Hi Amy, I am the mom of a 10 year old boy with ADHD more on the ADD side. This may be controversial but, let me tell you about the side effects of NOT dealing with (or medicating) a child with significant ADD or ADHD. My son is the child of an ADD mom and an ADHD dad. This child has an IQ of 140, is in gifted and has off the chart test scores. Yet, my son was barely surviving the 5th grade. He was terribly disorganized, had an "I can't do it!" meltdown whenever I didn't break down his chores for him from "Go clean your room!" to a step by step process of "first pick up your clothes then, come back to me and I'll tell you what to do next.". I wanted to deal with this before he turned out like me or his dad. His dad was until very recently, a raging alcoholic with no direction in his life. This is a man who has an IQ in the 150 range and can do complicated math in his head yet had no life or coping skills AT ALL. I, the ADD mom with an IQ of 141 started flunking out in 6th grade because I had no focus, and very little confidence in my ability to manage tasks on my own yet, I would score off the charts on standardized tests. Now, I am a single mom going back to school and struggling to survive on a month to month basis. I smoked pot on and off for years in an attempt to slow my brain down because it always seems to be one step ahead of the rest of me. My son has been on Vyvanse now for about 4 months. It has made a HUGE difference. He has gone from "barely surviving" to straight A's and his teachers say he used to be timid and now he steps up as a leader in the class! The biggest improvement has been his CONFIDENCE! Now, if I tell him to clean his room, he says ok, and he goes and does it. He even does the dishes with no complaining! Now, there are times when he doesn't want to but, now, he never says "I can't!". The only negative side effects that I have noticed from this medication are that he gets headaches and has appetite loss. We have countered that easily though. When he takes his med, he takes an Omega 3-6-9 at the same time and the headaches are completely prevented. I make him eat breakfast before the medicine kicks in and a healthy dinner. nuts for snacks. Nutrition is really important for these kids. Don't beat yourself up about medicating your child. I wish someone had noticed it in me or his father when we were kids. Often times, ADHD kids that are never treated grow up to fight depression and abuse drugs or alcohol. Remember, we are smart people who grow up and realize what we could have become if we would just "apply ourselves" as all of my teachers used to say. Good luck!View Thread
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