My 5 year old daughter diagnosed with ADHD, possibly SID? Help!

by Nicole
(Massachusetts)

My 5 year old daughter was recently diagnosed with ADHD (according to a multiple choice form filled out by myself and my husband, and one from her kindergarten teacher). Her pediatrician scored the forms and called me to say according to the forms she does have ADHD. When I asked her what we should do to help her, she gave me the name and number of an OT.


I recently brought her to see the OT for an evaluation. The therapist told me that she does not see any ADHD, and that my daughter has SI issues. I've been reading about SI since, and am very confused. She does have some of the symptoms, but not the telltale issues with textures and touch. She is bright, energetic, and has a lot of personality. I've occasionally wondered about ADHD, but even that isn't obvious.

Her symptoms are fidgeting, excessive talking, and difficulty completing tasks on her own (her kindergarten teacher says it is the most significant factor in her learning). She talks constantly, and is often funny (I don't think she always means to be). She is very imaginative and is almost always pretending something (right now she is crawling around on the floor pretending to be a baby dinosaur, and talking to herself about it the whole time). She often gets lost in her games like this and has difficulty transitioning to something else - if I ask her to get dressed it is very difficult for her to stop playing and get dressed and I have to ask her multiple times, or speak very sharply to her before she will do it.

She talks to everyone - total strangers in the store, adults, other children, animals. She does lack strength in her trunk (she can't do a situp, and she can't do the flying position on her stomach). She can focus on something she's interested in - she will sit and play computer games for hours. She is left handed, although occasionally does things with her right hand. She's a little picky with food, but not abnormally so for a 5 year old. She is disorganized, bumps into things a lot, loses things all the time, doesn't pay much attention to keeping her clothes/hair/face neat.

I'm very confused - her pediatrician is sending us a letter with the ADHD diagnosis that we are supposed to give to the school. But she sent us to an OT for SID, who told us she does not have ADHD. Do her symptoms sound more like SID? Should I give the ADHD letter to the school? Is there a more definite way to figure out what is wrong (if anything)? I would appreciate any advice at this point - I don't really know what to do. Thanks.

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May 26, 2016
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This may help
by: Inthesameboat

Please look at first signs of Asperger syndrome in bright young girls preschool

Sep 09, 2015
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Getting enough sleep?
by: Kate

Are you sure she's getting enough sleep? My daughter comes home so completely wired after a day at school (public school kindergarten & bus ride, gone everyday from 9am to 4pm). She comes home extremely hyped up from sensory-overload and acting wild and talking a mile a minute without taking a breath. I have been giving her a warm bath with some essential oils, and putting her to bed at 7pm with a gentle massage to help calm her down. With this routine, I have been shocked that she's sleeping 12 hours most nights. I just think the school environment is rowdy and overstimulating for some kids. They are literally "buzzing" from the day. Try more sleep, that's my recommendation. Good luck! xo

Aug 20, 2015
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ADHD
by: Ren

The best way to get rid or reduce ADHD is through dieting. These kids have more genes because they come from an environment whereby the women did the work of two people utilizing more vitamins and minerals and therefore require more food/vitamins and minerals. They need more iron, zinc,magnesium, protein, omega 3 and 6. These kids will have more critical thought, more creativity, more imagination, more seeing, more hearing. Almost two people inside one person - they need more vitamins and minerals to be highly reduced. Also magnesium baths help with a lot of things including frigeting.

Aug 04, 2015
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MY 4 YEAR OLD
by: Anonymous

Oh my gosh. Your story hit home with me. I have a 4 year old son who is the exact same way. He talks from the moment his eyes open in the morning until they close at night. I also have to repeat myself or raise my voice for him to listen. And then he will tell me that I am mean and that I have hurt his feelings. He is in preschool and his teachers tell me that all he does is talk and they will say you need to stop talking please and he will say ok then 5 seconds later right back at it. His teacher says I don't think he can help but talk. He is either going to be a preacher or a CNN new anchor they say. He is obsessed with video games on his brothers xbox or his ds. He has very limited time to play them but when it is time for him to turn it off and find something else to do you would have thought it was world war 3 in our home. I am not sure when I should speak to his pediatrician about the concerns I have. Does any one have any suggestions that may help???

