Intro to ADHD

Intro to ADHD

Intro to ADHD


  • ADHD inattentive type  (old ADD)
  • ADHD hyperactive type
  • ADHD Combined Type
  • No more ADD…right now

Predictors of ADHD

  • Family History
  • Prenatal issues e.g. exposure to lead, tobacco, substance abuse, poor prenatal care
  • Perinatal issues e.g. anoxia from cord, fetal distress, LBW, prematurity
  • Stress and cortisol



Please remember the following guidelines in communicating with ADHD children:

  • Be economical with your words (in other words do not say come and sit down over here  near me dear, but rather “sit down”)
  • Don’t preface a command with would you like to–just give the command
  • Always allow for a receptive lag
  • Make sure you have eye contact before you talk (which may require you calling his name  or touching him)
  • Be positive in directions, rather than negative, it’s much  better to say “do this” rather than “don’t do that” or when correcting the child you could ask a question “what is the right way to have handled this?”
  • Speak at a slower rate to facilitate auditory processing



  • Use Highlighter
  • Stand
  • Earn the easel or bouncy seat
  • Increase natural lights
  • Gum actually increases focus
  • Ticket System…Let the child earn his afternoon privileges by good school behavior as denoted by teacher ratings


The Incredible 5‐Point Scale(by Kari Dunn Buron) helps students become aware of emotions and its degree( such as anger, fear, or pain)

• 5 – I can’t control it. I want to go to a calm place.
• 4 – I want to relax in a quiet place.
• 3 – I can’t concentrate on the task and want to observe the activity nearby
• 2 – I am getting upset about  that . But I still want to keep trying
• 1 – I feel great

Creating a Calm Down Corner
Does your child benefit from:

  • Physical activity
  • Music
  • Artistic play
  • Fine motor play
  • Sensory Play
  • Try a stressball, counting to 10, roller pin, breathing and pulling band

Parent training


  • Pay attention to appropriate behavior
  • Ignore minor inappropriate behavior
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff
  • Clear and concise directions
  • Immediate rewards
  • Keep words to a MINIMUM

John’s To Do List


____     7:30 Take pills
____     7:40 Shower
____     7:50 Get dressed with socks & shoes
____                     Hang towel
____     8:00 Breakfast
____     8:20 Homework/books in backpack
____     Pack lunch
____     Take out trash (Tuesday and Friday)


____     Wash hands
____     Exercise 30-60 mins./ pull ups
____     Homework
____     study for Religious School
____     Typing


____     Homework
____     Clean up room
____     Brush teeth
____     Pack backpack
Parenting the ADHD child

  • Natural consequences best
  • Privelege removal does not always work
  • Parental Consistency
  • Work Detail
  • Cold Shoulder
  • Behavioral Contracting
  • Reading about ADHD together

Alternative Therapies for ADHD
SUPPLEMENTS (in order of evidence)

  • Fish Oil- eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA (3X) and docosaahexaenoic (DHA) acid
  • Zinc  20 – 100 mg
  • Iron   80 mg/day for Elementary age
  • Magnesium     6 mg/kg/day
  • B-6    1 mg/kg/day  for Elementary age
  • Thiamine (really B1)
  • Pycnogenol  1 mg/kg/day

Diets to treat ADHD

  • High-protein, low carbohydrate, sugar-free
  • Can have immediate or delayed effect
  • sometimes called  anti-allergy diet or elimination diet
  • Involves systematically removing the following and checking for behavior changes

1. wheat
2. dairy
3. eggs
4  peanuts
5. corn
6. soy
7. chocolate
8. yeast
9. tree nuts
10. fish and shellfish
11. Citrus
12.  Tomatoes
13. Aspartane MSG
14. Vinegar
15.  Strawberries

Food Dyes

  • Dyes such as sunset yellow (yellow #6) found in fruity drinks, blue #2, red coloring (#40) in jams and drinks, tartrazine (yellow #5) in lollipops and carbonated drinks…can increase hyperactivity
  • Also:  Carmoisine (E122)
  • Quinoline yellow (E104)
  • Allura red (E129)
  • Sodium Benzoate – soda preservative
  • 60.(British Study 2007) proves fooods dies increase hyperactivity in toddlers

Alternative Therapies for ADHD

  • Movement (breaks, stretching)
  • Exercise
  • Nutrition
  • Weight (vest and heavy work)
  • Working Memory Training
  • Biofeedback
  • Meditation


  • Exercise turns on the attention system
  • Reduces learned helplessness
  • Improves Endorphins, dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin levels

Working Memory Training

  • Working memory Is the ability to hold onto information long enough to complete a specific goal e.g. unfinished task
  • Improved working memory increases alertness to environ and social cues
  • Working memory can be trained through rigorous, sustained mental practice

ADHD Concentration building games Dr. Robert Myers, Child Psychologist

  • The Coin game
  • Relaxation and Positive Imagery
  • Mind-Body Integration
  • Crossword or Hidden Picture Puzzles
  • Memory and Concentration games e.g.
  • Mosquito Killer, Memory, Simon
  • Biofeedback Therapy
  • EEG biofeedback therapy rewards scalp EEG frequencies that are associated with relaxed attention (BETA), and suppresses frequencies associated with under- or over-arousal(THETA).


  • Brain Train:
  • SmartDriver and SoundSmart
  • CyberLearning Technology – uses Playstation with EEG Feedback
  • SmartBrainGames offshoot of NASA research
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