looking for advice and maybe opinions.

     My son is ten years old and has a current diagnosis of Autism. Five years ago it was PDD/NOS. I am at a loss as to what to do. We've tried different therapies, homeschooling, punishment and reward. You name it we've tried it. Except for medication. I've been reluctant from day one to go down that road. However, it's getting to a point where I feel like that's the only option left. Three days ago he literally broke his desk in half at school. How that's possible I don't know, but it happened none the less. Last year he got to the point that he was hurting his teachers, so I pulled him out of school and home-schooled him for the rest of the year. It was his idea to go back to public school, and everything went fine the first few weeks. However things are escalating now like they do every year. He has yet to hurt anyone this year, but I feel it's only a matter of time. If anyone has any advise about different medications to try that wont turn him into someone else, or any other suggestions, I'd love to hear what you have to say. Thank You.

                                                                                                                     Traci

  • I'm sorry to hear you're going through this.

    We've tried pretty much all the different meds out there and have had mixed results.

    The one thing I would have liked to have done differently is that I've never taken any hard data on frequency and severity of outbursts before starting a new med, so I'm always a little uncertain how effective any medication is. For the most part the drugs have either not worked, worked right away and then gradually lost effectiveness, or worked but caused side effects. This is a kind of difficult area because each person's brain is a little bit different, so what works or causes side effects varies - even between individuals with the same diagnosis and outward behavior.

    The blood pressure drugs, like Clonidine, supposedly work great for a lot of people - but not for us.
    Antidepressants haven't helped.
    Anti-psychotics and mood stabilizers have helped for a period of time but then either lost effectiveness or started causing side-effects or both.
    Anti side effect drugs usually work for a period of time and then start causing their own side effects.

    To be honest, while medications have provided valuable safety and calm, they seem - for us at least - to be an incomplete solution.

    But

    Don't let our experiences stop you from doing what seems best/safe for your family.

    We have gotten some periods of relief using the meds, even for years at a time.

    Best of luck, and perseverance.
  • Hello Traci

    Have you considered PDA - Pathological demand avoidance it is a diagnosis that is only being accepted (not by all) and it's actually the aspect whereby 'we' need to be taught in small groups in a PDA classroom at a autism school? Ritilin is the drug that is generally used in the U.K. which does calm anxiety down but may have an effect on his sleep routine?

    Hope this helps

    James