Some parents say that dealing with an ADHD child is a nightmare. However, many people have experienced a marked improvement using some behavioral techniques. It is important to distinguish between punishment and behavioral therapy. When a parent becomes impatient with a child who cannot seem to manage basic and acceptable behaviors, the relationship can easily be tarnished.
A loving and supportive relationship is very important between the parent and the ADHD child. If the relationship is compromized, the child will probably become more difficult to handle. By this time, the management of the child will probably consist of punishment, which further damages the relationship. Instead, following a few simple guidelines will help to improve the relationship and in return the child's behavior.
1. Rules and discipline must be consistent. The child must have a clear understanding of the consequences of his or her actions and inactions. This will make certain that the child understands the behaviors that are unacceptable.
2. Anger is a common and understandable emotion for parents of an ADHD child. However, it should be controlled and parents should use a slow and quiet voice. Many of these children have an associated disorder, known as sensory integration dysfunction and shouting and screaming could make them react even worse.
3. Look for good behavior and praise the child for this. When praising the child, avoid bringing any negative behaviors into the equation. Don't say "It is good that you are playing quietly and not jumping around as usual." Rather say "I am proud of you playing so quietly." The child should know that they are loved, even when his or her behavior is not liked.
4. A clear routine helps to build security and confidence into a child's life. A timetable with times for play, homework, eating and relaxation can be placed in a spot where the child can find it. An ADHD child is bound to push the boundaries and sometimes he or she will not complete certain tasks on time. However, the parents should encourage them to stick to the routine as much as possible. ADHD kids are often forgetful and a routine will help him or her to get used to daily tasks and organization.
The organizational and behavioral skills an ADHD child learns will stand him or her in good stead in the future.
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