Expected 1 dx NOT 2! Need info on ADHD! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 16 Old 10-22-2011, 09:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My 6 yo dd was dx'd with Aspergers AND ADHD today.  We really expected the ASD, but the ADHD took me by surprise.  I had wondered, even expected it could be either one, but getting the dx for BOTH kind of surprised me for some reason.  I have a 10 yo with ASD so I feel pretty confident in how to approach that one and really love our current therapy team, but have little/no knowledge on ADHD.  Any helpful links or book suggestions on ADHD (specifically in girls maybe?) would be much appreciated!  And seriously, how do I raise TWO kids with SN and meet all their unique needs while still making sure the needs of the other two are met. 

 

I am obviously still processing what this means in the long-term.

 

 



 

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#2 of 16 Old 10-23-2011, 08:23 AM
 
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As always, The Mislabeled Child is an excellent source of information. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama View Post

My 6 yo dd was dx'd with Aspergers AND ADHD today.  We really expected the ASD, but the ADHD took me by surprise.  I had wondered, even expected it could be either one, but getting the dx for BOTH kind of surprised me for some reason.  I have a 10 yo with ASD so I feel pretty confident in how to approach that one and really love our current therapy team, but have little/no knowledge on ADHD.  Any helpful links or book suggestions on ADHD (specifically in girls maybe?) would be much appreciated!  And seriously, how do I raise TWO kids with SN and meet all their unique needs while still making sure the needs of the other two are met. 

 

I am obviously still processing what this means in the long-term.

 

 



 

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#3 of 16 Old 10-23-2011, 07:48 PM
 
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http://www.chadd.org/ is a website ds's psychologist referred us to for adhd. I have not spent a lot of time there, but initially looked around.  We worked with the psychologist for a number of months until we felt ds was in a good place at school.  We plan to check in with her a couple times a year from now on unless he has major issues to work through again.  We also plan to work some with her at the beginning of next year when he transitions from elementary to middle school. 

 

Ds has adhd which is comorbid with partial epilepsy and dyslexia.  It is so hard to parse out which is which sometimes.  You would think it is more straight forward, but it is all a symptom of his brain functioning in a different way than is expected.  Aspergers and Adhd have some common characteristics, and hopefully you will find some good strategies for working with your dd so that she is happy and healthy.  

 

 

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#4 of 16 Old 11-07-2011, 05:27 PM
 
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Hm, that's interesting. We recently had DS diagnosed as high functioning autism (non Asperger's type; as you may know there is no longer a clinical definition of Aspergers as per the latest DSM). The psychologist explained that ADD/ADHD is often comorbid with ASD and so it is not considered a diagnosis itself when presented with ASD. However, had DS not met the social deficit requirements for ASD he would have received a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD (and SPD, too, which is also comorbid with ASD). Since Asperger's is now also defined as high functioning autism I would have thought you could not have two diagnoses. 


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#5 of 16 Old 11-07-2011, 06:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Piglet68 View Post

...as you may know there is no longer a clinical definition of Aspergers as per the latest DSM)....Since Asperger's is now also defined as high functioning autism I would have thought you could not have two diagnoses. 


Not yet; the DSM-V ,with that potential change, will not be published until May 2013.

 

 


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#6 of 16 Old 11-07-2011, 06:55 PM
 
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Interesting, Emmeline. Might it be different in Canada? I don't think so, yet we were told this by our psychologist. Perhaps I misunderstood her, I was sure she said they no longer do a diagnosis of Asperger's. Ah well, live and learn! :-)


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#7 of 16 Old 11-07-2011, 07:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Piglet68 View Post

Interesting, Emmeline. Might it be different in Canada? I don't think so, yet we were told this by our psychologist. Perhaps I misunderstood her, I was sure she said they no longer do a diagnosis of Asperger's. Ah well, live and learn! :-)

 

The DSM is published by the American Psychiatric Association: DSM-5; maybe he's using the ICD?


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#8 of 16 Old 11-08-2011, 05:39 AM
 
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I had the same experience as Piglet this year, I'm also Canadian.  The clinical psychologist tell me that the change had happened in the DSM-5, but did explain that they were no longer using Asperger's as a separate diagnoses.  We have high functioning autism as an official diagnoses, but we were mostly referred to resources typical for Asperger's as DS has no verbal deficits and no history of verbal delay.

 

ADHD and Asperger's are frequently co-morbid.  I think a lot of the social skills parents work on with ASD children are also useful for guiding children with ADHD, so two co-morbid conditions may not make things more difficult.  Parenting skills are very transferable.

 

OP, about having two kids with SN, being in this situation myself (one with ASD, one with an extreme expressive language disability, and a gifted DD in the middle).  You always had two SN kids, now you just have a diagnoses and more help.  It is difficult to raise an SN child, whether you have one or many.  And you will need to take time for yourself and share the work load so as not to get burned out.  But the work is not exponential with each child, just as people with large families of NT kids will tell you that their work didn't increase the same amount with each kid.  You will use skills with one child to help your other child, even though she is unique.  Your children will probably have some care providers in common, and they will get to know the family as a whole.  My two sons have very different reasons they see the SLP, but she is a common person in their lives, as is the school YSF teacher.  They become like family.  The one difficulty we have had with two SN kids is conflicting therapy times.  We've learned to prioritize when both appointments are impossible and to speak up and ask for more do-able scheduling when it is possible.


