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Sunday, September 24, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Seven

After being on Ritalin for a few months, we were really happy with the effects it was was having on us as a family. Life was no longer filled with rage and frustration, but slowly it started getting back to that stage.

Kyle was taking Ritalin 2x a day, and although it worked great at first, we started noticing that the effects weren't really lasting for the full 4 hours between doses.

After about 5 months Kyle turned to me and said 'Mum, I think I should stop taking these tablets because they're good but they're not lasting long enough. If they're not lasting long enough, there's really no point in them, right?'

What can I say, he's a grown up kid in many ways ;) Anyway, I've always said that medication would be his choice and his alone, so we stopped using Ritalin. I was a bit worried about it, and it turned out I was right to be worried.

Kyle crashed right back to where he'd been before ever starting the Ritalin, but he was even worse!

Anna


Comments:
Have you read or heard anything about the effects of anti-oxidants on children with ADHD? I am a health and nutrition consultant and I have heard some good things, but I haven't had the opportunity to work with anyone with it yet.
 
wow, you know if i compare our life before meds to how it is now (apart from teengae hormone... um... "fun") i truly wish i'd found the right doctor when damien was first diagnosed!
once we found the right doctor and the right dosage for damien he was a different child- he liked himself more because he was actually finishing his school work and he started excelling in his gymnnastics, even our family and friends noticed a difference!
 
Hi Josh, thanks for dropping by.

We tried for a while with omega 3 fish oils, but didn't actually notice any difference in Kyle's behaviour or concentration at all, so we gave up on it.

That's about all I've done/heard/read on that subject.

Anna
 
Hi Angel,

I can totally relate, Kyle is changing every day and it's all for the better. He's much more loving now and has time to sit and listen to instructions on how to do things, whihc was something he could NEVER do before. Life is good, and getting better :)

Anna
 
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If you are interested in alternative treatments for your child the link is below, but I can tell you that I couldn't believe what I was reading when I started my own ADHD research on ADHD treatments with prescription drugs. I thought I would share what I found out about the long-term effects of these prescription drugs for ADHD treatment. I found that there is no research out there to determine these long term effects! That means we are giving our children drugs we really don't know what effect they will have on them later in life. To top that off, most Psychiatrists' drug of choice for ADHD treatment are the Psycho-stimulants that not only have harsh side effects but only treat the symptoms, not the problem. I'm sure you have heard and researched this, but the further I researched ADHD prescription treatments it showed me that what science has determined in long term side effects so far, is that substance abuse problems and prescription drug addictions in adults are more common in people who took mind-alternating drugs like ADHD medications as children. Now that scares me. I have always been a firm believer in alternative medicine and have researched many and found a product that is FDA approved and works as a natural treatment for ADHD.

Anyone interested in this product, go to http://www.journeytowellnesshome.com/page/157060202/
 
once we found the right doctor and the right dosage for damien he was a different child- he liked himself more because he was actually finishing his school work and he started excelling in his gymnnastics, even our family and friends noticed a difference!
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Coping with ADHD: Patience is a virtue...

Patience and concentration are 2 things that Kyle has huge problems with due to his ADHD. It hard to find things that can hold on to his interest for longer than 5 minutes, but here's one thing he loves doing:

Mini Worm Farm:

Get a large clear plastic container, some soil, leaves, a little sand, and some bits of vegetables to create the farm. Dig up some earthworms. Fill the container with loose layers of soil and sand, beginning with soil and alternating the layers. Make the soil layers about 4x the size of the sand layers. Also make sure the top layer is soil. 4 or 5 layers should be enough. Drop some small bits of vegetables and leaves on top, and then put the worms in.

Add a lid of some sort, making sure it has air holes. Put the newly created worm farm in a cool dark place for a few days. The worms will tunnel down through the layers, and the kids can see just how good they are at churning up the soil. Please remember to let the worms go when the kids have finished with them.

Anna


Comments:
when damien starts telling me he's bored- or he starts getting impatient with something- we head for the kitchen. either bake or do something with chocolate!
i hide (read: lock) it all away until the occasion calls for it then i suprise him.
 
