overly sensative, overly hyper, trouble with focusing & my 6 yr old - FamilyEducation
overly sensative, overly hyper, trouble with focusing & my 6 yr old
09/20/2007 at 16:51 PM

I need some parental advice, that doesnt involve taking medications... (although it may be right for some, I feel it is not what we want for our child)

So, my 1st grader that is 6 yrs old, is very sensative, he doesnt just bounce back easily from being mad or having his feelings hurt. It takes him a better part of the day to get through it, especially at school.

He is also very hyper, he is loud and hands on with other kids, everything is playing to him, there is no serious side, now when I say serious side, I mean, at school there is play time and learning time, at Soccer there is pay attention to the coach and listen, and then at the end of practice for about 15 min she lets them play differnt games, freeze tag, duck duck goose, etc... When he is around other kids, once he knows them a bit, he is always the most hyper, and when we say "calm down" "stop that behavior" he listens for about 1 minute, and then he forgets it.

We used time outs and removing him from the situation when he was younger, we use taking away privlidges now,  TV (Cartoons or movies), his game systems, not allowing him to have friends over when he is being punished.

We went to our first Tiger Cubs meeting tonight, and at the start, everyone is arriving, and the boys are all runing around playing, average and normal i think. Then the leader asks everyone to settle down and starts talking to us all, all the boys stand there and look at him, and appear to be listening, but my child is putting his hands on the boy next to him, talking, falling on the floor doing push ups,..... I removed him from the spot he was stanind (they were all kinda in a few different lines) and moved him to another spot, and asked him, "please pay attention, and use respect for the leader that is talking"  I'm filling out paperwork, and go back to it for a minute, (standing behind him) and then, there he goes, right back to trying to talk, doing silly things like falling on the floor, and it disrupts everyone around us

What methods am I not using and need to ? My husband seems to think we should use spankings for all of these behaviors when they are at the inappropiate times. I'm just not sure if that will work, because it seems to be happening more and more, I'm worried that we're going to be spanking him all the time....

We are a mom, dad and 1 child family, we spend time with him reading each night, helping with homework 3 nights a week, we eat meals together, my husband and I dont raise our voices or argue in front of him, we play sports, and I did coach last years team. I'm saying all this, so as to give you the reader an idea of what type of inviroment he is in, I'm hoping it helps me receive some methods of Focus, Disipline, Attitude, and HELP in the advice I'm seeking

Thanks for reading, I look forward to hearing the responses :)


That sounds a lot like my son. I couldn't calm him down for nothing. Unfortunately, I did resort to medications. The doctor put him on the lowest dose of ADHD medicine and let me tell you, IT WORKS! I know it seems like such a horrible thing but do you think your child wants to act like that? Do you think he wants to get in trouble? No. He cannot focus his thoughts to understand the consequences. I tell parents that are going through this that you're not the only one struggling. He is struggling everyday wondering why he's getting in trouble. I think at least trying medication will help him and you. Then you can start continuing with your discipline techniques and start to see them working. Because now he can focus more and see the consequences of his actions. Someone that can't calm down for a second, can't calm down to think of what will happen next. They showed me a great video of what its like for a child who's extremely hyper to try and focus on one thing. Its horrible for them. You would be doing the right thing, (I think), by atleast trying all your options. Especially, since you've tried so many others. Good luck and don't get discouraged.


hi have you considered diet my children are on the failsafe diet we have no colours preseritives amines salyisatates glutimates it invloves a lot of home cooking, if you google fed up with adhd you will find sue dengates web site and see if it is for you it also helps with asthma ocd odd bad skin you name it it is brilliant for the kids even if it is a lot of work for mum there is support for them on the web too and 123 majic is an exclent dvd on disiplin technics for children with add adhd odd etc lol 


We talked with his teacher at school yesterday, and she suggested it may be ADD or ADHD, but there is such a long and often mis-dignoses of it, there shouldn't be alarm just yet. She suggested 1st trying the physical, like foods and such. Maybe cutting out certain foods as in milk, wheat, to much iron, among some others. She said that some children have reactions to foods that may not always show, as in hives or rashes. That in some children it can cause lack of attention and focus among other things.

2nd she said to try adding Omega 3, 6, and 9 to his diet. It use to be in foods we consumed years ago, but now it isnt as common and so you can supplement with Fish Oil capsules. (I know that Fish Oil also boots metabilism, because I was using them to assist in my diet a few years ago).

I'm not sure if he is old enough for the capsules, but I'm going to do a little searching to find out what dosage/amounts is safe for his age.

I wanted to share what I had found out so far, in case someone else reading has a similar situation.

