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6 Helpful Parenting Tips for Children With ADHD

Success Tips for Parenting a Child With ADHD

If you have a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), you know life can get overwhelming and frustrating. But as a parent, you are in a unique position to help your child overcome daily challenges and channel their endless energy in positive ways. Here are some tips for raising a child with ADHD and bringing a greater calm to your family.

Create structure. Establish a routine and make sure your child sticks to it every day. Create rituals around meals, playtime, homework and bedtime. You can also provide essential structure by having your child perform daily tasks on their own. A good example is laying out their clothes for the next day before they go to bed at night.

Break down tasks. Children with ADHD can feel overwhelmed by tasks that might seem ordinary to you. If you notice your child avoiding or dreading certain tasks, try to break them down into separate manageable pieces. You can also try using a large wall calendar to help remind them of their duties. Color code homework and chores to help keep your child from feeling overwhelmed with school assignments and everyday tasks. Even simple morning routines can be broken down into smaller tasks. Look for ways to make things easier by dividing responsibilities into "bite-sized" acts.

Provide a haven of focus. If your child has ADHD, he or she will be affected by even the smallest distractions. Mitigate potential issues by creating a quiet space where they can do homework, read and take a break from the demands of everyday life. Keep your home and your child's room organized and neat. This helps reduce unnecessary distractions and ensures that your child knows where everything goes.

Be wary of distractions. Since video games, computer activities and television promote impulsive behavior, they should be tightly regulated. You can provide your child with an outlet for built-up energy by reducing time with electronics and increasing healthy activities outside the home. You should also set aside some quiet time when your child can read, draw or engage in creative activities on their own.

Promote good sleep. For kids with ADHD, inadequate sleep can profoundly impact symptoms. In fact, some research suggests that treating sleep issues may be enough to virtually eliminate many attention and hyperactivity symptoms for some children. ADHD is associated with a wide variety of sleep problems. One study found that kids with ADHD have higher rates of daytime drowsiness than kids without ADHD. At a minimum, poor sleep exacerbates common ADHD symptoms including hyperactivity, inattention and recklessness. With this in mind, it's important to regulate your child's sleeping patterns. To help them get more rest, eliminate problematic stimulants such as caffeine and sugar. You should also decrease tablet and television time and establish a calming bedtime ritual.

Have them try out-loud thinking. Because kids with ADHD often lack self-control, they often act and speak before thinking. Ask your child to vocalize thoughts and reasoning whenever they feel the urge to act out. This can help them self-regulate while giving you insight into their thought processes so you can help them curb impulsive behaviors.

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