Do you know anyone who isn’t susceptible to holiday stress? Didn’t think so. Imagine what it must be like for a child with ADHD! Trusted ADD doctor George Sachs, PsyD, an expert in ADHD testing and treatment, understands.
Dr. George isn’t just an ADD doctor, you see. He has also been diagnosed with Adult ADD. He knows how scary it can be admitting when you need help but understands that life often gives us problems we just can’t cope with on our own. It is his unique perspective that infuses everything we do at the Sachs Center – from ADHD testing for adults and neurofeedback for ADHD to psychoeducational testing in NYC.
We hope the following tips, provided by Understood.org, will help you enjoy the holidays and we want you to know that we will be here for you in the New Year, with the caring connection that will help you to make it a happy one.
According to Understood.org’s Holiday Tips to Help Children with ADHD, planning ahead and setting realistic expectations will help your family enjoy the holiday season. Here are some of their recommendations for dealing with ADHD during this special time of year:
- Pick and choose holiday events. You don’t have to accept every invitation you get. If your child gets antsy or overexcited, you can attend only the most important ones. The family gathering at her grandparents may be a must. But you might be able to skip the community holiday pageant or the party at your neighbor’s house. You might also want to stick with smaller or more active events, like ice-skating with a few friends.
- Give your child a holiday outing heads-up. One trouble spot for kids with ADHD is feeling unprepared for new situations. But talking through what your child can expect during a shopping trip or a cookie exchange party can help. Discuss things like timelines (“We’ll be there for about an hour”) and outfits (“You don’t need to dress up, but please no gym clothes”). And make sure to clearly state your expectations (“Please no headphones once we get out of the car”).
The following advice from Understood.org may be helpful for adults with ADD as well! Acting impulsively is one of the most serious symptoms of ADD in adults. Impulsive actions may lead to financial difficulties, health problems and failed relationships. If you’ve gone through adult ADD testing or have asked yourself, “Do I have ADD?” these challenges may be only too familiar to you.
- Shop wisely—or online. If your child with ADHD has trouble with self-control, a trip to the mall at this time of year could lead to behavior problems. All the merchandising and hype can lead to extra pestering for a toy or a holiday treat. When shopping with your child, create and stick to lists. And if your child tends to get distracted by all the items and people in crowded stores, think about buying gifts and even groceries online.
- Praise your child’s good behavior. When your child is behaving well during a holiday event, show her you notice. You can lean over and whisper, “You’re doing great at listening to other people without interrupting. I’m proud of you.” Recognition and praise mean a lot to kids with learning and attention issues like ADHD.
If your family would like more help managing your child’s ADD, including neurofeedback for ADHD, or for ADD testing in NYC, call the Sachs Center or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.