How can I raise a hyperactive child?

Children With ADHD: The Best Parenting Tips

Children with ADHD also have positive sides

All of the tips and methods presented here are specially tailored to children with ADHD or particularly lively and impulsive (hyperactive) children, but can also be used with great success with "normal" children, especially with frequent disobedience. If you are the mother or father of one or more children with ADHD, it is vital for you to survivepersonal freedom for your own relaxationto accomplish. The extent to which this can be achieved naturally depends on the situation of each individual family (single parents, working mothers ...).

If your child has ADHD and very often doesn't heed your prompts, parent and child will come into one Vicious circle into it, which leads to parents having the feeling that the child will never follow because of the ADHD anyway and will only cause trouble, and that the child will only experience their parents cursing and believing that they cannot do anything right anyway and that they are not so loved such as a sibling without ADHD.

Make yourself one List on which you specifically enumerate the positive characteristics of your child. Even if you have a difficult child with ADHD, you are sure to find many positive things about them too, such as: B. spontaneous willingness to help in "emergencies", open-minded towards other people, creative ideas for games etc. Pay more attention to them every day Little things and things taken for granted that run smoothly. Talk to your child again and again specifically about these "bright spots" and enjoy them with them.

Set aside a certain amount of time each day for one common "feel-good time", in which you and your child can play, do handicrafts or read together in a relaxed atmosphere. You should devote 20 to 30 minutes a day to your child only; other family members (especially siblings) are not welcome because of ADHD. Always arrange the feel-good time in advance so that your child can look forward to it. A fixed time of day would make sense for children with ADHD, but it is not a “must”. During the time together, your child can decide what they want to do. However, because of ADHD, television and computer games are not allowed, or at least only for a very limited amount of time (e.g. at the end of watching the sandman on television for five minutes).

Occasionally praise your child during the feel-good time, e.g. B. for a successful building, or tell him that you too are happy to play together undisturbed. Show the away from behavior typical for ADHD (e.g. "freaking out" with yelling and slamming doors). If your child continues this behavior, you leave the room and thus end the time of wellbeing together.

ADHD doesn't make life easy for your child

Children with ADHD often fail to meet the expectations of those around them despite their best efforts. Things that are easy for "normal" children with good self-control are sometimes simply impossible for children with ADHD. As a result, their self-confidence is often "cracked". Help your child through a sense of achievement to regain more self-esteem despite their ADHD.

  • Promote your child's strengths! For example, if they are very helpful and help smaller children / siblings on the playground by the slide, you should encourage your child to do this more often and tell them that you think they are very nice.
  • Set realistic goals that your child can reach too! For example, do you expect For example, don't let a child with ADHD keep quiet for half an hour, but give 10 minutes as a goal. Encourage your child (“I know you can do this!”) And praise them for small advances. The widespread chaos and slowness in completing set tasks that ADHD brings with it, you simply have to learn to endure to a certain extent.
  • Skin contact is also important for children with ADHD, although stimuli are sometimes too strong / too much for them. Take your child in your arms from time to time, put your hand on their shoulder or stroke their hair. But please always make sure that your child is comfortable to touch.

My tip for dealing with ADHD

Some boys (and girls too) with ADHD do not like to cuddle or cuddle, even though intensive skin contact would do them very well. Try a "dry bath". Soap each other pantomime and then rub yourself dry with a (played or real) towel. You can massage your child extensively and remove any tense areas, e.g. B. the neck, also treat more intensively

Clear rules and limits for ADHD

Children with ADHD are little slobs who find their way around life better if they are given reliable structures. Because of their ADHD - in addition to a lot of patience - they need one regular routine with fixed meals, a predetermined bedtime and other fixed points such as B. going to kindergarten in the morning or going to the playground in the afternoon. The child's duties should also be built in. Introduce certain tasks to be completed at set times, such as cleaning up before lunch and dinner.
  • My advice: Children with ADHD often find it difficult to deal with unforeseen changes in their daily routine and then react stubbornly. If possible, announce changes as early as possible and repeatedly.

A orderly environment, that is, a tidy children's room as possible, in which there are better too few than too many toys, helps children with ADHD to concentrate better on a game and to stay focused longer. In a cramped nursery it would be distracted by the multitude of stimuli.

