What Is ADHD?
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, also known as ADHD is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that affects a child’s socialization and his behavior. Its symptoms vary and may be difficult to recognize. The disorder is generally diagnosed in children until their teens, and at times, it runs in the family.
Here are the most common signs of ADHD manifested by children:
Children with ADHD have difficulty recognizing other people’s need and desires.
They often interrupt others when talking or join the conversation or play games which don’t include them.
Trouble Waiting For Their Turn
If they do feel like doing something, they won’t bother if it is not yet their turn.
They often have outbursts of emotions and usually at inappropriate times. It is commonly known as temper tantrums.
Those children who have ADHD have trouble sitting still for a few minutes. They may try to move around, fidget, and squirm or get up.
Issues With Playing
Along with their inability to stay still, they are also expected to have vocalizations when playing.
Children with ADHD show interests in different things making them lose focus on what they are doing and move on to the next without finishing their work.
Lack Of Focus
They have trouble paying attention. For example, you are talking with someone with ADHD; they might say that they heard you, but they will not be able to repeat what you said because their focus is elsewhere.
Avoiding Tasks That Needs Mental Effort
Since they easily feel boredom, they may tend to get away from activities that require mental effort. They will have difficulty in focusing on one task without being distracted.
These children often fail to follow instructions because of their lack of focus. This then leads to mistakes, but it does not necessarily mean that they lack intelligence or lazy.
There are children with ADHD who are not noisy and loud. There are quiet children and engaged less to other kids. These types of children often stare into space, daydream and ignore their environment.
Difficulty In Getting Organized
Children with ADHD experiences difficulty in keeping track of their tasks and activities. It is hard for them to prioritize what is essential, and as said before, they start too many things and do not finish them.
Due to lack of focus, they may tend to be forgetful. Since they are focused elsewhere, they tend to forget doing important activities and lose some of their belongings.
Symptoms In Multiple Settings
These symptoms do not occur only in one place. It can be seen in different settings, such as school and home.
Most of these signs are common to be seen in children. As a parent, you may take the necessary steps if you notice that your child regularly displays these signs and their behavior affects their daily activities and interaction with other people. This disorder is treatable with the help of a doctor or psychologist.
Discipline Strategies For Kids With ADHD
A different approach to discipline is needed when you have a child with ADHD. Their need requires a few changes in parenting strategies, and this can help manage the child’s behavior effectively.
Provide Positive Attention
Positive attention is reduced attention seeking behavior in children. Set aside a one on one time spent with your child every day, and it is the most effective way in reducing the behavioral problem.
Give Effective Instructions
The first thing to do is to gain the child’s full attention. Also, avoid chain commands and give instructions one at a time. You may also ask the child to repeat the directions given to make sure that he understood what you said.
Praise Your Child’s Effort
Praise is a form of motivation a child can have. For a child with ADHD, it is best to give specific praises like “Good job in coloring the farm” rather than generic praise of “good job” alone.
Use Time-Out When Necessary
Timeout is essential to children with ADHD to help them calm their emotions and bodies. Teach them to go to a quiet spot when they are overstimulated or frustrated. This will help them to calm down before he gets into trouble.
Ignore Mild Misbehaviors
Negative behaviors such as whining, complaining, and loud noises they do to interrupt you can be ignored. This will teach them that their obnoxious behavior would not get their desired result – attention.
Establish A Reward System
It is better to create a token economy system wherein the child can earn tokens every day, which can be later be exchanged for more significant rewards.
Allow For Natural Consequences
Rather than convincing the child to make a better choice, there are times that parents should welcome the natural consequences. For example, if the child insists on not eating lunch, allow him to skip a meal. The physical effects he will experience is his hunger, and he will have to wait until dinner to satisfy this need. Through this, the child will learn to eat lunch on time.
Work With Your Child’s Teacher
Teachers handling students with ADHD have to work with parents regarding modifications in their school works and may help in creating a behavior management plan. This can also allow the teachers to know the child better.