How can I help my child who has ADHD?

Those with kids who have ADHD and are unmedicated what are somethings you do to help their behavior? We think my stepson has ADHD and is going to talk to his pediatrician in a few weeks, but what I’ve read, he shows a lot of symptoms. He’s 3 years old, and live read that diet change can help and also using essential oils. He constantly cries just over being asked to do a simple task like using the potty or get dressed; he cant focus on what you ask him to do.he will hear you and repeat what you said but then gets distracted or will just stare into space.


Yes diet change can help my son has it found out foods with coloring like red 40 ect triggered him he was diagnosed at 3

Caffeine. If he calms down with caffeine you know its adhd. Give him a little coffee.

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Sounds like a typical toddler to me! Give him time to learn and grow, he does not know a lot about life at that age. This is where he needs guidance and teachings. It sounds like you may need to work on obtaining more patience and coming up with ways to teach him the right things to do and right ways to act.


Diet yes. No red dye try to give him dha and fish oil vitamins as well

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We have two boys with ADHD, the youngest stopped having a day sleep at 6 weeks of age only sleeping between 2 - 4 hours in any 24hr period, his specialist started him on sleeping medication just before he turned 5… they wouldnt diagnose him properly until he was in full time school so he was six… he has inattentive ADHD… is now nearly 16…
The eldest was diagnosed with violent ADHD when he was around 7 is still medicated and going on 17…
Diet works for some but not for all, you can try cutting out certain things to see if it helps, just try one thing at a time so you learn his triggers…
Good luck because it is not easy.
Also as above try coffee, only thing is you may have to add sugar to get him to drink it, sugar could be a trigger…

If he struggles with tasks try some visual cards that he can visualise. Diets shouldn’t contain too many sugars or fats and should have an outlet for energy of 15-30 minutes a day. This is things like running, park, bike rides etc

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try to eliminate sugar and minimize bread, pasta, potatos. Minimize processed foods with chemicals, dyes. Have your child evaluated for adhd, autism and hearing loss. If these evaluations seem off, seek another opinion. Did these problems always exist? or was there a change after vaccinations?

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Keep a continuous routine also make things such as potty training etc exciting an fun. Try letting him help you do things if he wants to participate he will like to know he helping you in other ways maybe.

I agree he’s 3, to early to make that decision.


He could also be exhibiting early signs of autism though it honestly sounds like he’s just being 3 and you need to actually discipline him better 🤷

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They won’t diagnose him that young… and if they do seek 2nd opinion because most doctors won’t diagnose that little… just sounds normal for his age… every child is different… so many people many people told me my son showed sign when he was a toddler…even teachers did when he started elementary… but a boy is rambunctious and curious…and I never took him despite everyone’s opinions and he is in 4th grade and doing amazing… sometimes they need to mature a little… you have to let them grow and learn… and structure his HUGE at that age… make sure there is structure and don’t scold him for every thing he does because it will get worse… let him learn and grow… I’m sure he’s fine

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My daughter is 3 n showing extreme traits of adhd n poss slight autism. Nursery have even noticed but been told they carnt refer her b4 6yrs of age as they wont accept the referral. So for the next 3yr n more I’ve just got to deal with it on my own

First off. He is 3. My son has issues and sees specialists. And even they say at 3. They cant be diagnosed. Because they can not tell what is age related or an issue. But his doctor did tell me I could give him coffee… if he is having add or ADHD issues coffee. (Black) almost always has a reverse effect. It calms my son down when he will have a drink or two. Also watching sugar intake is a huge one of course. My son spaces out. But that is due to a seizure disorder. So I have no insight into that part in most kids. My advice would be just keep patience and keep routines for cleaning up etc… a good routine has helped my son a ton. Like cleaning up his place after meals. Putting his clothes where they go. While small. It helps us all a lot. He gets overwhelmed easy and that’s when he acts out. So I try to get on his level and break things down for him and help him start whatever he is doing. Then I’ll take a step back and just try to keep him on task for a short time.

My 2 1/2 year old cries and throws fits. She doesn’t listen and ignores me.

It’s called being a toddler! People need to stop looking for other excuses. Not everything needs a diagnosis.

