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Health & Parenting

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Why Is My Child So Hyper?

Are Food Additives Making Him Hyper?

OK, so sugar isn't doing it. But could artificial colors, dyes, or other additives cause your child to be hyper?

For most kids, the answer is probably no. But some studies show that a small percentage of children with ADHD may be sensitive to some of these additives.

If you think this might be the case, you could try an "elimination diet." Cut out sources of artificial additives like candy, fruit drinks, soda, brightly-colored cereals, and junk food, and see if you notice any behavior changes.

Could a Lot of 'Hubbub' in My House Make Him Hyper?

Sometimes too much noise and activity in your home can make it hard for your child to relax.

For instance, too much family conflict, such as arguments, can cause stress. So can chaotic schedules and lack of sleep.

So try to keep the atmosphere as calm as possible. And leave a place on your calendar for family time. Sometimes, a child who's acting hyper needs some quiet, close time with mom or dad. Cuddle up on the couch with a blanket and read to your child to help calm things down.

Is He Hyper Because He's Not Getting Enough Exercise?

Kids can get restless if they don't get enough physical activity to burn off their energy. You can help your child get the exercise he needs, though. For instance, take your family for a nature walk or hike. Or go bike riding or play tag in the front yard.

If you have a yard, set up a safe space to play, such as a sandbox.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Roy Benaroch, MD on August 05, 2014
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