4 Ways for Managing Attention Deficit Disorder

hyperactivity disorder

When a friend of mine was growing up with ADD, there were very few resources for him besides the medication he started taking in high school. Children with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can be a challenge for any family. These children often need a more structured and in-depth program of discipline and training.

Because ADD and ADHD have a biological component, medication may prove to be helpful as part of the solution. Some families adjust diet, exercise, sleep and/or give caffeine to address the biological component. In addition to this, parents must use a long-term character development plan. Medication is only a temporary solution, and children need to learn character qualities to cope with or offset their tendencies.

Here are 4 suggestions to help a child with ADD or ADHD.

1. Use ‘Taking a Break’ as a primary discipline technique.

This approach isn’t simply a punishment for misbehavior (as time-out can be), but it forces a child to make internal adjustments. Used in conjunction with other techniques, Taking a Break is foundational for helping a child make significant, heart-level changes.

2. Understand and use the ‘Positive Conclusion’ after every discipline experience.

The Positive Conclusion allows parents to do therapy with their children several times a day. It usually takes only a minute but can take longer when helpful. Its value is unequaled in helping children admit their mistakes, understand how to change, and reshape their thinking process. Although children with ADD/ADHD are often quite intelligent, they sometimes have difficulty applying their intelligence to social skills and behavior management. The Positive Conclusion uses a positive approach and continual repetition to reinforce right choices.

3. Work on self-discipline as a primary character quality.

Impulsiveness is a common trait seen in children with ADD and ADHD. Inappropriate speech, action or social skills, destructiveness, and dishonesty are often the result of undeveloped impulse control. These children must enter into a highly structured program to develop self-discipline. Parents enter into a coaching relationship with their children, providing the external discipline needed to build the internal self-control.

4. Actively promote a healthy sense of pride for children for themselves and their family. {Tweet This}

Talk about the things your family enjoys, the fun activities you’ve experienced, and the sense of teamwork you have. Help the child understand his/her uniqueness. Emphasize the fact that he/she is special. Use a scrapbook, photo album, bulletin board, charts, storytelling, and art to reinforce this positive sense of self. This is so important because much of the time these children experience limit setting, correction, rebuke and instruction which points out weaknesses. In reality, these children have many strengths which must also be acknowledged and enjoyed.

If your child struggles with Attention Deficit Disorder or you know someone who does, what techniques have you found that work?