Parenting Tips for Children with ADHD
Parenting is hard at the best of times. There is no rulebook or guidelines set down to make our job easier. When your child has ADHD, you have upped the challenge.
There is one thing that parents must understand: ADHD is not a reflection on your parenting skills. Many parents are handicapped by the mistaken idea that they did something to make their child contract ADHD. But you don’t contract it. It is a disorder that involves different wiring in the brain.
Here are some tips to make both you and your child feel better about the condition:
1. Stop blaming – Time wasted on blaming yourself or the medical establishment or the environment or your child could be better spent helping your child. Blame indicates that there is something wrong with your child, and you certainly don’t want him or her to think that. Your son or daughter may already feel bad because they can’t control their actions in class or at home, and your blame doesn’t help. It can even add to the chaos and limit the ways in which you can help your child.
2. Find resources – There are educational and parenting resources available to help you cope with ADHD and then assist your child. Seek out counseling resources and a treatment plan from your doctor. His or her recommendations can be used to help the school system prepare an individualized education program (IEP) for your child in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
3. Exercise – Physical exercise is good for the entire family. It can work off nervous energy in a constructive and healthy way. Try to incorporate a little activity before homework time or after dinner.
4. Provide structure in the home – Having a schedule for homework, dinner time, free time and the other regular activities gives your child a framework, helping him to improve his concentration and memory. Post it on a board in the kitchen where everyone can see. Yes, things will come up, but try to keep to your set schedule as much as possible. Be sure to leave wiggle room in the schedule so it doesn’t have the opposite effect and stress everyone out.
5. Participate in group therapy – This is a way for each person to learn more about ADHD and how everyone feels, particularly your affected child. It is also a time to share with others, with no repercussions and learn to cope with changes.
6. Learn empathy – While the challenges of ADHD might be hard for you to deal with, imagine what your child feels. Having to work so hard to concentrate all the time can be stressful and frustrating. Help whenever you can to teach others about the condition.
7. Take time for yourself – You will be a better parent when you take time out to relax and release.
Parenting is not easy but these tips can help you do the best job possible for your child with ADHD.