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Thread: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

  1. #1

    Default It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Hi, I have a 9 year old son who was recently diagnosed with Tourette's +. He has the OCD, high anxiety and ADHD. He was started on citalopram for the OCD and it helped lessen the OCD issues but he still had issues of aggression, not hesitating to attack me if I was calling the crisis line for help or if he was just angry. He has issues of abandonment, I am actually his grandma, and this only adds to his anxiety.

    He saw a psychiatrist who started him on Risperodone 0.25 mg twice a day. Because my son was tired on the meds he cut his morning dose in half. When this was done my son started backsliding towards the aggression. Now the Dr. wants to cut the morning dose out altogether!!! I told him that couldn't be done, that something had to be figured out as I was scared how much more my son would backslide.

    My son does not feel pain, honestly does not feel it. (has been hit between the eyes with a golf club that was put in a tree and fell out, has gone head first into a tree and just got up and played again, etc) Because of this he tries to hurt himself as he wants to know what pain feels like, he says it relaxes him to try to make himself feel pain. Because of this I have to keep everything sharp locked up.

    These two meds given to him have helped him to not do these as much and to take him off another dose scares me to death. When I fought about these changes the Dr. said he would change his meds to Seroquil instead of Risperodone. Still no prescription sent to pharmacy ...... I am losing a lot of confidence in this Dr. He seems to be over burdened with patients and does not want to see my son again until September!!.

    Can anyone give me any idea of how the Seroquil works compared to the Risperodone? As well, any ideas in getting help somewhere else for my son? I may have to go out of town as this dr. is the only psychiatrist for children in our area at this moment.

    I should also have added that my son was hearing voices before the Risperodone and that had stopped yet as the dose gets lowered that issue is coming back. I really suspect that there may be bipolar issues with him as well. How common is this with tourette's?
    Last edited by Steve; June 18, 2013 at 09:15 PM. Reason: reformat

  2. #2
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Both Risperidone and Seroquel are in a category of medications called Atypical Anti-Psychotics or second generation anti-psychotics.

    They are sometimes used to help control tics in people with Tourette Syndrome at the appropriate dose, different from the doses used to treat other indications in psychiatry.

    Is your son receiving any other form of psychotherapy in addition to the prescribed medications?

    What has the doctor said are your son's diagnoses other than Tourette Syndrome?

    I have a 9 year old son.....I am actually his grandma
    Do I understand correctly the boy is your biological grandson, but you have adopted him or have sole custody of him? Are his parents in the picture at all?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Hello and welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear there is so much drama in the family right now. It can be so hard to raise a grandchild and I commend you for doing it! Unfortunately you are not alone these days. My grandmother was my ray of light in my childhood My mother probably had bipolar. She was overwhelmed and me and my sister loved to go live w/ Granny for awhile. What doesn't work for a child in this situation is to hear the other adults or Grandparents bad mouthing thier biological parents or reinforcing the thought of them having it really bad and someone owes them for having a crappy life. Keep it as positive as humanly possible. I don't think Grandparents should have to raise Grandchildren so I can imagine wanting to vent. Don't do it around your grandson. Vent in this forum and he won't be able to hear you.

    Also, you said he is hitting you. This needs to stop now. He is doing it now because he feels comfortable around you and he trust you but when he gets older it could be the reason he has to go live somewhere else. If you let him hit you he is becoming conditioned to hit Grandma. He needs anger management classes.

    The best thing to do is take a walk if you are mad and angry. When you guys get back let him choose one thing he has to give up as a form of his reciprocity for hitting you. He will eventually get down to having only the things he loves and he won't want to give these things up and hopefully will modify his actions accordingly.

    We are here for you on this forum. We understand.

    Also, where are you located?

  4. #4

    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Thanks Steve for the info on the meds. He is my biological grandson, my oldest daughter's child. I have sole custody of him since he was 4 month old. His mom has not told him who his father is and she is not in his life which is good and bad. She is a trigger for him and a while ago I had to ask her not to call for him for a while. He has emailed her but doesn't hear back from her for up to 6 months at a time. She has her own mental health issues and when I tried to get help for her when she was younger I was basically told I was an over protective mother and just let her be. In my heart I knew differently and when she turned 16 I could no longer try to get that help for her as in the medical community she is of age to decide for herself.

