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  • Child Behavior Problems and ADHD

    A common problem for parents is how to manage child behavior.  Parents often have questions about what is normal child misbehavior and what may be a psychological or behavioral disorder. 


     We all know kids who can’t sit still, who never seem to listen, who blurt out inappropriate comments or don’t follow instructions no matter how clearly you present them.

    While it’s normal for kids to forget their homework, daydream during class or act without thinking, inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity are also signs of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD. ADHD makes it difficult for a person to inhibit their spontaneous responses, including everything from movement to speech to assertiveness.

    Some children with ADHD may be constantly in-motion, bouncing off the walls and disrupting others around them. Other children with ADHD may sit quietly, with their attention miles away.

    There are three primary characteristics of ADHD: Inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, though all three aren’t always prominent in one child.

    Children with ADHD may:

    • Have trouble staying focused or get easily distracted
    • Appear not to be listening when spoken to
    • Constantly fidget and squirm
    • Talk excessively
    • Act without thinking
    • Interrupt often, or say the wrong thing at the wrong time
    • Have a quick temper or “short fuse”

    Whether or not your child’s symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity are due to ADHD, they can cause problems if left untreated. Children who can’t focus or control themselves or get into trouble at school often find it hard to make friends. These frustrations can later lead to low self-esteem as well as friction for the whole family.

    Treatment can make a dramatic difference in your child’s symptoms. With the right support, your child can get on track for success in all areas of life.

    Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) 

    Most parents will have a problem with children being defiant, fighting, or lying at some point. In fact, oppositional behavior is a common concern that parents report to pediatricians.  So when does a parent need to worry?  

    When behaviors are EXTREME and PERSISENT well beyond what is common for a period of 6 months.

    Children with ODD may often have trouble with

    • Losing temper
    • Arguing with adults
    • Actively defying or refusing to carry out the rules or requests of adults
    • Deliberately doing things that annoy others
    • Blaming others for own mistakes or misbehavior
    • Being touchy or easily annoyed by other
    • Being angry and resentful
    • Being spiteful or vindictive

    Whether your child has symptoms of ADHD or is frequently oppositional, getting children to comply with daily routines, homework, and chores can be overwhelming.  Parent training and behavior therapy can help parents and kids to cope with life’s demands. Contact me today if you are interested in learning new skills for how to manage your challenging child.