Thanks for the feedback so far!!  I know that medication may be right for some, but I want to try other things before we look into that option. I will look up to information about sue dengates and the diet part, since this may fit into the plan we have for now.

The teacher also talked about focusing on the positive rather than negative actions. We wont just ignore the bad behavior or dismiss it, but we're going to try to focus less on it and praise the positive. She also said that for my childs situation, long term punishments may not work well, like a week without no video games. One day of good behavior equals one day of rewards. She is going to help us by having a chart for him with 2 things in the morning and 2 things in the afternoon

I completed my morning work, and I kept my hands and feet to myself and then the same for the afternoon. When he is doing these things, he will receive a star, and at the end of the day, (there is no set amount) she sends the card home, if he has 1-3 stars he probably wasnt very focused and if he has more than that, he had a good day. We're going to try this at home also.

She also suggested that we let him have some choices and control over his life. As of right now, I pick out his clothes and that's what he wears each day, i'm going to let him pick out his clothes, of course it will have to be weather appropiate :) And we are going to do a chore chart for him, that has only a few things that are very simple, and at the completion of each task, he can mark them off. At the end of the week, we will look at his progress and decide on a suitable reward. (Mon - Fri)

I'm thinking maybe ice cream or choosing a dinner for one night, any other simple suggestion?

We dont want to always reward with gifts, because we want him to learn to do the simple things in life, and know that you dont always get a reward for doing the things your suppose to do anyway. If we buy him a video game, or toy every time he's good, then I think it will just give him the wrong idea and it will also be costly if he does get a good record often. (We're hoping he does!) We may decide that after so long with good marks, maybe there will be a nice reward, something like an extra few dollors into his savings or soemthing similar.

I hope this advice I received works, and also helps others who may be in our situation. I still look forward to hearing more ideas of things that have worked for your child :)

Thanks for reading!


If a child has true ADD then changing the diet very rarely makes any difference. This has been tested out scientifically. My son was put on a total exclusion diet of anything artificial, and any foods which have been known to cause reactions were taken out of his diet too. It made no difference at all. Made him worse probably because he didn't like half the things he got to eat. As he also has Aspergers, he has a problem with the texture or even colour of some food.
ADD is not a psychological problem but a real physical problem. It is linked to the way the brain uses oxygen. Brain scans can show up ADD, and can show up the difference after medication has been taken.
Sanctions and methods of discipline have to be very different for a child who has ADD. Try reading some of the books and articles Dr Christopher Green has written.
He is a world renowned expert in ADD


Sensitive is defined as:endowed with sensation; having perception through the senses.

2.readily or excessively affected by external agencies or influences.
3.having acute mental or emotional sensibility; aware of and responsive to the feelings of others.
4.easily pained, annoyed, etc.
5.pertaining to or connected with the senses or sensation.
6.Physiology. having a low threshold of sensation or feeling

I like two Authors who I think explain how to live with sensitivity or support someone who is Ultra Sensitive.
Doreen Virtue Indigo,Crystal, and Rainbow children
Sanaya Roman "Personal power through Awareness".
The biggest excercise thats important to help a sensitive child stay calm and focused is to spend some one on one time with them the less distractions the better. And really help them get a sense of what their prefrences and talents are. So that they have a solid identity. When your sensitive you pick up on everything around you and try to express it, it's so overwhelming that the mannerisms and behaviors were taught, being quiet listening, etc. Just fall away admist the confusion. It's like pressing the on button for the stereo to listen to some relaxing Jazz or classical. Only to realize to late that the volume is @ 70% and it's Rock and Roll. Hard to do anything until lower the volume. Teaching the child about their own prefrences and Identity--> Likes dislikes will help them discern what's useless chatter and what feelings are there own to act upon. Hope this helps..


I am so happy to find this site as I too have a 6 yr old son who sounds much like your son. I have some hope now that I can get through the daily struggles to understand him. My son perhaps needs more attention from my husband and I than our other two children. I now believe he does struggle with his identity as mentioned in one of the blogs. I never really thought about that... I thought that my son doesn't like to listen. But when he goofs off he is looking for attention not trouble. I will definately try to focus more on the positive and try to reward him and see how this helps his behavior. I am at my breaking point with this matter and am willing to do what's necessary to get things turned around. But I am not willing to medicate him, either. I am not sure if I believe that entirely changing his food will help but I am gonna try a few things with that and see what happens. I promise to post a report on our progress at a later time. My son also likes to take his time on somethings so I get on his case to hurry up and get dressed or finish a meal...so maybe he is slower at somethings and more active at doing other things. And maybe that's just his way and I am the impatient one??? I think our way is just to fast for him. I will give him more time and less stress and maybe this will help too.

