Is your child overly hyperactive?
He might be suffering from an attitude problem known as ADHD. Know more about ADHD and what you can do as a parent to a child suffering from hyperactivity.
You’ve been called to school a couple of times this year as your child tends to misbehave and is usually behind school work. You spend time helping your child with his homework and you notice that he has an unusually short attention span and tends to be irritable when you point out certain things in his work.
Your child may just have a little attitude problem – or he could have ADHD.
ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Syndrome, is one of the more recently discovered aspects in child psychiatry. While its exact cause has not yet been determined, genes have been identified as one of the factors. It has also been associated with other neurobiological conditions like mental retardation and other seizure disorders (that is, it is not unusual for ADHD to be present when a child has these conditions). In a study headed by E. Mark Mahone, Ph. D, it shows that boys are more commonly affected than girls, with a 6-to-1 ratio
ADHD is usually manifested by the child’s inattention, impulsiveness, and hyperactivity. The child is unable to finish tasks and is forgetful and careless. He has difficulty staying in one place and is usually restless or squirming in his seat. He is also irritable, aggressive, and extremely talkative.
ADHD is typically present even at infancy, but it becomes apparent when the child begins going to school.
In this more structured environment and in the presence of other children of the same age, the child’s difficulty to keep up with the normal behavior of his/her age group becomes more obvious.
Often, ADHD lasts for the lifetime of the person. However, there are ways of coping with the condition. It is important to identify the presence of ADHD, as other psychiatric disorders may develop if ADHD is not properly addressed.
It is important for children with ADHD to have a supportive family that will help him cope with the condition. Parents, siblings, and other close ties must not simply blame the child’s behavior on his bad attitude. Such practice may cause low self-esteem and lead the child to believe that he is nothing but a source of trouble.
As parents, you must consult a doctor who can advise you on the proper treatment for your child’s condition. Ask about available drugs or medication, and whether they could help your child. Note the possible side effects that these drugs could have on your child.
Behavior modification, social skills development, and education of parents is also important in addressing ADHD. Both the child and the parents must be trained to cope with this medical condition. A proper understanding of ADHD will also give the child and parents more confidence in handling the mental and emotional predicaments that comes along with ADHD.
While ADHD may not be a completely curable condition, proper education, patience and the love of the family will surely help the child cope with his/her condition.