June 26, 2013

Starting Medication

Moe was a great sleeper as a baby. Sure, we had the usual newborn stuff, but after he hit the 4 month mark, he learned to fall asleep on his own and slept through the night. But something happened around the time Moe turned two, which is also around the time he started regressing in other ways.

Moe gave up his nap. Then, slowly, his nighttime sleep got worse and worse. At first he had trouble falling asleep. We tried behavioral techniques, sensory calming techniques and eventually melatonin. Then he started having trouble staying asleep. Sometimes the melatonin wouldn't work. We would have good cycles and bad, but the last six months or more have been awful. Moe rarely slept through the night, and his awake times would often span several hours. It affects all of us, including four year old Jelly.

We had to get a handle on this, so we found a psychiatrist.

Side note: finding a good psychiatrist is hard to do. Most of the ones I contacted aren't taking new patients or have waiting lists of several months, some up to 8-10 months. Many do not take insurance. Still, time and persistence and perhaps a bit of luck paid off.

Over the past two weeks, we had several appointments with the psychiatrist. At the last one, she recommended some medication. I am thankful we have options, and yet we do not rush into meds lightly. Moe cannot tell us how he is feeling. He already has trouble learning new skills. We want to make sure his mind is still sharp and that he is able to learn.

Our primary goal was to tackle sleep. After that, we wanted to address some emotional dysregulation, impulsivity, some aggression, as well as hyperactive behavior. It is our belief that most of these come from being over tired and over stimulated, but we can't get a baseline on those behaviors until he's sleeping well. We do not believe Moe has ADHD.

So we discussed options, and have decided to go with a medication that will help with sleep, and should also help address some of the above, as well as anxiety. I'm not sure yet if I feel comfortable talking about Moe's specific medications on this blog, so I'm going to hold off on that for now. (If anyone has specific questions, feel free to contact me here or via my Facebook page).

Last night was the first night, and we will slowly ramp up the dose over the next week if he tolerates the medication. We were worried about getting him to swallow a pill, but it is very small and he swallows it down with a spoonful of pudding. I hope that will continue.

It took two hours for Moe to fall asleep last night, but he slept through. It wasn't a great day for him today. It is hard to know if that is because of the meds or if he just had a bad day.

Tonight, he fell asleep at a decent time as well. I will be tracking everything, from asleep and awake times to overall mood.


  1. I'm SO happy that he slept through the night, and I hope that his rough day was only because he's adjusting. I hope it works. Getting good sleep helps everything. It's helped my anxiety a lot, all by itself.

  2. Here's hoping that it works and you all get some relief from the long nights. My heart reaches to yours and holds your family up to the Universal Healing Power.

  3. My heart goes out to you guys. Sensjng every best wish.

  4. Hey there!! Just wanted to let you know that after about 3 years, we've finally found the right med for Griff. We also got an appt with the top child psych in CA. That was definitely by luck, as his wait list is over a year. After trying different combinations to help him sleep and get him to focus during the day, we found out the hard way that he is a micro-dose kiddo. When combining meds and giving higher doses, he freaked. He has been taking 1/2 tablet 3x/day of a 1mg Tenex. It has worked wonders!!! He's focused, happy, and most of all sleeping through the entire night!!! Btw, I give the pill in a banana. It works great and the little sucker goes right down. So, I am with you Jen. We battled the same hellish nightmare forever!!! Call me or facebook me if you want to know more. Good luck!! I hope you get the same results we have!! Love you and always thinking about you guys!! xoxo

  5. I just want to wish you the best of luck with this. I can imagine it has been an exhausting experience, physically and emotionally. Here's is hoping these meds get you all some much needed rest!

  6. Good luck. It might take some time for him to adjust even just to different sleep patterns - kind of like one might feel a little foggy if one sleeps a whole lot more than normal. I don't know if you've had personal experience with taking medications that are related. I take meds for anxiety/depression & in the beginning, I felt woozy & dizzy - then it faded & I felt physically fine again. I've gone through it when changing dosages too.
    The tricky part is that Moe can't tell you how he's feeling & you have my sympathies there. My kid isn't good with telling me how he feels either. He's verbal, but he does not like to be questioned & I'm not entirely sure how much he understands when I ask him about how he's feeling, particularly physically. If he seems like he might not be feeling well, I try to ask him if something hurts or if he's tired, etc., I generally get screamed at or he just answers yes to anything or no to anything.
    I hope as the days go on, things get much, much better.

  7. I tried to comment on your other post with the medication update but I didn't see the option. I'm sorry it isn't working that well. I have a couple of questions as we have the same issues and I know a few people who have kids with horrible sleep issues like ours.
    Have you had a sleep study done on your son? Have you had his adenoids and his tonsils checked by an ENT? The adenoids and tonsils can be enlarged and causing issues for him to wake up and then not getting back to sleep. I don't know if you ever have thought that it could be a yeast overgrowth issue as well. That was part of my daughters problem. We finally got a dr to help with that and after an initial withdrawal and a diflucan protocol she is finally getting some good sleep. Just a couple of ideas. She also started full day school that has helped tremendously. She usually comes home from school rubbing her eyes she's so tired. She's five and goes to a private placement. Please contact me if you would like to bounce some more ideas off of me.


I love comments! Respectful disagreement always encouraged.


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