To the original poster on this message board: what has happened since your original post? Did the diet work? Did you resort to medication? Was this a phase your son outgrew? Please respond as I am having the same issues NOW with my 6 year old daughter. Thanks.

It would be rare to get a reply from an original poster over 2 years later. Most post and move on. What are your daughter's specific issues?

Cld the touching and high activity level be associated w/ a sensory issue? My son is very touchy w/ the kids in his class, and he, too, is quite active and has trouble staying focused. His therapists are convinced that w/ sensory input treatments, my son becomes better focused at school. We also give him Omega 3 fish oil. All of these treatments don't hurt, but honestly, they haven't solved the problem. Does your daughter have difficulties learning as well?

My story sounds just like most of yours. I too am reluctant to use prescription drugs. I found a natural supplement by a vitamin company called Source Naturals called "Attentive Child." It definitely helps although my 7 year old son HATES the taste of them (they're chewables) but it's worth it. You can get them on Amazon or vitacost or most online stores that offer vitamins and supplements. I feel much better about them because they are natural and not man made chemical.

Hi there, it is absolutely well worth experimenting with the diet if kids are being very hard to be around, to believe that food does not play a part in our behaviour is no longer sensible. You are what you eat, literally, and there are lots of the food chemicals that we eat, that we can't tolerate - we don't see reactions at first, but it builds up slowly, with use over time. My two, otherwise completely lovely kids, turn into complete nightmares depeiding on the food chemicals. Knowing about this has saved us from the nightmare it was before we found out. Also, ADHD, autistic tendencies etc. and asthma respond to a change in diet, even to the point of being cured. It's worth a try: The basics, that may help a lot of kids (and adults) is to _completely_ avoid additives, colourings, flavourings, etc. You will see results in 3-4 days already, and after that a change of diet seems like a tiny price to pay for the postive changes and health of your child. For a small percentage of people, avoiding the additives is only partly effective: For info on the most efficient elimination diet in the world, which will enable you to find out exactly what you/your kids do not tolerate, see Sue Dengates books and site: www.fedupwithfoodadditives.info Get her book at the library or cheaply on Ebay :0) Many kind regards, Susanna

I am so impressed with your deligence and willingness to help your little one! You're a great mom! I wrote "From a Child's Perception" and I'd love to, and be honored to, send you a copy! Free of charge, of course! Sure, I like selling books, but you didn't seek out my book and my main objective is to help children and I believe in my heart, my book can help you in your quest to find options to work with so this disorder doesn't rule your life...and trust me, it can! Life has a way of becoming all about, and revolving around these disorders and my book explains how this takes place from an insiders view who's been there during childhood. I relate the long-term damage and complications that often accompanies these disorders when they're misunderstood too. This book is from the heart of experience, written with only love in my heart for children, and there's several chapters dedicated to these disorders, and I can't think of anyone I would rather share this book with than you right now. You show your geniune desire to help not only your son, but the family atmosphere too, all the while reaching out to others. Your compassion extends past your family circle as is evident in your sharing of information and knowledge to others who will read this post and might be struggling. I admire that greatly. If you choose to read my gift to you, and if you find it helpful, I would like to ask you to help me help others by recommending it to your friends and future message boards, when you believe it might help another struggling parent. I can't offer everyone free books, but I admired the tone of your letter and would like very much to offer food for thought that I believe will help your family unit, but mostly your son. You have nothing to lose, as I'd be delighted to mail you a copy at my expense. Please see my profile and/or send me an email... fowler572@bellsouth.net with your address and I'll mail it out to you next day after I recieve your message! Google "From a Child's Perception" and read the reviews on Amazon, too. Your son is very fortunate to have a mom like you in his corner! Keep up the good work! Sincerely Anna Fowler

Hello I have a granddaughter who has almost the same problem... I have been dealing with this for alittle over 2 years. At first she would not go to sleep at night and be very hyper she would get so Hyper that she would start to shake and have a rapid heart rate and would be up for the whole day without sleeping or even feeling tired. Then the Doctors put the on Meds. which worked for about 3 weeks then tried something different, This went on for about a yearThen went to a Psychologist which he precribed different meds. Now she is sleeping with help of clonodine and Trazodone. But during the day she would still be hyper and get into everyones business and wouldn`t sit for a long period of time. doc. gave her all different kinds of meds. which worked then they didn`t. Now she is on 1/2 of clonodine in the morning and 1/2 at noon. Which is doing very well so far.. (KEEPING MY FINGERS CROSSED)