Meltdown help

by Mary
(Portsmouth VA)

Ok I need some help here, I need some ideas of how to help him while he is having a major meltdown.


His meltdowns are ones that will start off with small and grow very fast into a full blown meltdown. Where he is trying to hurt myself or my husband. We don't know how to help him. If we hold him down he head butts us, if we let him go he goes after his brother or one of us.

Some background we just moved to a new state and have now been in our home for about 2 months, he has been out of OT and Speech for now 3 or 4 months. Life has been stressful for him and I feel so very bad. We did enroll him in karate to help but he just doesn't know how to channel his anger.

We are at a total loss, I don't want to scare him and be afraid that someone is going to call the police on us because he is screaming so very loud (we have had the police called on us before) but I just don't know how to help him anymore.

Today we went a different way into our neighborhood since two cars were blocking the entrance and he did not like that and went full force on us. Ended up carrying him in the house while he screamed and tried to bit me.

Does this happen to anyone else? What have you done and what has worked?
Thanks

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May 14, 2011
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Meltdowns
by: Anonymous

My 6 year old daughter has been in and out of psychiatric hospitals for children, for the last year and a half. She has been diagnosed with ADHD, Asperger's Syndrome, Bi-Polar, and Sensory Disorder. I am a single mom who often cries and wonder's,"Why my little girl?" The ONLY thing I want in life, is a happy child. I too feel like a prisoner, because it is difficult at times to take her in public because of her behaviors and meltdowns. I just wish that this would all go away! She knows when she is mad, but she has no idea what is making her that way. She is aggressive with other children and can't be involved in many activities that include other children, because she literally becomes dangerous to them. She is a very petite little thing, but has the strength of 10 grown men. I feel so bad for her because she really is a loving and precious little girl! She just has way too much on her plate to deal with at such a young age. I pray for all the parents and families that are going through what I am.

Aug 24, 2010
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gluten free/casein free diet
by: Jenny

Hi there -
My 7 and 9 year old sons both have SPD (presents differently in both). My 9 year old has had problems with frustration and aggression -since he was about 4 years old it has been a problem getting worse and worse as he got older and stronger. I really hoped it might improve with age and maturity and by trying to teach him some strategies but it just got worse.

Our OT suggested seeing a doctor who has an interest in biochemistry/metabolic disorders. We had him tested (blood and urine analysis-'Pfeiffer tests') which was expensive but well worth it! It turns out he has very high copper levels and very low zinc levels and the way this affects the brain and function of CNS accounts for a lot of his out of control behavior. He is on compounded zinc supplements (prescribed by doctor) and a gluten free and casein free diet. I must admit I was a little skeptical but I cannot believe the difference! 3 months on and he is such a happier boy! Yes, he still had SPD issues but he is so much better at handling his stronger emotions and he is sleeping SO much better! I ran out of his zinc tablets for a few days and just thought I'd get more the following week when we were back at the doctor's and his behavior and sleep just went downhill! His brain really needs the zinc and his body doesn't absorb it properly for some reason.

He still has meltdowns but they are not as frequent or intense and I think he is better able to be aware of how he is going with SPD issues. He responds really well to the The Alert Program for Self-Regulation


So we still have a looong way to go but it has been so encouraging for him and me to see this progress. He was always so distressed by his meltdowns after he had 'sobered up' and never wanted to be like that - like Dr Jeckyll and Mr Hyde. Now when he has a wakeful night or meltdown we notice it because its NOT the norm anymore.

I am in Australia so I don't know where exactly you could go to in other countries for more info about Metabolic/Biochemistry stuff? I would recommend The Pfeiffer Treatment Centre's website for a start: http://www.hriptc.org/index.php and http://www.biobalance.org.au/ .

I know it probably won't work for everyone and I don't want to make it sound like the magic wand - but we have seen definite and marked results. From what I understand of the developmental pyramid, before you can even start sorting out CNS issues you need to make sure the body's biochemical needs are being met. Our doctor said it is "brain rehabilitation"!

Hope that helps someone out there!

Aug 23, 2010
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Meltdown help
by: Sunflower

My heart goes out to you! Have you tried using a small boxing bag and gloves? I have found the "pancake game" to be useful. If you can manage him to lie down, roll a large therapy ball over him giving firm deep pressure(somewhat like a deep massage). Also, it's best to do this when you read signs of overloading in order to prevent it. GOOD LUCK!

Aug 22, 2010
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therapies
by: Anonymous

are you able to get him back into therapies any time soon? If there is a delay would it be worth doing at home what the therapists were doing with him some months ago? We see an OT once a month (3 hour drive each way and 2 nights away is our limiting factor here) and work with our son at home in between those visits.

Aug 22, 2010
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lionface!!
by: Anonymous

you are definitely not alone! One thing that did work for us for a while when the tantrums were mostly due to frustration and were pretty intense. . . . A yoga technique called lionface, look it up on google or something as i can't describe it to well. We simplified it to his level at the time, and if we could direct him to that quickly enough, we diverted some of the tantrums, and we all got a bit of stress relief doing lionfaces!! Good luck.

Aug 21, 2010
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meltdowns
by: Anonymous

Your not alone in you situation. Our 9yr old is the same way. I seem to be his target when he has a meltdown,and now as he is getting bigger and stronger its very hard to handle. The only advice I get from MD is up the meds,which seem to help a little, then it starts all over again. I did get a free consult from a behavior therapist, but she wont take our ins. Is there anyone out there who can help us. I feel like i'm in prison some days because we avoid public places for fear he is going to act up.

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