Drug testing

What To Do When You Think Your Child Might Have AD/HD

AD/HD (attention deficit disorder) is one of the most common mental health disorders seen in childhood. Studies estimate that between 3-7% of all children have AD/HD: approximately 2 million children in the USA alone, or one child in every classroom.

The main symptoms seen in this condition are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, however, it's important to note that not all children with AD/HD have hyperactivity. Many have the inattentive sub-type; these are the children who are often over-looked because they rarely present with behavioral problems. Rather, they are the dreamers who find it difficult to pay attention and who may instead, seem withdrawn or even depressed. It is far more likely that the hyperactive, impulsive children are identified in school for their acting out behaviors. Often times, teachers will report to the families that an evaluation for AD/HD may be indicated.

What should you do if you think your child might have AD/HD?

? Have your pediatrician give your child a complete physical to rule out any possible medical condition that can mimic AD/HD symptoms. Some children with chronic allergies, for example, simply cannot focus.

? If your child is given a clean bill of health, discuss your concerns with your child's teacher. Find out how your child is behaving in school. Some questions to ask would be:

- Is he completing homework assignments?
- Is he paying attention in class
- Is she able to make friends easily?
- Does she have materials (books, paper, pencils) handy, or do they often get lost?
- Is he getting to class on time?

Keep in mind that many children with AD/HD can do well in school and often excel in structured environments. It often isn't until the later school years- often middle school- that these children "hit the wall" and can no longer keep up. It is imperative that interventions be carried out to avoid failures.

? Note your child's behaviors at home. Does he seem more immature than other children his age? Does he have a hard time following directions? Sitting at the dinner table?

If you feel that your child exhibits many of the traits of AD/HD, then it's time to get evaluated. Schools should have psychologists on staff who can offer testing. However, many parents prefer to go for an outside evaluation. Some pediatricians feel capable of evaluating AD/HD, but many child psychologists, psychiatrists and neurologists have special training to help decipher which behaviors could indeed be AD/HD and which might be something else, such as depression, anxiety or a learning disability.

My Child Has AD/HD: Now What?

If you find that your child does, indeed have AD/HD, it's important to educate yourself as much as possible. There are numerous books on the subject. Consulting with a mental health professional to help you with the many challenges AD/HD can present, is invaluable. Finding support by attending local groups such as CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder) also are immensely helpful in not only learning more about AD/HD, but also to connect with other families who are struggling.

Since the treatment of AD/HD often includes parenting strategies, it is imperative that you work with a professional to help you learn new techniques to not only help manage your child's behavior, but to also help him learn organizing strategies, homework management, social skills and more.

Treatment also often includes medication to help quiet the hyperactivity and impulsivity and/or improve attention. Many parents are reluctant to give their child medications, but stimulants (the most common and beneficial medication for AD/HD) are safe when given as directed. Still, all parents have concerns. Here are some questions to ask your doctor to help you in making the decision as to whether medication is right for your child:

? What are the risks vs benefits?
? What side effects might I observe?
? Which medications will work best for my child?
? What options do I have if I don't want to use medications for my child?
? How will I know if the medications are working?

School Issues

Since AD/HD usually impedes a child's performance in school, it is essential to work closely with teachers and staff so that your child can perform her best. Many with AD/HD qualify for special help. If the AD/HD is getting in the way of academic or social success, you can request accommodations or even special education services. In order to receive such services, you will need to have a letter from the professional who diagnosed your child. If the school psychologist administered the evaluation and found your child eligible for special help, discuss your concerns with her to see what sort of support your child needs and is entitled to in school.

Some AD/HD accommodations often include:

? Having your child sit closer to the teacher

? Keeping your child away from distractions, such as the door leading to the hallway, windows, noisy classmates

? Having a note taker, especially if your child has poor handwriting skills

? Having assignments written on the blackboard

? Asking the teacher to check for homework when your child arrives at school to eliminate the possibility of his losing it

? Have teacher maintain frequent eye contact

? Break down assignments and instructions into smaller chunks

? Give your child extra time to take tests and complete assignments

? Allow for your child to work in a quieter area of the room, as needed

? Get help with organizing books, papers, backpack, desk, locker, etc

All in all, AD/HD is a highly treatable condition and with the right support, most children will thrive and enjoy success personally, socially and academically.

Terry Matlen, MSW, ACSW, is a psychotherapist and consultant in Birmingham, Michigan specializing in AD/HD in adults. She is the author of "Survival Tips for Women with AD/HD".

