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Alternatives to Medicating yourToddler with ADHD

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A recent shocking New York Times article titled “Thousands of Toddlers are medicated for ADHD” tells us that thousands of toddler in every U.S. state are being given drugs such as Adderall and Ritalin when they show symptoms of ADHD. As the article points out when children that young are being medicated there are obviously parents and daycare providers that require more training in techniques to work with children with ADHD. There are many factors that contribute to a small child’s behavior that are external to that child. The first is a schedule in which the same things happen at the same time everyday. This way the child knows what to expect and when to expect it and their anxiety is lessoned. Secondly, children require at least 8 hours sleep and feel the best when they get 9 hours sleep. Establishing a standard bedtime and a standard bedtime routine can make a huge difference in your child’s behavior. Finally, children require patience, love and acceptance. If demands are made on children to do things they are not ready for or to do too many things too quickly they will respond by acting out. Schools need to use appropriate pedagogical techniques when developing curriculum and parents need to let the child tell them what they would like to do or provide age appropriate activities. If you have established a routine, provided a nurturing home and made sure that your child is getting at least 8 hours sleep and your child is still having behavior issues seek professional help from a child psychologist at Centers like The Growth Opportunity Center in Southampton, Pa.



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