Children who suffer from ADHD often experience difficulties at home or in school. What can be seen as unruly behavior in young children can become overwhelming in children as they reach their teens. They may perform badly in their academic work, become involved in fights or struggle to make friends. Some end up being moved from one school to another due to disruptive behavior. So it’s important to try and find relief of ADHD while children are young.
Although studies have been conducted, there are is yet no defined cause of ADHD, although scientists are moving away from environmental factors and are concentrating on looking at biological causes. However, there are some environmental treatments that can provide real improvements in ADHD behavior.
The premise of Behavior therapy is that it is based on simple concepts about what leads people to behave in socially acceptable ways. This works for ADHD by looking at the relationship between parent and child. Most children want to please their parents and make them feel proud as it also boosts the child’s feeling of self-worth. Also, most children have realized that if they behave in the correct or appropriate manner they can gain rewards for doing so. By contrast, misbehavior generally brings with it negative consequences.
In order for your child to get the most out of behavior therapy, they ideally need to be involved from the start. So sit down with them and go through what behaviors are expected from them in various situations. Be very clear in your descriptions so there is no ambiguity. Discuss all the possible outcomes and agree on the rewards and also the punishments. By doing this exercise your child will be clear on what you expect of them and also what they stand to gain or lose.
Some parents may wonder why they are providing rewards for behavior that should be done anyway and fear that they are bribing their children. This isn’t the case. You are providing your child the motivation they need in order to improve their behavior.
This approach will take time and perseverance on both the parents and child’s behalf. However, stick with it and you should see some improvements.
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Using behavioral therapy in conjunction with a number of the other treatment options like medication, natural remedies, diet and neurofeedback can help provide relief of ADHD behaviors. However, before adopting any treatment program, it is a good idea to chat your thoughts through with your child’s doctor for their input. They may be able to offer referrals or other suggestions.