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Hi. I think my child has an attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. He is only 6 years old. He just can`t sit still and his concentration is poor. Is there anyone who could tell me more about ADHD in toddlers?

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Hi. When your kid is hyperactive and impulsive ADHD may be suspected. However, this disorder is not easy to diagnose. If your kid is overly hyperactive or inattentive it doesn`t mean he has ADHD. This disorder usually becomes apparent in children in preschool and early school years. My daughter was diagnosed with ADHD last year and I have found psychotherapy to be more effective than meds. She had a brain injury 2 years ago and doctor said it may be the cause of her problem.
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Your kid is six, If you ask me there is no real way to tell if your child has any type of ADD until they are at least ten. Your child is still finding things out at the age of six, and if he/she is getting a lot of sleep they will be more excited and energetic during the day. Especially if they have no worries or hardly any responsibilities.
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It is harder to figure out in younger kids - though once they are in school there are signs. Sure - they are children so expect them to fidget, mess around, play and not want to listen!

But - other factors that may be noticeable:


    Constant Fidgeting of fingers, legs, arms - whole body

    Rarely finishing any one task - ie. playing with toy for a minute, maybe seconds and running to next event

    Unable to follow length directions (age appropriate). So instead of : "1. Go upstairs, change into pj's, brush your teeth and get into bed for story", they will most likely only hear "Go upstairs" or most likely "Story". You will need to break down the tasks into "1. Go upstairs, 2. change into pj's, 3. brush your teeth and 4. get into bed for story".

    Hard to fall asleep

    Hard to wake up

    Super sensitive - overly emotional and easily frustrated

    HYPER focus - getting so intensely involved in task they can not stop or change task direction.

    Does not handle change well and has irrational fits when "plans" change without notice

    Impulsive - doing things without thinking and especially if very dangerous to self or others


Too many people are diagnosing every hyper child with ADHD and the problem is: most of the time they are just being kids! Teachers & parents want quiet and co-operative kids but let's be realistic....they are supposed to be a little bit rowdy and hyper!

The other issue is: ADHD/ ADD is just a blanket illness....no for sure known cause or solution. It's like a headache...it could be caused by many things and different things will help it. But you can't just look at someone who's holding their head and say "Oh -that one has a headache, I can tell by the symptons and here is some tylenol to cure it."

Headaches, like ADHD/ADD have many causes which respond to many different treatments. There is also another approach besides any possible drugs/remedies that should be followed. With Headaches, you should have a good diet, exercise program and overall good health. Doing this reduces impact and occurrence of headaches.

With ADHD/ADD (with our without drug treatment) there is also a behavioral approach. Routine, consistent and predictable tasks and accountability must be focused on. Even a child with ADHD/ADD must be accountable for their actions. The trick is knowing when something is a choice and when the child is being controlled by the ADHD/ADD.

Learning how to teach your child to manage their ADHD/ADD is ESSENTIAL!!! There is no "miracle" cure for ADHD/ADD and your child must learn how to live with it and cope with it. Even if meds can help them down the road (pharmaceutical or natural), they need to learn behavior modification so they can survive when on their own. The meds are only so good IF they can remember to take them! As a younger kid with an adult to help remind them it's fine but the time to learn is now - because once they are 10,11,12 etc...they will be responsible for their own activities during the day when you are not there to coach them! (Trust me, my son is 11 and we are still working with him to help him understand his limitations ie. reducing sugary foods @ schools, eating his lunch to maintain good focus, drinking LOTS of water etc.)

Contact your community mental health department to see if they have resources for you - there are usually many groups out there and books/videos/brochures/web sites that have info and techniques you can try. Ask your child's teacher for a meeting and get their feedback. Many teachers and especially principals/vice principals are coached in ADHD and can provide you some resources as well as possibly assist in helping your child in the class - keeping the same techniques there as you do @ home.

I will create a post on this subject as I've spent the last 6 years dealing with my son's ADHD and have tried many approaches. I will share what worked, what didn't, what his thoughts were and what meds we tried. We tried natural remedies, then pharmaceutical remedies and now he's on Native Remedies which is working good for him - BUT, without the behavioral modification approach, nothing would be effective. We still make him accountable for his actions, modify his diet (no milk products, reduced sugary food, LOTS of water, bananas two a day.) It is frustrating but by trying to help your child early you are doing a good thing.

One other note: Your child can still be successful!!!


People think these kids are destined to fail - WRONG!!! Their minds are so full of creativity and genius they just can't slow it down and get it all out! They are thinkers, problem solvers, inventors, story tellers....you name it! Before I started my business I worked with other companies and two men had ADHD all their lives. One is a president of a very large, successful, international engineering firm and the other is a Psychologist who works in the counseling field - and owns his own business! Both men are very much ADHD but I learned from them how they handle their obstacles and "stay on track"....so don't see ADHD/ADD as the negative FAIL that society throws around! It is a challenge - Yes, but one that though patience & perseverance you can work through and help your child work with his ADHD as well.
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Well, what exactly are you hoping to get from a diagnosis? Many kids nowadays are labeled adhd and given drugs, when the real problem is the amount of sugar that is in most foods, think about cutting back on sugar before you go off your rocker with research and evaluations. Really cut back. And see if there are changes.
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