ADHD is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It is a mental condition in which children are unable to control their impulses and have poor concentration or unable to pay attention. The areas of brain that controls impulses and attention are less active in such children. It is a genetic mental disorder and has nothing to do with kind of parenting.
Common symptoms in Children having ADHD are
1. Inattention, such that they are unable to follow instructions, miss details and make careless mistakes in school work or other activities.
2. Often loses his belongings such as pencils, erasers, text books, water bottle and forgets about daily activities.
3. Gets distracted easily and unable to follow instructions
4. Keeps moving constantly and unable to sit at one place for longer period of time for example in classroom,during study
5. Keeps on talking continuously
6. Unable to wait for his turn to come
7. Unorganised at work and gets easily frustrated
8. Do not make friends and is unsocial
9. Unable to dress by himself unlike other kids of his age
10. Difficulty in learning and memorizing
Now if your child is diagnosed with ADHD, it does not mean that the world has ended and there is no hope. Although the exact causes of ADHD is not known but it is generally believed that it is inherited. But proper knowledge, treatment and your collective efforts can be effective in managing your child, although it would not be easy but not even impossible. Let us discuss some ways to manage children with ADHD
1. Accept your child
At first it may be embarrassing and feel like the child is misbehaving or not listening to you. But, it is not due to bad parenting, the actual fact is that the skills which controls the activity, behaviour and attention does not come naturally in a child having ADHD. To handle children with ADHD is a difficult task but accept it as a challenge. Accept your child and provide him extra love and handle him with bit more attention.
2. Be patient
Try to remain calm and observe your child. Avoid harsh words and punishments. Talk to him and spend enough time together to know about his strengths and weaknesses. Listen to your child and help him in correcting their errors.
3. Establish reward and penalty system
Give your child manual tasks and provide instructions to complete them. A system of reward and penalty can provide motivation to child to do his best. Reward and praise your child for his efforts by using kind words, patting their back, making their favourite food or taking them out to get his most desired toy if he accomplishes the task and a mild penalty if he fails. This will help in boosting his confidence and learn systematically.
4. Proper treatment
Gather maximum information on ADHD and if necessary take coaching to learn how to respond to behavioural problems of children having ADHD and follow with the treatment. Talk to the doctor and seek help. Give accurate dose of prescribed medicines on time.
5. Encourage your child
Be realistic in your expectations and set goals which are achievable. Be understanding and focus on positive qualities of your child and let go things at some time. Play with your child give instructions and watch how he follows them. Encourage and motivate your kid for his best efforts. Be simple in explanations and instructions which he can understand and follow. Watch your child when he is playing and get to know his strengths and weaknesses.
6. Consult with teachers
Spend quality time with you child and communicate about his friends, his school and experience in classroom.Talk to the school staff about the child and how to make him comfortable in class. Talk to the teachers and ask for their cooperation which can make the child do well and have good time in school. Teachers can help in building self-esteem of such children by appreciation or little bit praise for his work. Meet your childs teacher more often to know about how the child is doing in class. Help your child in homework and correct their mistakes. Explain your child what he has done wrong and suggest better options.
7. Make simple and consistent rules
Organise and set a proper time-table for activities like sleeping, eating, playing and studying. Rules should be clear and explained well to make child understand what is expected to do from him. A fair, mild and consistent punishment should be decided in order he fails to accomplish his task. Minimise distractions and provide suitable environment during study time to help child with ADHD learn better.
8. Praise your child
Love and praise your child for his efforts. As it is the parents who can understand a child than anyone else. Make a.strong bond with your kids and encourage them to ask questions instead of snubbing them. Let them learn through games and verbal communication. Ask about their difficulties and spare time to help and listen to them. Make him read any story and ask him questions about the characters in the story or the moral let him explain, also welcome his questions and answer them patiently. This will build his confidence in you and will help him to listen you seriously.
9. Give instructions one at a time
Keep your instructions short and clear. Let your child finish one task at a time and then ask for other. Continuous set of instructions will confuse him and he will not be able to perform. Tell your child what to do instead of what should not be done in a calm and clear tone. Avoid being rude and do not criticize your child as it may worsen the results.
10. Appreciate for attempt than result
Every child is different and have different capabilities. Most of the time children with ADHD are taught what they have done is wrong, instead of telling him that tell him how he could have done it better. Know your child’s strength and focus on their positive aspect. Appreciate your child for his effort rather than results. Build faith and confidence, no one other than parents can understand their child better.