Is your child unable to concentrate on studies even when he/she tries their best?
Do you find your child inattentive, distracted and fidgety all the time?
Is he/she always jumping like a spring from one place to another?
If your answer is yes to any of the above questions then your child might have ADHD.
If you have heard of this, then you must be knowing that it’s a disorder that effects learning the most as children aren’t able to keep their attention for long on a certain subject, are very hyper active and unable to even sit calmly at one place.
Though it is a significantly common disorder among children, most Indian parents are completely unaware of its existence or worse, they don’t care or want to believe in it.
As the saying goes,
“Never give up on someone with a mental illness. When “I” is replaced by “We”, illness becomes wellness.”
― Shannon L. Alder
A lot of times we think our children are lazy and dumb at studies and should be disciplined or worse forced to do it. But many times the reason for your child doing badly at school can be disorders like dyslexia, ADD and ADHD. For all we know they might be really trying their best and aren’t able to concentrate due to such medical conditions.
What is ADHD?
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder) is a neuro-psychiatric disorder which is quite common in children. If unchecked this can continue into adolescence and adulthood leading to serious learning disability hampering your child’s growth and social life.
Generally kids suffering from this syndrome will not be able to sit at one place even for a minute. You will find them engrossed in some or the other physical activities all the time.
These kids get distracted easily and have problems in paying attention when needed. They also take longer time to grasp things and need special learning techniques to help them learn.
How do you know for sure if your child has ADHD?
The symptoms stated above are partly exhibited by everybody. We are all in-attentive, impulsive and hyperactive at times, you should be concerned only when your child is always exhibiting one or more the above symptoms consistently over a period of time or is exhibiting these symptoms more than normal children of his age.
This can be tricky to observe or judge. This is the reason it is best diagnosed by a pediatrician, psychologist and psychiatrist.
It’s also important to note that your child might not exhibit all the symptoms but just one or two of them like all diseases. It’s difficult to diagnose this disorder in children who only exhibit un-attentiveness as it’s the least disruptive of the symptoms.
What causes ADHD?
Causes of ADHD:
80 % of the time this disorder is due to genetic heritage.
If the parents or grandparents of the child were diagnosed with this disorder or passed down a gene which is responsible for this disorder then the children of such lineage are more likely to get this disorder.
If a mother-to-be lady consumes alcohol or tobacco during her pregnancy in any form then their new borne children are more likely to suffer from this disorder.
This disorder also can be caused if there is a constant environment of stress at home and your child is sensitive to it.
Also, high exposure to chemicals like lead are known to cause this disorder in children. The exposure can be caused due to adulterated food or newly painted wall.
Injury on head:
Children are generally kept extremely protected to a certain age because they still don’t understand the dangers involved with them falling or jumping off high places. A head injury is something that should be avoided at all cost as it can be fatal for all we know. But if your child has history of his head being hit then he’s more likely to have this disorder.
Though the likelihood of this happening is pretty less statistically.
Low Birth Weight (LBW):
Children born with low birth weight are more likely to get this disorder.
Other points to be noted are that as per research this disorder is more prevalent in urban areas than rural areas and boys are 4 times more likely to be affected by it compared to girls.
Often people with this disorder get cured with just counselling, play therapy and psychotherapy. When the disorder is chronic, only then doctors prescribe medication to help children.
How can you help if your child has ADHD?
Children with ADHD are often depressed and have a really low self-esteem. They have problems coping with excessive stress and rejection. Like in case of any disorder or disease they need a lot of love, support and care from your side.
As a parent you should be their pillar of strength when they fall weak. Be supportive and loving towards your child and help them cope with ADHD by setting routines, creating clear boundaries on what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Don’t be too harsh or judgmental and maintain a pleasant atmosphere around your home.
The best way to help them is to always reinforce positive behavior with praises and rewards along with regular visit to a practicing doctor.
As a parent you have to understand that kids affected by this disorder need special attention in terms of diet, nurturing and education right from the beginning, be patient with them.
The unfortunate part is that most Indian parents are not even aware of this syndrome and would be hesitant to consult a doctor for psychological issues their children may be affected with and wait till the disorder is becomes chronic.
You can do your bit in spreading awareness about ADHD by sharing this post so that children can get the required help when they need it.
Wish you and your child good health and happiness. Happy Parenting 🙂