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Guest April Walker

Childrens Behaivor

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Interestingly enough, my psychiatrist is really the only specialist I have who fully recognizes that I am gluten intolerant (as opposed to just allergic), mainly because he's been with me long enough to see the before and after. I was on anti-depressants off and on for most of my adult life, since maybe age 19. My ADD started getting really bad a few years before I went gluten-free. I was taking two ritalin every day for 3 years while I was in grad school. A month after graduation was when I first went gluten free.

Since six months after going gluten-free (2 years ago) I have taken no anti-depressants and maybe 15 ritalin pills, mostly within a week after being glutened. Now that I'm more sensitive, the difference is more pronounced right after a glutening and I really can't get through the week without my ritalin. I definitely can't drive after a glutening because of the brain fog. On the other hand, ritalin makes me really jumpy when I'm not having gluten issues, and that's usually a sign that people don't need the drug.

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Type in keywords "The Celiac Brain". There is so much out there about Celiac and behavioral problems. It's what helped the nurse practitioner (in retrospect) to immediately look for Celiacs (mental health issue).

Gluten free is big in the Autism and ADHD circuits. Start typing in key words, and use learning disability (adhd is one) but if you apply the information from the celiac brain to what you're reading and then go by a list of each disorder + gluten in a search, you'll be AMAZED at what you find.

It's a neurotoxin for these poor kids.

I've got a 17 yr old who recognizes this in herself now too, and her mental health issues were pretty severe.

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Welcome, April. :)

My gosh, you might as well have been writing about ME in that paragraph.......this is exactly my behavior - and it got so much worse. As a girl, my mom would ask me to do something - empty the dishwasher, clean my room - and I would scream and cry and it would take forever....as an adult I realized jsut how jumbling and confusing everything was - - and how difficult it was to do any task requiring order. Your boy is SO fortunate he was diagnosed young.....my dx came at 44 years of age and......lots of damage done. But - the good part is - life inside my brain has never been better. :)

Congrats on your accomplishments - life without gluten will continue to improve. Am wondering if your meds after surgery contained gluten.......

this is a HORRIBLE epidemic in America....I have friends who teach and are facing impossible situations, every child on ineffective ADD drugs, with non-vigilant and uninformed parents who don't care much, and all the while, living on nearly complete fast food and junk food diets......and the sad thing is, not only will parents/authorities not listen to us about the dangers of their wretched diets, they can't afford to feed them properly anyway. (well - they probably could - - cutting out all the junk foods could save quite a bit of money. They just would never consider doing anything like this, or muster the discipline required to do it.)

We just have to keep getting the word out as much as possible.

My son is 7 yrs old and has ADHD. We dont have alot of junk in our house nor do we let our kids have it. He is on a medication called vyvance and it has calmed him down, but he still has other issuies. He saw a Pedi-Gi spelicalist yesterday and she believes that he has Celiac Disease. He still is having bathroom issuies where he will have pooped in his pants and not tell anyone. He used to lie about having accidents when asked. He also has a hard time falling asleep at nite, and used to get up in the middle of the nite and get into foood. He weighs 34 lbs and is 43" tall. He hasnt grown or gained weight in 2 months. I have had soo many dr apt and so many people that are proffesionals and they all have different opions on whats wrong with him.

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I am an elementary teacher, and I've taught for thirty years. Why would teachers believe parents talking about this issue? It isn't common knowlege--even the doctors don't believe patients when we talk about celiac/allergies/etc., and especially if it is connected to behavior.

I have the opposite problem, however. I am seeing an increasing number of children with odd behaviors and health problems. We call in specialists and run tests and have endless meetings. Sometimes the child goes on ADHD medications, but it doesn't solve things. A lot of the children are diagnosed as Aspergers. Some of them are lucky enough to get personal aides to help them. As a celiac teacher I keep thinking that maybe the child is celiac, or has other food or environmental sensitivities, but can I say that to parents? Will they listen? Will they be upset? I am not (in my district) allowed to recommend medications or mention attention deficit problems to parents--they have to come up with it themselves. Am I allowed to mention this?

I noted the resources you already mentioned and will check them out. Does anyone know others I might refer parents to?

Your school psychologist, when reporting their findings usually suggests to parents if they see behaviors that may warrent a trip to the Docs office, I would talk to them to see if you can get them onboard about educating parents. Educating, not recommending. I am a Guidance Counselor, I tell my own personal story and show bite marks. I don't tell parents what to do, but I mention that it could be health/food related, get a physical and allgery tests done. Why wouldn't you rule out health/food reactions reasons before medicating a kid. I think it's unethical for a doc to just medicate without complete blood labs.

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this is a HORRIBLE epidemic in America....I have friends who teach and are facing impossible situations, every child on ineffective ADD drugs, with non-vigilant and uninformed parents who don't care much, and all the while, living on nearly complete fast food and junk food diets......and the sad thing is, not only will parents/authorities not listen to us about the dangers of their wretched diets, they can't afford to feed them properly anyway. (well - they probably could - - cutting out all the junk foods could save quite a bit of money. They just would never consider doing anything like this, or muster the discipline required to do it.)

We just have to keep getting the word out as much as possible.

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I suspect my 2.5 yr old of Celiac as it runs in my family and I am also have it. She seemed to get better taking her off of gluten for about a month but the other day, she got ahold of some (she ran ahead in the grocery store and stuffed a bunch of french bread into her mouth within like a couple of seconds!) She also got a handful of crackers the next day from someone who didn't know. Anyway, It has been approximately four days gluten free again and her behavior is still awful. How long should it take to see a behavioral change after removing the gluten from her diet? I know it probably varies but I would love to hear what other people have experienced. THanks. This is a really interesting thread.

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