HealthDay News — Children with specific gene variants respond better to the drug methylphenidate Ritalin, Concerta, which is widely used to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD, a new study says.The finding could help improve treatment of ADHD, according to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center researchers."Physicians don’t have a good way of predicting who will experience great improvement in ADHD symptoms with a particular medication, so currently we use a trial-and-error approach. Unfortunately, as a result, finding an effective treatment can take a long time," lead investigator Dr. Tanya Froehlich, a physician in the division of developmental and behavioral pediatrics, said in a medical center news release.
Summer camp can be a wonderful experience for kids with ADHD, if it’s a successful experience. There are some things you can do to help ensure success. Even if your child is excited about summer camp or has already been through the experience once, you might find some useful suggestions here.
I used to drive my ex-husband crazy. Actually, I think what used to drive him crazy was my Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. I’m not sure what else about me drove him crazy, but that was definitely an irritant.
I was diagnosed with ADHD a few years after my first marriage broke up, so at the time, although I was beginning to realize that I had a short attention span and could be hyperactive, I didn’t know why. My ex (who did not have ADHD) and I both had computers and would often be sitting side by side working or playing a game or whatever. But I had always had either laundry, tidying up and cleaning to do, so I usually didn’t stay in my chair very long. I’d jump up after fifteen or twenty minutes at the computer and put a load of laundry in. Then I’d sit down for another fifteen or twenty minutes, until I felt the need to get up and do some dishes or pick up the apartment. My ex-husband, during this time, would not have moved. One day he roared at me, “Can’t you just sit down for longer than five minutes?!” Well, yes, actually. I was sitting down longer than that, but to him it seemed like I was up and down like a jack-in-the-box.
Is there a bigger challenge for someone with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder than the holidays? So many things to keep track of, so many things to accomplish – all of them with a deadline. After planning twenty-five or so holiday seasons, I’ve come up with some strategies, and also know where some of the potential pitfalls for someone with ADHD are at this time of the year.
I worked in retail sales for over three years, all of them spent in stores in large shopping malls. The first store I worked in, Victoria’s Secret, was in a beautiful mall in Boston called Copley Place. Everything about the mall was soothing – the peach marble interior, the low lighting, the waterfall and the softly playing classical music. The stores were all high end, like the beautiful Brentano’s bookstore with its many art books. At Christmas time white lights decorated the mall tastefully. Something about the way the mall was built kept it from being too loud, and the foot traffic, while healthy, wasn’t overwhelming. I loved my job, and despite the long hours, I never felt tired.
About ten years ago, I went to a craft fair with my parents. My parents go to the type of craft fairs that have handwoven coats and custom made wood furniture. I fell in love with some custom-made leather boots. They created a mold for your feet and lower legs and made the boots from that. They cost $500 (I got the sterling silver buttons). They were definitely worth the price, but for me that was about half a month’s pay. I hyperventilated the whole way home and tried to figure out how I was going to break it to my husband.
We ADHD-ers can be somewhat impulsive. In many situations it’s an endearing and even desirable quality. When it comes to spending money, not so much. Around the holidays this is particularly difficult. After all, we’re prone to impulses and we have to shop. Plus, it’s often easier to justify buying something when it’s a gift. So at this time of year it’s “Danger, Will Robinson!” All those nice, shiny things beckoning to us. Before we know it we’re at the register and handing over our money. And even when we make a good purchase and can afford it, sometimes we still feel badly because we didn’t buy it after carefully considering the purchase, or at least counting to ten.
My son Lawrence started kindergarten last year. It was kind of tough on him. The class was three hours long, and they only had a short, ten minute recess about halfway through. And unlike pre-school, there was a curriculum that had to be completed by the end of the year. Goodbye Show and Tell, hello learning by rote. His teacher was wonderful and very patient, but it eventually became clear that he was having trouble. Nearly every day he got a time-out for talking in class. His teacher worked with him on these issues, but after all, there were nineteen other children in the class. So she was very concerned that the first grade teachers would be less tolerant than she was, and that his self esteem would suffer from constant discipline and being made to feel like a bad kid. His grades were good, and everyone found him very personable, but he was definitely disruptive.
As I mentioned in a previous SharePost, I tend to collect paper into piles. I wish it was just paper that ended up that way, but unfortunately, that’s not the case. Let’s take a tour of the house I share with my son and husband.
Living room – there’s a pile behind my desk chair. I’m not sure what it is. I think it’s a combination of books I’ve had to look at recently and my son’s drawings. I can’t decide what to do with the drawings. They’re the ones he does in afterschool daycare, and since no one helps him like they did in preschool, these are not anything special. Of course, they’re special because he does them, but are they worth keeping? Since I can’t decide what to do with them, they accumulate.
I’m looking at my desk at work, trying to figure out what to do with this sea of paper that is covering every one of the three counters that make up my cube in the Office of the Registrar at UC Berkeley. I have a pretty large cube, and as usual the paper has expanded to fill the space allotted to it. Through the day, I’ll scratch out a little space on a counter for eating or doing work. It’s definitely not an ideal situation, and let’s face it, it’s of my own making.
One of my co-workers has an unbelievably organized desk. I’m not sure where everything goes. She doesn’t have any more file drawers than I do, and she actually has fewer file folders than I do. I envy her, I really do. I wish I knew how she did it.
As a card-carrying computer geek, I’ve been playing what are known as computer role-playing games (CRPGs) for close to twenty years. I’ll try not to bore you with too many details, but basically the structure of these games consists of gaining experience for your character by doing battle and completing quests for non player (computer generated) characters. Since the internet really started going in the 1990s, I’ve also been playing online computer role playing games. Since you’re playing with many other players (real life players), the experience is much more social, and more competitive to some extent.