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At first I had <a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=789061" target="_blank">concerns about our 4 yo ds</a>.<br><br>
Then dh and I started really worrying. We both had very intense, "hyperactive" brothers who had major challenges as babies, then as toddlers, then as preschoolers, then in school, then after they dropped out of school, and as adults <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">. Both of our families brought caring and intelligence to raising our brothers, but the results are not what we want for our child...or our family <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shake.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shake">. What we are seeing in our ds looks pretty similar <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/crap.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crap">.<br><br>
In spite of our concerns about the pitfalls of labelling our child, <a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=822657" target="_blank">we decided to get him assessed anyway (summary of our concerns)</a>. I'm feeling defensive about that choice, but we are struggling as a family and need more support in understanding and supporting our child and our family dynamics. We thought that an assessment would help us in seeking out helpful resources. <a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?p=10218897#post10218897" target="_blank">The diagnosis was ADHD</a>, strong on the "H", not sure about the "A".<br><br>
I have read/heard the opinion that ADHD is basically a school problem that is not relevant to homeschoolers. I totally admire parents who don't feel the need to have their children assessed in spite of knowing they would probably fit a label. Personally, though, I do feel the need for information and guidance that is relevant to our situation - especially because we are homeschooling. I really want to hear from parents and experts who understand children like my son.<br><br><b>Now I am looking for books, articles, and approaches that work for homeschooled children who have traits that fall under the ADHD umbrella. Strategies for younger children would be particularly welcome.</b><br><br><i>edited to add</i>: We are <b>not</b> currently considering medicating our son to "fix" this issue.<br><br>
----------------------------------------------<br><br><b><i>Below I have summarized the advice that we have received in this thread and others.</i></b><br><br>
Approaches:
<ul><li>relax and enjoy my child and just be present <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"></li>
</ul>
Books:
<ul><li><a href="http://www.amazon.ca/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.ca%2FScattered-Minds-Origins-Attention-Disorder%2Fdp%2F0676972594%2Fref%3Dwl_it_dp%3Fie%3DUTF8%26coliid%3DI2QZ4O7SNF15MA%26colid%3D927KNDH63LDC" target="_blank">Scattered Minds: A New Look At The Origins And Healing Of Attention Deficit Disorder</a> by Gabor Mate</li>
<li><a href="http://www.amazon.ca/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.ca%2FCalm-Compassionate-Children-Susan-Dermond%2Fdp%2F1587612763%2Fref%3Dwl_it_dp%3Fie%3DUTF8%26coliid%3DI3008KHT4PLRKU%26colid%3D927KNDH63LDC" target="_blank">Calm And Compassionate Children</a> by Susan Dermond</li>
</ul>
Diet:
<ul><li>omega-3 supplementation</li>
<li>Feingold Diet</li>
</ul>
Treatments:
<ul><li>homeopathy</li>
<li>enzymes</li>
</ul>
Other Assessments:
<ul><li>second opinion on the ADHD diagnosis from another pediatrician</li>
<li>psychologist</li>
<li>vision testing</li>
<li>sensory issues/OT</li>
<li>IgG testing to identify potential food intolerances</li>
<li>investigate learning styles</li>
</ul>
 

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Have you looked into non-drug ADHD treatments such as dietary changes? Feingold has helped my DD tremendously, and now we're doing a trial of Gluten Free to see if it helps her furthur.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Ruthla</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10281713"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Have you looked into non-drug ADHD treatments such as dietary changes? Feingold has helped my DD tremendously, and now we're doing a trial of Gluten Free to see if it helps her furthur.</div>
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I have done an elimination diet with ds to investigate food sensitivities, but we didn't see any changes <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug">. I will consider IgG testing for him to get a better handle on what foods are potential candidates for elimination diet testing. We haven't tried the Feingold diet, though ds has little enough access to food additives or food colouring that I would expect that we would have noticed a correlation by now <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug">. We haven't tried eliminating salicylates though. I will investigate further.
 

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You added that stuff after I posted, right? I didnt' actually not see that you're already doing something I suggested?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Ruthla</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10281803"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">You added that stuff after I posted, right? I didnt' actually not see that you're already doing something I suggested?</div>
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Yes, I did add stuff after you posted. Sorry I'm just trying to organize this stuff for my own reference. But no, I have not tried your suggestion - I've just added it as a recommendation that I've received <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/thanks.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thanks"> - see my post #3
 

