All children have changing needs as they grow older, this includes kids with ADHD. ADHD can present challenges to parents as they try to be supportive no matter what age the kids are.
Most parents wonder when they should have their child checked out for ADHD. Consult a pediatrician when behavioral issues impair your child’s ability to learn or be safe. Aggression, out of control behavior and physically risky choices are good signs. Some recommendations from Dr. Glen Elliott, MD, PhD chief psychiatrist and medical director at the Children’s Health Council in Palo Alto, CA include:
-Offer positive feedback. Reward good behavior with big smiles and hugs. Tell him what he’s doing right.
-Do not reward bad behavior. Don’t give in to demands to avoid embarrassment or to save time. Be willing to walk out of the store with a misbehaving child.
-Avoid excessive stimulation. TV, computer and video games need to be limited and stopped well before bedtime.
-Prevent burnout. Keep playdates short and limited to one friend. Make sure it ends before he gets bored.
-Create opportunities to be active. Schedule activity times when your child can run or play in a safe environment. Not before bedtime though.
ADHD in elementary grades
Ages 6 to 8 are when ADHD is commonly diagnosed. Your pediatrician may prescribe medication but most children don’t need it at this age. Behavioral therapies are preferred.
-Praise them when they earn it.
-Before bedtime, get everything ready for the next morning: clothes, books, projects.
-Use a chore chart to keep your child organized and to watch and praise progress.
-Take one-on-one time. Just 10 minutes a day can make a huge difference. Make this a special time to just do what your child wants to do without chores or expectations.
-Keep limiting media time.
[to be continued]
Source: Lori Newman/Lifescript