It can be not easy to decide whether or not to medicate your child. This article will answer some common questions and considerations, such as possible side effects of ADHD medication when figuring out how to manage your child’s symptoms.
Deciding to medicate your ADHD child
Parents face a difficult decision when a child is diagnosed with attention deficit disorder ( ADHD, ADD). You can also try other routes.
You might wonder: What if…the medication harms my kid’s health? It changes her personality? I’m failing as a parent. While some parents may be quick to medicate their children, this decision is difficult. Find out what factors convinced other families not to use ADHD medication. Don’t worry. You aren’t the only one.
ADHD medication: A difficult decision
“It is a difficult decision; every family will make different decisions. Our decision to medicate our ADHD child was a difficult one.
“It is the decision of the parent to take care of their child. People living with ADHD or those who have loved ones with ADHD know how serious and real the disorder is. This is something that people who don’t have ADHD in their lives can’t fully grasp, and it’s not their job to.
“I haven’t yet medicated my son, but I will likely do so within the next year. If someone says I did it too quickly, I will inform them that I haven’t lived with him in six years.” -An ADDitude Reader.
“I am an RN, and I understand this. If the other person claims I am hurrying medication, I will accept that. However, they must prove that the child they speak of was not tested or given behavioral options and only drugs. This usually ends the conversation.
Is he really in need of ADHD medication?
This is often the first question that parents ask following a diagnosis of ADHD. If your child’s ADHD symptoms interfere with their social, emotional, and academic lives, you might consider medication. While behavioral therapy may be an option to help children control their behavior, it is often more difficult for them to focus, manage their emotions, and organize their thoughts. Medication can help.
We had exhausted all other options, and he was getting worse. He can learn and excel with the meds!
Are ADHD Medications Safe?
ADHD medication is safe and effective. After a thorough diagnosis, years of research and clinical trials have shown that medication is a good option. These medications have very low risks and are usually reversible. Side effects can be treated by a doctor. They can decrease, alter, or stop the medication. It is important to monitor your child closely and communicate with your doctor.
“We have twice changed the dosage and meds.” It is a constant process. What about side effects?
The most common side effects include weight loss and appetite suppression. Other side effects include headaches and difficulty falling asleep. You can reduce the dosage, change your meal plan around medication, or switch medications. Except for appetite suppression, most side effects of the stimulant medication will disappear within three to five working days. Any side effects of stimulant medications can be addressed by your physician.
Do your research and be aware of the side effects. If it causes severe harm to your child, switch medications. -Jocelyn S.
These products have side effects and downsides and may not work for everyone. However, if they work for you or your child, it can make a big difference.
How do we know ADD Meds will work?
Talk to your doctor about a trial period. The short-acting forms methylphenidate and mixed amphétamine salts work within about 45-60 minutes and last for approximately four hours. Parents can discuss treatment options with their doctor if symptoms do not improve.
“We decided to give it a whole month on medication. He became calmer and more stable within a week. After that, we didn’t look back!
“We didn’t want to medicate, but after a well-designed trial, our child’s ability to learn, sequence, and function at school improved tremendously.
“I didn’t want to give him drugs at first. But then, I realized I could always take him off if I didn’t like the effects.
Can we take an ADD Medication Vacation?
Some children can take a break from ADHD medication once school is out. A doctor should supervise this. It can be helpful to determine whether therapy needs to be changed as you taper off. Ask your doctor if your child is experiencing anxiety or trouble or cannot do his favorite activities.
“He is only medicated for school, but he can be himself every night, on weekends, and all summer!
Get Rid of Medication Shame
ADHD drug therapy is not something to be ashamed of. This doesn’t make you a bad parent or incapable of parenting. This shows you care about your child and want him to succeed.
“One day, I thought, Am I not medicating because she’s the best or because I’ll feel like a failure?
“We noticed that our youngest daughter was becoming known as the “troublemaker” and how it affected her relationships with her family members and school. To see if medication would help, it felt selfish not to.
Do your research
Talk to your doctor and other parents about the medication you want. You can research the medication online and keep up to date with the latest news. Ask questions until your knowledge is complete. Keep your facts straight and separate myths from reality.
“We relied on the school psychologist’s advice. You should read everything and remember that if one plan fails, many options exist.
Get the kids involved.
A child should not be forced to take medication. Participate in the decision-making process with your child. Ask your child, “What are you familiar with medication?” What are your thoughts on medicine? Let children participate in decision-making by sharing the facts you have discovered.
Listen to your child. When our son returned home from school with a brain injury, he could not enjoy school anymore, and his friends were not like him anymore; we decided to medicate.
Follow your gut
When used correctly, medications can do wonders. If they are used correctly, they can prove safe. It would help if you did not start any regimen before you feel entirely comfortable with the decision. You should never create any treatment without consulting a doctor.
Don’t Let Naysayers Dissuade You
Some claim, “I would never give stimulant medication to my child,” or “Ritalin” as a kiddie drug.
“When I was making that decision, someone asked me if I would withhold medication from your child if she were diagnosed with diabetes. It made me really think.
Be patient with yourself.
Each family has its own preconceived notions of what medication means. Take your time when making decisions. It would help if you took the time to evaluate your feelings and find a doctor to help you determine the best treatment plan.