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Mama, my perspective is to enhance the environment to meet his intense activity needs. We have a huge sensory environment for our son. Have you read about sensory processing, right brained learners?<br><br>
Here are a few links:<br><br>
You might like these threads about sensory ideas:<br><a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=753091&highlight=ikea" target="_blank">http://www.mothering.com/discussions...highlight=ikea</a><br><a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=803814&highlight=ikea" target="_blank">http://www.mothering.com/discussions...highlight=ikea</a><br><a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=795958&highlight=ikea" target="_blank">http://www.mothering.com/discussions...highlight=ikea</a><br><a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=782016&highlight=ikea" target="_blank">http://www.mothering.com/discussions...highlight=ikea</a><br><br><br>
Hyper vs. physical learner: <a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?p=10168838&highlight=born+explore#post10168838" target="_blank">http://www.mothering.com/discussions...e#post10168838</a><br><br>
I really like the site "Born To Explore" about the 15% of folks who are physical learners: <a href="http://www.borntoexplore.org/addexp~1.htm" target="_blank">http://www.borntoexplore.org/addexp%7E1.htm</a><br><br>
Please consider reading Anne Ohman's article "I AM WHO I AM" <a href="http://www.livingjoyfully.ca/anneo/I_Am_What_I_Am.htm" target="_blank">http://www.livingjoyfully.ca/anneo/I_Am_What_I_Am.htm</a> It is one of my favorite article about not trying to "fix" our children.<br><br>
Here are some additional resources about the subjectiveness of the ADHD diagnosis. Mostly, I hope that you rely on your heart for knowing what your son needs, not "experts".<br><br><a href="http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/john_breeding.html" target="_blank">http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/john_breeding.html</a><br><br><a href="http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/david_keirsey.html" target="_blank">http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/david_keirsey.html</a><br><br><a href="http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/thomas_armstrong.html" target="_blank">http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/thomas_armstrong.html</a><br><br><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fexec%2Fobidos%2FASIN%2F0452275474%2Fncp-20" target="_blank">http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...2275474/ncp-20</a><br><br><a href="http://www.thomasarmstrong.com/" target="_blank">http://www.thomasarmstrong.com/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.docdiller.com/" target="_blank">http://www.docdiller.com/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.home.att.net/~fred-alden" target="_blank">http://www.home.att.net/~fred-alden</a><br><br><a href="http://www.wildestcolts.com/" target="_blank">http://www.wildestcolts.com/</a><br><br>
Here is a link about a friend's journey with her gifted child who was labeled ADHD. <a href="http://www.livingjoyfully.ca/family/our_journey.htm" target="_blank">http://www.livingjoyfully.ca/family/our_journey.htm</a><br><br>
Here is a bunch of info about Right Brained Learners who are notoriously labeled "learning disabled". <a href="http://www.squidoo.com/Right_Brained_Learner" target="_blank">http://www.squidoo.com/Right_Brained_Learner</a><br><br>
Here are a few more resources: <a href="http://www.visualspatial.org/" target="_blank">www.visualspatial.org</a> (Upside-Down Brilliance: The Visual Spatial Learner) Apparently, this is a huge variable in misdiagnosing ADHD, due to the varied processing of data presented, a person may *appear* to be delayed or confused by the information in a "distractable" manner. They are actually processing data in a multi-step process, ie. with <i>more</i> intellectual processing, not less, as it might appear.<br><br><br><a href="http://www.hsperson.com/" target="_blank">www.hsperson.com</a> (The Highly Sensitive Child by Elaine Aron) The author recognizes the *gift* of acute awareness of other's emotions and the challenges that this creates. It allows my dh to be an empathic and effective manager and negotiator, for instance.<br><br>
T.Armstrong has written several books about ADHD also. I don't know his work; but have heard this from friends.<br><br>
ADHD Drug Free (it's a yahoo group) <a href="http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/ADHD_DrugFree/" target="_blank">http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/ADHD_DrugFree/</a><br><br>
Autism Spectum and Mercury-ADHD is also addressed<br><a href="http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Autism-Mercury/" target="_blank">http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Autism-Mercury/</a><br><br>
Enzymes and Autism-ADHD is also addressed <a href="http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/EnzymesandAutism/" target="_blank">http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/EnzymesandAutism/</a><br><br>
Homeopathy and ADHD<br><a href="http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Homeopathy-ADDthruAUTISM/" target="_blank">http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group...ADDthruAUTISM/</a><br><br>
Here are a few more resources that I have learned about: <a href="http://www.ablechild.org/" target="_blank">http://www.ablechild.org/</a> Able Child: Parents for label and drug free education.<br><br>
David Keirsey, author of one of the articles which the naturalchild.org linked to, apparently has written some very cool books about personality types- a personality type is still a label, but it's a non-pathologising one, designed to foster better insight and understanding into what makes an individual's clock tick.<br><br>
Garret LoPorto's "The Da Vinci Method" is targeted at both adults and children who are likely to get the ADD/ADHD label stuck onto them and provides an alternative perspective focusing on the positive traits and non-medical ways of engaging those.<br><a href="http://www.davincimethod.com/" target="_blank">www.davincimethod.com</a><br><br><br>
HTH,<br>
Pat
 

