Daily Living ADD Tips

1. Often the most obvious is overlooked. If you or someone you know suspects ADD/ADHD, seek help. Ignorance is NOT always bliss!

2. Seek treatment solutions that work best for YOU. And support those others choose for themselves.

3. Continue your education about ADD / ADHD. Research continues daily. Keep up with the latest research, books, treatments; check out new workshops in your area, delve into new online resources, etc. Information can mean healing power.

4. Think long-term and don’t be afraid of change. Since there is no cure for ADD, always be open and willing to try to modifying behaviors and managing other symptoms with revised aids. For example, get on a mailing list for Franklin Covey planning products. If your budget, circumstances and time allow, experiment with computerized organizational and planning tools, sync them with print versions. Remember Aesop’s, “Slow and steady wins the race.”

5. Network. Subscribe to healthcare association publications. Attend meetings and other events in your area. Meet people, compare coping strategies, learn about new products and services out there to help, make new friends, have fun. Don’t let ADD keep you down and out. Get involved and be supportive of others, too.

Time Management for ADD

No need to go it alone! Get help with managing time, thoughts and things. Carry around a small notebook with a calendar insert and pencil, and USE them. Jot down to-do’s, log deadlines, tests and meetings, jot down notes for tomorrow, etc. For more help, try a planning system from the local office supply store or check online for planning pages to download and make your own planner system.

Ask your local or school librarian for help finding organization and planning books, videos, cassettes and other resources. And there’s no need to reinvent the wheel, either! Use what works for others. Ask for recommendations from family, friends, teachers, neighbors and co-workers. For better timing, set your watch or timed email alert to notify you to upcoming changes or scheduled events.

Managing large and / or long-term projects? Get help! Ask you manager or teacher to help you break down the project into smaller steps of chunks. Maybe you work with a temporary helper, too, or team up with a fellow classmate? And see about finding better ways to handle the tasks- maybe use subfolders to help organize materials more clearly, print out hard copies of online documents for marking up purposes and seek advice from more experienced workers or students, for starters.

Impulsive and Hyperactive Behaviors – Coping Skills for ADD

Dealing with impulsive and hyperactive behaviors are managed better if the job or lengthy class is not an inactive, sedentary position. However, if the job is something like sitting at a computer all day, or your weekend course lasts half a day, set your watch timer and try to get up and about for at least 5-minutes every hour.

Stretch your legs, go get a drink, etc. And enjoy active breaks and lunch periods. Pack your lunch so that you can walk to a nearby park to eat instead of standing in a lunch line somewhere. And run to the post office, mailbox or student bookstore during a break.

To handle impulsive behaviors, jot down notes in a daily planner or journal about what happens, triggering the behaviors. Then when you are calmer and things are less chaotic, take a look at your notes and get with your ADD healthcare team (friends, support network, doctor, etc.) to come up with alternative behavioral solutions for facing the issue next time around.

Make sure to touch base and see if you are following your recommended ADD treatment plan, too. Are you taking the recommended dosage of medication?

Coping Skills for ADD- Distractions

Studies show that therapy and / or counseling to help those afflicted with ADD learn coping skills and adaptive behaviors enhances their quality of life.

Distractions from both dealing with boredom and over-stimulation can both be important challenging issues in the workplace. Boredom can lead to distracted thoughts, daydreaming – which leads to loss of time and work production. And over-stimulation can lead to hyper-alert mode, resulting in overactive imaginations and distracting thoughts, resulting in lack of focus and attention to the job.

Some boredom busters include: break up tasks into smaller more manageable chunks, take breaks and water-cooler trips, and ask for more challenging work.

