Effective treatment for ADHD varies from child to child depending on the severity and symptoms. Some children can be effectively treated with behavioral and academic interventions. For others, these approaches are insufficient and may be combined with medication. Regardless of the treatment plan, it must be coordinated with parents, physicians and school personnel.
ADHD is not a condition created by parents who struggle to parent their child. The condition is not new and has been described in the medical literature since the early 1900s. Parents and educators can help to improve a child’s functioning. To learn more about ADHD and how the condition is diagnosed, go to www.understood.org. Related problems may be:
• underachievement in school
• difficulty regulating behavior, emotions and motivation • low self-esteem
• making and/or keeping friends
• appearing less emotionally mature
Researchers still disagree on the exact causes of ADHD; however, most agree that there is a hereditary component. There is no scientific evidence that it is caused by poor parenting; however, parents of children with ADHD often report high levels of stress.
A big part of the intervention provided by teachers is to be excellent observers of a child’s behavior so that the treatment team can provide effective treatment. Treatments that can be provided at school include:
- positive behavioral and social supports
- academic interventions
- small-group instruction
- management strategies such as agendas, desk placement, Daily Report Cards, and predictable routines
Parents can also implement strategies at home. They can:
- develop routines and a reinforcement system provide guidance when a problem is predicted to arise or a change in the routine is expected (e.g., eating at a restaurant, going to the store)
- reduce time with activities that can be over-stimulating, such as television or gaming
- ensure that a child eats healthy and gets sufficient “good” sleep
- make sure a child gets at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day
ADHD is a legitimate condition that requires a collaborative effort among the child’s physician, parent, teacher, and sometimes a mental health professional to be successfully managed. With this collaborative effort, ADHD does not need to be a hopeless condition. Children can learn to develop personal strengths and strategies and learn the academic skills needed to be productive citizens.
Currey Ingram hosts the ADHD Summer Treatment Program (STP), an intensive six-week program for students ages 8 to 12 with ADHD. Campers work on social skills, problem-solving, and self-regulation strategies within all camp activities, learning skills and resources that prove beneficial in both the home and school setting. Learn more here.
Neuroscience and Education: The Connection: Now in its sixth year, our two-day summer symposium is designed to bring together parents, educators and healthcare professionals to hear about the latest brain research as it relates to learning. This year’s symposium includes more than 24 sessions and a keynote by Dr. Russell Barkley who is an internationally recognized authority on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or ADD) in children and adults.