Aug 27, 2014
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Drugs do not treat the behavior needed for kids to succeed
by: Anonymous

I have to say that some of those questionnaires are very subjective. The ADHD diagnoses is often thrown around with little reservation. I am skeptical of ADHD diagnosis when given by pediatricians, especially if they do not really see the patient for more than 15 minute visits. I am also not a big fan of ADHD medications given to kids with this diagnosis, because medication does not address the behavioral issues. It merely slows kids down, and they often have issues with side effects such as stomach aches, headaches and nausea. The approach in my opinion needs to be behavioral rather than medical. I also agree that SID and ADHD have similar symptoms. It is hard to really know what is what. I would recommend being focused on solving the challenging behaviors in whatever way works for your child, rather than being so concerned with what the label for your kid's condition is. If you improve the behaviors, the label stays with the child. It can be stigmatizing. I would value the approach of a behavioral health therapist/occupational therapist to address the behaviors. If the child is one of those extreme cases, I would then consider medication, but never without behavioral health treatment.

May 25, 2013
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ADHD and ODD
by: Anonymous

Having read the comments on this page I realise that my 9 year old son has a lot of the symptoms you talk about. My son was diagnosed with ADHD and ODD 8 months ago and is now on medication. It does help him but not all of his symptoms are gone. He does like to play role play games and pretends a lot. He plays computer games but only recently as it seems to calm him but when he spends so much time playing them we can't help wonder if it is also not helping him. He doesn't always like school as he puts up barriers with his learning. He thinks he is stupid if he has to be taught things and cannot do them the first time and often hits himself and calls himself an idiot. He does not learn from his mistakes and cannot help but touch and fiddle with things that he is not supposed to, i.e. things in the classroom, at home, in shops, etc. Taking him out is a nightmare as he has a flight problem. He tends to go off if you do not keep your eyes on him all the time and also doesn't do what you ask him. He won't get dressed after repeatedly asking and will only do it when shouted at or when he sees I am upset. He is not bad just tends to act inappropriately towards people. He fights with friends as if they tease him playfully he gets really angry and certain people steer clear of him as he gets angry with them or himself.

We are supposed to be going to a wedding today but he is scared and is refusing to go as he is frightened of the adults that will be there. He also doesn't like big crowds. He got very anxious when we went to a theme park last year. His eating is okay and he will attempt to eat new things but his appetite is suppressed by his Equasym tablets and often eats late at night. Most of his problems I think are because he feels that people don't like him and he often says he has no friends although kids will talk to him on the way to and from school. I think he does have ADHD but feel there is more as although he is better at school he still feels scared of lots of things. He hates being alone and is scared of the dark. What else do we do, both of us work full time and I feel stressed a lot of the time and even my eldest son feels we spend more time with our youngest trying to help him. They also fight because he has issues with playing as he makes up the rules as he goes along and doesn't like losing. We try and tackle this but feel that he does not listen to what we say. Do you think my son as other problems other than what he has been diagnosed with?

Apr 18, 2013
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not just a typical 5yr. old
by: meisha

Reading this has given me a sense of relief. I'm not alone. My newly 5yr old daughter is identical. The comment about "if I hear let's pretend",,, everyday, 100x a day. I wish you good luck as we are on the same journey of trying to figure it out. The worst is not knowing. But I have faith my little love bug will be ok. God bless

Feb 16, 2013
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DYSPRAXIA
by: Anonymous

This is dyspraxia it has some ADHD traits but its sensory, fine and large motor skill difficulties and can have speech difficulties to

Jan 28, 2013
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SID or ADHD
by: Anonymous

In response to this question, my 6 year old has been diagnosed with SID (SPD) and under the care of an OT. He has severe anxiety issues mainly because of lack of care and understanding by others. We have just received an ADHD diagnosis which I am challenging. The Conners assessment form used to diagnose ADHD would give the same high rating if used for SPD - I will not be medicating my son until I have established if the sensory diet is unsuccessful or a PED screening gives a clear insight into his brain function. An ADHD child is as impulsive as an SPD child, an ADHD un-medicated child is as distracted as an SPD child in the same surroundings. Wait before medicating until you have clinical proof. If you medicate a child, the results will be the same, a medicated, functional child - even if they haven't got ADHD !

