Does your child have ADHD? Raising ADHD children isn’t similar to raising normal children. At times, having the children follow normal rules of the home can seem impossible. There is always a need to work out unique approaches to cope with your child.
This can be a frustrating experience and oftentimes results in parents being disheartened due to coping with unexpected impulsive behavioral changes in their children.
However, you can follow some easy steps that will help make life better.
The first step to progressing is acceptance. Parents at times live in denial and do not accept their children’s problem wholeheartedly. The fact is that ADHD children have unique, functionally-different brains from their regular peers.
Their internal brain regulatory features make them susceptible to impulsive behaviors.
Successfully fostering ADHD children in their overall development means you need to undergo a change in your behavior and approach. You need to involve yourself in learning the behaviors of ADHD children and how to manage them. Although medication may be the first step towards the treatment of your child, there are other behavioral techniques that help you manage the symptoms of your child.
By effectively following the stated guidelines, the destructive behavioral traits of the children can be reduced whilst helping them to overcome self-doubt.
Let us have a look at the Behavioral Management Therapy Principles.
A behavioral management therapy involves two unique principles:
- Encouragement and Timely Rewards for Every Good Behavior
- Approaching Negative Behavior with Necessary Consequences
The second step is necessary for helping you establish a clear set of rules and define consequences for undesirable behaviors.
Nevertheless, these types of basic principles need to be defined for every child to help them become better individuals in their later lives.
It is always necessary to have the goal towards behavioral modifications. Further, it is necessary to help your child know and understand the consequences of their undesirable actions.
This must be taught with affection and enough patience while showing empathy to help your child understand in the best possible way.
Further, parents need to stay true to their decisions of what is acceptable and what is not. It is always important and crucial to follow the set guidelines. Never punish the child today for a mistake and leave him scot-free the next day; it doesn’t do any good for the child’s improvement.
Make a strict note to make harmful behaviors like constant outbursts always unacceptable, no matter what the situation is. The list can also include other things like:
- Not willing to switch off the TV
- Physical Outbursts
Although initially, the child may face some difficulties with practicing the rules, your unacceptance towards negative changes goes a long way in encouraging the child to follow the guidelines.
Have clear and simple rules. Disclose rewards that they can expect should their behaviors fall in line with your expectations.
Try a trial-and-error approach to see what works best for your child.
If necessary, incorporate a point-based system. This will help you keep track of your child’s activities and reward the child every time he/she deserves it.
For instance, you can enact rules like these:
The child accrues points whenever he/she shows good behavior. And after successfully accumulating points, they are free to redeem them by getting something of their choice.
This helps instill a sense of responsibility in the child whilst helping them strive to accumulate more points for the offered goodies.
To make it easier for children to score brownie points, have the set of rules written legibly at a place that is easily accessible to everyone at home. Further, positive reinforcements and timely repetitions help children get a better grasp of rules.
Although it is important to stay true to your rules, allow some space for flexibility. For instance, if a child does something good, increase their brownie points.
If a child commits minor mistakes once in a while you can choose to ignore it. Avoid being either too strict or too lenient with the child.
Always remember ADHD children need time to adapt to their surroundings and they do not adapt to the environment with the same speed as their normal peers do.
Nevertheless, you too should learn a few things like allowing your child the flexibility to make some mistakes and helping them learn in the process. Some odd behaviors that do not interfere in the personality development of the child can be ignored. Never discourage the child’s behavior just because you deem it unusual.
Aggressive outbursts are often seen in ADHD children.
To help them effectively overcome their aggressive symptoms, have ‘Time-Out’ rules in which you make it clear to the child that being angry is ok but they must calm down within certain time limits. Gradually reduce the expected time limit while increasing the intensity of their awards.
However, enough care needs to be exercised to balance the rewards-punishment ratio so that it doesn’t look like you are bribing.
It is also important for a parent to learn when to ignore mildly disruptive behaviors.
Make it a point never to tolerate abusive, destructive behaviors and deal with necessary punishments.
How do you cope with ADHD successfully?
A Defined Structure
Have a routine prepared for your child to follow and see to it that the children stick to it at all times. Have established rituals for everyone to follow.
- Everyone adhering to meal-time
- Sleep Times
- Ironing times, and so on
Breaking Tasks into Manageable Activities
- A large calendar with bold markings highlighting the duties is advisable
- Have the morning duties properly addressed
- Have a quiet place to help the child carry out his/her academic activities
- Have their things properly organized
Keep the Distractions at bay
ADHD children are often easily distracted by the slightest of possible things. Although distractions are necessary for life, they need to be properly regulated.
A few important things that need timely regulations are:
- Video Games
Have your child dedicate some time to outdoor activities to keep their energies replenished.
Encourage Physical Exercise
Physical exercise helps ADHD children focus their energies in a constructive manner.
Keep Their Sleep Times Regulated
Lack of proper sleep gives rise to a host of undesirable things. For instance,
- Being Hyperactive
To help a child have better sleep, try removing excess stimulants such as caffeine and sugar from their food intake.
Always Believe in Your Young Child
Children are young and do not understand the stress adults undergo due to their activities. Your child might be diagnosed with ADHD today, but everything is set right with time. Have a positive attitude towards your children.
It is true that one cannot do everything. Seek guidance when required. With proper counseling and guidance, you can manage your stress levels effectively.
It is alright sometimes to be frustrated. No one can be supportive all the time. Keep aside some break options for yourself. A few of them may include:
- A warm shower
- A short walk
- Working out in the Gym
Practice Being Calm
Always remember, the calmer you are, the better tend to be the outcomes.
What You Shouldn’t Do
- Never embarrass your child for small mistakes
- Never lash out
- Control your negative emotions
Always remember, as a parent, it is your duty to see the child through his good times along with his difficult times. Establish rules and nurture your children.
However, never allow yourself to get intimidated or bullied by the actions of your child.