Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)
Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterised by inattention, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviours. Children with ADHD have difficulty being still for long periods and are highly active and engage in excessive movement. This can impact functioning at home, in school and with socialising with peers. Diagnosis is usually made when a child is aged between 6-12. ADHD affects 2-5% of the population. ADHD symptoms can improve with age although difficulties can be experienced throughout adulthood. The cause of ADHD is unknown, however the below play a factor:
- Premature birth
- Low birthweight
- Smoking, alcohol or drug abuse during pregnancy
How it affects individuals:
- Feeling restless or fidgety
- Talking a lot and interrupting
- Becoming easily distracted
- Finding it hard to concentrate
- Saying or doing things without thinking (impulsive behaviour)
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
- Applied behaviour analysis/ Verbal behaviour (ABA/VB)
- Positive behaviour support (PBS)
ABA approach to the disorder:
Although medication is the most common form of treatment for ADHD, behavioural intervention such as CBT and PBS have also been found to be effective in reducing the negative behavioural presentation of those with ADHD. Behavioural interventions can help children and adults with ADHD to develop strategies that help them and the people around them (family, teachers and peers) manage their organisational skills to help them complete academic tasks or other tasks required. Also interventions can be developed that help support them manage challenging behaviours.
All Behaviour Consultancy Approach:
At ABC we use the following ABA principles to support children with ADHD
- Focus on proactive rather than reactive strategies. We teach children skills to increase their on-task behaviours and develop individualised behaviour management plans based on the function of their behaviour.
- Praise and reinforcement to increase positive behaviours.
- We use behavioural contracts and self-management to increase independence in individuals.
- We support caregiver and staff to plan and structure activities, and to praise and encourage children for even very small amounts of progress.
- We provide individualised parent training programs that aim to teach parents and carers about positive behaviour support strategies while increasing confidence in their ability to help the child and improve relationship
- We run social skills groups. Our social skills groups meet weekly term time only. Our aim is to support children to interact and use functional communication skills in situations by learning how their behaviour affects others.