Paying attention to ADHD

Journal article citation:
Mental Health Today, November 2012, pp.8-9.
Place of publication:

The symptoms of ADHD often show up by age 3. When left untreated, the child may go on to have trouble academically and socially. However, due to concerns about the long-term safety of ADHD drugs on the developing brain, clinicians and parents are often hesitant to give medication to very young children. This article describes a psychosocial intervention, the New Forest Parenting Programme (NFPP), which is showing promising results. The NFPP aims to teach parents of children with ADHD-like symptoms how to guide the child towards becoming calm and focused. The parents learn how to ‘scope’ their child by noticing the particular ways the conditions affects them. They then learn how to ‘scaffold’ their child by helping them to improve on areas they are weak at. Giving praise when the child gets something right is important. So far, 3 studies have been published on the effectiveness of the programme. Larger trials are also being conducted in New York and Denmark. This research has focused on when the programme is delivered on a one-to-one basis to parents in their own home, but group sessions are also available and clinical evidence suggests it is effective.

Subject terms:
parental skills training, pre-school children, psychosocial intervention, ADHD;
Content type:
practice example
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