All parents want the best for their children. One way in which parents can have the greatest positive impact on their children’s lives is by teaching them to learn to deal with life’s challenges effectively, both emotionally and physically. Parents of children with ADHD have the added difficulty of helping their children learn to deal with some additional behavioral and academic challenges.
Create Structure For Your Child
One of the things that is most helpful to all ADHD children is added structure. As a parent, you can create structure by establishing certain predictable routines. These routines encourage your child to develop habits that they can continue to use for the rest of their life.
Establish specific times for going to sleep and waking up. Also make sure that you create a routine associated with your nighttime and morning routines. For getting up, your child may have to make their bed, get dressed, brush their teeth, and be ready for breakfast at a certain time. The bedtime routine may involve a bath or shower, laying out their clothing for the next day, and organizing their backpack for school. Perhaps story time or quite time. Try to stop all electronic devices including TV 1 hour before bedtime. Don’t allow TV or electronics in the morning until all things that they have to do are complete, if at all.
Regular healthy meals and snacks can have a tremendous impact on the ADHD child’s ability to focus and behave. Their attention span and anger issues seem to increase when they are hungry or tired.
Schedule a specific time for homework, and make sure that the area where your child does their homework is neat, organized and free from distractions. Don’t expect your child to be able to sit still and do their homework for two hours straight. Break down their tasks into smaller chunks. If they can only study for a half an hour, plan to give them a five-minute break. An important goal may be to get the child to be able to study and focus for longer periods of time, always allowing for regular short breaks.
Take Advantage of Online and Local Resources
Helpguide has a lot of useful information, including advice for teachers, recommendations for things to do in a classroom, and important tips that parents can use to encourage their child to complete their homework assignments. CHADD (Children and Adults With Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is an organization that offers all sorts of different resources, including information about ADHD, blogs, links to local chapters, and information about finding support.
Explore All Treatment Options
The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry provides a lot of answers to the typical questions that parents may have regarding ADHD. The site is also helpful for explaining the different types of treatment that are available for the disorder. A child psychologist can formally assess ADHD and discuss various treatment options. An ADHD therapist may be useful for helping you as a parent learns strategies that can help your child. An ADHD child psychologist specialist may help your child come to terms with ADHD and learn about self-acceptance.
Recognize that dealing with ADHD is something that will involve the entire family. It will take time for any therapy to begin to work, but it will also take time for you to learn better ways to relate to your child.
Dealing with ADHD is a continual learning process for everyone and will change as the child gets older. A commitment to helping a child, encouraging them and learning new coping strategies will ultimately benefit them greatly.