by guest blogger, Jane Sandwood
Many therapists report to having seen an increase in patients with ADHD in recent years. And while boys are still three times more likely to be diagnosed than girls, the diagnosis of ADHD among both girls and women has the fastest rise. The increased awareness of ADHD and the fact that it can affect anyone, regardless of age, race or background has led to a surge in diagnoses. And with an early diagnosis comes more opportunity to help the individual with their behavior, including early interventions such as preschool psychological testing. However, for many people living with ADHD, therapy begins with creating the right environment.
Therapy involves talking through the negative behaviors that those with ADHD exhibit and trying to find the root cause. Often they will disclose the stresses of everyday life, whether it is household chores or too much homework. To overcome this, there needs to be greater intention created to limiting and managing stress.
Feeling constantly restless can be difficult for both children and adults. Failing to concentrate at school can lead to a drop in grades, while career success can be difficult for those who lack organizational skills. This exacerbates anxieties among those with ADHD. Behavior therapy recognizes how the condition itself leads to stress and helps to find solutions to this problem.
You can overcome this by creating an environment for those with ADHD, which fosters a sense of tranquility. Schools should be designed differently, to reduce the need for therapy in future. Think of communal spaces like a spa, designed to encourage rest and calmness. It will be much easier for children to speak openly about their condition if they feel relaxed.
To make life easier, therapists like to provide those with ADHD with a schedule. Keeping things organized and clearly structured reduces planning time and allows for more time to engage in productive activities. Positive behavior can be encouraged using a chore chart. This is great for kids or adults to keep track of what tasks have been achieved.
Rooms should be well organized, so that everything has a specific place. This will reduce the chances of things getting lost, which can add to daily stresses. It is also a good idea to regularly clear out clutter. This reduces opportunities to lose items while also making it easier to clean. Organization skills around the house will improve a child’s ability to organize their thoughts, so that they can get the most out of their therapy sessions.
There’s no doubt that ADHD can create additional complications to an individuals life. However, by taking advantage of available therapy, while also making some significant lifestyle changes, whether at home, school or work, we can help support the individual with their learning and development, both now and in the future.