    I look forward to this forum for the information I need and questions answered from those with experience with Tourette's. It can be a little overwhelming to try to figure this out as it is something that changes from day to day.

    ---------- Post Merged at 07:36 PM ---------- Previous Post was at 07:20 PM ----------

    I am glad your Granny was such a positive person for you. Please rest assured I do not ever bad mouth his mom at all, in front of him or out of earshot. It is his mom and I would never hurt him like that.

    I suspect there is also some bipolar involved regarding him as he would have blackouts and not remember things he has done, his moods also are way extreme at times like swinging from manic to being so sad. The Dr. was going to give him something else but changed his mind and gave the Risperidone I believe because my little one was also hearing voices.

    There was one day a few months ago (not yet on meds at all) when my son was so off. He ended up picking up scissors and holding them towards me as if he had to protect himself and I could see by his eyes the my words to him were not reaching him. I had to call 911 and they took him to hospital for assessment. As well FACS was called in by the police to assist with my son's needs as they could open doors way quicker than I had been able to. The worker for FACS came right out and told my son that if he hurts me even one more time he would be taken to live somewhere else. He listened and believed them!! There has been no more of that and since being on the meds he has not had the urge to try to hurt me either. He is now for about 6 weeks seeing a counselor who is actually helping. He had one previously who felt it was behavioural only and did nothing for my son. He would come out of there telling me that she doesn't get it, there is a force that takes over in his head and he cannot stop it.... that is how he described it.

    Now we are at a place that is just for children's mental health needs and have started getting the help we need.

    I love him so very much, I was there when he was born and was the first one to hold him, I have been the only stable person in his life and I need to understand Tourette's so I can help him at home as well. I agree that grandparents should not have to raise their grandchildren and in some ways I feel robbed because I cannot enjoy that relationship with him as it should have been. I am in my early 50's but with the ADHD he has there is WAY more energy there than I have lol....

    How badly does puberty affect the Tourette's? That is my greatest fear at this time. I want to know what to expect especially given his propensity for aggression.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    It sounds like your son needs to be treated for the auditory vocal hallucinations, his moods and the aggression issues.

    not hesitating to attack me if I was calling the crisis line for help or if he was just angry
    This is unacceptable behaviour and for your own safety needs to be addressed.

    What is the extent of your son's Tourette symptoms? Do his tics affect his relationships with playmates, classmates and within the home?

    Is your son receiving any other form of psychotherapy in addition to the prescribed medications?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Quote Originally Posted by imbetts View Post
    Hi, I have a 9 year old son who was recently diagnosed with Tourette's +. He has the OCD, high anxiety and ADHD. He was started on citalopram for the OCD and it helped lessen the OCD issues but he still had issues of aggression... ...
    The age of your son is something of a limiting factor in terms of medications and in terms of accurate diagnosis.

    I think you mentioned elsewhere that your daughter, the boys biological mother, has her own mental health issues. What is the nature of her issues and/or her diagnosis? What do you know about the boy's biological father in terms of his mental health background? Is there any other history of mental health issues in the extended family, especially depression, OCD, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia?

    The symptoms identified as indicating OCD, ADHD, and even Tourette Syndrome may in the case of your son have a different basis.

    On the other hand, I'd like to know more about his aggression. Is it possible that may have been a manifestation of TS? Have you ever asked the psychiatrist about the origins of that behavior?

    Additionally, you say he was hearing voices and that these are returning. What do you know about the nature of those voices? What were they saying?

    Quote Originally Posted by imbetts View Post
    I should also have added that my son was hearing voices before the Risperodone and that had stopped yet as the dose gets lowered that issue is coming back. I really suspect that there may be bipolar issues with him as well. How common is this with Tourette's?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    I personally didn't know that TS dx could include hearing voices? I thought that was a schizophrenia characteristic. I have OCD and can get extremely paranoid. To the point of selling my house and moving

  8. #8
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Quote Originally Posted by Geneva View Post
    I personally didn't know that TS dx could include hearing voices? I thought that was a schizophrenia characteristic. I have OCD and can get extremely paranoid. To the point of selling my house and moving
    Auditory hallucinations don't necessarily indicate schizophrenia but again one of the complications is what that means for a 9 year old.

