Medicating #Autism


I wanted to open up a dialogue about #Autism and medication. I receive many emails asking for advice about whether or not I think it’s okay to medicate their child for #Autism related behavioral issues etc.

I wanted to open this up to discussion. 

What is your personal experience with deciding whether or not to medicate your child, for whatever reason? What were your concerns? Was your doctor helpful? Have medications benefited your child or not?

I think this is an important topic because so many of us struggle with deciding whether or not to medicate our child. Hearing from other parents can really be a positive thing, regardless of opinions. Knowing that your are not the only one that has had to make this difficult decision can be comforting. Please share your questions, experience or even just your opinions.

Remember that I require that all my readers be treated with respect and dignity, regardless of differing opinions. 🙂

I will share my experience with medicating any of my kids. For us it came down to quality of life concerns. If medications could improve their quality of life, that was a good reason to consider it. We always researched everything before a new medication was started. One of the things I would ask myself is why are we even thing about this?  Are we considering this to simply make our lives easier or is this the best thing for our son.

The decisions were never easy ones, especially with the hardcore medications we had to consider but with that said, it’s heartbreaking to watch your child struggle when there is something that could help. In so many ways, medications have helped our oldest Gavin, to regain part of his life that had been taken away by constant visual and auditory hallucinations brought on by a rare form of childhood schizophrenia.  Knowing he’s no longer afraid of things that only he could see and hear is indescribable. Truthfully, bringing him relief brought it for us as well.

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Had a hard time making the decision to start ours on Risperdal. Five little drops every morning has made a huge difference in life–now he can sleep more than three hours in a night, he can interact with other kids, and he enjoys himself. I fought that suggestion fora lot of years because I worried I might be seen as “just doping the kid up”. Finally decided that what other people might say wasn’t worth the endless hours of watching him hurt himself and lash out about everything. He’s been steadily making gains since starting the medication, and the only time we saw a regression was during the three weeks we tried to taking him off it.

Had a hard time making the decision to start ours on Risperdal. Five little drops every morning has made a huge difference in life–now he can sleep more than three hours in a night, he can interact with other kids, and he enjoys himself. I fought that suggestion fora lot of years because I worried I might be seen as “just doping the kid up”. Finally decided that what other people might say wasn’t worth the endless hours of watching him hurt himself and lash out about everything. He’s been steadily making gains since starting the medication, and the only time we saw a regression was during the three weeks we tried to taking him off it.

chris crane

We have tried only two meds for our son Ritalin,for hyper-activity-NIGHTMARE he began self injury stopped in a week,then tried inpremine,it helped calmed down the stimming (finger flipping,running back and forth)but destroyed sleep patterns,we did this for 3 years until I figured it was the pills that was keeping ALL OF US UP, So the pills left,milk was removed from the diet ,that calmed his hyperactivity,we stopped caring about stimming ,(and now after talking to other autistic people I will never care about stimming again,He needs to do it and it is not hurting anyone so people get over it! Meletonin is helpful for full moon nights and yes around the time change his sleep patterns suffer but he is 21 now,and won't hurt himself so he is up and we try to sleep ! lol Yes he raids the fridge,and leaves things out ,(drives me crazy) and will always will live with us,but he is a joy,sweet loving and happy most of the time,we have considered anti anxiatity at certain ages,but have found things that calm him LONG BATHS,SHOWERS ,time in the pool,his own space routine in his day allowing him to retreat when he needs has come a long way to calming meltdowns. We as a family have been at this a long time,we have found freedom in letting our idea of what it is supposed to be and accepting what is , I encourage every parent to accept more,of the good things about Autism ,the different way of looking at this world , and people. It has been amazing ride,yes at times painful,but all life ,normal or not has pain

Lost_and_Tired

Chris,

That was an awesome story. What great advice and amazing parenting. Thank you so much for sharing your personal story. I'm so happy that you have found ways to enjoy and embrace life and all it's given you. You are an inspiration to the Lost and Tired family and me as a parent.

Thank you

Dee

My son has aspergers and ADHD. He is currently taking 5 medications. It was not an easy decision to make and each med was introduced seperately and I was able to see a big difference. He currently is in a special education school where his class has 5 boys and two oats along w the teacher. He is not able to function with a regular school setting, even on medication. I’m a single mother who works fulltime. The state of MN has cut a lot of programs that would help him. For my son, it has come down to a quality of life and an opportunity for ABA therapy to work

Lost_and_Tired

Dee,

I think your story echos so many others. Thank you for sharing a bit of your life with everyone. 🙂 Stay strong and keep up the good work.

Dawn

The first medication our son was on was Clonodine at almost 4 years old. Up until that point he DID NOT sleep. We had forgotten what it was like to get to sleep through the night. After he started preschool, we became concerned that his hyperactivity was going to hinder him once kindergarten started. Up until he actually started speaking at just before 4 years old – we weren't even sure he would go to kindergarten! But once we started visiting a DAN doctor and started Methyl B-12 injections- his language EXPLODED! Then we were on a series of supplements, and using lots of behavior modifications but the extreme hyperactivity remained, along with a complete inability to focus for more than a fe minutes at a time, on anything. We discussed ADHD meds with his neurologist, but we didn't want to give him any at such a young age- so we modified his diet, worked on breathing techniques, all things that we read about and talked to other parents about. Combined with autism, OCD AND ADHD, we were also dealing with a developmental delay of about 2 years. A month into kindergarten it was clear that our methods just weren't working. So we gave into meds. It was a HARD decision to make- and just like with everything else- a TON of research went into it. He started out on Adderall, 5 mg. The effects were instantaneous and successful! He slowed down, he could focus, he became less argumentative. He still had autistic symptoms, lack of eye contact, some stimming, LOTS of echolalia- but the meds weren't FOR the autism! Now at 10 years old he takes 40mg. of Vyvanse- which works great- and he actually EATS when taking it- which was a problem with the Adderall.

Lost_and_Tired

That's awesome. Thank you for sharing. I totally agree with what you said. For us it came down to quality of life concerns. If medications could improve their quality of life, that was a good reason to consider it. In so many ways, medications have help our oldest Gavin to regain part of his life that had been taken away by visual and auditory hallucinations.

These decisions are never easy, but if done in the right way and for the right reasons, medications can absolutely be a positive thing.

Thank you for sharing your story 😉

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