May 02, 2012
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2 peas in a pod!
by: Anonymous

Reading this is like you can see my kid!!! I find myself getting so irritated by the CONSTANT movement & touching me & talking...the talking...to anyone with an ear!!! She has food issues too. She used to eat anything but @ 2 that stopped now it's just nuggets. If I hear let's pretend 5000 times a day that's a slow day @ our place. I have o.c.d.& I think she has it too. I'm @ wits end! I'm not sure what's going on or if she'll out grow some of this stuff or what is normal.

Apr 30, 2012
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ADHD and SID
by: Anonymous

Just a note that it is very common for children to overlap in areas now. Although all ADHD is classified as ADHD no matter if inattentive or hyperactive type it is not uncommon for the two to overlap. Often times we as parents even when educated do not see as quickly as others what is going on with our children. My daughter was four when we received her ADHD Hyperactive diagnosis she also has a processing disorder and a sensory integration issue. My oldest daughter has merely ADHD inattentive type. It is more common when one or both of the parents have ADHD. In our case the children get it from me. I am an educator and the teacher would have a baseline to compare the behaviors in the classroom. I applaud that you are doing your research and I can tell you what the psychologist told us that medication will not help if the issue is not ADHD. Now understand as well it could be a multilayer issue involving SID or other things as well so the OT will be very helpful to you in this area however...don't be too quick to overlook an area of concern. Always learn about it. I have gotten my daughter the youngest on a 504 plan to permit her more time and special accommodations for her testing. My oldest did not require it. Best of luck to you and hope this is helpful for you!

Oct 12, 2011
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Been through this
by: Anonymous

My son was diagnosed with a mild form of Autism when he was 2. I cannot stress to you how important it is to listen to the OT. They really know their stuff. I would first start with the OT therapy. I would at the same time ask your OT if they can recommend a place to get some additional testing done. Find out if there is anything else going on and make sure you aggressively follow the therapy recommendations. The ADHD is probably going to be a part of all of it and in very small doses could be very helpful to you and she will be able to slow down and focus on the therapy you will be getting.

Our son is 10 now doing very well considering and he also is on ADHD meds. Good luck and keep us posted.


Oct 12, 2011
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Any luck
by: Anonymous

To the person who posted recently...have you had any luck? We are trying to figure it out with my 4 year old. She sounds alot like this child too, except she does display more tactile and auditory defensiveness. I was told that it could also occur with ADHD though. Still meeting with doctors and psychologists...waiting on an OT. It doesn't help that the ones we have been sent to so far don't seem to know much about SPD, much less how to differentiate between that and ADHD. Hopefully we will have answers soon. Good luck to you as well. :)

Sep 17, 2011
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My 5-year-old
by: Anonymous

How you describe your daughter at 5 is exactly what we see in our daughter! I'm curious what you have found out through the process of finding answers. We are desperate for answers.


Jan 17, 2011
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Don't give up hope...search.
by: Ross' mommy

My son is 6 years old. At the age of 21 months he received his MMR and that was all she wrote. He changed. It took me 2 years to get someone to listen. An Autism group in Knoxville, TN. I spoke to the lady and she got me in touch with a child psychologist. I went above doctor heads. I went to the one who deals with the mind.

He did an evaluation on my son, we did forms and question-airs like you and then followed thru with a plan. My son was being labeled ADHA with possibilities of Asperger's syndrome and SID. BUT we had to go thru literally HELL to get things moving.

After a 18 month run Ross was re-evaluated and diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome and SID...NO ADHA at all. The psychologist apologized to me over and over for not finding it first, but he says you have to see just what is wired wrong before you can fix it.

Ross was setting things on fire if he found matches, he has no fear of traffic and he is easy to set off if allowed to do certain things. He loves to feel of fabrics, but if I let him touch to much he melts down. If he goes to ball game he cries due to all the noise. He can't concentrate. He hates flashing lights they cause him headaches and I am not allowed to burn certain candles in my home unless he has 'sniffed' them first because these things cause melt downs too. ALL part of his SID.

don't know if this helps, but seek a psychologist and dive deeper into your childs mind. Here is for HOPE and ANSWERS...

Dec 29, 2010
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A Specialist Knows Best
by: Anonymous

We have been going through similar issues with my son. My recommendation to you is to take your daughter to a developmental pediatrician. He/she should recommend that your daughter go to a school age clinic or something similar where she will meet with a team of specialist that will test her. They look for not only how she does on the test but how she is physically and emotionally while the tests are being done. We have been looking for an answer for 6 years and finally, we know. Take your daughter to get tested. My husband and I both feel those questionnaire forms only tell part of the story - for a true diagnosis the doctor needs to see the whole picture. I hope this helps you! Good luck!