Please wait until he sees the doctor and let him/her guide you. I am an OT and I can tell you not all symptoms you googled is for one particular thing, it could a range of things. One thing you have to remember is that he is 3 years old.


He’s 3!!! Dear God! No 3 year old can focus longer than a few minutes. I strongly recommend you go to a few reputable websites like Harvard’s Behavioral Science department or the American Pediatrics site and live chat with a professional. Most children won’t be diagnosed with it until they’ve been in school a while because age makes a difference. I would also recommend taking time to sit down and work with him in short amounts of time to help build focus. I’m an adult with ADHD and an 8 year old. At 3 you’d get about 10 minutes of focus. It gets better with time, and in school now she’s the best student ever, and that came out of the mouths of her teachers, but at home, she’s a nut because her energy is pent up at school. Set a schedule, make learning fun, do puzzles like the 10 piece ones from dollar tree, and make a big deal out of things when he completes little-I repeat little-things. That will motivate him to want to pay attention

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He 3 …and no doctor in their right mind will diagnose a three-year-old with ADHD


First off he is only three years old! Be patient with him and help him put his shoes on etc. he may just need a little help because he is really young and kids develop at different rates. Secondly before you start using essential oils on him take him to his pediatric appointment and get the opinion of a MEDICAL DOCTOR ! Not everything you read on the internet is true and can actually be very harmful. If you want to do something for about his diet then cut out processed foods and foods with dyes. This can’t hurt him but other than that I would wait for the doctor to see him.

Im here if you need help. Im severe add/adhd. And so was my daughter at 2.5yrs old.

Staring into space can be a form of seizure.

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Kinda sounds like he is on the spectrum not adhd.
Go online and there is a checklist to go over and seek a second opinion.

I believe they have to be older in order to make the diagnosis.

You know what… I’ve sat and read comments as I support a child with complex needs along with adults! If you feel like he has change routines, ensure he’s got time to burn that energy off park/walk … visual cards if not understanding what you are saying - maybe a timeline with activities on so he knows what to expect but I’d wait to see your doctor and all these comments about discipline don’t take them on! You can’t discipline a child with adhd/autism you need visual prompts so they understand eg… consequence cards or reward charts. All the best to you & yours :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: hope all is well and you get the right support and guidance you need!


He’s 3…don’t slap a label on a poor toddler. You gotta wait till they’re in school a couple years or so till you can see symptoms.


Umm, hard to say that’s ADHD at 3 years old because that’s regular toddler behavior for most. If he’s doing this stuff after 5 years old, then I’d say maybe.


Where i am from in fla they wont even do an assesment for ADD or ADHD untill the child is 5 or older because of the fact they are still babies and many babies show those same symptoms it sounds like normal toddler behavior to me but you can continue to monitor his diet cut out sugars etc but in alot of adhd cases things that make us hyper actually calm them down. My nephew for example has adhd and giving him Mt. Dew or coffee has a reverse act on him and puts him to sleep so just monitor the intake and just try to see if he out grows it before adressing with a dr

My doctors won’t even consider to start testing disorders like that until 4.

We think my son may has SPD and maybe on the spectrum or have adhd. At this point we just work on coping with life. Which really, won’t changed based on a diagnosis.

I find sensory tools to be incredibly helpful for focus with my child. I need to assess the situation first though to find if there’s too much going on or too little. He may be afraid of missing out (super normal). Maybe try things like having a small toy box in the washroom or a sticker chart/reward system for him to associate good feelings with non preferred ones

Sounds like a 3 yr old to me. No 3 year olds focus or etc. None of mine did and none have adhd. Now their 22,19, and 16. My 2and son cried all the time also. Every pic we have of him from 1-5 he was crying in :joy::joy:

My son was diagnosed while young because of his dad uncle and grandpa having ADHD I knew what to look for yes diet helps alot cut back on all sugars and carbs no dyes and try to keep a tight schedule that’s how I have to do it I mean tight schedule!! Structure is important and channeling their energy into productive tasks is a must.

