messy. crazy. amazing. joyful.

We're not all officially ADHD. Dad's unofficial. Our ten-year-old twins have ADHD. Our seven-year old wants to have it because everyone is always talking about it. Our three year old has ADHD--just because she's three. And me, Mom, I think it's contagious. Who can remain untouched in a house where shoes seem to be lost every morning, instructions are routinely thrown aside, and fights erupt over which continent capybaras come from?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Actually Doc…

Gets tired in the late afternoon sometimes, but I think switching the timing of Intuniv and starting Vyvanse has helped with that.

Took Luke to the doc for a checkup since he has started Vyvanse (lisdexamfetamine). Notice the amfetamine. My babies are on amfetamines. This all seems soooo counterintuitive.  And even though it does help, it still scares me. Have I said that before? Anyway, I’m happy that our move has taken us back to Doctor Dave, my husband’s brother who is an awesome pediatrician. And it was a classic Luke interchange.

Doc: “So do you think these new pills are helping?”

Luke: “Well, the pills don’t stop my meltdowns, they just give me more power to stop my meltdowns. Like if my brain is a bomb about to go off, the pills let me hack in and give me a couple extra minutes to disarm the bomb.”

Doc: “So you’re doing better with the meltdowns?”

Luke: “Ya. I haven’t had one since the Pinewood Derby.”

Mom (had to clarify a little): “The Pinewood Derby was last night.”

And later:

Doc: “So do you know what the Chill Drill is?”

Luke: “No.”

Doc: “When you feel like you’re going to have a meltdown, you imagine that you’re a penguin standing on ice. Breathe in some cool air, imagine your head cooling down, your feet cooling down. You just chill.”

Luke: “Well actually, that is the exact opposite of what penguins do. They try to maintain body heat and they huddle together to keep warm and hold their eggs on their feet to keep the eggs warm. They even have blubber to help them stay warm.”

The nurse and I looked at each other and tried not to laugh. Doctor Dave, patient as ever, went along with some Antarctic discussion and a new glacier metaphor.

The good news is that Doctor Dave saw a marked change in Luke since our last visit. Dave said the last time we visited, Luke wouldn’t even engage, but this time he talked a lot, and they had a good exchange. Small triumph. Better—I didn’t say perfect—social skills.

So for the record, we’ve changed both Izzy and Luke’s medications again. Nothing huge, but we’ve increased dosages. They’ve gone from 25 mg to 37.5 mg of Zoloft, their anxiety med. I’m giving them a pill and a half, since I’m wary about jumping right up to a double dose. I know they’ve been taking these meds for a few years now, and I know the dosage often increases as they grow and gain weight, but I’m still cautious. Who knows if they’ll take these meds off the market in 20 years and say, “Oops, we just realized that those drugs are causing brain tumors.” That may seem paranoid to some people, but in my mind those kinds of things happen all the time. So the smallest dose that helps is my mantra.

We also increased Luke’s dose of Vyvanse from 5 mg to 10 mg. Still a negligible quantity, but Luke and stimulants can be a scary combination. He just metabolizes the drugs like gasoline on fire. I was worried that he wouldn’t sleep on the 10 mg dose, but he fell in to bed and off to dreamland no problem. I think taking the Intuniv at night, riding his bike to school, and playing baseball are all helping with that. Baseball is another story for another day…


  1. It's so hard to find what works.

    I recently put my son on risperdal, that is scary to me. Its only been a few days, so I can't tell how it's working yet. He is also on vyvanse 70mg. That's the highest dose. :(

  2. All the drugs seem scary! But I can't deny that they help. And each person's dose can vary greatly. Just have to do what works for you, I say. And it sounds like you are! Good luck