Our child has multiple diagnoses including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD).
About three months ago, we agreed to add an additional medication to his regiment. It seemed to hel. but now we are seeing more symptoms—some old, some new. We are trying to decide whether to us more meds (or something else).
How do parents decide these things over and over and not second guess themselves? The short answer we always second guess. But we do whatever is the most reasonable and helpful.
Input from teachers, family members, and friends who see him often is helpful. We also rely on our gut instinct to help when navigating the “do we or don’t we” choices.
Our child has gained some weight and grown taller in a short time. Physical growth can reduce the effectiveness of some medications. Of course, the doctor’s expertise helps tremendously. Knowing how the medications should work Is important.
As the parent, we know our child best. We know what has worked and what hasn’t. All of this is taken into consideration when deciding our next step.
The one piece of this, maybe the most important piece, is asking your child: “How do you feel? Does this medication help you? What do you think would help you more?”
I’m surprised how often I forget this. Our child is old enough and communicates well enough to be able to have some say in how the symptoms are treated. He’s the one that lives with these conditions. He’s more cooperative about therapies when he can self-advocate.
In the end, we have to be the best advocate for our child. All any parent want is is for our children to feel happy and healthy.
Psychiatric Medication for Children-How Families Decide has information to help you make decisions about medication.