The end of summer is near and back-to-school time is here. If your family’s summer consisted of lazy days and sleeping late, it's time to get back to a healthy, structured routine. This can be especially difficult if you or your child have ADHD.
Routines are critical to individuals with ADHD. Without routines in place, chaos can ensue. Here are some tips to help you establish routines for good sleep, diet, and exercise habits:
- Meet as a family and develop a school-night routine.
- Allow for 30-minutes of downtime before lights out.
- Reading, listening to soft music, or talking about the day are a few ways to help get settled before bedtime.
- Get daily exercise to release energy and ensure deep sleep.
- Sign your child up for a school sport, dance class, or martial arts.
- Schedule a time for exercise (walking, riding a bike, playing outside, etc.). Morning or right after school is typically the best time for children to exercise.
- Must see TV? Place a stationary bike or treadmill in your TV room and require a block of time it must be used while you or your children watch TV.
- Don’t give up. Even if you can only fit in 10 minutes, that’s okay! You will feel better even after a short burst of exercise.
- Make school lunches the night before and start planning breakfast options.
- Don’t miss breakfast! Breakfast is important for sustaining energy throughout the day. It’s a good time to touch base with your child to make certain they have everything they need for school.
- Schedule a dinner time that works for your whole family. Avoid electronics while you eat so you can chat about the day and wind down from your busy schedule.
Recognize your child’s accomplishments and give lots of praise when they follow through. Little rewards go a long way and everyone likes to receive positive praise. Children with ADHD can lose confidence quickly when something doesn’t go right and may need more encouragement. Let your child know you are paying attention and are grateful for their effort.
You can support this entire process by improving executive function and self-regulation. Play Attention improves these skills by integrating NASA inspired technology, cognitive training, and behavior shaping. Developing executive function and self-regulation through Play Attention will complement the additional work you may be doing with Cognitive Behavioral Training (CBT). You are assigned a personal Executive Function Coach to assist you every step of the way. Call 800-788-6786 to learn more and schedule a free consultation.