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I know for my daughter, different types of sugar are a big issue. VERY big difference in her behavour between high fructose corn syrup, refined white sugar, and natural sugars. As you said your son has little access to foods with food additives or colors, I suspect he probably doesn't have much sugar, either, but thought I would point that out.<br><br>
As for schooling, we take lots of breaks because there are somethings I've not found a way to teach her without having her sit and do it. Luckily, none of these things take very long, but we have found that if I have her work for, say, half an hour, and then let her go do her own thing for a little while, she focuses much better. We try and do things hands-on. And a big thing also is just to focus on her strengths. Autumn reads extremely well, so while we try to keep many things hands on, we also do a lot of reading because she loves to do it and therefore will sit and do it. Math is where we really struggle because I feel she needs to learn it because there is sooooo much math in everyday living, but she hates doing it. I have a few "fun" math books for her that she's really a bit beyond skill-wise, but they are more like games and so once a week we'll do those instead of working in her regular math book. That has really helped.<br><br>
While it might take awhile, a big thing is to determine how your son best learns. A lot of people tend to categorize ADHD people and say they are all hands-on learners, but that is not true. ADHD does affect how someone learns, but basic personality (which, to me, is outside the ADHD) has a big part in it. Since people with ADHD can focus, especially on things they really enjoy, work with that. Like I said, my daughter loves reading, so we work most of our history in through historical fiction. And don't feel like anything is below your son. If it is something that catches his interest and helps him learn, go for it. I have used picture books with my daughter because it had information in there and she liked the book. It didn't matter that her reading level was about 4 times above the book.<br><br>
Sorry, I think I started rambling. The main point is that it can be done and it isn't necessarily as difficult as it seems. Oh, and getting a second opinion is probably a good idea. Our daughter was 4 1/2 when she was diagnosed and I had a very long discussion with the psychiatrist (?) who tested her and one of my main questions was how accurate it was, with Autumn being as young as she was. The doc said that with as high as Autumn tested, it was pretty much a guarantee that she had it, but that it might not be as bad/severe/whatever as it showed up then. She urged us to re-test her at about 7 for a better idea of where she falls.
 

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My 2 oldest kids are adhd plus other disorders. It is not only a school issue, my son in particular had issues bad enough to be put int eh children's mental health ward of the hospital for 2 weeks just before he turned 6. He has severe ADHD For him, he is on medication which I often feel I have to defend. SO many people, particularily other homeschoolers who think now that he is homeschooled he shouldn't need it. Though I admit his dose is much lower than it was when he was in ps.<br><br>
Anyway, beyond that I have a ton of adhd books around here, but one I really liked is called the adhd-autism connection and it goes into how adhd should be classified on the spectrum and how to treat it/work with it using techniques normally used for ASD kids. Things I have found work for my adhd kids are structure, and lots of it. Lots of warning of transitions etc. WOrking in small increments, though I am working at expanding that, I use things like exercise balls to sit on if I need them to concentrateon something. I bought scien e fair panels form staples, you know those 3 sides boards, to use as a way to cut down distractions. I found ideas for mini offices online, and made them bigger rather than just the size of a lapbook. This helps cut downt eh distractions for them. HAving 2 with adhd gets a bit crazy otherwise. I have to make sure they are physically active often, even if it means making sure they do a couple jumping jacks every hour or so. I also off set the things I want them to do with things they love. So I can keep him on task longer, such as writing his math test, because right after he gets to work on writing a comic book.<br><br>
I am currently looking into bach flower remedies and enzymes to help them but have not started using them yet. I am also shopping around for a weighted vest which his ped thinks will be helpful.<br><br>
I agree with looking at sensory stimulating activities. I know when I use them often with the kids they do much better over all.
 

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As far as approaches go, I use both Waldorf and Montessori approaches with my son and Waldorf with my daughter with some CM for the younger crowd. Outdoor learning has been so important for both of them, using lots of movement to enhance learning, allowing hands on learning, etc.
 

