Some Communication Strategies for Parents of Kids with ADHD
One of the essential aspects of taking care of a child with ADHD is communication, especially those that have sensory challenges. The tips below can enhance the communication of parents with their children.
Observe when your kid is hearing and paying attention to you
– For most people, making eye contact is a sign that they are being heard, but the mind of a child with ADHD is operating at a fast pace. So, it may not be possible for them to make eye contact with you but that doesn’t imply that they are not listening. In fact, children with ADHD may be fidgeting with objects while paying attention, so as a parent, you need to pay attention to your child’s cues.
Provide short and simple directions for your child
– It’s easy for kids to be overwhelmed while learning, so you need to provide step-by-step instructions for them whenever you’re teaching them. You don’t have to lay out all the steps at once; just provide one or two simple steps before moving on to the next step.
Establish communication strategies
– When communicating with your child, you need to come up with creative ways to do that. For instance, you can make use of visual or audio cues to help indicate the things you want your child to do. When it’s bedtime, you can show your child a picture of a bed or provide your child with a stuffed animal which comforts them to sleep with, or you can play some lullabies that they like or you can read to be them a passage from a favourite book.
Make use of visual aids
– Generally, kids with ADHD often respond to visual aids, so rather than merely informing your child that it’s bedtime, you can get creative. Create a poster that has a series of pictures which demonstrates the steps.
Be soft and calm when Talking
– As earlier mentioned, you don’t need to be under pressure; you might actually stimulate your child when you become agitated. Unfortunately, this is the opposite of what you want to accomplish especially if your child is already upset. You need to speak quietly to your child and as much as possible, stay calm even when they are throwing tantrums. Step away from the flying objects and engage in a quiet activity that your child may find interesting. Your calm state will definitely influence your child.
Things Parents should Avoid when Dealing with an ADHD Child
While focusing on the things you need to do to help your child with ADHD, there are some things parents need to avoid to get the best results.
Setting Unrealistic Expectations
You have to be willing to make some compromises with your child. For instance, if your child successfully accomplishes two out of three chores which you earlier assigned, then consider being flexible with the uncompleted task. Understand that this is a learning process and even the smallest steps are vital.
Avoid Allowing Your Child to Take Control
Always bear in mind that you are the parent here and ultimately, you are the one to establish rules for acceptable behaviour in your house. You need to be patient and nurturing and shouldn’t allow yourself to be bullied or intimidated by the behaviours of your child.
You shouldn’t be overwhelmed! Don’t forget that the behaviour of your child is probably as a result of their ADHD. Although on the outside, ADHD may not be visible, it still remains a challenging condition and needs to be treated as such. Always remember that your child can’t “snap out of it” or just be normal when you start to feel frustrated or angry.