The Challenges Facing ADHD Adolescents

Dr. Purushothaman
November 29, 2013

The story of ADHD adolescents is one that is filled with great challenges. As a preadolescent child extreme hyperactivity as well as the other primary symptoms of inattention/distractibility and impulsive behavior may be at the forefront. But as the child grows into adolescence the primary symptoms of ADHD are quite often overshadowed by the secondary symptoms of self esteem, frustration, and boredom. After of number of years of both academic and behavioral challenges in school or at home, many ADHD adolescents simply have become demoralized over the course of the last number of years.

ADHD adolescents with the impulsive/hyperactive type of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often times don’t have the extreme hyperactivity which was so obvious in earlier years. Instead it has morphed into the less noticeable symptoms of restlessness or fidgeting. While it would be easy to interpret the lack of hyperactivity as a lessening of they symptom is just is not the case. Instead it indicates that the person is finding a different way of expressing their pent up kinetic energy in a way that is more socially tolerable.

In school things are not really getting any easier and in fact may be becoming more difficult, depending on the environment. This is at least partly due the fact that ADHD adolescent don’t develop emotionally as rapidly as their peers. Additionally, classes are normally larger and there is a greater emphasis placed on personal responsibility with less access to one on one instruction. Let’s take a look at three of the biggest hurdles facing ADHD adolescent in a typical school environment.

Lack of organization: Disorganization is a continual problem for those with ADHD and it may be at it worst in the adolescent years. Anything that has to do with organization or planning may prove to be a serious challenge that likely will require the help of both parents and teachers. A few helpful tips in this area are to use a calendar to write down your child’s schedule and post it where it can be easily seen. The next idea is to color code your child’s things to give them a visual organizational aid. And lastly set aside a few minutes each day to go over goals, assignments, or any other miscellaneous topics which are dependent on organization.

Make homework assignments a priority: As a child moves from elementary school to middle school they often see an increase in the amount of homework assigned each day. ADHD adolescents are easily distracted, extremely absentminded, often have trouble getting started, fail to get the assignment right, and even if they do complete the assignment may forget to turn it in. Work with them to overcome as many of these hurdles as possible while still allowing them to feel in charge.

Behavioral issues: It is no secret that one out of every two ADHD kids has aggression problems which likely will become even more problematic in adolescence. Couple this with poor or impulsive decision making and the result may be any one of many antisocial problems such as fighting or bullying. Be patient and work with your child to overcome these issues, always remembering that ADHD is a biological condition involving neurotransmitter imbalances in the brain.

What Next? When the symptoms of ADHD adolescents are identified finding help should be the number one goal. In this pursuit many parents of ADHD adolescent children have found answers in the form of natural ADHD remedies. Whether you are worried about the side effects posed by prescription drugs for ADHD or you want to get to the root of the problem rather than just suppress symptoms, ADHD alternative treatment methods will deliver powerful, lasting results.

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