  9. #9

    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    It sounds like your son needs to be treated for the auditory vocal hallucinations, his moods and the aggression issues.

    This is unacceptable behaviour and for your own safety needs to be addressed.

    What is the extent of your son's Tourette symptoms? Do his tics affect his relationships with playmates, classmates and within the home?

    Is your son receiving any other form of psychotherapy in addition to the prescribed medications?
    Right now his tics are vocal (non stop whistling, repeating things he has read or heard, and facial tics) although I have been noticing head movements pulling to one side. He has been put on notice that it is unacceptable to attack me and he knows the police and FACS will get involved and he has been told if it continues he will be removed from the home. He has stopped doing this because of these things and I think the medicine as well is helping him.

    He does not have anyone he wants to play with outside of school no matter how much I try to encourage this. He is seeing a therapist for the past month for these issues so we are just getting started on help for him to deal with the feelings he has in an appropriate manner. He is being seen weekly and possibly bi-weekly if needed to address these issues.

    It is really hard, deep down he is the sweetest little boy I have ever known, he feels badly after these things happen and will put himself down because he couldn't control it. He describes it as a force that takes over his mind that he cannot stop while it is happening. He says he doesn't wake up that day thinking he wants to hurt someone, his anxiety just gets the best of him and he has not until now been able to learn how to control it (as best as he can) and not let it control him. Thankfully, and hopefully he is at the right place to be able to help him.

    ---------- Post Merged at 11:20 AM ---------- Previous Post was at 10:42 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by djbaxter View Post
    The age of your son is something of a limiting factor in terms of medications and in terms of accurate diagnosis.

    I think you mentioned elsewhere that your daughter, the boys biological mother, has her own mental health issues. What is the nature of her issues and/or her diagnosis? What do you know about the boy's biological father in terms of his mental health background? Is there any other history of mental health issues in the extended family, especially depression, OCD, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia?

    The symptoms identified as indicating OCD, ADHD, and even Tourette Syndrome may in the case of your son have a different basis.

    On the other hand, I'd like to know more about his aggression. Is it possible that may have been a manifestation of TS? Have you ever asked the psychiatrist about the origins of that behavior?

    Additionally, you say he was hearing voices and that these are returning. What do you know about the nature of those voices? What were they saying?
    Yes, his mom has mental health issues but I hit a wall trying to get a diagnosis for her as back then I was told over and over again that I was just an over protective mother. We do not know anything about his father and if there are issues on that side of his family history. Our family does have a history of depression and after a MVA I have had issues of OCD, a need to make sure everything was okay. To my knowledge there is no family history of bipolar or schizophrenia, but it is interesting that several years ago our family Dr. suggested that my son may have bipolar as he gets older, I don't know if she was basing this on how my little guy's mom acted or if she saw something herself. He was diagnosed as having OCD at 6 months old.

    What I know regarding the aggression is that is started about 9 months ago and that is when my son really started acting strange, doing things such as stopping what he was doing, laying on the floor laughing hysterically and then getting back up to finish his task. When I asked him about it he really honestly did not believe he had done that. I suspect that he was hearing voices at that time, even to this day he denies doing that. It is like he has blackouts. I have talked to the psychiatrist and my son's therapist and they feel that when kids are under stress they can hear voices but to me this seems to be much more than that.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: It's Just the Beginning, yet discouraged

    Imbette,

    He describes it as a force that takes over his mind that he cannot stop while it is happening.
    Some people with Tourette Syndrome experience rage reactions , sometimes referred to as "storms". These usually occur when the person or child receives multiple demands or is involved in multiple tasks that might be sources of frustration.

    There seems to be a point beyond which a person who is predisposed to these storms has difficulty controlling their emotional reaction thereby expressing rage and what appears to be anger or even aggression.

    If your son's therapist is familiar with treating children with Tourette Syndrome, s/he might have some strategies to offer, in the form of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) which is often helpful in diffusing and even aborting this kind of behavioural response.

    Have a look at the posts in the Anger section of our Forum, and in particular the first three posts at the top of the section titled Rage Episodes, Parts 1,2 and 3 that might be relevant to your son's situation.

    Additionally, the questions asked by Dr.Baxter in Post #6 will help provide additional insights for us to help point you in the right direction.

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