Don't set too many boundaries which your impulsive and often forgetful child cannot possibly keep. Only regulate the things that are most important to you and make sure that these few, important rules and limits are actually strictly adhered to. This is very exhausting for you as a parent, but the only really promising method for children with ADHD. The top principle in ADHD when rules or limits are violated: Act instead of talking! Instead of admonishing your child several times, go to him or her immediately after repeating the prompt and make sure that your child does what is instructed. For example, shake hands with your child if they “don't know” how to put their shoes or picture books away. Take the toy from him that he has just forcibly snatched from another child or is throwing around the room. If it annoys or beats its siblings all the time, annoys it incessantly, or talks like a waterfall while you are on the phone, then there must be room for one Time out leave. Take your child out in a friendly but clear and firm manner or, if necessary, carry them out if they cannot do so voluntarily. Then it should stay in its room for as many minutes as it is years old. If it continues to rage and scream there, however, it should remain alone until it has calmed down again.

  • My advice: Many children with ADHD are downright grumpy about the morning, and getting dressed in the morning often leads to the first friction of the day. Children from three years of age who can dress almost alone can enjoy the "Dressing Street“Help. Together with your child, lay out the clothes for the next day the evening before and line them up in the correct order (underpants, undershirt, stockings, sweater, pants) face up either on the floor or on a couch, so that your child can "work through" themselves. This way, getting dressed is much more relaxed, and your child will certainly be very proud if they dressed all by themselves.

If your child complies with a request without "drama", you should do so immediately praise. Try to recognize goodwill on its own, even if the result of the effort is often far from perfect! If your child comes into the house with completely dirty shoes, but has properly cleared them into the shoe cupboard after they have already lost a number of pieces of dirt in the hallway, you should either look over the dirt in silence or put the vacuum cleaner in your child without reproach Hand squeeze so that it can remove the dirt again. The following applies here: Strengthen the positive, pay less attention to the negative (if not particularly tragic)!

A sensible reward system for children with ADHD

The "reward snail" is a reward system that creates additional incentives for your child to show desired behavior. If correct behavior in children with ADHD is reinforced by praise or, better still, a small reward, it is much more likely that they will show this more frequently in the future. This system is particularly recommended for tasks or requirements that are particularly difficult for your child. Are there e.g. If, for example, there is a monkey show every evening and it takes forever until your child is finally in bed, they could receive a reward point for every evening they are in bed within a specified time (possibly using the “egg alarm method”).

The one shown in the picture "Reward Snail" offers space for eight reward points. Agree with your child what the reward points are “worth”. For example, if they have received four points, they can choose a smaller reward (e.g. an additional bedtime story, half an hour of extra play time with mom or dad). For eight points achieved, there is a greater reward, e.g. B. a visit to the ice cream parlor or swimming pool or possibly a long-awaited toy (which should not necessarily be expensive!). If your child has received a reward point, they can either color a point in the snail shell with a colored pencil or stick a colored adhesive point (better still: a small sticker with a picture) on it.

  • My advice: You can - depending on your child's wishes - design one or more of your own "reward pictures" to color in or stick in dots or draw from a coloring book or a template for window pictures. Well suited are e.g. B. also the following motifs: snake, caterpillar, train (with many wagons), mother goose with chicks in single file, etc.

Give the reward point immediately after successfully completing a task! For children with ADHD under three years of age, it makes more sense to reward the prompts they have followed with a little something (read a book, extra play time).



Protect your child from overstimulation

Too many stimuli only harm a child with ADHD and make them even more excited and restless. Stick to the daily routine with very restless babies - too many trips, visits to friends / relatives or courses with many new stimuli (baby swimming, crawling group) are often anything but helpful. Even toddlers and kindergarten children, whose behavior is typical of ADHD, are not allowed through too many undertakings overwhelmed become. Let your child play alone in the sandpit or do handicrafts with him. If you invite friends of your child to your home, no more than a maximum of two children should come to visit at the same time.

  • Limit TV viewing for children with ADHD!
    do not let your child watch TV for more than 20 to 30 minutes a day.

What helps if your child really "freaks out" again?

It is best not to take the tantrums and tantrums that are typical of ADHD personally. The impulsive children with ADHD are quickly very aroused, but can also quickly (and very violently) "get excited" again. The golden rule for acute outbreaks is: "Silently remove the child from the crime scene."

