Risperdal and a hunger outburst

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by zba189, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. zba189

    zba189 Guest

    difficult child had an issue today at school, that was minor but there seems to be an ongoing theme with his current Risperdal prescription. He broke a pencil in two and threw an eraser across the room because he was hungry. This was after lunch, where he failed to eat everything in his lunchbox because he was going to miss recess if he took much more time to eat. This is the first time we have had an issue at school, but the hunger that is going hand in hand with this medication is becoming a real problem.

    His teacher (who is amazing) suggested that I bring him a snack that he can eat during his last recess of the day instead of going out to play. She means well and I understand that his outburst could be caused by the animal like hunger that he feels but difficult child has begged me not to send him a snack because he doesn't want to miss recess. I told him he needs to make sure that he eats everything that I pack him in his lunchbox everyday to avoid being hungry but in all honesty I don't know if that will really make a difference. His lunch today was a peanut butter bagel, and bag of trail mix (nuts, cherries, craisins etc), a string cheese, a bag of pretzels and a bottle of water. He ate everything but the cheese.

    I hate for difficult child to miss recess, but if he can't control himself because he is so hungry I don't see any other solution. Is this a big enough concern to let his psychiatrist know about(we have our first appointment Nov 8th)? This is the only medication that difficult child has tried. It seems to be helping with his mood, but we are still having some very very minor issues and this type of aggression is actually what we are trying to curb. Is there another option for a mood stabilizer that doesn't create the insane hunger issues? Can you think of another option that would help with the hunger and allow difficult child to still go out and play?

    I'm so sick of this medication ruling his life.
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    At his age I would think they have a daily snack time in class, or is that before lunch? I'm struggling with my kiddo eating like a lumberjack since starting Zyprexa (she reacted badly to Respirdal), her school her allowed her to bring a snack that she can eat when she needs to as a dispensation (like a diabetic kid that has to eat on schedule or when they feel their sugar is low, etc). I send her with a box of crackers or air-popped popcorn so she can munch when she needs to.
  3. shellyd67

    shellyd67 Active Member

    Awwww poor kid. Kids need recess to burn off steam and work off some penned up energy. Also recess is alot fun and free tme ALL kids look forward to. Maybe he could go to lunch 10 minutes before the rest of the class ?
  4. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    If you can get him to eat breakfast, a very high protein breakfast with some fat can keep the hunger at bay; especially combined with a high-protein lunch with some all-natural carbs.

    Bfast: 3 egg omlette with 1/2 cup shredded all-natural cheese; 1 cup milk/soy milk
    Lunch: grilled chicken strips, carrot strips, all-natural ranch dressing for dip, cheese stick

    Maybe give the teacher a few high-protein bars that he could have if he is starving? He wouldn't even have to leave his desk - he could eat and work???

    With my kids, those hunger-binges settled down after a while on the medications.
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    They make all sorts of energy and protein bars. I strongly advise stocking up on bars that are made with the 40-30-30 ratio - 40 % car, 30% protein and 30% fat, for his snacks and times when the hunger gets so bad. There are a couple of brands that are made this way, the Zone bars and the Balance Bars. I HATE anything that tastes like health food and these bars taste GOOD to me. You MUST read labels because a LOT of the bars have little or no protein and that is exactly the opposite of what he needs. You can also get some bars that are higher in protein, but they may or may not taste good. My kids like the taste of the snickers marathon energy bars (NOT candy bars, these are in the energy bar/diet section, at walmart here it is the pharmacy not the grocery section) but they won't eat them because they are too hard to chew.

    If you buy one or two of several flavors you can see what kinds he likes, then you can send these as his snack. They are quick to eat so he won't miss much of the recess, or maybe he could even take one out to recess as long as he doesn't share or throw the wrapper on the ground. He can even eat one in class if the hunger gets the better of him.

    It is real hunger, so the school needs to let him eat when he feels he needs to (within reason, of course). If the school does not have a snack for the kids, at age 6 they are all probably in need of one. I know at that age we parents all worked together to provide healthy snacks for the class all year. They were just not old enough to go from 8:30 to 3:30 with just lunch.

    Even now with thank you in fifth grade we don't do ANYTHING afterschool other than come home unless we have a snack with protein for him. He is not on medications and needs this very much. If we are going to the store we let him get popcorn chicken at the deli or a protein bar or something. It makes a HUGE difference in him, so it will likely make more of a difference to your difficult child.

    You asked about a mood stabilizer. Did the docs tell you risperdal is a mood stabilizer, and is that what you are expecting the risperdal to do? If so, you have been misinformed. Risperdal is an atypical antipsychotic and works on aggression and violence. It may help moods, but it is NOT a true mood stabilizer. If he needs a mood stabilizer he should be on something like depakote, lamictal, etc... He may need the risperdal in addition to the mood stabilizer, but he will need a mood stabilizer too if the medications are supposed to control his moods.

    The protein bars are easy and fast, which may make life a lot easier for your difficult child and his teacher. Just make SURE that they have protein in them. For the rest of his diet, the 40-30-30 ratio is good to follow for all of us, diet wise, as a general rule. There are some books about the "Zone diet" that have a lot of good ideas for snacks and meals that follow this. The author is Dr Barry Sears. They are pretty easy to find used, and it can make a real difference in behavior and thinking. I am NOT saying your difficult child needs a "diet", just that it can be helpful to follow that 40-30-30 ratio whenever possible. Esp with a child, because so much of how kids handle situations can depend on if they are hungry or tired or both. The books are just ways to find some recipes and snacks that will help with the extreme hunger that risperdal and some other medications create. One snack idea that surprised me was to have 2-3 oz of deli meat with half of a snickers bar. It is a bit high in fat and empty calories, but you get the sweet taste and enough protein that it doesn't create problems with too much sugar. another handy suggestion is to have egg mcmuffins if you are going out for breakfast - they are a bit too high in fat, but mostly meet the 40-30-30 rule. If you make htem at home with ham instead of canadian bacon they are affordable and give a good start to the day.
  6. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I tried the protein bar route with mine, a variety of brands from diet brands to weight-lifter brands. She might find one she likes - for about a week. I have a snack drawer full of leftover don't-like-it-anymores. One thing I can usually get her to eat is peanut butter (I get her the new JIF with omega 3), and if I can get her to eat it on high-protein high-fiber low cal bread, so much the better. If not, fine, I'm willing to hand her the jar and a spoon.
  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    pb on apples is good too...or banana's...lol.
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    It sure is, but she refuses even though bananas are pretty much the only fruit she'll eat (and don't even suggest putting it on celery to either of us, lol).