He’s 3 ! This sounds like all normal 3 year olds

He’s 3 years old.
From what my doctor said they don’t even like to diagnose until later.
My kid always got told from the school it must be ADHD got tested 4 times 4 different doctors 2 hospitals. No ADHD.
He’s 3 years old. He’s being a 3 year old. You worried wait until the testing age. My son got test around 6 years old doctor said its best to wait until 8 years old.

Make his tasks seem to be part of his play… As in rather than per say tell him or ask him to get dressed say to him let’s see how quick you can get dressed today. Or rather than tell him to use the potty tell him let’s see if you can use the potty and if you do you can earn a sticker or something else he likes. And just overall try to keep a routine

Sounds like typical three year olds. I had two children. And that kind of describes their behavior at that age. They can’t think for themselves. They need guidance and direction and love and comfort. Medication at that age is only going to make problems, especially if there is not nothing physically or emotionally wrong with them.Sometimes you just have to go through the stages and teach them as you go. And stop trying to blame it on medical conditions all the time. And by the way , my kids had no medical issues .Had to be taught and guided.

Ma’am he’s being a toddler. As someone who is ADHD it drives me nuts when people assume a kid is just because they’re acting like a kid. Yes kids are hyper and defiant but it doesn’t mean they are ADHD. They won’t test him till he’s 6 and in a class room. Sounds to me he needs to be more active like going to the park for a few hours or in a sport.

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He may not be ready to potty train yet or perhaps he has a bad memory about it or doesn’t understand it is part of growing. Get everyone to take him in the bathroom when they go do he can see that there is nothing scary about using the toilet.
Getting dressed is a major fear for some kids, perhaps let him pick out his clothes,and start by letting him put on one thing himself and slowly work up to having him dress himself. Sweat pants and button shirts are great because they are easy to put on.
Perhaps breaking down what you are asking him to do into smaller portions will make it easier. So instead of telling him to clean up his room start with let’s pick up the toys and put them in the box,or put you clothes in the laundry hamper,small things with some one to show him what is expected may make it easier on him.
I asked on of my kids when they were that age to clean there room,and they did .looked great,They had pushed everything under there bed looked good just not what I had in mind lol

Get rid of red dye everything

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My son had similar behaviors, we removed all foods with artificial colors. Completely different kid. It’s a lot of label reading but there are a lot of kid friendly foods available without the added colors. He is now 18 and chooses to continue eating this way because he feels better without the colors.

Lol. He’s 3. He’s supposed to be 10 different things in 3 rooms at the same time as putting his socks in the vent and feeding the fish orange juice so it doesn’t get sick lol. Relax. Unless you find him on the garage roof, then panic a little.

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Go through your school special ed they should send him to be tested for autism shrink plays foosball and says adhd puts him on drugs

Consult a doctor you are assuming adhd but could be any number of things a professional is the one I would turn to to rule out any serious medical conditions

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Check his vitamin b12 levels. Can be symptomatic anywhere below top quarter of normal range. Neurological symptoms far proceed haemotological symptoms.

Research Elimination diets it is very strict and every one needs to stick by it My son was diagnosed at 3 after many tests Hearing Blood, urine,EEG,Three Months Elimination Diets Then we started Medications good luck

Be prepared for learning difficulties too at school. My son was diagnosed at 6 years old. He’s now almost 15. No medication. Just fidget tools for school, bean bags to wiggle his bumb and letting him take breaks to run off excess energy. We didn’t allow sweet foods in afternoon or after dinner because this affected his sleep. Also try to give one instruction at a time and praise him on completion. It’s hard work but their mind is just different. My son is fantastic at building things, and fixing but not good with bookwork. They find keeping busy helps, rather then book work

Change his diet first, less additives n pre packaged foods, lots of fruit n veg. Make sure he has plenty of physical activity to wear off the energy also. My nephew was diagnosed at 4 n hated meds so by 7-8 years old he drank a short black coffee n isolated himself(usually few minutes in his room til caffeine kicked in) n it would calm him. Be aware that ADHD meds contain steroids/amphetamines. This will affect the child’s behaviour, appetite, sleep, moods everything, whether they’re ADHD or not. If he is hell be a lot calmer on the meds but he may be just “doped” on them. My son was very similar as a child(still is at 24!) Very hyper n cannot sit still, daydreaming n not paying attention. Mind you so was I as a kid n neither me nor my son are adhd lol so it sounds like he’s just being a kid.

