More Fun Without Meds?


"My 18-year-old stopped taking his ADHD meds because his friends told him he was 'more fun' without medication, but now he's having trouble. How can I convince him to give it another try?"

Dr. Larry Silver specializes in treating children with attention deficit disorder (ADHD).

Make a list of the differences others perceive in him when he's off medication. Because it's never easy to convince a teen that his parents are right, solicit input from teachers, counselors, coaches, and so on.

Give your son the list, then let him decide whether the medication has a positive impact on his life. And you might mention his friends' comments to his physician. They may be right: If a stimulant dose is too high, it can "flatten" the patient's personality.

Larry Silver, M.D., is the author of Dr. Larry Silver's Advice to Parents on AD/HD and The Misunderstood Child: Understanding and Coping with Your Child's Learning Disabilities. He is also a clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
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