LOL angel! Chocolate??!! Are you crazy?? Kyle goes off the wall when he gets chocolate. Ok, so I'm too soft and let him have chocolate every now and again, but OMG do I ever pay for it! LOL
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
Quite effective material, lots of thanks for the article.
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Thursday, September 14, 2006

Be Good To You, You Deserve It!

It's never easy dealing with ADHD, and it's not always possible to get some time to yourself. I know I had a helluva time before the older kids were old enough to cope with Kyle for an hour without me.

The times I yearned for just an hour to myself, for a bath, or to read or just to totally vegetate!

My mother lived far away from me, I had no other relatives or even close friends and I was a single parent. Times got really hard and totally frustrating. I even ended up with major depression problems myself but had to keep going, for the kids' sake.

Life became so much easier for me when we finally got closer to my mother and I could send Kyle to her place for a whole weekend every month. And then when the eldest started being able to handle him (sometimes) it got even easier.

I've been really lucky in finding myself a fantastic man (my fiance Hugh) who takes care of all the kids as if they were his own and now I get lots of time to myself compared to before. God knows I need it due to all the belly troubles I've been having.

Kyle being on Concerta now has made it even easier for people to be able to cope with his ADHD, although it's still not controlled enough to let him stay with my friends or anywhere apart from here at home or with his Gran where he feels most comfortable.

Of course, with his Gran now living in France, the visits will be few and far between.

The point in all this ramblng is: Do everything you can to get some time out for yourself as a parent dealing with ADHD. You need it. Recharge your batteries as often as you get the chance, even if it means sitting on the loo for an hour in total peace when the kids are sleeping. (Yes, I've done that too LOL).

Taking time out will help you to focus and concentrate and will ease a lot of frustrations. Be Good To You, You Deserve It!

Anna


Comments:
my new "thing" a long hot bubble bath with a disc-man & earphones!
a fellow adhder mom suggested it to me!
 
Oh God Yeah!

I'd almost forgotten what hot baths with bubbles in WERE until the older 2 got to be old enough that they could 'safely' keep an eye on Kyle for me LOL. Talk about being in heaven!!

Anna
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
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Saturday, September 09, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Six

The doctor was really good. He told me all of our options, and in the end we settled on trying Kyle with Ritalin. Boy was I scared.

I'd heard so many bad things about it, and I knew I'd get a lot of flack from people for even thinking about trying it. But Kyle was so unhappy in himself that I was wiling to try almost anything to make his life better.

We started on the Ritalin about a week later, and whilst the changes weren't dramatic, there were definitely changes for the better.

Kyle was that little bit happier in himself. He also started concentrating for around 12 minutes at a time, whereas he was only able to concentrate for 4 minutes at the most before.

His memory was still bad, he still had no knowledge of consequences, and he was still the most active kid I've ever known. Rewards still didn't work, and neither did discipline, so we just didn't do it. We still had tantrums and everything still got broke.

None of that was important. What was important was Kyle's happiness. And he really was happier than before.

Anna


Comments:
ugh... i was also hesitant to try medication- but damien's first doc didn't even suggest it!
according to her he was a text book case of adhd- and started him on speech therapy and o.t.
she also suggested dietary changes and vitamin supplements. then she sent me on my way with an appointment for 6 months hence!
i knew it wasn't enough... but i was hopeful! it took her more than a year to suggest ritalin, and the dosage made not an iota of difference so i was hesitant to try it again...
it took me 6 years to find a doctor who really knew what he was doing and who was more willing to treat damien properly, someone who knew the disorder, so he's only been on meds for 3 years. he missed out on a lot... thanx partly to his first doctor's complacency (IMHO).
now of course i wish i'd been more adamant about what he needed- he missed out on so much!
 
I still vividly remember when I went to see our GP about getting Kyle a referral to see a specialist and she turned around and told me it was a discipline issue. I kept myself cool, calm and collected and also unbelievably polite and told her what I thought of her LOL.

She was quite stunned to say the least, especially when I pointed out that I had 3 other children who didn't have the same problems as Kyle had...