Well u.havent seen the pediatrician yet so wait n see toddlers love to push buttons. My.girl at 3 would take fits.if I used the word no always wanted my attention 24 n 7 mynbreak was.over night that’s it so just be mama bear with it till u see the doc

My mum was a really good teacher. My nephew was diagnosed with ADHD and before he was medicated she convinced my sister in law to take him for the summer holidays. She worked out a really regimented routine. Bed time meal time exercise times to eat gardening only fresh food. Taught him to read and maths. It was really intense and his parents couldn’t interfere or see him other than Sunday lunch. They took him back to the Drs no ADHD. Mum was a superior educator which was an advantage and my nephew respected her. Although for him there were many elements from an outsider looking at what she did it was the consistency and the fact that every time he did something he knew the answer will be the same. She had the ability to never raise he voice and turn you to stone with a look. He was a child that responded to that routine knowing where he stood and what the consequences would be. He is 30 now and still comes to mum for advice etc and know she will call his b.s. and always be in his corner

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So many possibilities. Possibly just needs a different learning or parenting/discipline style. Possible sensory processing disorder, possibly just a normal 3 yr old who has a lot of energy and needs more ways to let it out

Some of you would be surprised how much it can actually show in a some 3 year olds. They won’t give meds at that age. We used coffee in between diagnosis and med appt. it calms them but not for long

Diet change can help a lot, start by removing red dye from foods, then go down the ingredients list and start looking into what things arent natural or are known to cause behavior problems… removing foods with red dye was all we needed to do to correct some unwanted behaviors/meltdowns but I know others who had to restrict diets heavily…

Picture chart of morning/ evening routines. Keep referring to chart. One step instructions.

If possible please get a trampoline = amazing!!!

Reduce screen time (use it as a reward).

Set up a reward chart and follow through with immediate rewards.

Routine routine routine.

“Smashed pictures” - ask him what is the picture he has in his head about what is about to happen (getting home / going out /etc). It will help manage expectations and also stop melt downs - from his picture being smashed. Start this process by saying - the picture in my head, for when we get home, is that I have to unpack the car, take off my shoes, then do washing… what is your picture of what you think is going to happen when we get home.

I gave my son coffee every morning before school. Calmed him right down. For some reason kids with ADHD have a different reaction to coffee.

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Taking red dye out of my daughter’s diet made a big difference. Also, limit refined sugar and artificial sweeteners. Natural sugars, like fruit are good if limited. A small amount of coffee helped my daughter focus so much.

Have you tried joining some ADHD support groups. My 2 years has some sensory issues. I joined some sensory processing disorder groups and they gave lots of tips and advice and just there to vent when u r at your whits end. Alot of their kids had joint diagnosis along with ADHD

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He sounds like a 3 year old lol I have an 11 year old with adhd and her twin sister does not. Usually you can’t tell until they’re about 6 or 7. But my daughter couldn’t even look at book much less try and read it. It was horrible. Couldn’t sit down, always getting up, and the impulse control issues don’t even get me started. She’s 11 and medicated and still squeezes out shampoo, conditioner, lotion, toothpaste, cuts anything if she gets ahold of scissors, and I’ve had to lock up all alcohol, knives, scissors, meds, glue, tape, basically everything.

He’s too young to diagnose as ADHD. Typically they don’t diagnose until they are school age. He sounds like a typical 3 yo.


I hope you get the help for him… None of the pediatricians I talked to would help with my daughter until she had an episode at school she was diagnosed with o.d.d and ADHD… She was 2 when I brought up her issues and 6 when they finally agreed to test her for anything… we still struggle but take it day by day… I have 3 children 2 with adhd 1 with a.d.d. and o.d.d. it’s a struggle…

3 is too young to diagnose ADHD. they really like to wait until they’re school age and can have more than the parents opinion on behavior (kids act their worse for us parents lol) my daughter has ADHD and is unmedicated. We took Red dye out of her diet and really try to limit sugar. Keeping her busy with things that the finds an interest in has helped but she struggles the most at school with paying attention. We have a iep in place so she gets extra time for tests and such and we have her sit at the front of the class where it’s harder to slack off right in front of the teacher. She’s been diagnosed since the first grade. A diagnosis is not made based off of one appt and only the mothers opinion because this is a possible lifetime of a controlled substance. Voice your concerns but don’t rush to diagnose a 3 year old. He sounds like a normal 3 year old.

