So after Alvin's dental surgery it was time to start school. Alvin's sleep habits over the summer had been gradually getting worse but we figured once school started it would get better again, but they never did.
Even with school starting things just have not been getting better. It hasn't
been uncommon to see him up at 3 am and not be able to go back to sleep. He then
would have a full day at school with reading and math, both in his regular class
and resource room. By the end of the day he came home and just melted down.
Things continued to get so bad that I started to video the episodes every
afternoon and evening. While we knew he could do the homework, he was so
exhausted that he mentally couldn't focus and his way of dealing with it was to
scream and cry.
The screaming and crying episodes gradually kept getting worse until he finally started lashing out at me. The final straw for me was the week before Elliot's birthday he hit me 5 times. That's when I knew it was time for us to discuss it with his complex care management team.
The same day we were scheduled to meet with the CCM team he actually had to miss school. The night before he didn't sleep at all and was pretty on edge. Once we arrived at the meeting with the lead pediatrician on the team and she saw the video there was no doubt left in her mind. We had been working for the past year on how to regulate things at home and nothing was really working so it was finally time to consider medication. Part of me was ready to hear this, but part of me wasn't. I never wanted to have to result to using medication to control his behavior but for all of our safety it was time.
The next week was spent by the pediatrician at Seattle Children's talking to not only our pediatrician but also a pediatric neurodevelopmental doctor. The big concern was to find the right medication that would control his out bursts and help him sleep without making him a zombie.
Finally after almost a week of waiting trazodone. Its an antidepressant drug used to regulate serotonin levels in the brain. We were told we would start out at a low dose then increase as needed to get the desired out come or so we hope.
Now its been almost 3 weeks and some days it seems to be working while others not so much. He still has his (at times violent) outbursts that are normally directed at me. We still need to give it a little more time though until we say the dose isn't working.
The other issue that we still need to look into is getting more services through the autism center. His pediatrician at Seattle Children's thinks they could be doing a lot more and we need to follow up with them and see if they have any other areas that could help him.
Other than these issues school seems to be going well. I have an IEP meeting tomorrow and parent teacher conference next week to discuss his academic progress and how he is transitioning to the new school year. The initial feedback I've gotten from his general education teacher is that he knows the schedule better than she does and always reminds her of when he is supposed to be doing something else!