Manage Attention Deficit Disorder - The Prevailing Psychiatric Diagnosis for Children.
For the past several decades, theories on how to manage Attention Deficit Disorder has been a hotly debated topic. It has been estimated that 6% of children and 3% of adults in America have been diagnosed with some degree of Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. ADD/ADHD is a diagnostic label given to children and adults who have serious problems in four areas of their lives -- inattention, debilitating impulsive behavior, hyperactivity, and severe boredom that lead to destructive behavior. This is a neurologically based disorder. Most often it is not a result of bad parenting or willful defiance of the child.
In order to accurately diagnose this disorder, important characteristics of ADD/ADHD must be witnessed in many situations, not just at school or at home. This has become the prevailing diagnosed childhood psychiatric disorder. Anti-social behavior affects 60% of ADD/ADHD children, often most visible in defiance. Symptoms are usually evident before the child reaches the age of seven.
These children are very often very bright and creative. Unfortunately, they are often seen as disruptive and out of control, leading to problems with their peers and other family members. For the child with ADD/ADHD, he or she knows that something is not right, but often cannot control themselves because they don’t understand how to, leading to a downward spiral in self esteem. They often feel unloved, unworthy, and alone -- sometimes to the point of giving up completely.
Manage Attention Deficit Disorder - What Types Of Treatment Are Available?
There are a variety of treatments available to help manage Attention Deficit Disorder. Each individual with ADD/ADHD responds differently to them. It is recommended that parents or individuals carefully research which intervention is best for the one diagnosed and for those who live with them. Some of the considerations to include are: the personality and needs of the individual diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, the finances available for treatment, insurance coverage, eating habits, and the time commitment required by both the individual and loved ones in order to further enhance intervention success.
Talk with the family doctor or a licensed professional concerning whether a regimen of medication is right for your situation. There are many medications currently being prescribed for ADD/ADHD. However, every available medication is a stimulant (amphetamine) having both positive and unwanted (negative) side effects. Other considerations in terms of medication are the age and maturity of the individual, the dose versus the body make-up of the individual and the goals of successful treatment. A caution with medication is the danger of addiction, whether the individual will take the medication as prescribed and the follow-up care provided while on the medication.
Another treatment intervention includes implementing Behavior Training, which is a behavior management system that rewards the positive behaviors of ADD/ADHD children. This type of treatment will depend on the reinforcement needs of the child, provide frequent positive feedback on the child’s progress, often changing the types of rewards in order to provide changing positive stimuli for the child. Additional types of treatment include EEG Biofeedback training, family therapy/counseling, training classes teaching self-control, respect for others, and possibly a change in diet for the whole family. There is growing evidence that diet, allergies, and exercise all play a huge role in counteracting the effects of ADD/ADHD.
It is vital to work with children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD -- both at home and at school with definite teamwork, goals, communication, and consistency between those adults who interact with the child. These children, more than most, require scheduling, consistency, and a framework of expectations in performance and in dealing with the impulsive behaviors that lead to “anti-social” behavior. The ADD/ADHD child is “high maintenance,” requiring a lot of time, energy, patience, consistency, and sometimes, creativity from those they encounter on a regular basis.
Manage Attention Deficit Disorder - Do Children Outgrow The Symptoms Of ADD/ADHD?
The good news is that you can manage Attention Deficit Disorder. Studies show that up to 60% of ADD/ADHD children will outgrow most of the serious symptoms by 20 years of age. The hyperactive feeling may become more of a fidgety restlessness. If the individual has gone through any of the treatment options, he or she will have learned self-control techniques to control the impulsive behavior. Some problems with inattention may persist into adulthood, becoming more of a “brain-fog,” causing difficulty in completing repetitive, unfulfilling tasks such as balancing a checkbook or filling out tax forms. A cup of coffee for the caffeine may help clear this feeling for many sufferers. Many adults with ADD/ADHD who have learned both coping skills and personal styles have succeeded and are succeeding in jobs that utilize their strengths.
In order to manage Attention Deficit Disorder, some adults have learned to use color coded binders to separate work and tasks in order to help them stay focused. They have learned to trust someone at work, home, and in friendships who will lovingly help them when the ADD/ADHD is beginning to negatively impact their daily living. Many have learned to enjoy the high energy spurts to their advantage to accomplish many tasks and then to admit when they are having problems. Some have learned to make lists, cue cards, visual presentations when they have a series of tasks to be accomplished. There is also evidence that certain kinds of music will help to keep them on task and some use that as a way to stimulate the brain in the right direction. Most recognize that the danger of alcohol poses a significant risk to someone with ADD/ADHD and avoid it.
A college professor writes, “In the college classrooms I teach, I encourage those with ADD/ADHD to let me know that they live with this. The only way I can help them as an instructor is to know about it. I can gently steer them back to topics at hand when the symptoms are presenting themselves. I can present material differently and with more animation for them so that the brain get stimulated in different ways -- sometimes through visual aids, sometimes with getting them physically involved in some portion of the lecture, etc. It’s vital that the adult student knows that they are cared for, respected, understood and still expected to meet classroom guidelines. I can and do offer extra one-on-one help for those students in need.”
Manage Attention Deficit Disorder - Hope for the ADHD child and Family Members
There is always hope for tomorrow to face all the problems and trials that may result from coping with Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Looking for the endearing things that these children do or say lets us know that all of our hard work does make a difference in their lives.
There is one who understands our pain, confusion, difficulty in managing -- GOD. He is the Great Physician. The Counselor. The One who is with us always.
Psalm 121:1-3: “A song for the ascent to Jerusalem. I look up to the mountains – does my help come from there? My help comes from the LORD, who made the heavens and the earth!He will not let you stumble and fall; the one who watches over you will not sleep.”
Psalm 33:22: “Let your unfailing love surround us, LORD, for our hope is in you alone.”
Psalm 91:2: “This I declare of the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I am trusting him.”
Jesus is our hope, our help and our refuge. He has promised to be with us, to guide us, to lift us when we feel that we cannot cope.
The strength that we gain through Christ as promised in Philippians 4:13: “For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need,” coupled with the support of family and friends, and the use of interventions will help individuals diagnosed with ADD/ADHD and their family members.