How Do You Help Someone with ADD/ADHD?
Do you or your child experience ADD or ADHD symptoms? What are the most common?
- A sense of underachievement, of not meeting one’s goals (regardless of how much one has accomplished) that often creates anxiety and sense of failure for the individual.
- Difficulty getting organized, particularly with situations that involve multi-tasking.
- Chronic procrastination or trouble getting started with even small projects or tasks.
- Many projects going simultaneously; trouble with follow-through on any of them individually.
- Tendency to say what comes to mind without necessarily considering the timing or appropriateness of the remark.
- An ongoing search for high stimulation.
- A tendency to be easily bored with a short attention span.
- Easy distractibility, trouble focusing attention, tendency to tune out or drift away in the middle of a page or a conversation, often coupled with an ability to focus at times.
- Often creative, intuitive and highly intelligent. Individuals can exhibit innovation.
- Trouble going through established channels, following proper procedure.
- Impatient; low tolerance for frustration or failure.
- Impulsive, either verbally or in action, as in impulsive spending of money, changing plans, enacting new schemes or career plans, and the like.
- Tendency to worry needlessly, endlessly; tendency to scan the horizon looking for something to worry about alternating with inattention to or disregard for actual dangers.
- Sense of impending doom, insecurity, alternating with high risk-taking.
- Depression, especially when disengaged from a project.
- Tendency toward addictive behavior.
- Chronic problems with self-esteem.
- Inaccurate self-observation.
- Family history of ADD, manic-depressive illness, depression, substance abuse, or other disorders of impulse control or mood.
Causes of ADD and ADHD
ADHD is believed to be inherited. ADHD is two to three times as likely to be diagnosed in boys as girls. The actual cause of ADD is unknown, but it is probably associated with subtle differences in brain structure, its neural pathways, its chemistry, its blood supply, or its electrical system.
Regardless of the cause, ADD or ADHD can be disruptive in the life of the individual. Child and adolescents particularly report not only difficulty dealing with daily activities, but sensing a deep frustration that only serves to exacerbate the already tough symptoms.
Many people report personal duress, confusion and discouragement over their behaviors. They often recognize the problematic nature of their behaviors, their inability to control their behaviors and the impact of their behaviors of their environment. Many carry a sense of guilt over their inability to control these behaviors, feeling that they are somehow inadequate, stupid or retarded. Often self-esteem becomes an issue.
What You Can Do
ADD and ADHD can be managed.
- Seek a qualified therapist who can assist you or your child in building effective coping skills.
- Develop structure within the home and school environment to assist the child in better managing behaviors.
- Explore issues such as adequate sleep, nutrition, structured study and recreation as well as regular exercise.
- If the symptoms are significant, consider the possibility of medications to assist the person/child in further managing their behaviors.
Dr. Julie Barrier says: “For the Christian, quiet meditation, prayer and Scripture memory can assist in slowing down the racing brain. Focusing on God’s will for one’s life and channeling the purpose and passion God created within oneself will harness creative energy. The discipline of fasting can also help. Remember, there is hope!”
Dr. Edward M. Hallowell and Dr. John J. Ratey, Driven to Distraction (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1995)
This information is presented for educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for informed medical advice or training. Consult a professional.
For more information from Dr. Lounsbrough, click HERE.