My 12 year old step-son has been on Adderall since he started school. Since we have switched custody arrangements and I see how this affects him...I am against using this.
He gets aggressive, and has mental melt-downs, won't communicate with me, gets chronic headaches, he isn't gaining weight at the rate that he should be (10% on the growth chart for his age.
He has no appetite and sometimes has to be forced to sit down and eat something. He doesn't get tired on Adderall either, so he doesn't want to go to bed, and he wakes up extremely early because he can't sleep.
These side effects alone are enough to scare a person off...
When he isn't on the medication he acts like a normal 12 year old.
We don't have the fits of hysterics and crying, we don't have the throwing of objects, we can hold a conversation together, we don't have any of the headaches...he has a normal appetite, and he can get the required sleep for his age.
On some days it does help him concentrate more on his school work. But then he has bad days too that he can't concentrate even on the pills....so really, I see they are harming him more than anything. He has good and bad days off of the pills too.
I would definitely consider long and hard about all the side-effects before giving my child anything like this. It's not like a normal pill with side-effects that you "might" get.....you deal with a lot of them every single day.
And it's not only hurting the kid...but it hurts you as a parent too. Raising any child can be stressful, but when you have to fight and fight your child and go through all the side-effects right with them it makes it a lot harder than it would have to be.
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