How to Help a Child with ADHD?
ADHD is a common neurodevelopmental condition in children, that can persist into adulthood. Caring for a child with ADHD might be challenging due to impulsive, daring, and unpredictable behaviors that may interfere with routine activities. Our board-certified pediatrician, Jeff Drasnin, MD, FAAP, and his team at ESD Pediatric Group, offer effective treatment alternatives to improve ADHD symptoms. For more information, contact us or request an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Milford OH, and Norwood OH.
Table of Contents:
Though it can be very tempting to jump on one specific method to help a child with ADHD, every child is unique, meaning that what works for one child is likely not going to work for all children. With those grounds set, indeed, children with ADHD do often benefit from forms of behavioral therapy from a psychiatrist, psychologist, or other well-versed mental health professionals. Taking this route may be especially beneficial for a child suffering from anxiety disorders, forms of depression, or even children who need help managing emotions. Another potential option or supplement is medication. Psychostimulants, such as amphetamines (Adderall), or methylphenidates (Concerta, Ritalin, etc.), are the forms of medications that are commonly prescribed to deal with ADHD. While both psychotherapy and medication can show effective results, it is also very beneficial for children to be allowed to play, exercise, or generally enjoy themselves as this can help burn off energy before going into a task. Additionally, many children respond well to more structure and routine in their days. This can involve set times of eating and sleeping, as well as diet and exercise. Making sure the day is not overwhelming and ensuring that there is room for relaxation and a fulfilling activity will also be crucial. While it can be difficult to determine the best way to go about aiding your child, with persistence and encouragement, your child can thrive despite their ADHD.
As a parent or guardian, moments of hyperactivity can be especially concerning if your child is struggling to complete tasks such as schoolwork or extracurricular activities. In this event, there are some actions that many medical professionals recommend taking to help soothe a child with ADHD in an energetic state. It is quite helpful for a child with ADHD to be able to take breaks during tasks; A child can recharge their sensory processing, reset their attention span, and more easily manage their impulses. Children with ADHD can also greatly benefit from learning to calm themselves through techniques such as breathing exercises or counting to a specific number— both are common examples of what both professionals and parents may teach children. Furthermore, it is important to offer very specific expectations and instructions for a task for kids with ADHD. This allows a child to more easily focus on carrying out the activity itself by reducing the cognitive load that would be required to dissect more vague instructions. Finally, it can also be greatly beneficial to use excessive energy in exercise or games to help calm a child. The additional movement and stress-free moment should help burn energy that can help calm a child. Finally, a child must experience positive reinforcement, as well as understanding and calmness from the parent or guardian. Seeing a more calm mentor can help lead to a child following in their footsteps.
Traditional methods of discipline for children with ADHD seem to be running thin, meaning that there are certainly ways to discipline a child with ADHD that are simply more effective than others. A parent needs to remain calm and collected, even when upset when disciplining a child with ADHD. Modeling this calmer behavior has shown more significant benefits than simply yelling. For children with ADHD, it is very much advised to affirm positive actions, and rewards, while ignoring less impactful/mild misbehavior, but using a time-out system to effectively establish discipline. While placing a child in timeout, it is important to be clear about the details that lead to the discipline, the length, and the continued use of positive reinforcement.
Moments of impulsivity and hyperactivity from ADHD can be triggered by a variety of factors, however, they are sure to vary for each child. A few of these factors include emotional and sensory overload/overstimulation, sleep deprivation, and breaking or lack of structure. These are most commonly pointed to as the main causes of outbursts, but with proper preparation and care for the child, they can be managed quite effectively. It is advised to speak with a physician or medical professional who specializes in this area if assistance is needed.
Children with ADHD frequently experience significant behavioral issues that make it difficult for them to manage their lives normally. ADHD treatment is available at ESD Pediatric Group. For more information, contact us or request an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Milford OH, and Norwood OH. We serve patients from Milford OH, Hyde Park OH, Cincinnati OH, Blue Ash OH, Montgomery OH, Loveland OH, Mt. Orab OH, Newtown OH, and Kenwood OH.