Thursday, June 16, 2011

A Change In Over-The-Counter Supplements

     Nathan has been on an over-the-counter "otc" supplement for his attention deficit called Attend mini's by VAXA for close to three years now. It has worked well, with gradual increases over time, as he gained weight. About 18 months ago, he was having difficulty in 1st grade at school with negative behavior towards his teacher & classmates. After careful deliberation, we added another otc supplement called Behavior Balance by Food Science of Vermont to help with his mood swings. It helped Nathan as we had expected that it would, making Nathan's daily routine a lot smoother. His 1st grade teacher was working with him patiently & always made me feel welcome in the classroom. She and I would talk daily about any concerns she or I felt needed attention.
     That summer was full of family outings to the municipal water parks, the boys' favorite place ChuckECheese and trips to the AMC Theater for the Autism Society ~ Sensory Friendly Films for the monthly feature. Also, we have been able to go more places on the spur of the moment, and keep previously made plans with friends. It makes a big difference when our entire family can enjoy our outings without worrying whether Nathan can handle everything we encounter.
     Matt and I have been researching different supplements to help balance Nathan & reduce the number of pills he takes each day. Nathan has been quite a trooper when it comes to regimens, routines and rules but, he has always had an extreme difficulty at night "shutting down" everything that circulates in his brilliant mind so that he can get the sufficient amount of sleep needed to function properly the next day.  Listening to positive & encouraging KLOVE radio christian music has helped Nathan relax & fall asleep at night for the last three years. It calms and gives him something to focus on besides the daily activities that he tends to reenact for his emotional understanding of what happened around him. 
     The one "otc" supplement that we researched extensively is gamma aminobutyric acid. Commonly known to some as GABA, it is a natural tranquilizer and induces sleep and calmness. Yesterday, while at the doctor's office, I asked our family practitioner about the research Matt & I had done on GABA. Our doctor said he knew enough of the "otc" supplement and agreed that it was worth trying to see if Nathan would benefit from it. It is a good feeling knowing that our family practitioner will listen to our concerns, values what we take time to research and is working with us on Nathan's behalf! If this will help Nathan get a decent amount of sleep at night to be able to handle his daily tasks better, this will hopefully make a huge adjustment in how Nathan looks at his day and what he has to do. Our doctor helped me to decide what Nathan’s daily dosage should be since the GABA otc supplement is normally only intended for an adult. It will make quite a difference, not just in cost but, also in Nathan taking only one (1) peppermint flavored tablet that dissolves under the tongue versus taking the previous regimen of ten (10) pills daily between an attention deficit supplement and behavior supplement. Nathan started his new supplement yesterday evening just before bed. Even though he seemed to have slept soundly last night, I'm sure that it will take a reasonable amount of time for the supplement to make a noticible difference. Since Nathan just took his daily supplement before laying down earlier tonight, I am hoping that he will receive all the calming benefits it has to offer to get a good night's sleep. I am so happy to have a family physician that will take the time to listen to what I had to say concerning my son!  Thank God for even the smallest of miracles!!
     Nathan has matured exceptionally in the three years since he was diagnosed but, especially in the last six months. I am not an expert but, if I can help someone by sharing about the various obstacles that our son, Nathan, has conquered & how he is still making great progress to overcome this disorder...I consider that to be a double blessing!  I would be amiss to not give credit to our family, friends and most of all God for the strength & support to work with Nathan each day.


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