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I've always called my son "hyperkinetic" though he's had other issues as well... never fully ADHD, he has almost all the "H" issues but none of the "A" ones really (never formally assessed and he's never been to school).<br><br>
More recently, I learned about Sensory Processing Disorders, and it was a EUREKA moment. I notice you included that in your list of things to consider, and I'd strongly recommend it.<br><br>
"The Out-of-Sync Child" is the 'bible' of SPD, with detailed descriptions of the different types of SPD (aural, kinetic, proprioceptic, under-responsive, over-responsive, etc). Also it has suggestions for dealing with your kids' sensory needs.<br><br>
Another one I've found interesting is "Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults: ADHD, Bipolar, Ocd, Asperger's, Depression, and Other Disorders" DS is definitely gifted, and this goes into the reasons why many gifted kids are labeled ADHD (or something else) for entirely the wrong reasons. Or, how to identify if you kid is both gifted AND ADHD, and how that affects everything.<br><br>
FWIW, DS is 9 and things are MUCH better now than even just a year ago. The crashing-into-everything has virtually stopped, though the stepping-on-everything continues unabated. Tantrums are down to just once every few months instead of every few days, and he comes out of them more quickly.<br><br>
We never found much of a diet trigger for him, I think it's mostly just the way he's wired. (Wired... heh... literally) We do limit his exposure to milk (and only organic when we do) and artificial colours and flavours, 'just in case' it helps and it's more healthy that way anyway.<br><br>
I also recently found out about calcium propionate, a common preservative in commercial bread products, and potentially one of the worst offenders for inducing hyper behaviour in sensitive folks. That just cemented my desire to only bake our own bread... I even make out own hamburger and hot dog buns now! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>tankgirl73</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10289545"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">That just cemented my desire to only bake our own bread... I even make out own hamburger and hot dog buns now! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"></div>
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Would you share the recipe? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br><br>
Pat
 

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Ksenia,<br><br>
I would look further into your elimination diet, particularly with the Feingold program and here's why:<br><br>
Additives are not limited to artificial food colors and flavors. Preservatives, such as those found in lunch meats, even from Trader Joe's, cause my son to react and puts him in the hyperactive range.<br><br>
Annatto, a natural coloring found in many snacks bought at our local health market and TJ's, causes him to react as badly as if he'd just eaten an artificial red popscicle or drank a red slushie. Other children have had similar reactions to annatto.<br><br>
Salicylates are a huge part of the program. Those grapes and tangerines that ds was eating endlessly made him react.<br><br>
His behavior has improved greatly. I thought a diet program was the last thing that would help- I make most of our meals from organic, whole foods purchased at our local health market and TJ's. It still has made a tremendous difference because I was making things and buying snacks that had flavors, colors, preservatives or salicylates before that I don't now.<br><br>
Also, look at those vitamins and the toothpaste he uses. If it is flavored artificially, or colored, or even naturally flavored with orange, which is a salicylate, he could still be reacting to it.<br><br>
I would highly recommend you look further into this. Every one of his symptoms you described may be helped by his diet. Many children have been helped for those same symptoms. My ds who is 4 has improved greatly. Our relationship has improved. My ability to parent respectfully, happily, and gently has improved.<br><br>
Good Luck!!
 

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A huge <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/thanks.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thanks"> for all the insights and suggestions. I have been looking into the above-recommended resources. What is resonating most with me right now is the need for understanding ds' personality type and what works for it, although I am also interested in doing more detective work to address potential underlying causes.
 

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Hi Ksenia,<br><br>
I read your other threads, and I can't remember if you mentioned the "Active Alert" temperament before or not, but I found the book by Linda Budd really helpful. Another that has helped me is The Explosive Child. I don't know if these fit part of your situation or not but thought I would mention them in case they do. Sometimes getting little pieces of help can be beneficial, even if it doesn't match the whole picture.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Ksenia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10337850"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">A huge <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/thanks.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thanks"> for all the insights and suggestions. I have been looking into the above-recommended resources. What is resonating most with me right now is the need for understanding ds' personality type and what works for it, although I am also interested in doing more detective work to address potential underlying causes.</div>
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Hi Ksenia,<br><br>
I read your other threads, and I can't remember if you mentioned the "Active Alert" temperament before or not, but I found the book by Linda Budd really helpful. Another that has helped me is The Explosive Child. I don't know if these fit part of your situation or not but thought I would mention them in case they do. Sometimes getting little pieces of help can be beneficial, even if it doesn't match the whole picture.<br><br>
As for underlying causes - I am only throwing out some things that have helped our DS, not saying they would fit yours, but might be worth considering. For him, the biggest contributors were food allergies (dairy and egg), severe yeast issues in his gut, and mercury. Dealing with those three has made a world of difference. He is also on a regular supplement that covers lots of amino acids, B vitamins, zinc and folate (ASDPlex), as well as a daily probiotic to keep his gut healthy.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Ksenia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10337850"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">A huge <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/thanks.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thanks"> for all the insights and suggestions. I have been looking into the above-recommended resources. What is resonating most with me right now is the need for understanding ds' personality type and what works for it, although I am also interested in doing more detective work to address potential underlying causes.</div>
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