Give instructions clearly so that the child is
more likely to follow through with the task. Break tasks into simple steps.
This makes it easier for the child to maintain attention.
the attention, praise, and privileges or rewards given to the child for obeying
household rules. A token, sticker, or point system may be helpful for keeping a
record of the child's good behavior.
Anticipate where the child may
misbehave (such as in stores or restaurants or in the home when visitors come
by). Make a plan with the child about how to manage the situation before
problem behavior occurs.
Explain what will happen if the child
misbehaves. When misbehavior occurs, follow through with the consequences as
soon as possible. Your child will usually respond better with consistent
reactions while in different settings, so discuss your strategies with school
personnel. Consider requesting daily report cards from your child's teacher to
get a sense of how he or she behaves outside of the home.
Model good behavior. Demonstrate patience, calmness, and
understanding. Avoid angry outbursts, and don't interrupt others. Pay attention
while someone else is talking.
Allow your child to help plan rules and
consequences. Be willing to negotiate these rules
Anticipate when major changes will occur, such as
starting a new school. Also, recognize other high-stress situations,
such as a heavy class load or final exams. These are all times when symptoms
may be more difficult to manage. Talk about what the child can expect and ways
to meet the challenges successfully.
Be consistent. Predictability
reinforces expectations and will help your child develop positive behavior
When parents start a new system of limits and
consequences, children tend to test those limits. It takes patience,
imagination, creativity, and energy to carry out behavior management. It is
important for parents to apply the techniques consistently. The program is
often successful in helping a child behave appropriately and function well. But
if parents stop using the techniques, problem behavior usually returns.
Parenting programs and books may be helpful for some parents. Ask your
health professional for specific recommendations.