Some over-stimulation busters include: forget “multi-tasking,” do one thing at a time; when possible, use tools like email and voicemail so that emails and calls do not interrupt your routine, allowing you to focus more on tasks at hand. Then only respond to them twice a shift. Jot down notes to help sort out ideas that pop into your mind. See your manger, teacher or advisor about handling chaotic noise, space and other hectic

Behavioural Coping Skills for ADD

A combination of behavior and cognitive therapy has been found to help modify some ADD behaviors. It also helps ADD sufferers handle the emotional effects of their disorder. Basically, there are four key issues involved in behavior modification programs:

1. Start with goals that the person can achieve in small steps.
2. Be as consistent as possible— with times of the day, days of the week, environment, and associated people.
3. Implement behavioral modifications all along the way, long-term. I.e. don’t wait until the end to introduce everything.
4. Take learning the new skills’ process a little each day, one day at a time.

Check with your ADD resources for help learning and incorporating new behavioral skills. There are a variety of treatment programs for adults and children, from workshops and classroom instruction to videos and audiocassettes and more. See which options fit into your lifestyle and budget and don’t be afraid to experiment with something new.

Hang in there! Just like anything else in life, there are ups and downs when dealing with ADD. What will drive you to successful living is dedication, persistence and a little elbow grease, during those down or tough times. Here are a few ADD tips.

Medication for Attention Deficit Disorder

Medications are often prescribed by physicians to help stabilize brain activity or make it more “normal” functioning. They are the same for adults and children. Common stimulant medications that have shown the most effective ADD results are Adderall, Ritalin and Dexedrine. Cylert and Desoxyn are two other popular prescriptions.

Ritalin, the most popular medicine prescribed for ADHD, has been prescribed for over 40 years and is reported by some healthcare professionals as being “safer than aspirin.” Research with ADHD children shows that Ritalin, when taken in the correct dosage, helps most, or some 70 percent, largely decrease their ADHD behaviors.

The exact role that all of these stimulants play is still being uncovered; however, research definitely shows that they help most ADHD recipients lead better lives with major improvements.

There is a downside, though. The medical community and the FDA say that these stimulants are safe in their respective prescribed doses. However, the downside is that: there is extra paper work for the healthcare professionals; short-term (one-month supply) prescription regulations; and FDA and licensing issues with regards to people seeking these just to get controlled substances for other (unethical) reasons.

Coaches

A lot of adults with ADD have benefited from working under the direction of an ADD coach. A good coach can help them learn behavioral and coping management skills and put them into practice to improve their daily functions, like improving organizational skills and productivity.

Some key areas of concentration for improvement could be learning to use organizer and filing systems. Step-by-step instructions on how to choose systems, set them up and use them effectively, monitoring for revisions / updates to tailor an individual workable solution long-term is recommended. They can then be adjusted and even taught or coached by professionals in the industry, like from companies who sell organizer products such as Franklin Covey and Day-Timer, or even by a friend, colleague, neighbor or relative who uses a successful system already and has time to help coach. (You can contact companies like Franklin Covey and Day-Timer for workshops online, in your area or available as tutorial videos, books, etc.)

Tips on Helping an ADD Child

Even though a child has ADD, that does not mean he or she needs to be “labeled” and stuck into a category. Many, many children with ADD today can and do learn to overcome their limitations and far exceed expectations, competing well with those who do not have the disorder.

Studies show that the earlier a child is diagnosed and the earlier treatment begins, the better chance there is for success. In other words, early intervention is KEY.

There are many ways to help children who have ADD. First of all, let the child know that you care (and love him or her, if appropriate, as in the case of relatives). Sometimes after a diagnosis, youngsters may think your opinions of them have changed and that you think less of them. So let them know that this is not the case at all, even share an imperfection of your own with them to let them know you work on issues, too, and did as a child.

Also, let children know that you support them in their challenge and struggles with ADD. And try your best to express your support with positive remarks, praise, encouragement and any help you can.

Note there will be good days and bad days in dealing with the ADD, just as there are with anything else. And no one is perfect. So remember the better days when bad ones roll around and keep on hanging in there! It may help a lot to keep a journal. Jot down notes, (and don’t worry about spelling and grammar- just have fun with it), include school grades, pictures, etc. Make it multi-media, if possible, and colorful. Then during bad times, you’ll have plenty of reminders in your journal of the progress to date and be proud and encouraged for the both of you.