Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a childhood disorder that affects their ability to pay attention and regulate impulsive behaviors. A child who has been affected by this disorder is mostly restless and in constant movement. According to Harpin(2005), ADHD is so common among boys. In most cases, the disorder is discovered when a child is at a low age, especially at the school level. Normally, at a low age, children are exposed to new materials which they are required to use and learn about the world. It is the responsibility of a child to concentrate on these materials to improve their learning ability. If ADHD is not controlled, it may continue until adulthood. Adults who are affected by ADHD have a lot of issues when it comes to the management of time, settings, goals, and other daily activities (Moseley, Freed, & Goold, 2011). Due to this condition, they experience a lot of issues in their relationship and performance. At the childhood level, a child experience three major types of symptoms; inattention, hyperactivity, impulsivity. On inattention symptoms, a child is easily distracted by various components within the environment (Ahmed et al., 2014). Additionally, it appears to be hard for them to listen; hence, they do not follow instructions as required. As a result, they tend to forget a lot of activities. Hyperactivity symptoms are seen when a child experiences trouble, especially when playing (Whalen et al., 2006). They regularly bounce to keep them moving from one place to another. Furthermore, these children talk excessively. At impulsivity symptoms, a child looks impatient and tends to interrupt others when they are talking. Due to this condition, a child with ADHD triggers various effects on parents, siblings, and society.
Effect of ADHD on Parents and Siblings
When a child has been affected by ADHD, they create a condition that affects the whole family. In this case, they affect how parents and siblings engage in their daily activities. Among all members of the family, parents take the largest percentages of how a child will affect the family. In this case, they make parental jobs tougher and more challenging. This condition triggers more problems that hinder them from participating in their daily activities effectively (Harpin, 2005). Therefore, parents are required to deploy activities, which helps to manage the condition the child is suffering. To effectively manage the condition, parents are required to seek some education training. Training offers parents more skills and knowledge on how to control the disorder (Moseley, Freed, & Goold, 2011). Additionally, parents may be forced to engage in counseling services regularly to monitor how the child is performing. Counseling services introduce other management activities such as therapy which parents may require to pay. Therapy encourages parents to concentrate on controlling daily life, which commits them only to the child. Most parents engage professionals to have good knowledge of mental management. This action increases the family budget. Furthermore, parents are required to engage in support groups within their area (Whalen et al., 2006). This condition creates more activities that parents are required to engage in so as to cater to all child's needs. Parents engage all these conditions as a way of managing child behaviors. Despite home management, a child requires regular medication and treatment (Moseley, Freed, & Goold, 2011). Parents suffer from psychological trauma when they remember all the conditions their children are undergoing. Stress subjects them to poor health conditions.
As family members, siblings are affected in the same manner as parents. In this case, brothers and sisters suffer stress when they see one of them is affected by ADHD, and this may interfere with their development (Whalen et al., 2006). When they see how they create a lot of time in the management of the child who has been affected by ADHD, they feel as if they are neglected. As such, they keep wondering what caused the child to have the condition. This condition makes siblings feel guilty and shame of the condition (Harpin, 2005). Hence, they feel embarrassed when non-family members visit their homes. Therefore, most of the time, they tend to be angry, and they do not enjoy the joy that the family creates at home. Most of their free time, they are required to take care of the child with the disorder. Hence, they do not have time to interact with other children around the home. Due to the lack of information about the condition, siblings develop a bad relationship with a child who has been affected by ADHD.
Information Needs of Parents of Children with ADHD
Life with a teen who has been affected by ADHD is more challenging. However, parents have a vital role that can help to overcome these daily problems and bring joy to the family. As such, parent needs information that will allow them to handle and manage a child in an effective way. Parents are required to develop a positive perception of the child with ADHD (Whalen et al., 2006). In this case, a parent is encouraged to maintain a positive attitude to assist a child in meeting all the needs and overcoming various day challenges. A positive attitude creates a good platform that will connect parents and other family members in a struggle to manage the challenge. Due to this behavioral action, parents are required to believe in their children. After developing positive behavior, parents should establish a self-care system (Harpin, 2005). This system will give children the support they require to overcome various challenges encountered. In most cases, parents are encouraged to establish a structure which they are required to stick to it. This structure helps a child to understand some basic routines which they are supposed to engage daily (Moseley, Freed, & Goold, 2011).
To improve the performance, parents are requested to provide a clock or a timer to a child. This helps to remind a child of various activities such as homework, and hence, they will be in a position to follow various rules encountered in their daily life. Parents are encouraged to set clear expectations and rules which a child can easily follow (Whalen et al., 2006). Parents may integrate rewards to motivate these children to follow a certain principle. Most children who suffer from ADHD do not have the ability to make friends. As such, they suffer a lot, especially when an incident requires friend interaction (Ahmed et al., 2014). Parents are required to teach children how to make a friend, which is an essential learning component.
Digital Technologies That Can Support Parents of Children With ADHD
Technology development has been an essential aspect of treatment. As a way of improving the management of ADHD, technology has been deployed to assist in monitoring their activities. Monitoring helps parents to gather data which helps to understand whether a child is improving. As such, technology is perceived as an essential system that parents may use to help their children to manage the condition (Harpin, 2005). Currently, parents are using electronic diary assessments of how a child is performing. Advancement in smartphones has helped parents to keep updated on every action a child is engaging in. As such, smartphones have been used to remind children about various activities they are supposed to engage in. To make it more effective, these phones are installed with apps that help to store and monitor every action a child is doing. Through the approach, parents may develop an effective technique that will assist their children in staying organized and overcoming some distractions, which affects their performance. A timer can help children to engage in various routine activities and ensure all activities are maintained as required (Whalen et al., 2006). Since children who are affected by ADHD tend to lose memory more easily, parents may introduce dictation technology, which helps to engage in various learning and writing activities. These materials may help a child to overcome the challenges encountered in the learning process.
Ahmed, R., Borst, J. M., Yong, C. W., & Aslani, P. (2014). Do parents of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) receive adequate information about the disorder and its treatments? A qualitative investigation. Patient preference and adherence, 8, 661.
Harpin, V. A. (2005). The effect of ADHD on the life of an individual, their family, and community from preschool to adult life. Archives of disease in childhood, 90(suppl 1), i2-i7.
Moseley, K. L., Freed, G. L., & Goold, S. D. (2011). Which sources of child health advice do parents follow?. Clinical Pediatrics, 50(1), 50-56.
Whalen, C. K., Henker, B., Jamner, L. D., Ishikawa, S. S., Floro, J. N., Swindle, R., ... & Johnston, J. A. (2006). Toward mapping daily challenges of living with ADHD: Maternal and child perspectives using electronic diaries. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 34(1), 111-126.
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