Saturday, February 16, 2008

My Child Has Been Diagnosed With ADD, Now What? - The first steps after diagnosis

When my son was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, I felt a plethora of mixed emotions:

relief, remorse, fear,disappointment or frustration.

You may feel the same way. But whatever you feel, do not forget that your child's situation is not out of control.

There are a number of ways in which you can help your child use his talents, and deal with ADD.

The first and most important step is to learn all you can about ADD/ADHD and to educate yourself about all the treatment options.In this way you can make an educated decision and will not fall prey to the myths and misinformation that is so rife.

You would also become more aware of the popular treatments, and be more prepared to face what might come next. It should also be helpful in preparing you to work with the doctor for managing the disorder successfully. This blog as well as the links on the right hand side of the blog are a great way to start. You can also get the 2 free reports about ADD here.

Deciding to medicate your child or not is an entirely personal one. According to some parents, being able to provide their children with means to lead a normal life is the best opportunity that they can give.

But, for others,as was the was for me (and thousands of others) medication is not a good choice. However, no matter what you decide, you should be sure of it and well informed about your choice.

You need to be aware of the variety of treatment options available, and even if your child is taking medication, some behavior modification techniques, properly and consistently implemented will make a positive difference in your child's behavior and academic performance.

These prepare your child with lasting skills to provide them with help in becoming efficient and productive. The strategies for your child's actions and the consequences should be set by you.

My son with ADHD responded best to well defined limits set on his actions and consistent discipline. This wasn't (and isn't ) always easy, but it's well worth the additional effort it takes.

Remember, that as the parent, you are your child's best supporter, and must encourage him every step of the way.

Work as a team with your child's doctor and teachers to ensure steady progress in all the key areas of your child's life.

And most importantly accept, love and cherish this unique human being.

Build his self-esteem and focus on the positive things he does.

Join a good support group and reach out to other parents who have been through what you are now experiencing.There are many excellent forums and discussion groups on the internet and you are sure to learn a lot from the experiences of others.

And don't loose heart. Having ADD or ADHD, whilst certainly a challenge , is not the end of the world.

In fact, it's the beginning of a new and exciting future for your child. One where he can become the unique, talented and wonderful human being he was born to be.