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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5763
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My 11 year old daughter has been dealing with her ADHD since

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My 11 year old daughter has been dealing with her ADHD since she was 6 years old. We've tried Adderall, Daytrana patch and Vyvance and now her psychologist believes she also has ODD. To the point that she's always in trouble at school. She's always angry, cant take responsibility for her own actions, she's getting into fights, cant mind her own business, etc. I'm at a loss for what to do next. I feel she's alway grounded and now she just doesn't care that she doesn't get to do anything. Is there a different type of medication that will help with the AHDH and ODD (and possible Bi Polar)???
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.


Bipolar disorder is much different than ADHD. It also happens to be one of the most over diagnosed disorders (in children) in clinical psychology. What you are describing sounds very much like a conduct related disorder and not Bipolar. I say this only because the mood stabilizers that are used to treat this disorder are harmful to the kidneys and liver and are not to be used lightly in children.


I see a variety of ADHD related medications in her past history. Please know that ADHD medications, when prescribed by themselves, (if the child has true ADHD) should have had a greater impact on the child. ADHD is biochemical and once the medications are given, there should be a significant change in behavior. If there is not a significant change in behavior it is usually a combination of problems and it sounds in your case that it is primarily conduct related.


As a result, the proper treatment for your daughter is medications and behavioral based therapy. Medications by themselves are usually only 50% effective and therefore therapy is needed to help address the rest of the issues. With both therapies, effectiveness is often 80 to 85%.


I would strongly recommend your daughter be seen by a child and family therapist. Her pediatrician should be able to provide a good referral.


I also recommend some resources for you: These books are inexpensive on and are soundly behaviorally based, and when applied, work. They are to be used in conjunction with therapy.

10 Days to a Less Defiant Child: The Breakthrough Program for Overcoming Your Child's Difficult Behavior - Paperback (May 19, 2006) by Ph.D. Jeffrey Bernstein Ph.D.


Also: Your Defiant Child: Eight Steps to Better Behavior by Russell A. Barkley PhD ABPP ABCN and Christine M. Benton PhD (Paperback - Oct 6, 1998)


And a final resource:


The Challenging Child: Understanding, Raising, and Enjoying the Five "Difficult" Types of Children by Stanley I. Greenspan and Jacqueline Salmon (Paperback - Sep 10, 1996)


The missing piece here is customized behavioral based therapy. With the introduction of child and family therapy you should see a significant improvement. Kate

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