Aug 02, 2010
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i hade adhd
by: Anonymous

i have adhd, i was very when i was younger all i did was talk and talk, always had a great imagination, when we would have family gatherings i would always dress up in costumes and entertain people, everyone always used to say that i was going to be and actess people tell me that i was very bright when i was young they say when i talked i sounded so mature every one used to be surprised.by the time i was 9 my parents always asked me for advise.till this day i cant finish tasks,i get very distracted my sounds, i lose or misplace everything, im allways s in a hurry.i had a lot of similarities with your daughter but i have wayy more sensory issues and i still do. add/adhd and sid are very very similar and very hard for even doctors to tell them apart then their young, but the thing is if she does have adhd you should be very very happy that she was diagnosed this early beacuse it wount affect her life as much.


ps sorry is i made a lot of mistakes b ut english is my second language

Jan 04, 2010
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I don't know much about SID but could this be Aspergers?
by: Anonymous

is it possible that Asperger's is the diagnosis because all the symptoms listed could also be Asperger's. My older sister has this and talks often of Sensory Processing differences but also difficulty focusing, being very involved in her own world and what she is doing, very picky eater. She was popular as a young kid and very intelligent but would have preferred to be on her own doing whatever she was into at the moment than spending time with other kids her age. Her social cue understanding was not the same as her peers.

As she got older she didn't always connect with the main stream socially but had some friends. She has difficulty with the deadlines and structure given to complete academic and vocational tasks but completed college at a top university but wasn't diagnosed with Asperger's until her late 20's. For years she didn't know why she was having such difficulty.

Now that she knows she has been able to work on specific skills to improve and feel more capable having to play by other's structure and deadlines. People with Asperger's just experience the world in a different way, it is unfortunate that most of our society is not set up to respect this and see it not as a deficit but instead as a potential benefit from looking at the world from a different perspective new discoveries and abilities can occur.

Apr 16, 2009
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Hi,
by: Anonymous

My daughter's story is so similar. She was diagnosed with both disorders in 2nd grade. OT helped dramatically by helping her learn coping skills in class, but she always works harder than anyone I know just to maintain the basics and is completely burned out when she gets home. Things would get better then bad again.

We started her on ADD med. after starting 5th grade. Her self esteem was so low. She now takes a tiny 10 ml tablet and she can finally concentrate in class and not on the distractions in the classroom. I wished I hadn't let her struggle for so long. She can now perform to her potential and her self- esteem is through the roof. We found that the ADD diagnosis helped her qualify for school assistance that SID won't. So you may have better luck getting her extra help using the ADHD diagnosis. She may never need it but also the kids with ADHD qualify for the 504 which is protection against being left behind in school.

Until recently my daughter was such a mixed bag when it came to grades. One day brilliant the next day a mess. We always knew she was smart but would never see it on a test, she was too busy listening to the sound of the air-conditioner or to the birds outside. The 504 was critical for her. I would advise more than anything watch her self- esteem these kids work so hard and sometimes get disappointing results it's really easy for them to believe they're not as smart as other kids.

Apr 16, 2009
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Hope this helps
by: char113

The OT personnel are usually more versed in what true SID/SPD is. Physicians and teachers are more apt to think a child has ADHD. It is a possibility that your child has both or just the SID.

My son sounds just like your daughter. He does not have any tactile issues and is fun, energetic, and talkative, he also has a hard time transitioning from one thing to another but he does not have ADHD. A lot of children with SID are misdiagnosed with ADHD and really need a true diagnosis of SPD. Unfortunately SPD/SID is not a covered diagnosis but things like ADHD, and ADD are.

I would give them the papers just so that your child can get the correct transitional cues she needs, she may need more of a warning before changing from activity to activity rather that warning be visual or auditory. Both of these have worked with my son who is in PRE-K. Hope this helps...

Apr 16, 2009
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We have the ADD diagnosis
by: Anonymous

My son, SID, has SID and is formally diagnosed with ADD. It gets him help he needs. SID affects your ability to concentrate and attend to task. It is more of a cause of not focusing for him. Hope this helps.

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