6 Tips for Productive Studying with ADHD

Doing homework and studying with ADHD can be more manageable when your child embraces techniques that help him to keep his mind focused on the task at hand. Traditional study methods of long study streaks and sitting at desks can make your child more distracted and less productive. That leaves no one happy and everyone frustrated. Here are some of our tips to make homework easier: 1. Move around Having your child walk around while studying can help him to focus better. 2. Speak out-loud When your child studies aloud, then her mind is more actively engaging with the material (which means that it is harder for her mind to wander from what she is studying.) 3. Fidget It is hard for students with ADHD to concentrate for long periods without moving around during school. “Fidget tools” can help students… Read More »

The Independence Curve

ADHD is a neurodevelopment disorder.  That means that it delays the way the brain develops the connections leading to normal function in certain areas.  Well connected brains can sustain attention, regulate emotions, resist impulses and regulate motor activity.  Less well connected brains, well, you know…Until those connections catch up, parents are filling the void on organization, completing tasks and providing time management.  Parents are reminding, giving the same instructions over and over while they go in one ear and out of the other over and over. Inescapably this leads to frustration and resentment.  Parents try punishment and kids get angrier and angrier. Parents just want their kids with ADHD to be responsible and kids with ADHD just want to stop getting yelled at.  So, if reminders, yelling and restricting privileges don’t work, what will?   How about regularly treating the problem… Read More »

Featured Doc Blog: Spring is Just Around the Corner!

by Dr. Andrew Burstiner, Focus-MD Red Bank March and April mark the halfway point for kid’s ages when determining what grade a child should be in.  Here in New Jersey, most school districts use October 1 as the cutoff date for determining a child’s grade eligibility.  So, kids born in the March/April period have classmates up to half a year older or younger. As a Pediatrician, I know that this age variability can mean a world of difference in the physical, mental and social development of children.  This phenomenon has been well researched over many years, is clear to most professionals caring for and/or working with children, and has been well portrayed about 10 years ago in the Malcolm Gladwell book, Outliers. Older children in a grade year often have a competitive advantage over their younger peers, and this advantage often… Read More »

Why Physicians Should Pay Attention to ADHD

by James Wiley, MD, FAAP In recent years, our understanding of ADHD has overwhelmingly improved. We know that this chronic medical condition has been proven to cause serious problems with learning, destroys self-esteem, significantly increases the risk of accidents, and can lead to substance abuse, depression, anxiety, divorce, and even incarceration. A recent study suggested that those with ADHD have an increased risk of suicide, especially completed suicide, even without depression. Now that we know so much about ADHD, isn’t it ironic that so few physicians are paying attention to it? Why are so many ignoring a serious condition that is diagnosed in five to ten percent of our patients? Here's who is not ignoring ADHD: The Media. The media gives ADHD plenty of attention, but it's the wrong kind of attention. We know that ADHD teens are more likely to smoke, but… Read More »

Why I don’t Diagnose Oppositional Defiant Disorder (Part 4 of 4)

by James Wiley, MD, FAAP -- @adddoc As we wrap up this series on why oppositional defiant disorder is often misdiagnosed, let's talk about depression.  "She doesn’t care about anything." "He’s lazy! Every day instead of doing homework or studying he goes straight to bed." "She is so grumpy and cries at the drop of a hat." "She won’t even try in school.  When pushed she gets very angry and says the meanest things." "He skips school or falls asleep in class half the time." "Every time I ask her to do something she argues or tells me she is too tired." "She can’t make up her mind about anything until we ask her to do something and then she won’t do it." Does any of this sound like common rhetoric in your household? Depressed kids seem apathetic and don’t see… Read More »