When your child is diagnosed with ADHD it can feel overwhelming. You may find yourself sorting through many questions:
ADHD is a processing disorder that has to do with attention and internal motivation. Having ADHD does not make your child less intelligent. The difficulty with ADHD is that it's not the same in all people; therefore, there is no single best treatment. Some children can present as hyperactive, while others seem calmer but are preoccupied with their own thoughts. Many have difficulties with time management and organization. For these reasons, the most effective treatment needs to be personalized to make use of your child's strengths and to shore up his or her weaknesses.
It's important to bear in mind that ADHD symptoms can change over time, and that they are often accompanied by other problems. Some symptoms, such as hyperactivity, for example, generally decline as a child grows older. On the other hand, the academic and social struggles that sometimes accompany ADHD can lead to depression, anxiety or oppositional behavior. An effective treatment plan tailored to your child's particular situation, and to your family's culture and style, can help alleviate or avoid additional difficulties.
It's been my experience that most children with ADHD want to do well and please their parents. The problem is—what may make perfect sense to you, as an adult, may be utterly baffling to your child, who may be thinking such thoughts as,
"How can I sit still and focus when my brain is going 100 miles an hour?"
"Why would I do this worksheet when that video game is so exciting?"
"Wait? How am I supposed to do that?"
As a parent, you want your child to be happy and successful. The last thing you want to be doing is having unproductive, nightly battles, or to be giving up out of frustration or hopelessness.
I can help you coordinate with teachers, harness your child's natural smarts, and implement an effective treatment plan tailored to your child's specific needs. These ingredients, combined, will enable your child to succeed in school and prepare for a successful future.
©2012 Brian Clark, Psy.D.
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