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#9 of 16 Old 11-11-2011, 05:38 PM
 
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As I am quite sure DD has Asperger's I asked the psychologist about whether they distinguish between that "non clincally" and she said they did. That they would give a diagnosis of HFA but then add "Asperger's Type". DD definitely has different needs that DS, so that made me feel better. Mind you, each child with ASD is unique in their needs so perhaps the distinction isn't as important as I thought it might be. 


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#10 of 16 Old 11-11-2011, 06:09 PM
 
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I have ADHD, DH has aspergers, and our 3 bio kids are on the spectrum. You can do it :) Soon meeting everyones needs will just be your daily routine. Make sure to meet your own though or you will burn out :)


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#11 of 16 Old 11-18-2011, 03:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#12 of 16 Old 11-22-2011, 04:11 PM
 
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Quote:
The psychologist explained that ADD/ADHD is often comorbid with ASD and so it is not considered a diagnosis itself when presented with ASD. However, had DS not met the social deficit requirements for ASD he would have received a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD (and SPD, too, which is also comorbid with ASD).

 

 

I've seen this in print in a few places as well. My understanding is that ADHD and ASD aren't considered separate diagnoses if there is ASD. The ASD diagnosis would trump the ADHD one because of the high rate of comorbidity and the tendency to treat ASD with ABA and CBT. I'm kind of surprised, honestly, that you were given 2 diagnoses. It's really not supposed to happen that way. (confused)


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#13 of 16 Old 11-22-2011, 06:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#14 of 16 Old 11-22-2011, 06:17 PM
 
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Free Range, it was just an interesting point, that's all. You are right that it makes little difference to your child or the treatments she will need. Nobody was trying to be snarky or hurt your feelings in any way. In fact we were trying to make sure you were being presented with good information. I'm still early on in this journey but I'm finding some medical professionals are more a hindrance than a help, some of them don't actually understand certain aspects of this (me having to tell the Paediatrician what the requirements are for getting a diagnosis!), etc. I know I just wanted to make sure that you were getting accurate information from someone who knows the system and how to help you best navigate it. I'm sorry if you felt attacked in any way. 


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#15 of 16 Old 11-24-2011, 04:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama View Post

I am not sure why it matters?  She has symptoms of things typical of ASD and symptoms typical of ADHD.  Whether it is considered one dx or two I am still dealing with issues of ASD AND ADHD.  Or am I missing something?  Really I just wanted a little support, maybe some pity. shy.gif  Not a whole issue about how many dx's my dd has.  Not to sound snarky, just wondering why it matters more than anything.  She deals with both, we need to help her overcome issues to do with both.  It is so much different dealing with both (comorbid or otherwise) than it is dealing with a child who only exhibits symptoms of ASD without the ADHD (comorbid or not).  And kind of regretting spilling my fears and worries into this thread now bag.gif    I thought maybe people on this board would understand that a new (even if expected) dx can be hard. 



Did you really want pity?  I think some people wouldn't, and if they are treating others as they would like to be treated, maybe that's why you didn't get the expected response.

 

As for support, which most of us do want:  Maybe it would help you feel better to join a parent support group for parents with children with ADHD or with ASD or generally special needs.  An actual face to face, real-time type where you can really discuss with others going through the same thing and everyone is there to respond and see the non verbals.  On line support is great, but it has its limits.  Getting counseling or therapy for yourself can also help you take care of yourself, which is so important for parents of kids with special needs.

 

It isn't really clear from any of your posts what sort of symptoms (of either diagnoses your daughter has been given) you are dealing with or finding particularly hard.  As someone with SN kids who also works with other people's SN kids, I can say that the boundaries between lots of diagnoses are foggy, and that individual kids vary a lot.  I do get how it's different dealing with just ASD symptoms than symptoms of both.  If it's not what you are used to with your older child I get how you could be frustrated.  I don't know about it being harder, necessarily.  If a child has "just" ASD but it its more severe, then it may be harder to deal with that child than one with a co-morbid disorder.  I think if you wanted help with info on ADHD as the title of your post indicated, (besides some decent links others have given you) you might have to be specific as to what you are wondering about in particular.  A parent dealing with a very active or aggressive child with ADHD would have very different needs than one who is mostly inattentive, for example.

 

Hope you find some of the info and support you are looking for.


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#16 of 16 Old 11-24-2011, 09:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Uh, no I didn't *really* want pity.  Mostly just information and maybe a little understanding.   I posted here because I remember this board when it first started and the awesome amount of support it was.  But things change and MDC is no different.  I think I was just taken aback by the responses I got because they were not at all what I expected based previous experiences.

 

Thanks for the links upthread.  I originally posted on dx day, I have had time to process and adjust and we are well on our way with an ISP, OT, and a all the other things we need to do. I would be content to let this thread fade away.  Thanks  :)



 

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