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Would Bipolar Be A Special Need In A Child?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I'm not 100% on this, but I'm sure my son has bipolar, just like I do. I look at him and his behavior, which is almost hyperactive, just like I was at his age, his attention span, how difficult it is to get his attention AND keep it, his lack of memory of events occuring, his fits of rage for almost no reason and see myself. My mom and sisters say the same thing. They, as well as I are positive that he's bipolar. He'll be 5 in December, and while I don't believe in medicating a CHILD, I would like to try to head off his condition early with emotional, and physical tools so that he doesn't have the same problems in school that I did. Everybody thought I was ADD or ADHD or just a normal rambunctious child, and I was not. I was a child with a mental illness that didn't rear its ugly head until I was 14 and couldn't stop obsessing about suicide. I don't want that for my son. I see the same things in him as I used to do and it scares me to think that he could act on a stupid whim and really hurt himself. Is there someone I could see this early on, without putting him on meds so that I can get some tools to help him early? I hope this is the right place to post this.......

post #2 of 12

Whether or not a trial of medication is indicated probably depends on the severity of the symptoms. He may not have the ability to respond to therapy without medication, which was the case with my ds and ADHD. My ds is also not capable of functioning in school without medication and his unmedicated Kindergarten year was horrid.

 

From what I have read, the best provider for this a board-certified child psychiatrist diagnoses/treatment with extensive experience treating early-onset bipolar disorder, which can be difficult to find.

 

 

Mental Health America of Montana - Links

 

Manic Depression / Bipolar Disorder Treatment, Cincinnati ...

 

Can 'Talk Therapy' Help Bipolar Disorder In Children/Adolescents ...

 

Bipolar Therapy Types: Behavioral, Cognitive, Interpersonal, and More

 

Bipolar Disorder: Perspectives on Diagnosis and Treatment

 

NIMH · Bipolar Disorder in Children and Teens (Easy to Read)

 

NAMI | Facts About Childhood-Onset Bipolar Disorder

 

Is It Bipolar Disorder or ADHD? Symptoms and Treatment of Bipolar ...

 

About Pediatric Bipolar Disorder | Child & Adolescent Bipolar ...

 

Researchers identify bipolar disorder in preschoolers | Newsroom ...

 

Sample 504 plans | Child & Adolescent Bipolar Foundation


Edited by Emmeline II - 8/7/11 at 8:42am
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much for these links! It's easy to search for help for yourself when you want it, but I find it a bit harder to seek out help for your kids. Thanks again!

post #4 of 12
To answer your question a child with a mental illness may have a special need. My son has major depession with anxiety that has kept him out of school a lot. He is on medication and is grateful there is something that makes him feel better. He has an iep which helps him get the services he needs from school. I have read a ton of books and Internet sites to help me figure out how to nelp him. His psychiatrist and therapist have also been really important to us. Good luck.
post #5 of 12

It's a special need in my 9yo ds...a special need that can't be managed without medication.

post #6 of 12

My son has ADHD.  However, my husband has bipolar II.  Something we didn't know till 2 years ago.  We have concerns our son also has BP.   

 

We use to live in Bozeman.  I am not sure of what Psych Services are there.  You may need to go to Helena or even Missoula or even Spokane if you can't find anyone.  My oldest daughter has special needs and we had to seek out services in Billings (Neurosurgery and Urology) and for a time in Helena (Neurologist).

post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by IwannaBanRN View Post
Is there someone I could see this early on, without putting him on meds so that I can get some tools to help him early? I hope this is the right place to post this.......


You are totally in the right place. This forum is open to parents whose kids have been dx'ed, and parents who are concerned that a dx might be appropriate for their child.

 

I'm a fan of seeing professionals and figuring things out, and you've gotten great links. thumb.gif

 

There is a series of self-help books for kids, and some of the titles might be helpful for you and your son to work through together. Here is a link to one

http://www.amazon.com/Relaxation-Stress-Reduction-Workbook-Kids/dp/1572245824/ref=wl_it_dp_v?ie=UTF8&coliid=IEMPTX65T4EUI&colid=2C4OMK9ZDASLT

 

I suspect that there are a variety of things that could be helpful to your son, such as cognitive behavioral therapy and finding the perfect outside activity (for my kid, it's swimming), but for some kids, medication ultimately becomes the most compassionate option. My DD has intense anxiety as part of being on the autism spectrum, and may be on meds at some point for that. I've made my peace with that. It wouldn't be the first choice, but I'm not going to let her suffer.

 

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post




You are totally in the right place. This forum is open to parents whose kids have been dx'ed, and parents who are concerned that a dx might be appropriate for their child.

 

I'm a fan of seeing professionals and figuring things out, and you've gotten great links. thumb.gif

 

There is a series of self-help books for kids, and some of the titles might be helpful for you and your son to work through together. Here is a link to one

http://www.amazon.com/Relaxation-Stress-Reduction-Workbook-Kids/dp/1572245824/ref=wl_it_dp_v?ie=UTF8&coliid=IEMPTX65T4EUI&colid=2C4OMK9ZDASLT

 

I suspect that there are a variety of things that could be helpful to your son, such as cognitive behavioral therapy and finding the perfect outside activity (for my kid, it's swimming), but for some kids, medication ultimately becomes the most compassionate option. My DD has intense anxiety as part of being on the autism spectrum, and may be on meds at some point for that. I've made my peace with that. It wouldn't be the first choice, but I'm not going to let her suffer.

 



thank you for the additional link. I know that there will be struggles with his schoolwork and his behavior ahead, especially without medication. I DON'T want him to think of school as a bad thing when he's small like I did. I felt singled out all the time because no one understood or was trained to know something might not be right. One teacher suggested that I was ADD, but I was written off as a rambuntious kid. I found something very therapeutic for myself as a child to be running. My sisters would ride their bikes, but I didn't need to because I ran right beside them. As a teen, I ran 3-4 miles a day. When I got pregnant is when things kind of spiraled out of control as far as my coping mechanism being running(pregnant at 16). And I didn't run until last September. Anywho, I am a big believer in physical activities being a good outlet to anxiety, mania and depression. I just gotta find the right thing for him. smile.gif

 

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatWrangler View Post

My son has ADHD.  However, my husband has bipolar II.  Something we didn't know till 2 years ago.  We have concerns our son also has BP.   

 

We use to live in Bozeman.  I am not sure of what Psych Services are there.  You may need to go to Helena or even Missoula or even Spokane if you can't find anyone.  My oldest daughter has special needs and we had to seek out services in Billings (Neurosurgery and Urology) and for a time in Helena (Neurologist).


I don't know what's out there as far as children's mental health services, but I know I could probably find someone through my prescriber.
 

 

post #10 of 12

Found some books (all by the same author). I'm currently reading the first book.

 

 

post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 

I found the 3rd one on amazon.com for $0.38 with shipping only being $3.99! Thank you!

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 

So, I figured out that my son doesn't have bipolar. It's a gluten intolerance. I started to get suspicious of this because I found on a facebook "children with bipolar" page that some children diagnosed with bipolar are in fact not bipolar, but have a gluten intolerance which makes them act out after eating pastas, breads or lots of cereal. One of the tell-tale signs of this is a darkening under the eyes that almost look like black eyes. That's what they are called, actually. Allergic shiners. My son only got these shiners after eating cereal, followed by anything to do with breads or pasta. After cutting out gluten, his behavior and attention span got alot better. No more shiners, and tantrums were not nearly as bad. :)

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