That's when she decided to send a referral letter to the specialist ;)
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
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Thursday, September 07, 2006

Help Dr Mani save kids lives

You will probably have noticed the Spread CHD Awareness over on the right at some point in time. I hope you've at least clicked through to read what it's all about. If it hadn't been for an experiment Dr. Mani was running I wouldn't have started this blog ;)

Anyway, I had a mail today from another intrnet marketing colleague about Dr. Mani and his Blog-A-Thon. I couldn't have written it better, sp oasting it here instead.


"My friend Dr.Mani is a heart surgeon who innovatively uses
online marketing to help kids born with heart defects.

On Saturday Sep.9th, in a very special event called the Heart
Kids Blogathon, he is blogging non-stop for 24 hours to raise
funds for the 'heart kids'.

The fundraiser is off with a bang, with over $3,700 donated
already. Every $2,500 raised means an additional operation
can be funded - so please try and help, in any way you can.

http://www.HeartKidsBlogathon.info

Also, don't forget to drop by and encourage him on the big
day! Make sure you visit his blog on September 9th -
the URL is

http://www.EzineMarketingCenter.com/blog/

Thanks So Much!

Eric Louviere"


I really hope you get the chance to help Dr Mani out with this.
Thanks


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My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Five

In the meantime I'd been reading these posts by parents and I started reading up on defiance disorder, ADD, ADHD, compulsive disorders. All sorts of things.
I took ideas from each and every one and implemented them with Kyle. It was all I could do because I still didn't know EXACTLY what he was suffering with.

Some things worked, some didn't. Some made things seem better, and yet others just made things worse.

I finally received a letter saying he could be seen by a child psychiatrist! I was scared, but I was so happy! I would at least KNOW what it was and what I could do about it to help make Kyle's life easier for him.

We hadn't been in the doctor’s office for more than 10 minutes when he said 'I'm sorry, there is no doubt in my mind that Kyle has overly moderate ADHD'.

I broke down and cried.

I had always had my suspicions, but to have them confirmed was like a kick in the gut.

Anna

Comments:
wow...

that takes me right back to damien's first official diagnosis...
i also "knew" he had a disorder, but i wanted someone to tell me i was paranoid and his teachers and i were exaggerating!

i must have been quite a sight- my face going all red and my eyes screwing up and my chin wobbling... and then as soon as i tried to say anything i started crying, then i'd get it under control a little, take a deep breath, try to start talking again and start crying instead!

the psych handled it like the pro she was though!
 
Ive recently had the same fight as yourself. My child has now been diagnosed adhd, odd and a conduct disorder due to the adhd being left untreated for so long. I dont know where the strength to carry on came from but im glad I followed my instincts.
 
It IS a struggle, and it does make us stronger people. Just remember you're not alone. Gut instinct is what makes us great parents. ;)

It hurt like hell to have Kyle diagnosed, but in the long run I'm really glad we got it figured out. Stand your ground and fight for the help you need.

Anna
 
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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Four

At the age of 7, Kyle's headmistress at school called me and demanded that I collect Kyle immediately, as he had bitten another child. No questions or explanations. Just 'Come and get your child because we refuse to have naughty behaviour like that in our school'.

I went and got him, and told her he wouldn't be back. I decided to home educate him. It was one of the hardest decisions I've ever made. What if I couldn't do it? What if I wasn't good enough? What if it made him worse? What if he hated me for it?

I was amazingly surprised. Kyle LOVED being at home. He revelled in the one-on-one attention he got. He had always refused to write, and still refused. But his reading came on in leaps and bounds. When he turned 8 he was reading the same stuff as Kelsey, and she was 11! He was as good as Chris on computers, and Chris was 14!

When I took him out of school I started researching everything I could about home education, and came across a whole mound of information posted various places on the internet by people who seemed to have children extremely similar to Kyle.

All along I kept pushing to get a referral for him to be seen by a specialist. All I wanted was to know what I was 'working with'. Was it something simple? Was it something hard to deal with? Would he need medication? Was it really all down to me? Was I to blame somehow?

