Do your children take their ADHD medications on the weekends?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by liz, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. liz

    liz Guest

    I was wondering if you who have children who take stimulants to control their ADHD if you give them their medications on the weekends and holidays and summers from school?
  2. whatamess

    whatamess New Member

    Not usually. I probably will give one dose tomorrow because we are going to a stuffy family function where his behavior would be more noticable.
  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    We are starting to.

    We started out just school days morning and after lunch but have now added after school and weekends. difficult child says it helps a lot. We also increased his anxiety medications so not sure which one (anxiety or ADD medication) is helping the most or if they are equal. He did not get his after lunch or late afternoon ADD today so I will ask how he feels without it. Maybe the increase of the anxiety medication was what he really needed? It is hard when you make major changes of more than one medication to really know which was the most effective - if all changes were really needed or not.

    Our major concern right now is that the ADD medication also suppresses his hunger. This is a side effect that I don't think all kids get? He will eat breakfast and a little lunch but for supper time, he is not hungry until 8:00/8:30. We are giving him 4 hour doses to try to get lunch in between but now with the 4:00 dose, it is too early for supper. He does need to eat so I will make him late suppers.

    Today he didn't get his afternoon and later afternoon dose so I will ask him later how he felt about not having them. He is still not hungry (late breakfast at 9:00).
  4. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Yes. The roller coaster of emotion was difficult for Miss KT to deal with, and it was easier on all of us when she did. She wasn't getting into trouble as much, was able to go places without ticking people off, and it was definitely helpful because she was SO DOGGONE LOUD!
  5. liz

    liz Guest

    My son is taking 50 mg of Vyvanse. It works like a dream for him when he is in school.

    Lately, though, I have noticed when he is home and on the full dose, he seems to not need such a high dose and is taking out workbooks and obsessing on them and seems to be more Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) than usual UNLESS we are somewhere in public or at a party and he needs to gain control (such as in crowds, etc), then he seems to need the medications to get through the day. Know what I mean??

    I am wondering if his issues with school have more to do with anxiety than hyperactivity? He definitely does have anxiety that mimics ADHD and his ability to focus on a task at school stinks.

    He has a very hard time controlling his impulsivity at school and at home; but at home, he can control himself better (and his ADHD symptoms -- literally fighting with his brother, tantrums, indoor voice, standing to eat all meals, and incessant whistling) unless his brother is taunting him, etc.

    Besides loss of appetite, he does have a "tick" which is incessant whistling. I am not sure if he would've done that anyway or if this is a side effect of his ADHD medication. I am also concerned because his growth in height has definitely slowed down and I am afraid that this is because of the medications, possibly the high dose he is on (which he definitely needs to be successful in school) or the medication itself. The loss of appetite we deal with by feeding him early before the medications and feeding him an extra meal at nighttime before bed. The growth I am not sure what to do except take him off on the weekends and holidays.

    He has been on the medication Vyvanse for two and a half years, since 3 months into Kindergarten and he is now in 2nd grade making excellent grades and having excellent behavior.
  6. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    The nice thing about ADHD medications is that you can give them one day and not the next. So if you're concerned about how he's doing at home on Vyvanse, try him at home over winter break for a few days without Vyvanse and see how he does. It may help you make a decision about how to proceed.
  7. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    Mine took a half dose on Sunday mornings for Hebrew school but not otherwise.
  8. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member


    We did try the "holiday from medications" but found the child had too much difficulty adapting to having to manage without medications.

    It varies form kid to kid - some kids can get by without medications on non-school days. Some kids need a full dose all the time. Others need something, nut not the full dose.

    easy child 2/difficult child 2 only takes her medications on days when she is working, or studying. Without her medications she is very "blonde".
    difficult child 1 without medications can be violent, aggressive and extremely irritable. Neither of them are aware of how bad it is for us, when they don't take their medications.

  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    We are still working on a medication my daughter can tolerate and that doesn't give her side affects. When she took Concerta it was only on school days. We used it strictly for attentional issues at school. She has ADD inattentive so didn't really need it at home. We will do the same, summers too, if we try another medication.
  10. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!


    My difficult child 1 is so unbelievably off the wall without them that we just can't function as a family without him being on his medications. He annoys the crud out of everyone and acts like a manic drunk.
  11. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Mine did. In our family the more uniformity there was the better they felt. Perhaps I went a bit overboard but we always had meals at almost the same time, bedtime was almost always at the same time (although tey were allowed to read etc. in bed
    once they were older), and pill taking fell into that same category.

    On weekends when they had functions or even just played with others they felt "normal" and were able to interact without impulsive behaviors. on the other hand, we had very few sideeffects from the medication. DDD
  12. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member


    every one of our difficult children is so totally different! You are going to get many differing opinions based on our own unique experiences!

    For my difficult child, my medication philosophy has always been medicate for success. For my son, that really was limited to school and some social/family obligations (especially when he was younger and the hyperactivity and impulsivity were at their peak). For our family, having him hyper, impulsive and inattentive at home was doable. Surely it created some stress from time to time, but I preferred to not medicate unless really, really necessary.

    Now that he is 15, the hyperactive is pretty much gone and the impulsivity is often tempered with maturity (not always, but more than 50% of the time). For us, weekends, school holidays, and summer are medication-free (stims) times.

    Go with your gut and what works best for your difficult child and the entire family as a whole.

  13. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Eeyore takes his ADHD medications everyday without fail or he has a really bad day. If he sleeps late on a day-off, I give him a half-dose but he still gets some.

    Piglet only takes her ADHD medications on school days, when she has a competition or other event where she needs to focus. She can't take the whole summer it depends alot on what her schedule is.

    It depends on the kid.
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    When my ADHD son was on medication he normally only took his medication on school days or when he had some sort of event that he needed to concentrate on during the weekend.

    He actually started it that way from the time he started on medication because when he started on Ritalin in Kindergarten, the mental health dept dispensed the medication to the school instead of giving the script to the parent so the child only got medicated on school days. Go figure. Long time That changed when I moved to my current town.
  15. barneysmom

    barneysmom Member

    My gfg13 is one who needs his Adderall every day in order to function.