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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our toddler was evaluated by a developmental pediatrician last month and given a very small dose of clonidine. It's meant to help him nap (yes, he still needs naps, his behavior shows it), she assured us that it'd be out of his system in a manner of hours, and said if we needed to she'd be okay with going up to the next dose but not any higher. He was later evaluated by a psychologist and several other specialists, who agreed that such a small dose shouldn't be a concern. All the doctors/therapists/etc that we've told about this haven't expressed any worry about it.

Ever since starting it, his behavior has been much worse. Including:

-CONSTANTLY hungry. Oh my gosh, he won't stop asking for food! He'll get like this for growth spurts, but a whole month?
-No attention span whatsoever. He used to be really willful and would resist focusing on tasks, but could have laser-like focus on things he wants to do. Now he constantly flits around.
-Melts down at the drop of a hat.
-Worsened night time sleep.
-Keeps saying "ow ow ow" and reporting pain in various parts.

It's possible that this is just a phase he's going through, he does have really bad periods. He was starting to get worse before he started the medication. But, eurgh, I don't want to keep giving my baby something if it's hurting him! :(
 

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You could try magnesium lotion / oil to help with restlessness and inability to sleep. There are gentle and safe formulas. Not sure about Clonidine or your questions, sorry about that! But, just wanted to mention it in case you decided to seek an alternative option for help with sleep.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Is it helpful for nap time sleep? I keep finding things that are good for night time, but it's hard to find things that help you nap.
 

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how old is he?

The only immediate thought I had was that the napping is taking away his need for sleep at night. I have no experience with that drug. I know that drugs don't effect all people equally, for example, I can take a certain medicine for sleep and it will have the reverse effect making it impossible to sleep, it also made me feel ill and cranky after. My son was a high energy kid who would not nap during the day (3?) even though it was clear he was going to burn out mid day. So to retain my sanity I would get him into bed with me for a minimum 1/2 hour holding him close if need be so he wouldn't leave, and maybe telling him stories. He would sleep like a rock at night. We also took a lot of walks so I could get mental breaks, it was go go go crash with him. My nephew is at a busy busy age, I was able to get him to slow down and calm down by having play in the kitchen sink with soapy bubbles, he'll also calm down in the bath.
 

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My son was on clonidine for about a week. It changed his behavior to the point that I had no choice but to take him off it. I know it works for some just not for us. We now use a prescription strength melatonin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
On naps: he's almost 3 and I know a lot of kids are ready to give up naps. When we started it, he clearly needed them. On days he napped, he also slept better at night, in addition to having better behavior during the day.

I don't think the clonidine is giving him properly restful sleep, he shifts and fusses a lot more when he naps, and he wakes up exhausted. Bags under his eyes. He's also been waking up earlier in the morning and waking up crying more often.

We're taking him off it. He still managed to nap yesterday without it. Hopefully it'll be out of his system soon and we can figure out what's going on and what to do.

We have looked into the side effects, but not everyone gets all the side effects. And I think the increased appetite isn't listed and I've seen a lot of parents report it with their kids. I know for some it's a boon, but he's never had trouble eating so we're really worried that he's overeating now and it's hard to have a kid who's constantly hungry.
 

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Have you tried melatonin?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
He's on melatonin for night sleep I don't know if you can use it for nap sleep.
 

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Melatonin helps for falling asleep but not staying asleep. Won't hurt to give it a try before nap time like you would bedtime.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well tall to his doctor. It impacts sleep cycles so it may not be good for naps.
 

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Some of your side effects sound like it could be the clonidine... Others, it's hard to say. Hope you figure this out, meds are tricky.
 

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Is it helpful for nap time sleep? I keep finding things that are good for night time, but it's hard to find things that help you nap.
I would think so, it makes you sleepy / comfortable after about 20 minutes of putting it on. The more you use it the more effective it is supposed to be. So yes, I would think you could just it before nap and bedtime.

I would try it if I were you! We've been using "Kids Safe Magnesium Oil" for a while now. We bought it on Amazon. I use it too, especially the nights my mind won't stop. If you are in a quiet dark room and use it, it will calm or put you to sleep. There are rare days when it doesn't work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Some of your side effects sound like it could be the clonidine... Others, it's hard to say. Hope you figure this out, meds are tricky.
They really are -_-
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
He's been off the clonidine for 5 days. We talked to the developmental pediatrician and she okayed nap time melatonin. So we tried it. He napped for two hours! ....then only slept 5 hours last night (yes still with nighttime melatonin).

So that was a bust.
 

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He napped for two hours! ....then only slept 5 hours last night (yes still with nighttime melatonin).

So that was a bust.
I'm so sorry. Sleep issues are the worst--they make it harder to cope with everything else that's going on. I know your LO's situation is really complex, and I know you've been through a lot already, so I really really hope you find some solutions that will make a real difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thank you. We're coming down from a week with the flu that's screwed everything up. His schedule went out the window, everyone was miserable, and now his behavior is horrific. We're trying to get the reigns on things and pull them back together, but it's hard. :(
 
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