Terry is the director of http://www.addconsults.com, an online AD/HD eClinic and http://www.myADDstore.com. She serves on the board of directors of the Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA),

A popular presenter at local and national conferences, Terry has a passion for raising awareness of the special challenges for women with AD/HD and the unique issues parents face when both they and their children have AD/HD.

In The News:

Longtime wildlife biologist Jim Ozier unties and then boards a small boat on Lake Jackson, an hour south of Atlanta.
The remains of two Civil War soldiers have been discovered in a surgeon’s burial pit at Manassas National Battlefield Park in Virginia.
The famous ancient site at Stonehenge may have been built using Greek philosopher Pythagoras’ famous theorem two millennia before the mathematical equation was developed, experts say.
If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, rejoice! The summer season officially kicks off on Thursday, thanks to the summer solstice.
The University of California, Riverside, explained Monday in a news release that the moniker “honors President Barack Obama’s passion for science.”
When one of the ocean's top predators washes up dead on a beach, it's likely that something fishy must have happened. On Sunday (June 17), beachgoers found a juvenile male great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias), weighing 500 pounds (225 kilograms), and reaching 8 feet (2.4 meter) long on Beer Can Beach in Aptos, California, near Santa Cruz, reported KION.
If a giant wave of plastic garbage washing up our shores seems like the stuff of science fiction, think again.
T. rex may have been a highly successful predator, but it would have been terrible at licking stamps, lollipops or popsicles, thanks to a tongue that was likely fixed to the bottom of its mouth.
A small space rock crashed into Mars recently, and NASA has captured an amazing view of its crater grave site, as well as the trail from an avalanche triggered by the impact.
New research suggests that a newly-discovered 'structure' in the San Andreas fault line could result in a massive earthquake, often referred to as the "big one."

Hurting from the Outside - In: The Rise of Self-harming

Ask any teacher or adolescent counselor what the most disturbing... Read More

How Much Water are You Wasting?

Are you being smart about water conservation? Do you consider... Read More

Children Who Talk to Angels

What do you do when your child begins talking to... Read More

Elephants and Teenagers

Something eerily familiar happened in KwaZulu-Natal's Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Park in Africa... Read More

Promoting Your Childs Heart Health

Cardiovascular endurance is one of the five health-related components of... Read More

No, No, No -- What Else is a Parent to Say?

The word no is probably the most overused word in... Read More

Monitoring Your Teens for Drug Use Without Appearing to be Spying

Even if your teenagers do not use drugs, you still... Read More

Personal Responsibility: What It Means and Whose Job is It?

"How many times do I have to tell you to... Read More

Strong-willed Kids: Raising a Spirited Child

Sometimes a change of perspective can make a huge difference... Read More

Parenting

This article on parenting is by a practicing relationship counsellor/therapist,... Read More

Ritalin (Methylphenidate) in the Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Ritalin is a good medication with a bad reputation. Its... Read More

Summer Marks the Time to Remember Active Supervision Around Family Swimming Pools

LOS ANGELES (May 19, 2005) - With Memorial Day weekend,... Read More

Why Fathers Are Such a Necessary Component in the Raising of Their Children.

The first year of a child's life is the most... Read More

Parenting Your Teenager: Ask Questions

Many parents seem to be more than a little confused... Read More

Responsible Fatherhood - A Unique And Irreplaceable Role!

Something happened the other day that made me feel uneasy.... Read More

Potty Training Battle of the Wills

Some children practically potty train themselves, while others struggle and... Read More

Preparing Your Child for the Three Rs

There is little doubt that reading, 'riting and 'rithmetic are... Read More

Pet Loss Can Be Just As Devastating!

'And all because of a damned cat! It's only a... Read More

Your Company Vehicle is a Portable Bill Board; A word of advice on children passengers

Child Safety Restraints and children in work vehiclesIf you take... Read More

Promoting Your Childs Motor Development

Assuming there are no serious motor problems present, what can... Read More

Help! My Kids Dont Listen to Me

Does this sound familiar? Have your kids not listened to... Read More

Top Ten Reasons to Hold Family Meetings

1. Make stronger connections among individuals and, therefore, creates a... Read More

Teaching Kids to Read

We are all so very happy to see that the... Read More

What To Do With A 6 Year Old Smart Mouth Know It All

Just the other day, I was talking to some other... Read More

Picky Eater Syndrome

'Picky Eater' is a label coined to describe the phenomenon... Read More

induction tunnel induction self-ballasted Pete's produce ..