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So im severe Add/adhd. Caffeine is a downer for ppl like him and i. No red dye 40s. Mountain dew will calm him down. My 3yr old was diagnosed with ADD/ADHD last year at 2.5yrs old. I have started working on her the same way my dad raised me. When your child goes into a attitude let then calm down. Music is a life saver.

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My daughter will be 6 in a few weeks I believe she has ADHD as well. We have been to like 6 specialists in the past few years. I’ve done absolutely everything from routines, to diet change and haven’t seen any results. I wish you the best of luck it isn’t easy!

My mom never put me on meds either. She always just watched my diet really close bc that had a lot to do with my symptoms when I was that young she said. And strict discipline that is constant.

That’s too young. Stop trying to force ADHD dignosis on children. You should not get them dignosed until school aged. 6 or 7. Now diet change and strick routine can definitely help until then. He can’t have any caffeine or sugars. We try to avoid red and yellow dyes.


My son was diagnosed with adhd when he was 4, he’s been on concerta ever since and he’s 10yrs old now, his medication does help him without he’s very active

Honestly, just sounds like a 3 year old.

He sounds like a perfectly normal 3 year old to me.

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There are some good books for parents on behavior modification for adhd. Barkley is considered the expert. Also- CHAD - on line is a good resource that I recommend as well. Don’t forget- heavy metals-like lead in drinking water- and other medical and behavioral health issues- can look like adhd.

My Husband has ADHD med that are made drowsy keep u up and meds that are made to make you non- drowsy make u sleep the doctor told them that a ADHD Brain is Like A Tv It Keeps Changeing Channels see if u can find something he enjoys doing like playing with legos that helped my husband when he was little

My daughter has ADHD combined, and severe anxiety. Caffeine and CBD (non THC) have changed our lives.


Little to young to diagnose adhd. I think you’re looking for something that isn’t even there yet.

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You can also make sure he’s getting enough sleep. Lots of kids are misdiagnosed simply because they don’t get enough quality sleep.

Hear me out… he is 3.

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set timers and start transition times. like when the timer goes off we need to pick up your toys. reset it for other things like the potty (even though ideally you want him to go just when he needs to) Or playtime will be done when the timer goes off. it takes a little getting used to but it can usually help

Talk to the ped,also diet changes will help.You can google what to avoid.You can try no meds,but later on they might be needed.Also look into support groups.

Check out the Feingold Diet and find a PCIT therapist near you.

My youngest has ADHD. She was diagnosed at age 6 because they will not test her until she was in school and having issues at school and at home, however, here is a link that may help you better. Also, look into behavioural & psychotherapy for 3 yr olds.

We used magnesium daily and cut back on dyes, refined sugar and gluten. We also went to play therapy for several years. It helped alot. On another note, three is awfully young to think ADHD. It could just be where he is developmentally. I work at a preschool and every child exhibits symptoms of ADHD at any given moment. Give him lots if physical activity opportunities. Let him carry heavy stuff like a bag of flour. Heavy work helps to calm.

Sounds like a 3 yr old.

Sounds like my four year old . I’m convinced she just thinks she’s a princess and everyone coddles her too much .

Far too young to make an ADHD diagnosis. I mean, all three year olds show “signs” of ADHD. My son was diagnosed at 8 years old.

You’re trying to find something wrong with a 3 YR OLD! Another stepmom giving all of us stepmoms a bad name…


He is 3, so don’t jump to conclusions just yet. A multivitamin with folate will help a lot. Give it at least two weeks of him taking them everyday. We use Smarty Pants toddler vitamins. Also, for sure change the diet. Processed foods and high sugar foods and carbs make these behaviors worse. My daughter shows similar symptoms when she eats things with red dye 40. We cut that completely from her diet, it has helped so much. Red dye 40 is in SO many kids foods, it is scary.

