye contact, better focus, and better attention. If he gets even one sip of milk his sleep is effected for three days. I don't know if this is from the diet, the supplements (he takes alot), or a combination but he no longer has any symptoms of asthma and is completely off his asthma medications. I have read that soem kids with adhd are helped by eliminating milk and wheat. I was talking to a mom the other day who has had great success with the Feingold (?spelling) diet for her daughter with severe adhd. I really wish I would have investigated and tried dietary interventions with my 7 year old when he was tiny.

One thing that I have found that helps my son is too make sure he has several high protein snacks during the day. It doesn't slow him down but it does help him use all of his energy in a constructive manner instead of a destructive manner.

I do not know of any herbs. But I have read that Zinc has a calming effect, especially if given with magnesium. It is also supposed to help with sleep.
BetsyAnn, it is common for children with mild-ish (with a high IQ even more severe) ADHD, mild Tourette's or even autism spectrum disorders to "hold it together" during the school or work day and then "fall apart" when they get home... because all the stuff they kept inside just floods back and they can't hold it in any longer.

I am the same, although I don't tantrum or become aggressive etc. Mornings are mostly great but as time goes by I get more frustrated, anxiety creeps up and the effort of holding it together and trying to function "as normal" mounts up.

In the evening I get anxiety attacks, am unable to socialise, work or interact appropriately etc. On a bad/stressful day I even regress badly... and end up making weird screeching noises, rocking etc. when very stressed.

If he was Bipolar, he would be more likely to have problems in the morning, and he would have some episodes of bad behaviour at school... rage attacks and suchlike...
I know what you are going through- it is hard!
My 4 year old son- he'll be five saturday- has always been a live wire. From the day he was born-he's always been in motion. He used to lay in his bed at night, as an infant, scratching his matress in his sleep. When he first started running, he would run nonstop-then just drop over asleep. He pulled his first fire alarm at 18 a hospital. Emergency stops in elevators, code adams in walmart, kicked out of resteraunts....heck- we had our own "special" waiting room at the doctors office. Our waiting room was the room where they perform stress tests-I guess they thought it would be appropriate!!!! No, I'm not joking either. He actually WAS diagnosed as ADHD when he was 3. By two different doctors-and a psyc. doctor. The psyc. doctor actually made us leave-I think my son "slightly" frazzled her. I remember thinking-gosh, I guess she agrees with the other docs. She wouldn't even let us pay at the pay desk-she made us go to the waiting room to pay.
Time outs are IMPOSSIBLE!!!!! for ADHD children! If I send my son to his room, he pops his window open, knocks the screen out, and away he goes! And it's not grass under his window-its rocks and rose bushes. He could care less if he gets hurt in the process-all he knows is that he needs to keep moving. I don't have a minute to myself-I'm always too busy worrying about keeping him safe. He's taken off into the road, and when I made him go in the house for it, he slammed the door in my face and locked me out. Then he took off through the house and locked the other doors. We had to turn the lock around on the bathroom door, because he would lock himself in and vandelize it. But he got "even" with me for that. When I used the bathroom, he locked me in. Then he climbed up on the counter reached up into "repo" and grabbed a bag full of kit kats.....and ate them-all. Then he drank a can of soda and then unlocked the door.
One day, we went to my moms house to help her out. My son yelled "I'm going home now", and shot out the door. So, I got up to leave. My dad said, "oh, he's not going anywhere-sit down." I just said "you don't know your grandson do ya". By the time I got out the door, he was half way through my moms corn field.
Lately, I've been even more stressed. His medicine isn't very helpful. Instead of running around doing dangerous stuff- he's running around and THINKING about what he's going to do. The other day he threw a toy on the big deal. But then he carried my husbands extension ladder over to get it down. When we were having a bon fire, he grabbed an aresol can of bug repellent and started to spray it into the fire. when I took it away and explained to him he could get hurt REALLY bad, he said, No, I just got hurt a little-when the big fire touched my hand.
Even harder though- I actually have two boys who have ADHD-My four year old is just very severe. My nine year old who has it actually wants to go to boot camp to get away from his four year old brother!

I can't offer a whole lot of advice- but a few things that might help:

I've found, that when my boys get really restless- I can give them small chores to help me do- like- hand them the mop and dump a little water on the floor and tell them they can mop the floor-or a wet wash cloth and ask them to wash walls. This way, they get to play in water-and they feel important. Make sure you point out how big of a helper he is!

Keep as much structure and routine as possible. ADHD kids don't handle changes or sudden events too well. Their minds are already zipping around.

Keep plenty of stuff around for him to play with. And don't be afraid to throw your hands in the air, say"dishes can wait" and color with him. Ask him stuff about the pictures your coloring-try to get him to focus on tasks a little at a time.

Also, I've found it helpful to actually initiate a mess making. Cook up a couple pots of spaghetti, go outside, and have a food fight! Buy washable finger paints and let him "paint" his bedroom walls. Let him start a sticker collection- on the back side of his bedroom door.

Avoid possibilities of a public scene/display.

Limit sugar (believe me- I know this isn't always easy).

Try to remain calm.

Talk to his pediatrician- ask if they will refer you to a psyc. doctor for evaluation. If you don't want him on meds, they may be able to refer you to someone who works with you and your child on eating habits- some doctors believe that certain food trigger and help ADHD. I know there's one here in Michigan somewhere.

My favorite saying- what I tell everone when they ask how I do it- is:
"I keep one thing in mind- they have to go to bed some time-even if it is only for two hours!"

Hope this helps...


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