Sunday, September 04, 2005

Here Comes the Cavalry! (of MD's, that is)

I've been putting off writing this one for a couple of days. Lots has been going on...

Friday lunchtime I received a phone call from Mrs. Social Worker. She told me that The Kid had been involved in yet another violent outburst in the classroom, hurting children ( believe he kicked this time, screaming and overturning a basket of lunchboxes (there was possible food spoilage involved--not to sound flippant, but do I really need to know about that?) and this time he had been sent in to talk to Mrs. Principal. I was also told that Mrs. Principal has a background in special ed, and so understands what is happening with The Kid. Mrs. Social Worker also added, probably inappropriately, that I'm lucky to have Mrs. Principal, because any regular Tom, Dick or Harry Principal would have probably suspended or expelled The Kid for the trouble he's been causing for these 8 days he's been in kindergarten.

Mrs. Social Worker suggested we get working right away on The Kid's case. I was glad she called, but I thought that we had already decided to get working right away on getting The Kid some help. But this time, poor Mrs. Social Worker had to do the dance. This is the act wherein they must tell parents to consult a physician regarding the child's mental health without actually saying, "I think your child might have a diagnosable mental/behavioural disability or disorder." I'm assuming it's because parents have gotten defensive at this statement, maybe they've even sued school districts for it (which is ultimately suing oneself, if you think about it). I knew the act had started as soon as Mrs. Social Worker paused to think of how to do this. I let her say that she was going to get started with special educational testing, but... I told her right away that as soon as I got off the phone with her, I'd be calling our pediatrician. That cut the song and dance short. She thanked me, and wished me a good holiday. I did the same.

I like my pediatrician (and her whole office), but she had once told me that she was uncomfortable with diagnosing things like ADD. I left it at that at the time, unsure why. Does she not believe in ADD? Who knows? I was nervous to call her, but did so right away anyway. These are not easy phone calls to make. Once we started talking, she began again on how she was uncomfortable doing this. What I didn't understand is that she may not want to do it herself, but she will gladly refer me to some experts, and then continue on as a resource, but not an expert. Aha! This is good news, I think. The end result: I'm going to be getting a call, hopefully Tuesday, from Children's Hospital's Child Development Unit. This is one of the best ranked hospitals in the state, region, and I believe (at least for the trauma unit) nation. I am encouraged. The Kid will begin testing there as soon as they can begin.

So, teams of professionals will now be working to understand The Kid's brain and the impulses it give him. This should be interesting.

I want to appeal to my tiny internet community for some books, websites, etc on what to expect now that I've actually reached the stage where ADHD or some other synaptic-release issue that is causing my child to be unable to process the information put forth by the world in a "normal" way may actually be diagnosed. What are the drugs and what do they do? Is drug therapy the natural progression of things? What are the alternatives to drugs? I don't even know this, except for the whole "refined sugars and starches" diet stuff.

This is a wierd thing to have to do. I've books from most of the "attachment parenting" style kind of stuff. LOVE Parenting magazine. LOVE good ol' Dr. Sears. I subscribe to a number of their practices (I was a long-time nurser, co-sleeper and natural childbirth survivor, er, practitioner), but I distrust their distrust of the medical community. I think the hippocratic oath is generally kept, and just because some (or rather, many) of the medical establishement's remedies don't come from herbs that can be planted in one's own backyard, they can be useful (um, like birth control! Hooray! Love that Tylenol too. Oh, and antibiotics have sure saved a few lives).

I also don't think that I will be completely okay with a scenario wherein a doc spent 5 mintues with The Kid, gave us an Rx for Ritalin or Concerta and left it at that. I don't think that this will be what happens, though. I just am an anxious person and like to read up on things so I'll know what to expect (this in itself explains the veritible library of books on natural childbirth and attachment parenting in my home library already, no?).

Anyway, if any of you would like to share, I would welcome the help. There is just so much going on right now. The school is taking The Kid and I very seriously, and I appreciate that. I know that they have to, partially to protect the other students and free up the teacher from having to spend more time with The Kid than the more compliant students, but I also get the feeling that they are starting to understand the love that The Kid truly is at his core. There's just something else going on in there... Anyway, perhaps the doctors at Children's will help us find out a little more about what is going on inside his beautiful mind...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My name is Irene Pak and i would like to show you my personal experience with Concerta.

I am 60 years old. I have been taking concerta for three days now. So far it is wonderful. I was previously on ritalin for 2 months, and felt like I was on rollercoaster. I would go from jittery to severly depressed and crying. After changing to concerta three days ago, I feel like myself again, only with much more energy focus and concentration. I am sure hoping this will continue. I am on 36mg.

I have experienced some of these side effects-
mild headache, dry mouth, some affect on sleep

I hope this information will be useful to others,
Irene Pak

Concerta Side Effects