Anna

Comments:
wow, i can't believe you were still waiting for help at 7am!
 
I waited for years to get the help that Kyle needed. I'm so glad he's finally getting it though.

I'm also glad your enjoying our story. It makes me cry sometimes to think of certain parts of it, but I feel I have to write it to let others know they are not alone.
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
 
Great... Im just surfing the web and looking for peoples with same interests... If you will have time just have a look at
 
Thanks for the post, pretty worthwhile info.
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Monday, September 04, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Three

At the age of 4, Kyle started mainstream school. The teachers were as patient as they could be with him, and made sure that whenever they went on trips one of them ALWAYS held his hand. They learnt that from an episode when they lost him. He'd just done his normal thing and wandered off.

Kyle could never sit still in school, and he just couldn't concentrate on anything for more than a couple of minutes at a time. When he was almost 5, we moved to a different town and he changed schools. I took him to the doctors and they told me he was definitely hyperactive.

I took all sweets, e-colours and additives out of his diet and he calmed down a bit. But that was when I noticed that there was something else not quite as it should be. He was calmer, but he had no attention span to speak of, and his concentration levels were almost nil.

The teachers had a helluva time with him, and he had a rotten time with them. I kept telling them that there was something not quite 'connecting' with Kyle, but they wouldn't listen. It was always put down to 'normal' hyperactivity.

Kyle had always been fascinated with flames and fire, and we always had to hide any lighters we had. When he was almost 6 he managed to find one, and at 11pm one night, I could smell smoke. I ran up the stairs to find that he'd burnt a hole in his mattress, his chair, his duvet AND his pillow. That was when I finally broke down. I held him close and wept my heart out.

Kyle cuddled me back, but seemed so totally adjacent. As if he wasn't really feeling that I was upset. He watched TV as he cuddled me, while I was sobbing and hulking.

I knew then that something was definitely wrong. I'd noticed his lack of 'feelings' before, but not as clearly as this. I asked him why he'd done it, why he did things like this all of the time. His reply was; 'The words aren't typing right in my head.'!!

I took him to the doctors the next day and begged for a referral to see a specialist. The doctor turned around and told me it was a discipline issue! I explained, as nicely as I could, that I had 3 other children and Kyle was 'different'. At the age of 6, a lot of the things he did were still 2-year-old things, yet other things were 10-year-old things.

The doctor blew me off totally. I felt as if I was a criminal for even suggesting that there was something not quite connecting in Kyle's head. Even when I aired my suspicions with my mother, I got the same reaction. It was all in my head and it was all my fault. There was nothing wrong with Kyle that a little (or a lot of) discipline wouldn’t sort out.

Believe me, we had tried everything. Rewards, discipline, positive attitudes, ignoring the bad things. None of it worked. And life carried on just as difficult as it always had been. The older kids stopped bringing their friends to the house as Kyle would often get physically violent with them. The house was a total wreck. All our furniture was trashed. We had holes punched in walls, doors slammed and screams echoing throughout the day and night.

Anna

Comments:
luckily for me damien was never physically violent, but the tantrums and screaming was there. i also had a helluva time when he started school, at first i didn't want to listen- i was afraid of looking like a failure because i am a solo act... but after a few months i had to face up to that fact that he had a problem. he was 6...
i was also getting the discipline lectures from everyone and their dog!
 
It seems to be much harder for us to ask for help when we are alone. It's like we don't want anybody to think we can't handle things ourselves, or at the very least think we're totally nuts. I was a single parent for most of the time with all 4 of mine, so I know what you mean there. I was also constantly fighting with myself about whether I was to blame or not...
 
the problem that im having with my 12yr old that has ADHD is that she has an attitude problem and can be mean to her sister as well. im just wondering what i can do to get that under control with her
 
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Sunday, September 03, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Two

Kyle was a great “escape artist” and could get out of anything. Windows, locked doors, you name it. We’d turn our heads away for 5 minutes and he was gone. Pretty scary when an 8 month old is walking in the middle of a road, believe me.

