Thursday, March 17, 2011

Yes, I'm Still Here

There has been a lot going on lately (mostly quite good), and I need to process and share. Writing about it will help me process, so hopefully you'll see more posts in the near future.

In the meantime, I have two things for you: a link and a question.

The Link: I had a blog reader share a wonderful link with me. I'd not heard of Roses for Autism, but what a wonderful organization doing good work.

The Question: Have you put your child with autism on attention medication? If so, how did it go?  We're going to talk medication with Jack's doctor soon, and I'd really appreciate any information you can share!


onecraftymama said...

We put our oldest on meds when he was 7. It was a long hard road to walk, making the decision, and since we did, we regret not doing it sooner. Connor was so incredibly hyper, all the time, and was never able to stay in a classroom long enough to do much. He also had trouble speaking & being understood by anyone other than us. Once we started the meds, within probably a couple of weeks, it was like his brain finally slowed down enough for him to speak effectively, and everything else fell into place. He was no longer aggressive - confirming that his aggression was mainly due to his frustration with never being understood. We have an excellent psych, the only actually helpful professional, and she's on the same page as we are, using the very least amount of med possible to have the desired effect. The first drug we used was Adderall, and about 2 years ago we switched to Strattera because A. suppresses appetite, and we had a normal-height but only 52lb ten year old. Strattera has worked well too - it's not as good for hyperactivity, but helps with anxiety & concentration, and having had the Adderall for several years gave us lots of time to teach Connor the tools to calm himself & meet his sensory needs without wigging out. In the last year, we've also been able FINALLY to work on food issues, and now we can actually all eat the same supper. That was way down on my list of important things, but it's pretty awesome not being a short-order cook anymore. Anyway, we've had a really positive experience, and the one thing I would recommend is that you trust the doctor. Not blindly, I mean, but that you have a good relationship with the doctor, and trust his/her expertise.

Nolle Prosequi said...

Thank God you are still there.

Anonymous said...

We had our boy on Ritalin for a time. He was firstly (at 51/2) diagnosed with ADHD with oppositional behaviour even though I asked for a diagnosis of Aspergers with an anxiety disorder (his formal diagnosis now). Ritalin was the recommended treatment and while it did improve his attention (He sat down and made his father a fathers day card from start to finish!!) it did not improve any of the ASD behaviours which were concerning us. After a year we took him off it and tried diet from which we made some progress. Around 9 his behaviour was "large" and often aggressive and it was recommended we try him on it again. His teacher, who had taken the trouble to tell both us and our son that he had no need of such medicine and that prayer would work much better, came to us after the first week and said "He has had a week that was better than the whole of last year". We kept him on it because it did seem to work. A couple of years later our government took Ritalin off the system and went to a generic. all of a sudden his behaviour detiorated with lots of aggression and swearing. With nothing else working one day I did a search on the meds and found out that it was a side effect for some children. Took him off it and he stopped these behaviours and he has never been on it again. At 17yo he is anti medication along with drugs, alcohol, learning to drive, children, religion and going to the doctor.

Give it a go and remember it is never a final decision and no two ASD children are the same or react the same.

Good Luck