Is there something about your child, that you feel is not right?

Is the daycare or school telling you that you may need to get your child checked out by the GP as their behaviour or social skills are not quite right for their age? Is the term ADHD being thrown around?

It is time to seek help.

ADHD could completely scare the life out of you or you could be ashamed about getting a diagnosis such as this, but I am here to tell you it doesn’t have to be scary or shameful.

You might not want to label your child with anything, trust me, I was there and I completely understand.

Unfortunately, with the school system as it is today, if you want help with your child through school, you must have a label for them to get the assistance that they need.

So, if you are suspecting there could be ADHD here are some tips which may help:

1) First, and I would say THE most important thing is, don’t be ashamed or scared. Quite honestly, this isn’t about you, it is about your child. You need to get them the help that they need.

If you let your own uncertainty get in the way, then they won’t get the help that they need. The sooner you get the help the better, this is imperative for them to be as successful as possible within the school environment.

2) Talk to your GP, if you suspect a behavioural disorder, start with the GP first. The GP is your basis to getting referrals to the required specialists.

If it is the school or daycare that has brought this up with you then ask them to write a report with their concerns and take it with you.

3) Once you have seen a GP, they may then refer you to a paediatrician for further investigation. Depending on where you are based and whether you go privately or publicly, the wait for a paediatrician can take anything from 3 – 18 months.

Take as much information as you can with you to the paediatrician, things like reports from daycares, schools, other activities and your own experiences. If you have particularly crazy behaviour even take some video footage if you can so the paediatrician can see this.

A lot of the time, no symptoms show in their doctors’ offices as we have probably experienced more than once.

4) Accept that medication may have to be an option. Medication has such a bad name when associated with ADHD that is hard to get rid of the stigma. Trust me, most parents who have medicated their children have gone through a lot of heartache to decide to medicate and have generally tried several other things first.

One thing I will say though, unless you have a severe case of ADHD where people are becoming seriously hurt with outbursts I would re-consider medication if you are offered it in the first instance. Most paediatricians won’t offer it in the first visit and you may need a few more visits before they will discuss it but sometimes you may get the odd doctor that will offer it as a solution on the first visit. Just ensure it is applicable.

5) Accept that everyone is different. ADHD can present very differently in many children because we are all different.

Of course, this means that different treatments also work for different people. There generally isn’t a ‘one size fits all approach’ you may have to try a variety of things before you find something that works.

6) There will be other therapists involved in your child’s care depending on which path you choose to take. You can have (not limited to) a paediatrician, psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist, naturopath, behaviour therapist, ADHD Coach, nutritionist/dietician and many more if you choose to try different options.

7) Keep it positive. I believe for every negative aspect you find of ADHD, there is a positive. Although it can be hard at first to see the positive in anything as it can be a very hard road, it is important to try and stay on top of those negative feelings.

You have NOT done anything wrong, it is just a chemical imbalance in the brain and something you need to work with. These kids can be amazing if we get the opportunity to guide them correct and find something that interests them. To do that we need to stay strong and help them.

ADHD in the family can be a hard road and one where you feel you must be a constant advocate for your child. This can be tiring. Get support, ask friends and family to help where they can, educate people where you can on ADHD and it will become more accepting.

Remember, there is help there, you just need to search for it and become informed.

If you have any concerns, please contact your family GP. Share your thoughts with us in the comments.

  • I can vouch that ADHD is hard work. You try so many techiques trying to control behavioural issues. You can try eliminating some foods that may be aggravating it. One Mum discovered her son was always worse aoon after eating potatoes. A girl I worked with, together with her parents discovered her little brother was always uncontollable after having chewing gum. Sometimes he had been given it by others, he went “crazy” and they would start asking questions to the boy and others he was with….Believe or not some kids learn how to “play on it” too. I witnessed a perfect example of this. One of my nieces suffers with the condition. One weekend she was staying her Grandma and I. She did some silly and dangerous so her Grandma asked her not to do it and explained the reason why. Missy stuck her face into her Grandma’s and told her “I’m ADD.” Grandma got a huge shock as none of us had that reaction previously. Her Grandma was a very placid person and it really shook her up. On another occasion I was a victim. She bounced up and down so hard on my legs the pain was so bad in one of them I thought she had broken it. She also hit me on the head with a thick book she was reading so I has a bad headache for 2 days. Fortunately she didn’t give me concussion. She hadn’t had any for a few days but her parents later discovered if she ate too much cheese she was uncontrollable within 24 hours. After trying quite a few therapies as recommended her threatening self harm, and assaulting her Mother they resorted to medication. That was “trial and error”. A couple of them weren’t suitable and actually made her worse. Blood tests were done regularly to check the level of medication in her blood. It was necessary for her to go to hospital to weaned off one medication and start another one. She hated school lessons. She is good at doing things with her hands, but couldn’t concentrate for long enough to learn as much as the average child does. It affects other children in the family too. having to dedicate so much time to helping the younger child meant the older one got very little attention at all.


  • Be aware that other conditions can mimic ADHD so it is really important to ensure that you are not trying to treat the wrong condition. Sensory Processing Disorder (Sensory seeking) will very closely resemble ADHD and many doctors wont be able to see the difference which may lead to misdiagnosis. SPD (sensory seeking) will not respond to medication but responds really well to behavioural therapy. Occupational Therapists are really good at picking the difference between ADHD and SPD so it is worth an OT assessment before you consider medication. Also many truly gifted children have some form of hyperactivity (their brains are just working on a much faster level than normal so they seem hyperactive). Many gifted children have been misdiagnosed as ADHD and once medicated it permanently alters their brain patterns forever removing their gifted potential. That is why it is really important to exhaust every other available option before considering medication.


  • Think ADHD is indeed a hard road and an we live thankfully in a time and age and continent that many different options are available. Still needs lots more knowledge and research I think.


  • My sister in law was told to medicate her 5 yo for ADHD. She refused to medicate her little boy. She did it tough, as did all around him, but he was never medicated


  • Hopefully this article will help those who suspect their child may have ADHD.


  • If the first thing your doctor offers is medication then get a new doctor! You want someone that will help your child learn to control their own behaviour without medication if its possible.
    Also, if you haven’t already, resign yourself to the fact that your kid is going to be really hard bloody work and you are the parent so it will be you putting in the most effort. Its ok to need a break and its ok to have a break but if you slack off then its just going to make things even harder later.


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