Does your child have ADD or ADHD?

Parents commonly struggle with young children and adolescents with behaviors and impulsive behaviors. Does your child struggle with homework, fidgeting or being impulsive- do they miss pertinent steps to chores or frequently act spaced out? It could be that your child may have ADD or ADHD. What are the differences between ADD and ADHD? Here are some things to consider when thinking about your child’s symptoms! According to the A.D.A.M Medical Encyclopedia (2013) here are some differences,
Symptoms of ADHD fall into three groups:

Not being able to focus (inattentiveness)
Being extremely active (hyperactivity)
Not being able to control behavior (impulsivity)

Some people with ADHD have mainly inattentive symptoms. Some have mainly hyperactive and impulsive symptoms. Others have a combination of different symptom types. Those with mostly inattentive symptoms are sometimes said to have attention deficit disorder (ADD). They tend to be less disruptive and are more likely not to be diagnosed with ADHD.

Inattentive Symptoms

Fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork
Has difficulty keeping attention during tasks or play
Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly
Does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork or chores and tasks
Has problems organizing tasks and activities
Avoids or dislikes tasks that require sustained mental effort (such as schoolwork)
Often loses toys, assignments, pencils, books, or tools needed for tasks or activities
Is easily distracted
Is often forgetful in daily activities

Hyperactivity Symptoms

Fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
Leaves seat when remaining seated is expected
Runs about or climbs in inappropriate situations
Has problems playing or working quietly
Is often “on the go,” acts as if “driven by a motor”
Talks excessively

Impulsivity Symptoms

Blurts out answers before questions have been completed
Has difficulty awaiting turn
Interrupts or intrudes on others (butts into conversations)

Did you know that some foods, dyes and sugars contribute to negative behaviors of your child? For years medical experts have warned about the effects of food, try this link to find out more.

http://www.medhelp.org/add-adhd/slideshows/9-Worst-Foods-for-ADD—Plus-1-That-Can-Help/20

Here are some helpful links to help with goal setting because one major way to combat ADD and ADHD is schedules, repetition goal setting and structure. Check them out !!

http://www.addrc.org/setting-target-goals-for-adhd/

http://www.adhdandyou.com/hcp/goals-for-adhd.aspx

Everything is attainable, everything is workable- Keep a positive mindset and keep an open mind and be patient when dealing with your family member who has ADD and ADHD. Sometimes you have to start from basics. Start a chore chart and reward them with tokens for miscellaneous things that will motivate them to change behaviors. Keep in mind that when you give too many instructions your child will forget half of them. For instance when telling your child to clean their room, what does that entail? For adults we can connect the various steps, but kids with ADHD do not. Consider telling the child – we are cleaning the room today. First I want you to start by picking up the books and putting them on the shelf.. when you are done with that come back to me and we will take the next steps. The more that you do these things, the more repetitive it will become for them. Once things become repetitive anxiety between parent and child will lesson and make things easier in the home. 🙂

Reference

A.D.A.M, (2013). Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Retrieved from the Pub Med Health website: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0002518/

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