Planning the Perfect Summer with ADHD Kids

May 31, 2010 by Dr.Yannick Pauli

Summer is no doubt a favorite season for kids of all ages.  There’s no school, there’s no homework, and there’s nothing to do but relax and have fun. You probably think that summer also means a break for you – after all, you don’t have to supervise the kid’s study hour or wake up early in the morning to help them get ready for school. Sounds like a good time to relax and take it easy! That is, until your ADHD kids start complaining that they’re bored or find potentially dangerous ways to amuse themselves.

During the school year, the routine of waking up, getting ready for school, and coming home to do homework keeps many ADHD symptoms in check.  But as soon as the kids are faced with long days of doing nothing, the hyperactive, impulsive, and inquisitive nature of children with ADHD can pose a few problems.  Since ADHD kids require constant stimulation to keep themselves entertained, your child might get bored easily and often.  He or she will probably be more demanding of your time and attention. And since it’s not possible for you to keep your child entertained 24/7, he or she may get into trouble for finding new ways to stay amused. For instance, there was this 8-year-old boy who tried to cut a large tree in the backyard with a hand saw because he wanted to find out the tree’s age.  Fortunately, he was unharmed, but his parents quickly realized that the rest of the summer cannot go by without some sort of plan.

Here are a few tips that will help you plan the perfect summer with your ADHD child.

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Fluoride: A Hidden Cause of ADHD?

May 24, 2010 by Dr.Yannick Pauli

It’s no big secret that exposure to lead, mercury, and other heavy metals increase the risk of ADHD and other neurological disorders.  For centuries, the accidental ingestion of these heavy metals has impaired nervous system development and function. Only in the late 20th century did governments around the world prohibit the use of these products in the manufacture of water pipes and consumer goods. Today, researchers are starting to worry that fluoride, a common chemical compound found in toothpaste and drinking water, may have the same neurotoxic effects as heavy metals. Some evidence suggests that fluoride exposure may be the culprit behind the increased cases of ADHD in the 20th century.

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ADHD and Compulsive Lying: How to Get Your Child to Tell the Truth

May 17, 2010 by Dr.Yannick Pauli

Nothing damages a parent’s trust and creates tension more than habitual lying from their child.  It’s normal for kids to tell the occasional white lie, but compulsive lying is a habit that many children with ADHD can’t get away from.  Lying tends to come with ADHD symptoms, especially if the child has not learned to control them.  For instance, a child with ADHD might lie because his distractible nature made him abandon an important task; when asked about his progress, he quickly saves face with a lie.

However difficult it might be to deal with this behavior, try to understand that most ADHD kids who lie don’t mean to be dishonest.  All children (even those without ADHD) keep a few lies in their tool boxes of responses.  It’s just that children with ADHD (and related disorders) take longer to realize that lying is not a desirable trait for relationships and character building.  Disciplining your child for his or her untruths is one way to stop the habit, as is finding a way to treat the symptoms that triggered the lie in the first place. Meanwhile, here are a few tips that can help you get your child to tell the truth.

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Fidgeting is Good: Why You Should Let Your Little One Wiggle

May 10, 2010 by Dr.Yannick Pauli

You’ve probably told your child to sit still and focus so that he or she can get homework done.  Anyone with ADHD is no stranger to well-meaning statements like, “If you try hard enough and concentrate, you can become whatever you want to be.”  However, relying on mind over matter can be frustrating and downright discouraging for someone with ADHD; after all, their distractible and inattentive brains aren’t exactly their biggest assets. But what if there was a way to use fidgeting as a means to improve focus?

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Should You Give Anti-Depressants to Your ADHD Child?

May 3, 2010 by Dr.Yannick Pauli

Stimulant medications are not the only drugs used to treat ADHD in children.  Over the last several years, doctors have been turning to antidepressant medications like Desipramine and Imipramine for various reasons. Sometimes, these drugs are prescribed because of a co-morbid mood disorder like depression or anxiety.  In other cases, anti-depressants are given when stimulants fail to yield positive results.  Many believe that the increase in the use of anti-depressants for ADHD is a response to popular media’s criticism of stimulant medications and its harmful side effects. But are anti-depressants necessarily more effective and safe than stimulant medications? Can mood disorders and behavioral problems be treated naturally?

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