Do not try to verbally calm the defiant head, in 99 out of 100 cases this will cause the child to become even more upset! Clamp your child firmly under your arm, but without words, and take them to their nursery. It should stay there until it has cooled down. Often it doesn't want to come out until it has calmed down anyway, otherwise you will consistently bring it back into the nursery when it comes out furious. If your child runs out of the room in anger and possibly slamming doors, please leave it alone until it reappears by itself.

It does not make sense to ask a child with ADHD about their "impossible" behavior once they have calmed down, as this often leads to another fit of anger. If possible, try to take the first opportunity after the "seizure" to praise it for something positive.

Running around doesn't always help with ADHD

Children with ADHD absolutely need a lot of space in order to be able to act out their urge to move. In ADHD is a large nursery, in which there is the opportunity to slide and climb, ideal. Various furniture manufacturers now offer corresponding children's furniture programs.

Pure "let off steam" is usually less useful, as children with ADHD are often so turned up that they cannot calm down afterwards. Once a child has really "rocked up", the best way to help is a targeted movement that requires a certain amount of effort (carrying, pulling or pushing a heavy object) to let the child come to rest again.My advice: Romping around in the evening should be taboo, as going to bed is sure to turn into a drama! The best is "Guided" movement, so z. B. dancing or sports (especially good: interval training with alternating fast and slow movement). Ideal sports for children with ADHD are those that particularly promote physical awareness, such as judo and horse riding.

Professional help with ADHD

The Fliedner Clinic in Duisburg offers a special inpatient treatment concept for children with ADHD, in which mother and child are admitted and which is suitable for children from the age of three. If an ADHD diagnosis has been made, the inpatient treatment costs are covered by all private health insurances and, in the context of individual decisions, also by some statutory health insurances.

  • Additional Information:
    Fliedner Clinic Duisburg, Center for Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy
    To the Erlen 69, 47269 Duisburg
    Tel. 0203/72 995-0

How do you get your child to obey your prompts?

Address your child by name loudly and clearlyand make eye contact. If necessary, crouch down so that you are eye to eye with him and / or place your hand on his shoulder. This will help your child focus on you and the prompt. If necessary, have the request repeated ("So what are you gonna do?“) To make sure your child heard them too.

The 1-2-3 rule is often helpful

Tell your child what they should or should not do and what the consequences will be if they do not obey “three”. Then count to three. That's how long it takes to comply with your request. If applied consistently, this procedure has a certain signal effect, which makes it easier to follow instructions.

  • Example: Your child rummages in the flower pot. They say, “No, (your child's name)! With three, your hands are out of the ground, otherwise you'll end up in your playpen. One, two and the last number is called three (you can take a little break here). And now your hands are out of the ground. ”Otherwise, put your child in the playpen. You can send an older child to their room for a break if they repeatedly break the rules.

Special tips for living with a hyperactive toddler

Break down tasks into small, manageable steps!For example, if your child is to set the table, you should initially only instruct them to uncover the cutlery. When it has done this task, tell it to put the plates down, and so onDawdlingcan youturn off with the help of an egg alarm. Give your child a little bit of work to do and set a realistic time on an egg alarm clock in which this task is easy to cope with. If your child has managed to complete the task by the time the alarm goes off, praise them or give them a previously agreed reward or a reward point for the “reward snail” presented below. Has your child carried out an order from you without any problems,please praise it afterwards!Most parents expect obedience from their child and find it natural that their orders will be obeyed. Especially when there have been several admonitions, you as parents often have the feeling “Finally! Why not like that right away? ”And turn to other things again.For your child, however, this means that after completing the task, they will receive less (or no) attention than before, when their behavior practically forced you to deal with them because of their disobedience. So good behavior is not particularly “worth it”. You can only counteract this with prompt praise or a reward or a reward point.

Prepare yourself for the fact that your child is realless sleepneeds and is awake longer than other children of this age. Say goodbye to the idea that your child should be able to play alone with age-appropriate toys for a while. If you keep it busy andget involved in your housework, the work will take significantly longer and the household will not be so perfect, but your child will then be much happier and less cranky. Typical whining times (for example in the late afternoon) can best be bridged by taking walks. To be on the safe side, dressing and changing should be carried out on the floor. You may yourDo not take your eyes off the child, because thanks to its speed and ingenuity, it can quickly put itself in danger in an unobserved moment. This can be remedied by a playpen or a door grille on the child-safe children's room (lockable window handles are recommended!). Door bars or playpens can also help your child to learn to keep busy for a short time (initially only a few minutes).