My nephew has severe ADHD and to be honest with you what you’re describing sounds more like Autism but that’s just my opinion. ADHD runs in my family. I would talk it over with your son’s pediatrician.

Ahhh idk. My momma said the same thing about me and had to physically get me to do things and when i threw tantrums or cried she still would make me do it. 3 is to early to say adhd.

Martial arts training

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Mt dew and coffee help them focus try using something for a reward give them a poker chip when he finishes task

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He’s only 3 and this is normal for that age, I’ve raised 1 out of 4 with it and you can’t really tell if a child had it until a couple of years in school. Toddlers are supposed to be hyper and none of them pay attention good so don’t start to worry yet. Good diet and activities that they like are always good but right now he seems very normal.


He “may just be 3” but my son was the same way, I knew from the moment my son was born that he had ADHD and other issues presented as he got older, we went the unmedicated route for a LONG time, changing his diet, counseling amongst other things. Nothing worked for him, now at 6 he’s finally got a doctor that believes me about his issues and had started him on meds and he’s doing a lot better but we still have issues with him, the meds help but they don’t solve all the issues.


Hes 3… Give it time. He is a toddler still…

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Sounds like my daughter. She has aspbergers .and did the same thing. Ya have to take his hand and show him what ya want him to do… it does get frustrating but it does help. Get eye level and tell him ok time to go potty. And take his to the bathroom. Or to clean up or anything. Then reward him with alot of praise when he does it… sometimes us Mama’s have to look and act goofy for our toddlers to respond … lol . Plus he is 3 so their little minds want to do .what they want to do… diet wise… I would just try no red dye and limit the dairy. And even try gluten free… the crying just ensure him ya are there and he is gonna be ok… If he has a big vocabulary tell him use yar words… and just comfort him. Remember he is only 3 years old.

3 year olds are not supposed to be able to focus…its apart of being 3.

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I urge you to see a specialist. As children go into their teens and adulthood with untreated adhd they self soothe or self medicate. Usually at that point , they’ll turn to drugs. So you definitely don’t want that happening. It’s better you treat the underlying problem now and Find solutions now that can be later used into later adolescence and adulthood

Hes 3 I had the same problem with my daughter now 4 1/2 she wasnt sleeping well either. I would cry because it was so difficult dealing with her the doctor said its too early to diagnose anything if she continued at school then it was possible she had a condition. Well pediatricianrecommended we give her melatonin gummies to help and guess what they helped her alot she is in prek doing great. Sometimes we see things that arent normal but its just their age and will grow out of it. But of by all means you see no progress continue to seek help because we know pur children and need to find what is wrong. Good luck to you.

He sounds like your average three year old :roll_eyes:

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if you’re even going to entertain the thought of using essential oils on a child, get your advice from a certified aromatherapist, not a "seller of " these oils. 99% percent of the time they are trained to sell you stuff, not on essential oil safety and use. I’ve seen a lot of sketchy suggestions

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I would said he is boy he will grow out of it…

red dye is the worst. Lavender in an diffuser helps at nite while sleeping

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My son was 3 when he started to have adhd symptoms. Took him to a specialist and he was diagnosed with sensory disorder. I would make an appointment with the dr and see what they suggest to see if he needs to be referred to a specialist. They will tell you how to handle his behavior.

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he is 3! stop playing internet dr. there isn’t nothing wrong with him.


I have adhd it doesn’t necessarily get better unmedicated people learn to control it better I have been unmedicated for 5 or more years it’s hard to focus sometimes and I don’t do well when overwhelmed. Talk to his pediatrician get him concerta it will help. Let him do alot of outdoor activities and keep him occupied at the end of the night he will be tired

He’s 3. They can’t focus like older kids. ADHD is diagnosed in kindergarten/1st/2nd grade (and often much later). Don’t use essential oils. They aren’t some magic to cure ADHD if he even has it. if he does have adhd and you find that out in a few years try a 504 or IEP plan before resorting to medications. Extra time and a separate location can do wonders for people with adhd. If in a few years it isn’t helping him then ask the pediatrician about medication but it’s supposed to be a last resort.