Difficult Child's 14th birthday and neurotherapy update

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Second Time Around, Feb 23, 2015.

  1. I wanted to give you all an update on how things are going with Difficult Child's neurotherapy treatments. He's had 12 neurofeedback treatments so far. I'm keeping a checklist of behaviors and updating it once a month, so we can see whether he is making progress or not. He has no self-awareness about his state of mind at all. Whenever anyone asks him if he feels different or is able to do certain things better, he just says "I don't know." Any progress is going to be without him making any conscious effort. However, things are gradually improving, anyway, so I guess conscious effort isn't required for this to help. :) He is much less anxious and fearful and somewhat less impulsive. He hasn't wet the bed since the end of November except once when he had a bad cold and took some Nyquil. This is a big improvement as he was wetting the bed 2-3 times a week. He is now having two 15-minute sessions in the hour appointment. He is able to handle the first 10 minutes pretty well, but starts to get fidgety after that. He was very fidgety the entire time today and kept adjusting himself in the chair, complaining of itchiness, boredom, being cold, etc.. He still managed to get a fairly decent score in spite of himself.

    Part of his distraction is that his 14th birthday was yesterday. So, he is obsessing about what he's going to buy with the money. He'd like to get a Smart Phone, but he's already lost 2 track phones, and would probably use up a lot of minutes, so we're not too keen on it. He has always been obsessed with money and buying things and constantly changes his mind about what he wants. The neurotherapy has definitely helped him, though. In the weeks before Christmas, he was almost literally bouncing off the walls in anticipation and asked us dozens of times per day how many days it would be until Christmas. He has behaved like that with Christmas and birthdays every year for 14 years! So we knew that his birthday would be a good test. While he still obsessed about it and made lists of the dollar amounts he hoped for in the weeks leading up to it, he remained pretty calm and there was very little pestering and no bouncing off the walls. Progress!

    Difficult Child was telling the therapist that now that he's 14, he wants to get his learners permit so he can start learning how to drive. Absolutely no way are we letting him behind the wheel of a car anytime soon. He's still impulsive and so completely occupied by bodily sensations, that he would have an accident in short order. We were only in the therapist's office an hour, but he was constantly fidgeting in the chair and complaining that he was cold, itchy, his neck hurt, his leg was uncomfortable, etc. He's also supersensitive to pain and will fall on the floor screaming if he stubs his toe. I can just imagine what would happen if his leg was uncomfortable or, God-forbid, he bumped his knee on the steering wheel while he was driving. Of course, he has no insight into his behavior or how it would impact his ability to drive safely, so we will have to endure months and years of pestering and arguing until he better able to manage himself. Sigh...
  2. runawaybunny

    runawaybunny Administrator Staff Member

    Things are definitely going in a better direction for you and your son. Seems like the neurotherapy is really helping him, even without any conscious effort from him.
  3. ILoveCupcakes

    ILoveCupcakes New Member

    I haven't heard of neurotherapy before. From your description it seems to be helping your son. I will research this further. Thank you for sharing.
  4. Thanks! We thinks so too.
  5. It's not that well-known yet, but there are places out there that use this for ADHD. It's covered by insurance as it's invoiced as ADHD therapy. I wanted to share our experience in case it helped someone else. Our Difficult Child has bipolar disorder as well as ADHD, so he can't take ADHD medications. This works without medications and once his brain has been retrained, it should stay that way. The therapist first does a Quantitative EEG to see what the client's brainwave patterns are. Then the client watches what looks like a simple computer game with electrodes on their scalp with a connectivity paste. The computer is programmed to look for an increase or decrease of a particular brainwave pattern. If the client increases or decreases the brainwave for at least 3 seconds, depending on the goal, he scores a point on the computer game. This rewards the brain for the desired brainwave pattern and the client gradually retrains his brain. It usually takes 20-30 sessions to really have an effect, but we started noticing improvements after 8 sessions. When he first started, Difficult Child could hardly sit still for more than 2 minutes, but now he can hand 15-minute sessions, although he does get fidgety after about 10 minutes.
  6. ILoveCupcakes

    ILoveCupcakes New Member

    Thanks again for sharing this. I am definitely going to ask my son's new doctor if he has any experience with neurotherapy.