There are several options available for treating your child’s ADHD. Some parents choose to include medications in their treatment plans, while others choose not. What is best for your child might differ from what is best for someone else.
Your doctor may prescribe medication to manage ADHD symptoms. Your child may become more focused, less impulsive, and hyperactive with Medication.
You may be concerned about medication’s side effects, cost, and impact on your child’s growth.
There are many concerns with ADHD medication.
Some kids can tolerate Medication well, but others experience side effects that can be uncomfortable, interfere with how they function, or even hinder their growth and development.
Some side effects include:
- Appetite loss
- Dry Mouth
- Changes in mood
- When Medication wears off, it can cause a rebound effect
- Sleep problems
Speak to your doctor if you are worried about the side effects of medication.
As your child becomes accustomed to specific side effects, they may improve or disappear. Some side effects can be managed with particular strategies. You can change the type of Medication your child takes, the dosage, or the time they take it.
How it affects your child’s growth
You might worry that your child’s growth will be affected by taking medications.
According to research, ADHD medication does not affect your child’s growth. Some children may show a reduced growth rate. A recent study shows that it does not affect how quickly children grow or how tall adults become.
It depends on the type of Medication your child is taking and your health insurance plan. It could cost you $200 or even more if you don’t own health insurance. You may be required to pay a copay for each prescribed Medication if you have health insurance. This can range anywhere from $11 up to $110.
These resources are available to help you if you need health insurance or have a hefty copay.
- Patient Assistance Programs (PAP). If you cannot afford the regular price, some medication brands offer a lower price. You must first fill out the paperwork to prove your financial need. The company will then tell you what you are eligible for. You can ask your doctor, pharmacy, or the manufacturer for more information.
- Coupons and Discount Cards. Discount cards are available from some pharmacies, such as Walgreens or GoodRx. They offer discounts of up to 80% on prescriptions. Some ADHD organizations, like CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder), also offer discount cards. Call or look online for more information.
- Nonprofit agencies are providing prescription assistance. You can find discounts by using databases and prescription assistance programs. You can try the Partnership for Prescription Assistance or NeedyMeds.
Keep up with your medication and doctor visits.
Managing your child’s medications takes time.
Your child’s physician will first need to determine the correct dose. They’ll then need to monitor your child and adjust the dosage.
It’s essential to establish a schedule for your child so that they take each dose at the correct time. You may have to coordinate with caregivers or the school to ensure that teachers or nurses administer the proper Medication at the appropriate time.
Most ADHD medications work by increasing the amount of Dopamine within your child’s Brain. This reduces their ADHD symptoms. This shouldn’t affect your child’s personality.
The dose may have been increased. Your doctor may adjust the dosage if your child seems zombie-like or tearful.
The doctor may suggest another treatment if your child’s symptoms persist despite a low dosage. Rarely some children’s symptoms will only disappear if they stop using the Medication.
You might worry that your child’s medication use will lead to them abusing substances when they get older.
Although research indicates that ADHD is the cause of drug or alcohol abuse in teens and young adults, it’s not the Medication.
Abusing ADHD medication can increase your child’s chances of becoming addicted. This includes taking the wrong dosage or using it differently than prescribed. For example, it is crushing, snorting, or injecting. This can cause euphoria and increase addiction risk.
Avoiding Medication if your child has a history of substance abuse is best.
When do doctors not recommend Medication?
Some children should avoid ADHD medications because they can cause other medical conditions.
Consult your doctor if you suspect that your child may have any of the following conditions:
- Alcohol or drug abuse history
- History of monoamine oxidase (MAOI) use
- Allergic reaction to stimulant Medication
- Coronary Artery Disease
- Blood vessels disease or Heart
- Irregular heartbeat
- The history of fainting
- Motor tics or family background of Tourette syndrome
- Overactive thyroid
- Anxiety, tension, or severe anxiety
- Uncontrolled high Blood Pressure
Your doctor may suggest behavior management whether or not you take Medication. This includes classroom intervention, parent training, and school support. Communication with your child’s teachers and coaches, as well as their coaches, can make a huge difference.
Speak to your doctor and discuss what is best for your child. Be patient. Finding the proper treatment may take some time.