Does my child have ADD or ADHD?
This question seems to be on the lips of every parent at some point during the early years of their children. Diagnosis is up, way up! Why? Is the occurrence of ADD/ADHD really growing at exponential rates or is there another reason for the increase of diagnosis?
I believe there are many factors at play here. The most important ones being: time, age, education, nutrition and exercise.
Over the next few blog posts I will look at these in-depth. Let’s begin with age and timing
Time & Age
Time is a tricky thing JCan we really say that a child born on the 1 of January versus a child born on the 31 of December are the same age? The school board says so! What about gender; a girl born at the end of the year versus a boy born at the beginning of the year will be pretty close in maturity age around k-gr 2 (girls mature faster than boys before age 10). Reverse that birth order and we have a huge difference; in some cases as much as 2 years maturity! As parents there is nothing we can do about these age gapes. I, myself have a late December boy and and an early February boy. I can tell from experience that they were not the same maturity when beginning school! No matter when the time line is drawn you will see these maturity differences because there will always be a year difference of calendar age in any given classroom.
So, what can be done about this is? Education! Let’s educate the teachers, support workers and parents about the differences and make allowances for these within the class. The widest spread is seen in the primary years: grades K through 3. Is it any coincidence that these are the years teachers and doctors love to “diagnose” ADD & ADHD? I think not!
Support before school even starts would be great to prepare the less mature children for class time.
Before we jump to conclusions about the fidgeting 6 year old lets give them the benefit of doubt and say they just need more time to adjust to a full day work load!
The next post will look at nutrition and how simple changes can help children better focus.
Read part 2 HERE
Read part 3 HERE