He was an early walker and talker. Was constantly babbling on and running around. The only thing was, he STILL wanted to do things he wasn’t physically ready for, and that was the hardest part for us all to deal with. He’d continue getting frustrated, but now he’d bite and throw more stuff around.

Poor Chris and Kelsey were always getting bruised by him. But they handled it well, and loved Kyle to pieces.

Kyle was constantly active, seemed like he just COULDN’T sit still, no matter what.

We moved to Wales when Kyle was 2 and a half. I enrolled him in nursery, thinking that it might help wear him out. I was wrong. It just got him more frustrated, he didn’t get on very well with the other kids and after 4 months I took him out again.

We started to settle down in Wales, and got used to not being able to have anything nice in the house. Any nice furniture we had got wrecked within a couple of months, carpets that were in the house when we moved in had to be taken up due to him still making cakes.

When Kyle was 3 and a half, I had Courtney. Kyle was always very protective of Courtney, and she idolised him right from the start. Unfortunately this meant that she’d copy everything he did. People used to say “How can you cope with such naughty children?” and “Why do you let your kids run riot like that?”

Trying to explain to them was mostly like talking to a brick wall. Kyle was hyperactive, I knew that much, and Courtney liked to copy, and that was all there was to it. Or so I thought...

Anna

Comments:
ah me... so many memories! damien sat at 5 months, pulled himself up on the furniture by 7 months and walked just before he was 9 months old... and also an escape artist of note!
LOL...
i'm so enjoying this!
 
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Saturday, September 02, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part One

The pregnancy with Kyle was just like any other, with morning sickness and iron deficiency. The bump grew and the sickness subsided. It felt good. He was born on New Years Day. It was an amazingly fast birth. From the very first twinge until it was all over and done with only took 1 hour and 20 minutes.

10 centimetres dilation in less than an hour is hard work, made worse by the fact that when Kyle finally decide to show his face, that’s exactly what he DID do. He came face first, and got stuck! There he was, looking at the world for 20 minutes, while a huge nurse came and lay herself across me to try to push him out.

He was so stuck that they couldn’t put forceps on him, and being that it was his face, they couldn’t use the suction cap neither!

Finally, his whole head emerged, then his left arm. He immediately put his thumb in his mouth, the way he’s always had it every time we saw him on the scan. He was such a welcome addition to the family, and what a beauty he was!

Kyle was a handful right from the start. He was mostly a happy baby, but at times he would seem to get so frustrated at just about anything. It was like HE wanted to do things, but his body wasn’t ready for it.

He would lie on the floor, and you could SEE he wanted to move and get on with life, but at 6 weeks what baby can do that? So he’d slam his head on the floor and scream.

Then, when he first started moving around the floor, he would roll as most babies do. Only thing is, he wanted to crawl! Of course, his body wasn’t physically ready for that, and in frustration he would roll over to the table and smack his head on the table leg. It got so bad at one stage that he had to wear a bicycle helmet.

At 6 months, Kyle would sit in his little bouncy chair and play happily for about 5 minutes. Then he would take whatever he was playing with and aim for Chris or Kelsey, his elder siblings. Even when they ran he’d manage to aim so well that they’d end up with a bump on their head.

When Kyle was old enough to crawl, and then walk we ALWAYS had to watch him, 24 hours a day. He would get into the most unbelievable situations and he absolutely LOVED making a mess with anything he could find.

I lost count of how many times there were “cakes” on the carpet, consisting of flour, eggs, ketchup, hair-gel, milk toilet paper. Actually just about anything he could get his hands on went into making his cakes.

In the end we stopped having carpets, it wasn’t worth the hassle.

Stay tuned for part 2..

Anna

Comments:
wow anna... that brings back memories! with damien i had 4 hours of labour and he was flipping himself from his stomach onto his side in the hospital already! i had to force the nurses to watch because they thought it was me!

this is fabulous, i think i must write a bit about damien's history too.
 
Yep, these kids of ours truly are fast movers in many aspects of life. We just have to fight to get everybody else to see what WE see lol. I look forward to reading about Damiens history :D
 
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